Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George Knight Grand Cross Medal
Extremely Rare and Authentic 19th century sterling silver and guilloché enamel Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George, Knight Grand Cross. This came from a Los Angeles estate and was handed down in the family through inheritance since around 1900. Before that history is cloudy, and even though the owner didn't know what the cross was, he told me it came from Parma. Conveniently, that matches up nicely with the order's history. Although I am not an expert in medals or orders, it is my understanding that in order to qualify for the Grand Cross of this order, one has to be Jure Sanguinis (Latin: right of blood), meaning a direct blood descendant going back centuries to the founders of the order. In essence, the Order is full of Italian and French royalty, going back over four hundred years, making it a very exclusive membership, and very few of these crosses ever make it out into general circulation.
Measures 3" diameter. Weight 68 grams.
Condition: both metal and enamel are in mint condition without any damage or repairs, with original patina.
From Wikipedia: The Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George is a Roman Catholic order of chivalry. It was fictively established by Constantine the Great, though, in reality, it was founded some time between 1520 and 1545 by two brothers belonging to the Angeli Comneni family. Members of the Angeli Comneni family remained grand masters throughout the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
In 1699, Francesco Farnese, Duke of Parma was recognized as grand master. In 1731, his son and successor, Antonio Farnese, Duke of Parma, died without male heirs. He was succeeded by the first Bourbon grand master, Charles, Duke of Parma (later King Charles III of Spain). Since that time, members of the House of Bourbon have been grand masters of the order.
Owing to various family disputes, the grand magistracy was, until 2014 claimed by three rivals, all princely members of the House of Bourbon: