The History of the St. Stanislas ORDEr

The Order of St. Stanislas, one of the most significant jewels of Polish national heritage, shared fates of Poland in the most tragic times of the partition and struggle for reunufucation and independence. Instituted on May 7, 1765 by king Stanislas Augustus, originally in a single class. Suppressed after the partition of Poland of 1794 and renewed in the Grand Duchy of Warsw in 1807. With creation of the Kingdom of Poland in 1815, the order was retained, divided into four classes and conferred mostly for civilian merit. In 1832, after the collapse of the uprising of 1830 it was added to the system of Russian awards, where it remained until 1917. In the restituted Poland the order was not renewed (it was replaced by the Order Polonia Restituta). On June 6, 1979 count Juliusz Nowina-Sokolnicki (1920-) pretending to the post of President of the Republic in Exile in London renewed the order in five classes (Grand Cross, Grand Commander, Commander, Officer and Member) and included it in the system of Polish stare decorations (statutes of the order being issued in 1984). The new statutes of September 15, 1990 made the Order of St. Stanislas independent sovereign order and excluded it from the system of state awards. The order is divided into eight Grand Priorates (Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, New Zealand, Poland, Romania and Russial). The order is named in honor of St. Stanislas of Szczepanow (ca. 1030-1079), Bishop of Caracow and Patron Saint of Poland. The holiday of the order is on May 8. Prince Sbigneus Potocki is presently the Grand Master of the order. Badge: gold Maltese cross with ball finials, with the arms of the obverse covered by red enamel. Between the arms there are four stylized white enameled crowned eagles. Between the corners of the side and the lower arms there are small gilt laurel sprays with a rose in the middle. The central medallion depicts the likeness of St. Stanislas on white background, between the letters S. S. The medallion is encircled by a green laurel wreath. Medallion reverse: the royal cypher SAR (Stanislas Augustus Rex) of king Stanislas Augustus, red on white background. The dimensions of the badge are 76 x 76 mm (Grand Cross), 67 x 67 mm (Grand Commander and Commander) or 50 x 50 mm (Officer and Member). Star: 80 mm, of eight sets of plain rays. Medallion: the royal cypher Stanislas Augustus, red on white background, surrounded by a white ring with the Latin motto of the order PRAEMIANDO INCITAT (encourages through rewarding), the whole being encircled by a green laurel wreath. The star to the class of the Grand Cross is golden, to the class of the Grand Commander is silver. Both stars are worn on the left. Ribbon: red with double white side stripes (currently made ribbons have an extra narrow red edge pinstripe). The width of the ribbons is 98 mm (Grand Cross), 52 mm (Grand Commander and Commander) or 40 mm (Officer and Member). There is a rosetee on the ribbon of the Officer's badge.


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