Badge of Order of St. Andrew the First Called
Brief History of the Order
The Order of Saint Andrew the First Called was established by Peter the Great in 1698 and was the
highest award in the Imperial Russia, reserved exclusively for royals, the highest statesmen and military
It had a single class and consisted of four items: gold cross, blue shoulder sash, eight sided star, and gold
chain, only worn during important ocasions. Cross of the order was in a shape of a slanted Saint Andrew
cross in blue enamel over a black double-headed eagle crowned by three crowns. The image of Apostole
Saint Andrew was depicted on the cross along with initials S. A. P. R. (Sanctus Andreas Patronus Russiae
– «Saint Andrew, Paitron of Russia»). On the back of the eagle was enamel ribbon with order's motto:
«For Faith and Fidelity.» Silver eight sided star of the order was worn on the left side of chest. In the
central medallion of the star during the XVIII century was the depiction of the St. Andrew changed in
1800 to a double-headed eagle with a blue Saint Andrew cross on its chest. The motto of the order was
written around the medallion on blue enamel background. Chain of the order consisted of three repeating
elements: the state emblem, trophy with superimposed gold crowned monogram of Peter I and round
enamel rosette with blue Saint Andrew cross. Order badges sometimes were bestowed in diamonds which
constituted the highest degree of the Order. From 1855, these awarded for military achievements, had two
crossed swords depicted on the Star.
According to the regulations of the Order, knights of Saint Andrew had to be either counts or princes,
ministers or ambassadors, full generals or admirals, or governors. Only twelve Russians could be knights
of the Order at the same time while the total number of all knights could not exceed 24 persons
simultaneously. From the 1797, every knight of the Order of Saint Andrew the First Called was
automatically bestowed Order of Saint Alexander Nevsky, Order of Saint Anne 1st Class, and from 1831,
also Order of the White Eagle, from 1865 also Order of Stanislaus 1st Class.
Knights of the Order of Saint Andrew the First Called
The first knight of the order was General-Field Marshal Fyodor Golovin, one of the closest colloborators
of Peter I, a man of outstanding state mind and dimplomatic talents. Peter I became the sixth knight of the
Order in 1703, awarded for capture of two Swedish ships in the mouth of Neva river. Until the reign of
Pavel I (1800), only 231 persons were bestowed knightship of the Order including such Russian military
leaders as Rumiantsev and Suvorov, statesmen as Apraksin and Potyomkin. In 1807, Russian Emperor
Alexander I awarded Napoleon Banaparte with the Order of Saint Andrew in commemoration of the
Treaty of Tilsit. Napoleon's brother Jerome, marshals Murat and Berthier, French statesman and diplomat
Tolleyrand were also bestowed as well as British general Duke Wellington.
After Catherine II, all Russians of the Royal blood automatically received knightship in the Order –
Russian emperors and their heirs upon birth, male members of the royal family upon Baptism and grand
dukes upon reaching of sixteen years of age.
Between 1801 and 1916, approximately 600 people had been awarded with the Order of Saint Andrew the
First Called with total number of awards close to 835 (according to another source – 1050).
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