ORDER OF THE PHOENIX
Legislative Decree of 13 May 1926 (Off. Gaz. 180, issue A, dated 3 June 1926)
The Order of the Phoenix was established in 1926 in order to replace the previously existing Order of George I (which was re-established in 1935 with the restoration of the monarchy, only to be abolished again in 1975). The Order is named after the Phoenix, a mythical bird and symbol of rebirth, and is third in the hierarchy of Orders.
Until 1927 both Greek citizens and foreigners were admitted into the Order. In 1927 the Constitution forbade the conferring of decorations on Greek citizens, so the Order continued to recognize only the services provided by foreigners. After the Restoration of the Monarchy in 1935, and in accordance with the law of 19-4-1935 (Off. Gaz. 170, A), the Order could once again be conferred on Greek citizens.
Nowadays, the Order of the Phoenix is awarded to Greeks who have distinguished themselves in the fields of public administration, science, commerce, industry and shipping, and the arts and letters. It is also conferred on foreigners who have contributed to enhancing Greece’s stature abroad in the aforementioned fields.
The insignia of the Order of the Phoenix is cross-shaped. It is made of white enamel, and in its center lies a depiction of a phoenix bird in relief, emerging out of the flames with open wings. The phoenix is also depicted in relief in the center of the eight-pointed star. The reverse side of the cross bears the national emblem of the Hellenic Republic. The ribbon accompanying the insignia is deep yellow, with a narrow black border on both edges
Like the other Orders, the Order of the Phoenix consists of five classes: the Grand Cross, the Grand Commander, the Commander, the Gold and Silver Cross.