ORDER OF THE REDEEMER
Decree of 20 May 1833 (Off. Gaz. 19, issue A, dated 20 Jan. 1833)
The Order of the Redeemer is the most important Greek Order. It was established in 1829, during the final year of the Revolution, by the Fourth Greek National Assembly in Argos. The first recipient of the Grand Cross of the Order was King Ludwig I of Bavaria, the father of King Otto, in 1833.
For almost 80 years, the Order of the Redeemer was the only Greek Order. The name and form of the insignia were selected to serve as a reminder that the Greek nation was liberated with the Lord’s help and support.
In the 170 years since the Order was established, the form of the insignia has been altered in several respects. Currently, the insignia consists of a white enameled cross placed on top of a wreath, formed by an oak branch and a laurel branch on each half. In the center of the cross there is a depiction of Christ the Redeemer, also made of enamel and encircled by the inscription: “YOUR RIGHT HAND, LORD, IS GLORIFIED IN POWER”. The reverse side carries the inscription: “THE 4th NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF THE HELLENES AT ARGOS – 1829″.
The stars of the Grand Cross and the Grand Commander both have eight radiating points. The first stars were embroidered. Eventually stars made of silver prevailed, as is the case today. The ribbon that accompanies the insignia of the Order is light blue, with a narrow white border on both edges.
Like the other Greek Orders, the Order of the Redeemer consists of five classes: the Grand Cross, the Grand Commander, the Commander, the Gold and Silver Cross.
The Order of the Redeemer is awarded to Greek citizens who have distinguished themselves in defending the interests of their country or have provided exceptional social services in Greece or abroad. As far as foreign citizens are concerned, the Grand Cross is awarded only to Heads of State.