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ASIA - OTHER & CIVIL ORGANIZATION MEDALS & DECORATIONS

Japan - The current honors and awards

Civil organizations, Other organizations

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Japan - The current honors and awards

Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:22 am

The current Order and Decorations of Japan, along with a little old and some new history on the different Orders.

Supreme Orders of the Chrysanthemum

The Supreme Orders of the Chrysanthemum (daikun'i kikkashō, literally Grand Order of the Badge of the Chrysanthemums) is the most prestigious award in Japan. The Grand Cordon of the Order was established in 1876 by Emperor Meiji of Japan; the collar of the Order was added on January 4, 1888. Although technically the order has only one class, it can either be awarded with collar (or chain), or with grand cordon (or sash). Unlike its European counterparts, the order may be conferred posthumously. The Grand Cordon is the highest possible honor a Japanese citizen could be awarded during his life time.
Aside from the imperial household, only three grand cordons have been awarded to living citizens and eleven to the deceased.


The order features a rising sun in the center, symbolizing the national flag, from which radiates rays of sunlight, wreathed with chrysanthemums and chrysanthemum leaves. The attachment between the medal and the ribbon is shaped into a chrysanthemum.
The collar features the two kanji characters mei and ji, indicating the imperial era of the award's establishment, in classic form and is decorated with chrysanthemums and leaves.
The Rising Sun design is said to symbolize "kyokujitsushouten" (energy as powerful as the rising sun).

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The badge of the order is a four-pointed gilt badge with white enamelled rays; the centre bears a red enamelled sun disc. on each of the four corners of the badge there is a yellow-enamelled chrysanthemum blossom with green enamelled chrysanthemum leaves. The badge is suspended on a yellow-enamelled chrysanthemum, either on the collar or on the grand cordon.

The star of the order is similar to the badge, but in silver, without the chrysanthemum suspension, and with an eight-pointed gilt medallion (with white enamelled rays and red enamelled sun disc) placed at the centre. It is worn on the left chest.

The grand cordon of the order is red with dark blue border stripes. It is worn on the right shoulder

Collar of the Supreme Order of the Chrysanthemum
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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:23 am

Grand Cordon of the Supreme Order of the Chrysanthemum

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:24 am

Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers

In 1888, Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers was established as the highest award in the Orders of the Rising Sun. However, it presently serves as a different award. The medal features rays of sunlight radiating from the rising sun, wreathed by Paulownia flowers. The attachment is also shaped into a Paulownia flower

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:34 am

Order of the Rising Sun

The Orders of the Rising Sun, established in 1875, was Japan's first award. It features rays of sunlight radiating from the rising sun. The attachment is shaped into a chrysanthemum
In 2003 the Order of the Rising Sun was changed. The lowest two classes of the Order were abolished.

The Order of the Rising Sun, Silver Rays
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Last edited by Laurence Strong on Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:35 am

The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:36 am

The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:37 am

The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:38 am

The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 12:40 am

Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun

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More to come. Thanks for looking
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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:43 pm

The Order of the Sacred Treasure

In 2003 the Order of the Sacred treasure was changed. The lowest two classes of the Order were abolished. Moreover, the badges of the Order will from now on be suspended from three white-enamelled Paulownia leaves. This makes even the late Showa era "no rivets" Sacred treasures a rare commodity as in all likelyhood fewer of those were issued than the earlier (pre August 1945) "riveted" versions

Here it the "new" order starting from the lowest level

The Order of the Sacred Treasure, Silver Rays

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:46 pm

Introduced 4 January 1888. Awarded for both civil and military merit. The obverse design shows in the centre the legendary Yata Mirror, symbolising purity. Apparently so sacred, that even the emperor was not permitted to look into it. The circular discs represent the Yasakani jewels, which legend has it the Gods hung on the trees to entice the sun godess out of hiding and bring light to the world.

The Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold and Silver Rays

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:47 pm

The Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold Rays with Rosette

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:48 pm

The Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:49 pm

The Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold and Silver Star
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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:50 pm

Grand Cordon of the Order of the Sacred Treasure

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:54 pm

Order of Culture

It was established in 1937,The order has one class only, and may be awarded to men and women for contributions to Japan's art, literature or culture; recipients of the order also receive an annuity for life. The order is conferred by the Emperor of Japan in person on Culture Day (November 3) each year.
This medal features the five petals of a mandarin orange blossom with three magatama (comet-shaped stones) swirled in the center. The attachment features a mandarin orange and leaf.
The indeciduous mandarin orange tree has been planted in the south garden of the Kyoto Gosho Shishinden since the Heian Era. Its position in the garden is immortalized by the phrase "Ukonno tachibana". Prized from ancient times, the mandarin orange tree symbolizes eternity. It is said that the mandarin orange tree is used in the Order of Culture because this symbolism connects deeply with the timelessness of culture.

The order ranks between the Order of the Sacred Treasures, First Class and the Order of the Rising Sun, Double Rays (second class).

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 9:59 pm

The Order of the Precious Crown

The Order of the Precious Crown was established on January 4, 1888, concurrently with the Order of the Sacred Treasure. , by Emperor Meiji of Japan. Originally the order had five classes, but on April 13, 1896 the sixth, seventh and eighth classes were added.

The order is reserved for females (men may be awarded the Order of the Rising Sun instead); the first class is normally conferred to female royalty. Unlike its European counterparts, the order may be conferred posthumously.



The order after the 2003 reform:

Originally, this medal was only conferred to women, featuring the precious crown based on the design of a crown worn by ancient empresses, encircled by pearls, designs of bamboo shoots, and cherry blossoms and leaves. The shape of the attachment draws its influence from the crests on ladies of the ancient Imperial Court, and includes paulownia, peony, butterfly, wistaria, apricot, and ripples.
In 2003 the Order of the Rising Sun, previously reserved for males, were made available to women as well. This means the Order of the Precious Crown will hereafter be conferred only on foreign female dignitaries at at ceremonial award or on other special occasions .


Starting from the lowest level:

The Order of the Precious Crown, Ripple

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:01 pm

The Order of the Precious Crown, Apricot

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Last edited by Laurence Strong on Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:03 pm

The Order of the Precious Crown, Wistaria

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:05 pm

The Order of the Precious Crown, Butterfly

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:05 pm

The Order of the Precious Crown, Peony

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:07 pm

Grand Cordon of the Order of the Precious Crown

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:08 pm

Since the late 19th Century, the Government of Japan has issued six different types of Medals of Honor (hosho) to individuals for achievements in various fields.

The Medals of Honor were established on December 7, 1881, and were first awarded the following year. Several expansions and amendments have been made since then. The medal design for all six types are the same, bearing the words 褒章 on a gilt central disc surrounded by a silver ring of cherry blossoms on the obverse; only the colors of the ribbon differ.

The Medals of Honor are awarded twice each year, on April 29 (the birthday of Showa Emperor) and November 3 (the birthday of Meiji Emperor). About 800 individuals receive these medals on each occasion.

Medal with Red Ribbon

to individuals who have risked their own lives to save others

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:08 pm

Medal with Green Ribbon

to morally remarkable individuals who have actively taken part in serving society

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:09 pm

Medal with Yellow Ribbon

to individuals who, through their diligence and perseverance, became public role models

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:10 pm

Medal with Purple Ribbon

to individuals who have contributed to academic and artistic developments, improvements and accomplishments

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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:11 pm

Medal with Blue Ribbon

to individuals who have made prosperous efforts in the areas of public welfare and education

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Last edited by Laurence Strong on Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread postby Laurence Strong » Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:12 pm

Medal with Dark Blue Ribbon

to individuals who have made exceptionally generous financial contributions for the good of the public

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In all fairness, this is not my material, but a compilation of info from the Japanese Decoration Bureau, and Wikipedia
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