Order of Saint Vladimir

Imperial Order of Saint Prince Vladimir
Орден Святого Владимира
Ster van de Orde van Sint-Vladimir antiek.jpg
Star of the Order
Awarded by Greater coat of arms of the Russian empire.png Head of the House of Romanov
TypeDynastic Order
Royal houseHouse of Romanov
Religious affiliationRussian Orthodox
RibbonBlack with a Red stripe in the middle.
MottoBenefit, Honour and Glory
StatusCurrently awarded
SovereignGrand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia
GradesKnight/Dame Grand Cross
Knight/Dame Commander
Knight/Dame Officer
Next (higher)Imperial Military Order of St. George
Next (lower)Imperial Order of St. Anna
Order of Saint Vladimir, ribbon bar.svg
The Ribbon of the Order

The Order of Saint Vladimir (Russian: Орден Святого Владимира) was an Imperial Russian Order established in 1782 by Empress Catherine II (r. 1762–1796) in memory of the deeds of Saint Vladimir, the Grand Prince and the Baptizer of the Kievan Rus'.


The order had four degrees and was awarded for continuous civil and military service. People who had been awarded with the St.Vladimir Order for military merits bore it with a special fold on the ribbon - "with a bow". There was a certain hierarchy of Russian Orders. According to this, the St. Vladimir Order, 1st Class was the second one (the first - St. George Order) by its significance. According to the Russian Law about the Nobility, people who were awarded with the St. Vladimir Order (each class) had had the rights of hereditary nobility until the Emperor's Decree of 1900 was issued. After this only three first classes of the Order gave such a right. Today, HIH Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna, pretender to the Russian throne, and Head of the Russian Imperial House continues to award the Russian Imperial Order of Saint Vladimir as a dynastic order of knighthood.[1] This is disputed by some historians and by some members of the Romanov Family Association. [2]

First class of the order – A red cross with black and golden borders. The badge of the Order depended from a sash worn over the right shoulder, and a gold-and-silver eight-rayed star was fastened on the left chest.
Second class – The red cross on the neck and the star on the left chest.
Third class – The red cross of a smaller size on the neck.
Fourth class – The same on the left chest.

Recipient Knights and Dames Grand Cross use the post-nominal letters "GCStV", Knights and Dames use the post-nominal letters "KStV" and "DStV" respectively, Knights and Dames Commander use the post-nominal letters "KCStV" and "DCStV" respectively, Knights and Dames Officer use the post-nominal letters "OStA". When an individual is entitled to use multiple post-nominal letters, those of the Order of Saint Vladimir appear before all others, except "Bt" or "Bart" (Baronet), "KA" (Order of St. Andrew the Apostle the First-Called), "GCSG", "KSG", "KCSG", "OSG" (Imperial Order of Saint George).

Wearing of the various grades of the order, 4th class through 1st.
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