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Cat. No. 50


French military portrait miniature with gold frame: Extremely rare hand painted on ivory portrait miniature of a gentleman housed in a gold frame, with a gold and enamel medal hanging from it, Inscription reads Bellicae Virtutice Praemium, and reverse Lud. M. Inst. 1693.

Croix de Saint Louis: The Royal and Military Order of Saint Louis was a military, founded on 5 April 1693 by  Louis XIV and named after Saint Louis (Louis IX). It was intended as a reward for exceptional officers,

The  badge of the order consisted of a portrait of Saint Louis surrounded by the motto ´LUD(OVICUS) M(AGNUS) IN(STITUIT) 1693 ("Louis the Great instituted it in 1693"). The reverse features a sword interlaced with a laurel crown and a white sash, with the inscription ´BELL(ICAE) VIRTUTIS PRAEM(IUM) ("reward of wartime valour"). Knights wore the badge suspended from a ribbon on the breast, Commanders wore a red ribband (sash) over the right shoulder, and recipients of the Grand Cross wore the ribband as well as a star on the left breast. The general assembly of the Order was held annually on 25 August, the  feast day of Saint Louis, in the residence of the King.

Until the death of Louis XIV, the medal was awarded to outstanding officers only, but it gradually came to be an award that most officers would receive during their career. On 1 January 1791, during the French Revolution, a decree changed the name to dÈcoration militaire ("military decoration"). It was subsequently withdrawn on 15 October 1792.

The Ordre royal et militaire de Saint Louis, founded 1693, was also the only military order awarded in New France (Canada). The insignia, which had to be returned to the king when the owner died.

Creation Year: 18 th Century

Measurements: 2 x 1.6 inches (Painting), 5.1inches (the chain to the bottom of the medal)    

Style: Portrait Miniature

Technique: watercolours on Ivory

Inscription: Bellicae Virtutice Praemium, and reverse Lud. M. Inst. 1693

Provenance: Private Collection


Condition: In very good overall condition.


Please note: Shipping and insurance costs are not included in this offer.

(please note additional 16% tax applies for transactions concluded within Israel)



* 2-3 days door-to-door shipment, professionally packed and shipped with EMS worldwide: 87,78 GBP + insurance 1,8% of item price

* Cheaper alternative: professionally packed and shipped with regular Israeli mail - upon request under  (OBS: In this case maximal refunded insurance value is GBP 100).



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