Military William Order

Militaire Willems-Orde

  • Order instituted on 30 April 1815 by King William I.
  • Order awarded for feats of excellent bravery on the battlefield and as a meritorious decoration to senior military officers. In the spring of 1940 it was decided that civilians would receive the Military Order of William for heroic acts in the resistance.
  • Order have four classes.
  • The badge of the Order is a white-enamelled Maltese Cross, in silver for the 4th Class and in gilt for higher classes; a green enamelled Burgundy Cross appears between the arms of the Maltese Cross. The obverse bears a golden firesteel at the centre, and the motto Voor Moed – Beleid – Trouw (For Bravery – Leadership – Loyalty) on the arms of the Maltese Cross. Both the Burgundy Cross and the firesteel were symbols of the House of Valois-Burgundy during their lordship of the Netherlands and probably are meant to recall its crucial unifying role in the history of the Netherlands. The reverse central disc bears a crowned monogram "W" (for King William I) surrounded by a laurel wreath. The badge hangs from a royal crown.
  • The star of the Grand Cross is a silver, 8-pointed star with straight rays; the obverse of the badge of the Order, minus the crown, appears at its centre.
  • William I - first King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg.