Author Topic: Imperial Knighthood?  (Read 9283 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Maria Sisi

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 327
    • View Profile
Imperial Knighthood?
« on: October 30, 2015, 10:43:12 AM »
Did Imperial Russia have their own version of 'Sir/Dame' bestowed on citizens for their life accomplishments and achievements like they have in the UK? 

I know in Russia today they have the 'People's Artist of Russia' and during the Soviet period 'People's Artist of the USSR'. I think the U.S. version would be the 'Presidential Medal of Freedom'.

What was the equivalent during the Tsarist era if any at all?


Offline Sanochka

  • Boyar
  • **
  • Posts: 238
    • View Profile
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2015, 11:25:15 AM »
The Order of St. Andrew comes immediately to mind.  Bestowal of this order on civilians and military personnel for outstanding merit was begun by Peter the Great in 1698, and continued until 1917.  Once granted, the order was kept for life.

Offline Maria Sisi

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 327
    • View Profile
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2015, 01:14:01 PM »
I'm probably wrong but I've always got the impression big honors/awards were for those in high positions. Only ordinary civilians I can think of honored were those who distinguished themselves in battle but nothing about those who participated in other cultural activities like the arts.

The closest I can think of off the top of my head was Tchaikovsky receiving a lifetime pension from Alexander III but I don't think he ever received any special title or such.


« Last Edit: October 30, 2015, 01:25:45 PM by Maria Sisi »

Offline Forum Admin

  • Administrator
  • Velikye Knyaz
  • *****
  • Posts: 4641
  • www.alexanderpalace.org
    • View Profile
    • Alexander Palace Time Machine
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #3 on: October 30, 2015, 01:26:55 PM »
The order of St. Vladimir was used for this purpose.  However, under Alexander II, the rules were changed so that only those earning a "First Class" Order would receive the life long Title.  Often, second or third class orders of the various Orders were awarded to reward people, but no title.

Offline Превед

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 947
  • Мой Великий Север
    • View Profile
    • Type Russian Without a Keyboard
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2015, 03:30:45 AM »
The order of St. Vladimir was used for this purpose.  However, under Alexander II, the rules were changed so that only those earning a "First Class" Order would receive the life long Title.  Often, second or third class orders of the various Orders were awarded to reward people, but no title.

There was no knighthood as such, with titles like Sir and Dame, in the Russian Empire. The first class reward was hereditary nobility, giving the holder the right to be adressed as Ваше высокородие, Your Highbornness and have a coat of arms. The lower classes of orders only gave personal nobility or honourable citizenship, with the corresponding predicates. This was fixed to correspond to exact regulations in the Table of Ranks, the limits varying somewhat over time (becoming more restrictive) and differering for military and civilian ranks.

Wikipedia says about the originally Polish Order of St. Stanislaus:

Орден Св. Станислава 3-й степени стал самым младшим в порядке старшинства российских орденов и был наиболее распространённой наградой. Его получали практически все, прослужившие установленные сроки и имевшие классные чины, государственные служащие — военные и статские. При учреждении орден любой степени предоставлял права потомственного дворянства, однако в среде дворянства возникло недовольство от слишком большого числа новых дворян из числа купцов и мелких служащих. В 1845 году Высочайшим повелением было приостановлено награждение 2-й и 3-й степенями. Возобновились награждения лишь с 28 июня 1855 года, но с этого времени право потомственного дворянства предоставляла только 1-я степень ордена Св. Станислава.
=
The Order of St. Stanislaus 3rd degree became the junior most award in the order of precedence of Russian orders and was the most common reward. It was awarded to almost all military and government employees as well as civilians who served the empire with a blameless record, and who has status in the Russian table of ranks. At the time of the establishment of the Order, the award of every class provided the right of hereditary noble status, but there was discontent among the nobility that too many new nobles were being created from the ranks of merchants and civil employees, and so in 1845 the highest command suspended the awarding of the 2nd and 3rd class. Awarding resumed on 28 June 1855, but from this date the right of hereditary nobility was awarded only with the 1st class of the Order of St. Stanislaus.

The famous singer Feodor Chaliapin was awarded the Order of St. Stanislaus, 3rd class, in 1914, but four years earlier he had been made Солист Его императорского Величества, Soloist of His Imperial Majesty, which was an honourary title in recognition of his artistic merits and contribition. Other singers like Mariya Kamenskaya and Nicholay Figner also received this distinction, corresponding to German Kammersänger and Danish kammersanger.
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и березы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Forum Admin

  • Administrator
  • Velikye Knyaz
  • *****
  • Posts: 4641
  • www.alexanderpalace.org
    • View Profile
    • Alexander Palace Time Machine
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2015, 04:17:14 AM »
" Your Highbornness " is "Your Highness" in English.  There is no actual term  Your Highbornness  in English

Offline Превед

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 947
  • Мой Великий Север
    • View Profile
    • Type Russian Without a Keyboard
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2015, 05:16:50 AM »
There is no actual term  Your Highbornness  in English
Agree.

Quote
"Your Highbornness" is "Your Highness" in English.  
Equating those two styles is misleading, as Highness is a higher (royal) style. It's often translated as Excellency in English, which also can be misleading, as Excellency is a higher style in the Table of Ranks. "Highborn Sir / Ma'am", or "Excellent Sir / Ma'am" is perhaps an alternative. Or just plain Sir / Dame, which gives roughly the same idea of hereditary lower nobility and / or the first class of an order conferring hereditary nobility.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2015, 05:19:37 AM by Превед »
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и березы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Kalafrana

  • Velikye Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 2863
    • View Profile
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2015, 09:55:42 AM »
'Highness' in English denotes royalty or semi-royalty.

Before the 1917 Royal Warrant, male-line great-grandchildren of monarchs were Highness, not Royal Highness. Queen Victoria also created her Schleswig-Holstein and Batternberg grandchildren Highnesses.

To call a moderately senior civil servant 'Highness' would give completely the wrong impression!

Ann

Offline Превед

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 947
  • Мой Великий Север
    • View Profile
    • Type Russian Without a Keyboard
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #8 on: November 02, 2015, 02:52:35 PM »
I suppose one could translate the predicates applying to the Table of Ranks thus:

I — II - Ваше высокопревосходительство - Your High Excellency
III — IV - Ваше превосходительство - Your Excellency
V - Ваше высокородие - (Your Highbornness) - The Honourable / Sir / Your Honour
VI — VIII - Ваше высокоблагородие (Your Highwellbornness) - The Most Honourable /Most Honourable Sir
IX — XIV - Ваше благородие (Your Wellbornness) - The Right Honourable / Right Honourable Sir
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и березы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Maria Sisi

  • Graf
  • ***
  • Posts: 327
    • View Profile
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2015, 05:00:35 PM »
So according to the Table of Ranks posted if Feodor Chaliapin was awarded the Order of St. Stanislaus, 3rd class, he would have been addressed as Your Excellency?

So only the hereditary nobility were able to achieve first class. That means the others, II-XIV, are open to everybody else (merchants and civil employees)? This applies to all Orders or just St. Stanislaus?
« Last Edit: November 02, 2015, 05:05:42 PM by Maria Sisi »

Offline Превед

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 947
  • Мой Великий Север
    • View Profile
    • Type Russian Without a Keyboard
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2015, 05:24:30 PM »
So according to the Table of Ranks posted if Feodor Chaliapin was awarded the Order of St. Stanislaus, 3rd class, he would have been addressed as Your Excellency?
No, sorry if I didn't clarify that: The Roman numerals refer to the service ranks (Russian: chin) in the Table of Ranks, not the classes of the order. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Table_of_Ranks
Based on the order, Chaliapin was His Highwellbornness or Wellbornness, like most lowly Imperial government clerks - have to check exactly which one.

Quote
So only the hereditary nobility were able to achieve first class.
No, receiving the 1st class of the order conferred hereditary nobility on the recipient, equal to reaching service rank V in the Table of Ranks. (In many cases an official would receive an order of the appropriate class as part of the promotion to the service rank granting him hereditary nobility, so it was in many ways automatic and governed by seniority, but for some receiving an order of the first class for some exceptional service was a way to jump the ranks, is my understanding.)
« Last Edit: November 02, 2015, 05:35:57 PM by Превед »
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и березы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Превед

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 947
  • Мой Великий Север
    • View Profile
    • Type Russian Without a Keyboard
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2015, 06:16:15 PM »
This applies to all Orders or just St. Stanislaus?

The more exclusive the order was, the more likely was it (in all its classes) to confer hereditary nobility.

The Russian Wikipedia articles on the different orders give the correspondence between order classes and service ranks.

Order of Saint Andrew the First-called:
1st class - Rank I - III

Order of Saint Catherine:
Not appliccable, as it was for women.

Order of Saint George:
1st class - Rank I - II
2nd class - Rank I - III
3rd class - Rank I - VI
4th class - Rank I - XII

Order of Saint Vladimir:
1st class - Rank I - II
2nd class - Rank I - III
3rd class - Rank I - VI
4th class - Rank V - XI
(Untill 1900 the 4th class also conferred hereditary nobility (Rank IV or VI), but because of complaints about all the merchants and industrialists obtaining hereditary nobility through this channel (receiving the order because of their massive contributions to charity), Nicholas II limited the 4th class to bestowing personal nobility.)

Order of Saint Alexander Nevsky
1st class - Rank I- III

Order of the White Eagle
1st class - Rank I - IV

Order of Saint Anna:
1st class - Rank I - IV
2nd class - Rank V - VIII
3rd class - Rank VIII - X
4th class - Rank X - XII

Order of Saint Slanislaus:
1st class - Rank I - VI
2nd class - Rank VII - X
3rd class - Rank X - XII

We can thus see that as a кавалер (cavalier, knight) of the Order of Saint Vladimir, 3rd class, Chaliapin was styled Ваше благородие, Your Wellbornness.

After 1856 hereditary nobility was bestowed from military service rank VI and civilian service rank IV. All military ranks from XIV bestowed personal nobility, civilian ranks from rank IX. Civilian ranks from XIV to X only bestowed honourable citizenship.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2015, 06:27:49 PM by Превед »
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и березы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Превед

  • Knyaz
  • ****
  • Posts: 947
  • Мой Великий Север
    • View Profile
    • Type Russian Without a Keyboard
Re: Imperial Knighthood?
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2015, 04:38:06 PM »
We can thus see that as a кавалер (cavalier, knight) of the Order of Saint Vladimir, 3rd class, Chaliapin was styled Ваше благородие, Your Wellbornness.

Correction: ...as a кавалер (cavalier, knight) of the Order of Saint Stanislaus, 3rd class, Chaliapin was....
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и березы», 1843 / 1856)