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THE DISTINGUISHED SERVICE MEDAL: This is a decoration that can be given to anyone serving with the Navy "who shall distinguish himself by specially meritorious services in a duty of great responsibility." It was established by Congress in February, 1919.
It is composed of a round metal disk, upon which is engraved an anchor under the words "Distinguished Service," above is 1917-1918, and an eagle suspended by a blue and yellow ribbon.
The American military or naval decorations are not hereditary.
COMPANION ORDER OF ST. MICHAEL AND ST. GEORGE (C. M. G.): Founded in commemoration of the date when the Ionian Islands were placed under the protection of Great Britain by George IV in 1818. It is bestowed for naval, military and civilian service to the Crown.
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE ORDER (D. S. O.): Established by Queen Victoria in 1886 to be awarded for special service to commissioned officers of the Army and Navy, "rendering good service to the Crown in relation to the Foreign Affairs of the British Empire."
LEGION OF HONOR (Legion d'Honneur) was instituted by Napoleon in 1802. It is not exclusively a military order, being awarded quite as often for artistic or literary accomplishments, or even industrial achievements. Its award is not restricted to French subjects.
CROSS OF WAR (Croix de Guerre) is a new order created at the beginning of the war for bestowal in the Army and Navy.
MILITARY CROSS OF THE ORDER OF LEOPOLD: This order, bestowed for distinguished civil service to the Crown and military valor in the field, was founded in 1832 by Leopold I. It is a white enamelled Maltese cross of four double rays, the points terminating in silver balls. The military decoration is distinguished by crossed swords.
CROSS OF WAR (Croix de Guerre): This is a decoration instituted at the beginning of the World War and is somewhat like the French medal of similar name. It is a military order exclusively, being awarded chiefly for gallantry in the field.
The insignia is a bronze medal hanging from a red ribbon with green stripes.
ORDER OF THE CROWN OF ITALY: This order was instituted in 1868 by Victor Emanuel II. It was designed "in honor of military men and given as a reward for signal merit and direct interest in the nation." It is for Italians and foreigners.
ORDER OF SAN MAURIZIO e LAZARO (Order of St. Maurice and St. Lazarus): An ancient and illustrious order, bestowed for "the reward of civil and military services, liberal actions and personal devotion to the Sovereign."
CITATION is the enumeration or recital of an heroic act, and is usually set forth in writing.
PALM: Any token or symbol of superiority, success, triumph or victory, attachable to a medal.
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