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German First World War Iron Cross, 2nd Class

Availability: Out of stock

$225.00

Quick Overview

This original First World War Iron Cross 2nd Class is in very good condition. It retains a short section of what appears to be the original ribbon. The silver is tarnished in places. The painted iron cross retains almost all of its finish and there is no evidence of pitting. The suspension ring bears the mark 'K.M.".

Details

This original First World War Iron Cross 2nd Class is in very good condition. It retains a short section of what appears to be the original ribbon. The silver is tarnished in places. The painted iron cross retains almost all of its finish and there is no evidence of pitting. The suspension ring bears the mark 'K.M.".

Established in 1813 by King Frederick Wilhelm III of Prussia, the Iron Cross was awarded to soldiers during the Wars of Liberation against Napoleon. Designed by noted architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel, from a sketch by Frederick William, the medal was a simple blackened iron cross, with silver trim. One face had a design of a simple oak leaf sprig, with 1813 on the lower arm, and the Royal Cipher "FW" and a crown in the upper arm, the other face was blank. The blank face was the obverse of the medal until 1838, when the practice of wearing the medal with the face bearing the oak leaves showing was approved. Three classes of medals were established, the Grand Cross (awarded to senior commanders) , 1st Class and 2nd Class (awarded for individual merit in combat).

Intended to be awarded only during war, after 1815, the Iron Cross would not be awarded again until 1871. The new design, established in 1870 but not awarded until 1871, had a crown in the upper arm, the Royal Cipher "W" in the center, and 1870 on the lower arm on the obverse of the medal. What had been the obverse of the 1813 medal became the reverse of the 1870 medal.

The award was established again on the 5th August 1914 shortly after the outbreak of the First World War. Its design was identical to the 1870 award, however, the date 1914 was substituted for 1870.

Specifications

Maker K.M.
Material Sliver/Iron
Finish Black
Width 43mm
Height 61mm
Authenticity Original