Royal Guelphic Order

The Royal Guelphic Order (German: Guelphen-Orden), sometimes also referred to as the Hanoverian Guelphic Order, is a Hanoverian order of chivalry instituted on 28 April 1815 by the Prince Regent (later King George IV).[1] It takes its name from the House of Guelph, of whom of the Hanoverians were a branch.

After the defeat and forced dissolution of the Kingdom of Hanover by the Kingdom of Prussia, the order continued as a house order to be awarded by the Royal House of Hanover. Today, its current chancellor is the Hanoverian head of the house, Ernst August, Prince of Hanover. The honour is named after the House of Guelph to which the Hanoverian kings belonged, and its insignia were based on the white horse of that kingdom's arms.

In the United Kingdom it has always been regarded as a foreign order, and even before 1837 members of the order were not entitled to style themselves as "Sir" unless they were also created Knights Bachelor, as many were.

Royal Guelphic Order
Guelphic Order grand cross insignias (Hannover 1830) - Tallinn Museum of Orders
Grand cross and sash of the Royal Guelphic Order
Awarded by Kingdom of Hanover
TypeHouse Order
Established28 April 1815
MottoNec Aspera Terrent
(Not afraid of difficulties)
Grand MasterErnst August
GradesAfter 1841
Grand Cross
Commander 1st Class
Commander 2nd Class
Cross of Merit
Former gradesOriginal
Knight Grand Cross
Knight Commander
Next (higher)Order of St. George (Hanover)
Next (lower)Order of Ernst August
Royal Guelphic Order

Ribbon of the order
GuelphenOrden HoferAntikschmuckBerlin
Badge of the Royal Guelphic Order
Göttingen-Grave.of.Ernst.Poten 02
Grave of Lieutenant Colonel Ernst Poten (1785–1838) of the Royal Hanoverian Army. The inscription lists the Royal Guelphic Order among other awards and honours.
Flag of Hanover (1692)
Flag of the Electorate of Hanover, 1692


The Order includes two Divisions, Civil and Military. It originally had three classes, but with several reorganizations since 1841, as house order today it has four classes and an additional Cross of Merit. In descending order of seniority, are:


  • Knight Grand Cross (GCH)
  • Knight Commander (KCH)
  • Knight (KH)

Holders of the respective degrees of the order in Britain were entitled to be post-nominally addressed with the initials, which stand for Knight Grand Cross of Hanover, Knight Commander of Hanover and Knight of Hanover. The initial GCG was also used, and held to be more correct.[2]

After 1841

  • Grand Cross
  • Commander 1st Class
  • Commander 2nd Class
  • Knight
  • Cross of Merit

The Order


The Order has six officers: the Chancellor, the Vice-Chancellor, the Registrar, the King of Arms, the Genealogist, and the Secretary.

Officers until 1837

The first six officers were:

  • Chancellor: Count Ernst Friedrich Herbert von Münster
  • Vice-Chancellor: Georg Nieper
  • Secretary: Ludwig Moeller
  • King of Arms: Sir George Nayler
  • Genealogist: August Neubourg
  • Registrar: Sir William Woods

Officers since 1987

Notable members

See also


  1. ^ Robertson, Megan C. (2 April 2007). "United Kingdom: The Royal Guelphic Order". Medals of the World.
  2. ^ Disbrowe, Charlotte Anne Albinia (1903). Old Days in Diplomacy : Recollections of a Closed Century, by the Eldest Daughter of the late Sir Edward Cromwell Disbrowe, G.C.G. London.

External links

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