Knighthood, The Most Honourable Order of the Bath. The Order of the Bath was probably instituted by King Henry IV , 1399, although Selden and Ashmole are of opinion that the said King did not institute, but rather revive it. After the coronation of Charles II., the Order was neglected until the year 1725, when George I. revived and remodelled it. However, several alterations have since been made, and on the second day of January, 1815, it was enlarged and divided into three classes, in commemoration of " the auspicious termination of the long and arduous contest in which this empire has been engaged." On the 14th April, 1847, it was further increased by the addition of Civil Divisions of the second and third classes, when new Statutes were made for the Government of the Order, which have since been revised and the Order now consists of the following members, viz. :
1st Class Knight's Grand Cross for themilitary service, fifty, exclusive of the Sovereign and princes of the blood royal, and such distinguished foreigners as may be nominated Honorary Knights Grand Cross, and twenty. five for the Civil Service. By Eoyal Warrant, 2nd June, 1725, all Knights Grand Cross are entitled to a grant of supporters.
2nd Class Knight's Commanders for themilitary service, one hundred and twentythree, and for the civil service eighty, exclusive of foreign officers, who may be admitted as Honorary Knights Commanders. In the event of actions of signal distinction, or of future wars, the numbers of this, as well as of the third class, may be increased. The members of the second class are entitled to the distinctive appellation of Knighthood, after having been invested with the Insignia.
3rd Class Companions of the Order sixhundred and ninety, and for the Civil Service two hundred and fifty ; they take precedence of Esquires, but are not entitled to the appellation or style of Knights. No officer can be nominated to the military division of the third class of the Order, unless his services have been marked by special mention of his name as having distinguished himself in action against the enemy. This class has never been conferred upon any officer below the rank of Major in the Army, and Commander in the Navy.
The Badge for the Military Classes of theOrder is a gold Maltese cross, of eight points, enamelled argent; in each angle a lion passant-guardant or ; in the centre, the rose, thistle and shamrock, issuant from a sceptre between three imperial crowns or, within a circle gules, thereon the motto of the Order, surrounded by two branches of laurel, proper, issuing from an escrol azure, inscribed Ich Dien (I serve) in letters of gold. It is worn by the Knights Orand Cross pendent from a red ribbon across the right shoulder, by the Knights Commanders around the neck, and by the Companions suspended from the left breast.
The Collar is of gold (weight 30oz. Troy),is composed of nine imperial crowns, and eight roses, thistles and shamrocks, issuing from a sceptre, enamelled in their proper colours, Lied or linked together with seventeen gold knots, enamelled white, having the Badge of the Order pendent therefrom."
The Star of the Grand Cross of the MilitaryDivision is formed of rays or flames of silver -, thereon a gold Maltese cross, and in the centre, within the motto, branches of laurel, issuant as in the Badge.
The Badge and Star of the Knights GrandCross of the Civil Division are the old badge and star of the Order. The Star is of silver, formed with eight points or rays, charged with three imperial crowns, proper upon a glory of silver rays, surrounded with a red circle, upon which is the motto of the Order. The Badge is of gold, composed of a rose, thistle, and shamrock, issuing from a sceptre between three imperial crowns, encircled by the motto_. The Knights Commanders of the Civil Division wear the like badge, of a smaller size, round the neck by a red ribbon, and the Companions of the same division the same, but of a still smaller size, from the left breast, pendent from a red ribbon. The Star is a cross -pattee silver, charged with three imperial crowns proper upon a glory of silver rays, surrounded with a red circle, upon which is the motto of the Order. The Star of the Knights Commanders Civil Division is of the same form and size, omitting the laui'el wreath and the escroU, and is worn embroidered on the left side.
Ribbon of the Order pale red.
Motto Teia Juncta in Uno. Throe joinedin one.