Badge of the Society of the Cincinnati
Silk, gold, enamel
badge (and ribbon): 4 3/4 x 1 1/2 in. (12.1 x 3.8 cm)
written: on reverse of enamel plaque: "SOCIETAS : CINCINNATORUM : INSTITUTA : AD : 1783" written: on obverse of enamel plaque: "OMNIA : RELINQUIT : SERVARE : REMPUBLICAM"
Badge of the Society of Cincinnati consisting of metal clasp with silk ribbon of pale blue with white edges, attached by squared gold bracket to badge in the form of an eagle with outstretched wings and a wreath around his head; obverse has eagle head facing left, and oval plaque at center of eagle with enameled image of Cincinnatus receiving a sword; reverse has eagle head facing right and enameled plaque at center with scene of city and Cincinnatus in foreground; eagle, plaque and portion of wreath decorated with enamels; plaques with Latin inscriptions around perimeter of oval.
The Society of the Cincinnati was formed in 1783 by Major-General Henry Knox and other Revolutionary War officers, including General George Washington, to maintain and perpetuate the personal associations established during the war. The original medal was designed by Major Pierre Charles L'Enfant and the die cut in Paris in 1784. This example, made in New York around 1802, belonged to Major Bezaleel Howe (1750-1825), a Revolutionary War officer and great-grandfather of the donor.
Gift of Mr. Herbert Barber Howe
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.