Gilt-edged white enamel cross pattée on royal crown suspension; the face with an imposed circular central light blue enamel medallion bearing the gilt metal equestrian figure of Saint Hermenegild within a deep blue enamel ring inscribed in gilt letters ‘PREMIO A LA CONSTANCIA MILITAR’ (Award for Military Constancy); the reverse plain gilt; on original ribbon with pasador top bar mounted for wear.
The Order was created for King Fernando VII in 1814 to reward constancy and irreproachable conduct in military service and is today awarded to members of the Spanish Armed Forces and Civil Guard.
Saint Hermenegild was a member of the ruling Visigoth Iberian dynasty, son of King Liuvigild (reigned 569 to 586) and brother of King Reccared (reigned 586 to 601). He married Ingund, the catholic daughter of the Frankish King Sigibert and converted to Catholicism, leading to conflict with his father. He was imprisoned, refused to recant and was killed on his father’s orders on 13 April 585. In January 587 Reccarded, now king, converted to Catholicism, a crucial event in Spanish history and credited to Hermenegild’s intercession.
In 1951 the royal crown suspension replaced the imperial crown suspension, itself introduced in 1938.