A Portuguese Military Order of the Christ; Grand Cross Set
A Portuguese Military Order of the Christ; Grand Cross Set - Grand Cross set of insignia, comprising: Cross, in silver gilt and enamels, 57.47 x 43.05 mm, unmarked, no cracks to enamels, very fine. Mounted on a full length of original sash. Star, in silver, center in Gold appliqu? and enamel, 71x72mm. Hallmarked Da Costa on reverse, extremely fine. Very fine set of insignia, attractive, circa 1900. Brief History: Military Order of Christ has its origins in the medieval Order of the Knights of Our Lord Jesus Christ which was created on 14th March 1319 by Pope John XXII's Bull, " Ad ea ex quibus ". King Dennis I (1261-1325) had requested the creation of a new order to replace the suppressed Order of the Knights Templars (Pope Clement V, at the Council of Vienne, in 1312). The first Grand-Master was D. Gil Martins, whom till then had been the elected Master of the Order of St. Benedict of Avis and who died in 1321. It assumed the nature of a religious military Order, the lay knights being committed to vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. The original seat of the Order was at the medieval town of Castro Marim, in the Algarve. However, in 1357, in the reign of Peter I (1357-1367) having long ago ended the reconquest, the Order moved to the town of Tomar, former seat of the Order of the Knights Templars in Portugal. The Military Order of Christ together with the Military Orders of Aviz and of St. James of the Sword form the group of the "Ancient Military Orders", governed by a Chancellor and a Council of eight members, appointed by the President of the Republic, to assist him as Grand-Master in all matters concerning the administration of the Order.