Order of the Falcon

The Order of the Falcon (Icelandic: Hin íslenska fálkaorða) is the only order of chivalry in Iceland, founded by King Christian X of Denmark and Iceland on 3 July 1921.[1] The award is awarded for merit for Iceland and humanity and has five degrees. Nowadays, appointments are made on the nomination of the President of Iceland and that of a "five-member council".

Order of the Falcon
Grand Cross Order of the Falcon Iceland AEA Collections.jpg
Grand Cross star
TypeState order
EstablishedJuly 3, 1921
Grand MasterPresident of Iceland
Order of the Falcon ribbon.jpg
Ribbon of the Order of the Falcon

History and appointmentsEdit

Christian X, the King of Denmark, ruled Iceland until 17 June 1944. During his royal visit to Iceland in 1921, King Christian X issued the royal decree founding the Icelandic Order of the Falcon.[1] When Iceland became a republic, new statutes were incorporated for the Order on 11 July 1944. The Republic of Iceland replaced the King by an elected President of Iceland who is the designated Grand Master of this Order. It may be awarded to both Icelanders and citizens of other countries for achievements in Iceland or internationally.[1] A five-member council makes recommendations on awards to the Grand Master, who then grants the award. However, the Grand Master may award the Order without recommendations from the Order Council. The Grand Master and the Chairman of the Order Council then sign the Letters Patent, which is given to those who receive the awards.


Grand Cross sash and sash badge
Knight's Crosses on current suspension and older crown suspension

The Order has five classes:[2]

  1. Collar with Grand Cross Breast Star (Keðja ásamt stórkrossstjörnu), only for heads of state
  2. Grand Cross (Stórkross)
  3. Grand Knight's Cross with Star (Stórriddarakross með stjörnu)
  4. Grand Knight's Cross (Stórriddarakross)
  5. Knight's Cross (Riddarakross)


The collar is gilded metal, consists of links bearing the Icelandic coat-of-arms and blue-enamelled discs bearing the white falcon.

The badge consists of a gilt cross, enamelled in white, with a blue-enamelled central disc bearing the white falcon.

The star is a silver, eight-pointed star. For the Grand Cross class it has the badge of the Order superimposed upon it. For the Grand Knight with Star class it has a blue-enamelled central disc bearing the white falcon.

The ribbon is blue with white-red-white border stripes. It is worn on the left shoulder.

In summary:

  • Collar with Grand Cross – wears the badge on a collar[3] plus a star on the left chest;
  • Grand Cross – wears the badge on a sash on the left shoulder,[3] plus a star on the left chest;
  • Grand Knight's Cross with Star – wears the badge on a necklet, plus a star on the left chest;
  • Grand Knight's Cross – wears the badge on a necklet;
  • Knight's Cross – wears the badge on a chest ribbon.

If a holder is promoted to a higher rank, the lower rank's insignia must be returned. The insignia is retained during the recipient's lifetime, but it must be returned to the Icelandic Government upon his or her death.

Ribbon bars
Collar with Grand Cross Grand Cross Grand Knight's Cross with Star Grand Knight's Cross Knight's Cross

Notable recipientsEdit

Politicians and heads of stateEdit

Artists and entertainersEdit




  1. ^ a b c "The Order of the Falcon". Website of the President of Iceland. English.forseti.is. Archived from the original on September 10, 2012. Retrieved July 1, 2012.
  2. ^ The Fellowship of the Order of the Falcon - website of The Reykjavík Grapevine
  3. ^ a b c d e Seegers Press, Photo from State visit of Swedish Royal Family in Iceland
  4. ^ Caroline Richmond, Obituary of William Paton Cleland (1912-2005), British Medical Journal, 2005, 330; 1212; pdf

External linksEdit