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A painting of Captain Kidd with a red sash around his waist.

A sash is a large and usually colorful ribbon or band of material worn around the body, draping from one shoulder to the opposing hip, or else running around the waist. The sash around the waist may be worn in daily attire, but the sash from shoulder to hip is worn on ceremonial occasions only. Ceremonial sashes are also found in a V-shaped format, draping from both shoulders to the stomach like a large necklace.

Contents

Aristocratic and civilian useEdit

 
Prince Louis, Duke of Nemours wearing a red sash (Legion of Honour) together with his ceremonial military uniform. Date 1840s.

In Latin America and some countries of Africa, a special presidential sash indicates a president's authority. In France and Italy, sashes, featuring the national flag tricolours and worn on the right shoulder, are used by public authorities and local officials, such as legislators, in public ceremonial events.

Sashes traditionally form part of formal military attire (compare the sword-belt known as a baldric, and the cummerbund). Most of the European royal families wear sashes as a part of their royal (and/or military) regalia. Some orders such as the Légion d'honneur include sashes as part of the seniormost grades' insignia. Likewise Italian military officers wear light blue sashes over the right shoulder on ceremonial occasions.

Military useEdit

 
The sashes of the French Foreign Legion are blue.

Sashes are a distinctive feature of some regiments of the modern French Army for parade dress. They are worn around the waist in either dark blue or red by corps such as the Foreign Legion, the Spahis, the Chasseurs d' Afrique and the Tirailleurs[1] which were originally raised in North Africa during the period of French colonial rule. In its traditional Franco-Algerian or zouave form the sash ("ceinture de laine") was four metres in length and forty centimetres in width. In the historic French Army of Africa, sashes were worn around the waist in either blue for European or red for indigenous troops.[2]

 
Elaborately emboroidered sash from 1635-1642.

At the time of the American Civil War (1861–65) silk sashes in crimson were authorized for officers and red woolen sashes for non-commissioned officers of the regular US Army (Army Regulations of 1861). US Generals continued to wear buff silk sashes in full dress until 1917. In the Confederate Army, sash colour indicated the corps or status of the wearer. For example: gold for cavalry, burgundy for infantry, black for chaplains, red for sergeants, green or blue for medics, and grey or cream for general officers. With the exception of the West Point Band Drum Major, today the West Point cadet officer is the only person in the US Army who wears a sword and sash, the sole guardian of the tradition.[3][4]

The modern British Army retains a scarlet sash for wear in certain orders of dress by sergeants and above serving in infantry regiments, over the right shoulder to the left hip. A similar crimson silk net sash is worn around the waist by officers of the Foot Guards in scarlet full dress and officers of line infantry in dark blue "Number 1" dress. The same practice is followed in some Commonwealth armies.

The present day armies of India and Pakistan both make extensive use of waist-sashes for ceremonial wear. The colours vary widely according to regiment or branch and match those of the turbans where worn. Typically two or more colours are incorporated in the sash, in vertical stripes. One end hangs loose at the side and may have an ornamental fringe. The practice of wearing distinctive regimental sashes or cummerbunds goes back to the late nineteenth century.[5]

In addition to those detailed above, several other modern armies retain waist-sashes for wear by officers in ceremonial uniforms. These include the armies of Norway (crimson sashes), Sweden (yellow and blue), Greece (light blue and white), the Netherlands (orange), Portugal (crimson) and Spain (red and gold for generals, light blue for general staff and crimson for infantry officers).[6] The Spanish Regulares (infantry descended from colonial regiments formerly recruited in Spanish Morocco) retain their historic waist-sashes for all ranks in colours that vary according to the unit.[7]

Until 1914 waist-sashes in distinctive national colours were worn as a peace-time mark of rank by officers of the Imperial German, Austro-Hungarian and Russian armies, amongst others. Japanese officers continued the practice in full dress uniform until 1940.[8]

Cross-belts resembling sashes are worn by Drum Majors in the Dutch, British and some Commonwealth armies. These carry scrolls bearing the names of battle honours.

Modern civilian and cultural useEdit

 
Winner of a beauty pageant wearing two sashes
 
President of Republic of Suriname wearing a ceremonial V-style sash

In the United States, the sash has picked up a more ceremonial and less practical purpose. Sashes are used at higher education commencement ceremonies, by high school homecoming parade nominees, in beauty pageants, as well as by corporations to acknowledge high achievement.

In Canada, hand-woven sashes (called ceintures fléchées and sometimes "L'Assomption sash" after a town in which they were mass-produced) were derived from Iroquoiuan carrying belts sometime in the 18th century. As a powerful multi-use tool this sash found use in the fur trade which brought it into the North West. In this period the weave got tighter and size expanded, with some examples more than four metres in length. Coloured thread was widely used. Today it is considered to be primarily a symbol of the 1837 Lower Canada Rebellion Patriotes and the Métis peoples.

In Ireland, especially Northern Ireland, the sash is a symbol of the Orange Order. Orange Order sashes were originally of the ceremonial shoulder-to-hip variety as worn by the British military. Over the 20th century the sash has been mostly replaced by V-shaped collarettes, which are still generally referred to as sashes. The item is celebrated in the song 'The Sash my Father Wore'.

Sashes are also worn by Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts and Beauty Pageant Participants. Badges are sewn onto the sash, to indicate achievements of the Scout.

Sashes are part of the diplomatic uniform of many countries.

Many modern schools of Chinese martial arts use sashes of various colors to denote rank as a reflection of the Japanese ranking system using belts.

The Japanese equivalent of a sash, obi, serves to hold a kimono or yukata together.

Honorific ordersEdit

Sashes are indicative of holding the class of Grand Cross or Grand Cordon in a chivalric order or an order of merit. The sash is usually worn from the right shoulder to the left hip. A few orders do the contrary, according to their traditional statute.

 
Prince William, Duke of Cambridge wearing Garter Riband and Star.
 
1720s Garter sash.

Orders with the sash worn on the left shoulderEdit

Europe :

Asia :

Malaysia :

  Federation of Malaysia
Decorations Post-nominal Grade Ribbon Sources
The Most Exalted and Most Illustrious Royal Family Order of Malaysia
Darjah Kerabat Diraja Malaysia
DKM Recipient   [19][20]
The Most Exalted Order of the Crown of the Realm
Darjah Utama Seri Mahkota Negara
DMN Recipient   [20][21]
  Sultanate of Kedah
The Most Illustrious Royal Family Order of Kedah
Darjah Kerabat Yang Amat Mulia Kedah
DK Member   [22]
  Sultanate of Kelantan
The Most Esteemed Royal Family Order (Kelantan) (Al-Yunusi Star)
Darjah Kerabat Yang Amat di-Hormati (Bintang al-Yunusi)
DK Recipient   [23][24]
  Sultanate of Negeri Sembilan
The Most Illustrious Royal Family Order of Negeri Sembilan
Darjah Kerabat Neegri Sembilan Yang Amat di-Mulia
DKNS Member   [25]
The Order of Negeri Sembilan - Darjah Negeri Sembilan
Darjah Tertinggi Negeri Sembilan DTNS Paramount   [26]
Darjah Mulia Negeri Sembilan DMNS Illustrious  
  Sultanate of Pahang
The Most Illustrious Royal Family Order of Pahang
Darjah Kerabat Yang Maha Mulia Utama Kerabat di-Raja Pahang
DKP Member (Ahli)   [27][28]
The Most Esteemed Family Order of the Crown of Indra of Pahang
Darjah Kerabat Sri Indra Mahkota Pahang Yang Amat di-Hormati
DK I Member 1st class  
  Sultanate of Perak
The Most Esteemed Royal Family Order of Perak
Darjah Kerabat di-Raja Yang Amat di-Hormati
DK Member (Ahli)  
(before 2001)
 
(after 2001)
[29][30]
[31]
The Most Esteemed Perak Family Order of Sultan Azlan Shah
Darjah Kerabat Sultan Azlan Shah Perak Yang Amat di-Hormati
DKSA Superior class   [32][33]
The Most Esteemed Azlanii Royal Family Order
Darjah Yang Teramat Mulia Darjah Kerabat Azlanii
DKA I Member First Class   [34]
  Sultanate of Perlis
The Most Esteemed Royal Family Order of Perlis
Darjah Kerabat di-Raja Perlis Yang Amat Amat di-Hormati
DKP Recipient   [35]
The M. Est. Perlis Family Order of the Gallant Prince Syed Putra Jamalullail
Darjah Kerabat Perlis Baginda Tuanku Syed Putra Jamalullail Yang Amat Amat di-Hormati
DK Recipient   [36]
  Sultanate of Selangor
The Most Esteemed Royal Family Order of Selangor - Darjah Kerabat Selangor Yang Amat di-Hormati
Darjah Kerabat Selangor Pertama DK I First Class   [37][38]
Darjah Kerabat Selangor Kedua DK II Second Class   [39]
  Sultanate of Terengganu
The Most Exalted Supreme Royal Family Order of Terengganu (10/03/1981)
Darjah Utama Kerabat di-Raja Terengganu Yang Amat di-Hormati
DKT Member (Ahli)   [40]
The Most Distinguished Family Order of Terengganu (19/06/1962)
Darjah Kebesaran Kerabat Terengganu Yang Amat Mulia
DK I Member 1st class
Ahli Yang Pertama
  [41]

Classified examples of current orders' sashesEdit

Colours classified in
the order of the rainbow :
White Red Orange Yellow Green Blue Indigo Violet Black
                                            
WHITE
  ( )
Order of the Dannebrog
  ( )
Order of Grimaldi
  ( )
Order of Vytautas the Great
  /   ( )
Order of Isabella the Catholic
  ( )
Order of Liberty
RED
  ( )
Order of the Golden Fleece
  ( )
Order of Christ
  ( )
Order of the Legion of Honour
  ( )
Order of the Lion of Finland
  ( )
Order of Merit of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
  ( )
Decoration of Honour for Services to the Republic of Austria
  ( )
Order of Saint-Charles
  ( )
Order of May
  ( )
Order of the White Lion
  ( )
Order of the Crown of Tonga
  ( )
Royal Order of Pouono
  ( )
Order of St. Olav
  ( )
Royal Order of King Sobhuza II
  ( )
Military Order of Swaziland
  ( )
Royal Order of Cambodia
  ( )
Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany
  /   ( )
Order of Logohu
  ( )
Order of the White Elephant
  ( )
Order of the Golden Heart
  ( )
Order of the Burning Spear
  ( )
Order of the Chrysanthemum
  /   ( )
Order of Merit of the Principality of Liechtenstein
  ( )
Order of the Star of Romania
  ( )
Order of Saint Gregory the Great
  ( )
Order of the Golden Spur
OTHER SHADES OF RED : CRIMSON / PINK
  ( )
Order of the Bath
  ( )
Order of the Crown
  ( )
Order of the White Star
  ( )
Supreme Order of the Most Holy Annunciation
  ( )
Order of Chula Chom Klao
ORANGE
  ( )
Order of the Phoenix
  ( )
Order of the House of Orange
  ( )
Order for Loyalty and Merit
  ( )
Order of the Dragon King
  ( )
National Order of Merit
  ( )
Order of the Precious Crown
  ( )
Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas
  ( )
Order of Orange-Nassau
  ( )
Order of the Crown
  ( )
Order of the Phoenix
YELLOW / GOLD / YELLOW-ORANGE
  ( )
Order of the Aztec Eagle
  ( )
Order of the Royal House of Chakri
  ( )
Royal Order of the Great She-Elephant
  ( )
Medal of Victory of the Thunder Dragon
  ( )
Order of Moniseraphon
  ( )
Royal Household Order of Tonga
  ( )
Order of the Rajamitrabhorn
  ( )
National Order of Mali
  ( )
Order of Merit
  ( )
Royal Household Order of Swaziland
  ( - )
Order of the Gold Lion of the House of Nassau
  ( )
Order of Beneficence
  ( )
Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II
  ( )
Order of the Golden Heart
  ( )
Order of Public Instruction
GREEN
  ( )
Order of the Thistle
  ( )
Order of Aviz
  ( )
Order of the Condor of the Andes
  ( )
Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus
  ( )
Order of the Lion
  ( )
Order of the Crown
  ( )
Order of Merit of the Italian Republic
  ( )
Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary
  ( )
Order of the Direkgunabhorn
  ( )
Order of the Star of Jordan
BLUE
  ( )
Royal Norwegian Order of Merit
  ( )
Order of the White Rose of Finland
  ( )
Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana
  ( )
Order of the Tower and Sword
  ( )
Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland
  ( )
Ordre national du Mérite
  ( )
Order of the Merit of Chile
  ( )
Order of the Garter
  ( )
Order of the Holy Spirit
  ( )
Order of the White Eagle
  ( )
Royal Order of the Seraphim
  ( )
Order of Queen Salote Tupou III
  ( )
Order of the Elephant
  ( )
Order of the Southern Cross
  ( )
Most Dignified Order of Moshoeshoe
  ( )
Order of Rio Branco
  ( )
Order of the Redeemer
  ( )
Order of the Liberator General San Martín
  /   ( )
Order of Civil Merit
  /   ( )
Order of Charles III
  ( )
Order of Faithful Service
  ( - )
Order of the African Star
  ( )
Order of the Falcon
  ( )
Royal Victorian Order
  /   ( )
Order of the Crown of Thailand
  /   ( )
Order of the Defender of the Realm
  /   ( )
Order of Loyalty to the Crown of Malaysia
  ( )
Order of St Michael and St George
  ( )
Order of the White Double Cross
  ( )
Order of Pius IX
  ( )
Order of Adolphe of Nassau
  ( )
Order of Honour
  ( )
Order of the Netherlands Lion
  ( )
Order of the Three Stars
  ( )
Order of Prince Yaroslav the Wise
  ( )
Order of the Polar Star
  ( )
Order of Leopold II
  ( )
Order of the Crown of the Realm
  ( )
Royal Norwegian Order of Merit
  ( )
Order of the Nile
VIOLET - PURPLE
  ( )
Order of Saint James of the Sword
  ( )
Order of Leopold
  ( )
Order of the Sun
  ( )
Order of al-Hussein bin Ali
  ( )
Order of Queen Maria Luisa
  ( )
Order of Independence
  ( )
Order of Vasco Núñez de Balboa
  ( - )
Royal Order of the Lion
  ( )
Order of Culture
  ( )
Legion of Merit
BLACK
  ( )
Order of the Holy Sepulchre
  ( )
Sovereign Military Order of Malta
  ( )
Order of Rama
  ( )
Order of Merit
  ( )
Order of Saint Sylvester
TRICOLOR / MORE COMPLEX
  ( )
Order of the Star of Melanesia
  ( )
Order of Prince Henry
  ( )
Star of the Solomon Islands
  ( )
Order of the Crown
  ( )
Royal Order of Bhutan
  ( )
Supreme Order of the Renaissance
  ( )
Grand Order of King Tomislav
  ( )
Grand Order of Queen Jelena
  ( )
Order of Liberty
  ( )
Most Courteous Order of Lesotho

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Galliac, Paul. L'Armée francaise. p. 88. ISBN 978-2-35250-195-4. 
  2. ^ André Jouineau, pages 45-63, "The French Army in 1914", ISBN 978-2-352-50104-6
  3. ^ Fredrick Todd Col USAR Cadet Gray page 40
  4. ^ West Point Band
  5. ^ John Gaylor, "Sons of John Company - the Indian and Pakistan Armies", ISBN 0-946771-98-7
  6. ^ Rinaldo D'Ami, "World Uniforms in Colour - the European Nations", ISBN 0-85059-031-0
  7. ^ José Bueno, Ejército Español, Uniformes Contemporáneos",ISBN 84-7140-186-X
  8. ^ Ritta Nakanishi, "Japanese Military Uniforms 1930-1945, 1991 Dai Nippon Kaiga
  9. ^ Photo, King Albert II of Belgium, Queen Sofia of Spain and Queen Paola of Belgium wearing a sash of the order
  10. ^ Royal Swedish Family during a State visit in Iceland
  11. ^ "Noblesse et Royautés" blog, Victoria of Sweden's wedding, June 2010, Prince Alexander Archived 2013-07-10 at the Wayback Machine. wearing it on left shoulder
  12. ^ Photo of Princess Anne wearing the Thistle at King Harald V's 70th birthday in 02/2007
  13. ^ South Korea's honour System, click on "Methods of Wear"
  14. ^ Royal Cabinet Website Archived 2008-04-24 at the Wayback Machine.
  15. ^ Royal Cabinet Website
  16. ^ State visit of Sweden in Thailand, 2003, Gala dinner
  17. ^ Royal Cabinet Website, Order of the White Elephant Archived 2005-09-24 at the Wayback Machine.
  18. ^ Royal Cabinet Website, Order of the Crown of Thailand Archived 2007-07-17 at the Wayback Machine.
  19. ^ "Noblesse et Royautés", article showing photos of guests invited to Prince William's wedding. A photo shows the king wearing it on the left shoulder
  20. ^ a b General visual table of decorations
  21. ^ Photo on a royal news forum showing the King and Queen of Sweden wearing it on left shoulder
  22. ^ Photo of Sultan Abdul Halim and Sultanah Haminah
  23. ^ The Royal Ark, Late Sultan Ismail Petra's photograph
  24. ^ The Royal Ark, Sultan Muhammad V's photograph
  25. ^ The Royal Ark, Late Sultan Jaafar's photograph
  26. ^ Besar of Tampin and his wife wearing respectively the DTNS and the DMNS
  27. ^ Group photo : DKP & DK I : left shoulder - DK II : right shoulder
  28. ^ Sultanah wearing DK I
  29. ^ The Royal Ark, Sultan of Perak wearing former DK sash
  30. ^ Sultanah of Perak wearing former DK sash
  31. ^ Raja di Hilir wearing nowadays DK sash
  32. ^ Heir Apparent of Kedah wearing DKSA
  33. ^ Crown Princess of Kedah wearing DKSA
  34. ^ The Admire Hunkz, Photo of Crown Princess wearing DKA I
  35. ^ Sultan with DKP
  36. ^ The Royal Ark, Sultan Sirajuddin
  37. ^ Sultan of Selangor's photograph
  38. ^ Selangor Official Website, DK I
  39. ^ Selangor Official Website, DK II
  40. ^ The Royal Ark, late Sultan Mahmud's photograph and Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin's photograph
  41. ^ Photo of the Heir Apparent of Terengganu

BibliographyEdit