Order of the Eagle of Este

Order of the Eagle of Este
Ordine dell'Aquila Estense
Order's medall
Awarded by Duchy of Modena and Reggio
Type Chivalric order with three degrees
Awarded for Faithful civilians and officers and distinguished foreigners
Status former order
First Grand Master Francis V, Duke of Modena
Grades (w/ post-nominals) Grand Cross
Established 27 december 1855
Next (higher) None (highest)
Next (lower) Cross of Seniority of Service
Ribbon bar of the Order

The Order of the Eagle of Este is a knighthood order of the dynastic house of Duchy of Modena and Reggio, a former sovereign state before the Italian unification.

The Order was instituted on 27 December 1855 by Francis V of Modena, Duke of Modena & Reggio, to reward the services and the merits of faithful civilians and officers. The order was established under the protection (patronage) of Saint Contardo of Este, a founder's ancestor in maternal line (House of Este) & protector of Modena.[1]


The ordine is divided in three classes:

The number of Grand Crosses was established to a maximum of ten, the Commander couldn't surpass twenty members & the Knights could be maximum sixty. The foreigners appointed into the Order were counted as supernumerary knights.

All grants were awarding personal nobility which, if mentioned in the letters patent, could also be hereditary.

The "Royal Parish of the Court" served as Church of the Order.

Grand Cross

The insignia

The medal of the order consisted of a white-enameled cross border of "overseas azure" and subdivided in eight "golden-balls" points. In the middle, an azure shield with a white eagle in its center, antique symbol of the Este. In the superior part of the shield, one can read the motto PROXIMA SOLI, and the inferior part, the data of foundation MDCCCLV. At the back, the shield shows the Saint Contardo's effigy with the inscription: S. CONTARDUS ATESTINUS. Between the four arms of the cross, four golden cursive letters, to form the word E S T E. The cross is surmounted by a trophy for military class, by an oak crown for the civilian one and a royal crown for foreigner knights.

The ribbon is white bordered with sky-blue stripes.

The founder, Francis V, continued to grant the Order, even in the years of his exile.


  1. Crespellani, Arsenio (1893). Medaglie Estensi ed Austro-Estensi (in Italian). Coi tipi della Società tipografica modenese.

External links

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