Order of Merit
The Order of Merit
(OM) is a British
honorary institution. It was established in 1902
by King Edward VII
as a reward for distinguished service in the armed forces
, or for the promotion of culture
The order is limited to 24 members, but additional foreigners may be added as "honorary members". The order is open to women; Florence Nightingale was the first, in 1907. Members are entitled to the post-nominal OM.
The badge has the appearance of a red Maltese Cross surmounted by a golden crown.
Notable former members:
In October 2002
the members were
The Indian Order of Merit, recognizing individual bravery by Indian
military persons, was originally called "Order of Merit" when established in 1837
, and was renamed when the present-day Order was established.
See also: British and Commonwealth orders and decorations, British honours system.