Original German pre WW1 Saxony Commemorative Cross for 1866 (Erinnerungskreuz für 1866), IN GOOD CONDITION ON GENUINE RIBBON, A VERY GOOD EXAMPLE WITH ATTRACTIVE TARNISH / PATINA - SHOWING SOME MINOR OXIDATION, THE AWARD IS RARELY SEEN
HISTORY OF THE AWARD:
Saxony Commemorative Cross for 1866 (Erinnerungskreuz für 1866) - Gilt-bronze cross pattée with concave ends to the arms, with graduated rays between the arms forming the appearance of a square behind the cross, with loop and ribbed ring for ribbon suspension; the face with the crowned cipher of King Johann centrally within a wreath of oak and laurel; the reverse with the date ‘1866’ centrally within a wreath of oak and laurel. The Cross was instituted on 22 May 1867 by King Johann for all soldiers who had participated in the war with Prussia, whether or not they had seen action. The war of 1866, often viewed as a conflict between Prussia and the Austrian Empire, was, in fact, pan-German with many German states such as Saxony, Bavaria, Baden, Württemberg and Hanover fighting on the Austrian side (in Germany and Austria the war is often referred to as the German War – ‘Deutscher Krieg’). In the event, Saxony was the only German state to make a significant contribution to the Austrian cause, though superior Prussian training, tactics and equipment soon decided the war in the latter’s favour. The war determined Prussian hegemony in Germany and Austrian exclusion. Saxony was obliged to join the Prussian-dominated North German Confederation (Norddeutscher Bund), effectively ending its independence.