A necklet is a type of decoration which is designed to be worn and displayed around a person's neck, rather than hung (draped) from the chest as is the standard practice for displaying most decorations.

In the Middle Ages most orders's insignias were worn on a collar – see livery collar. Later, in the 16th century the insignia of the French Order of the Holy Spirit were worn on a ribbon. When, in the late 17th century, orders were divided into several classes, the cross on a ribbon around the neck became the privilege of a commander. A decoration in that rank is usually awarded to high-ranking officials like brigadiers, consuls and secretaries of State.

A female usually wears her commander's cross on a bow on the shoulder of her dress.

In chivalric orders like the Order of Malta or the Teutonic Order the insignia of the knights is worn hanging from a ribbon around the neck. The same is true of the Order of the Golden Fleece.[1]

In the 19th century it was not unusual to wear a Grand Cross, normally hanging from a ribbon over the shoulder to the hip as on a necklet when this was considered more convenient or when another Grand Cross was worn.

Select list of badges suspended from neck riband

Some nations confer honors which are signified in the form of a badge which is worn suspended from a ribbon (also known as riband or ribband) around the neck, including:

See also


  1. "Orders medals and decorations of Britain and Europe", Paul Hieronymussen, London 1967
  2. Military Order of William Archived 2011-07-16 at the Wayback Machine, official website; Grand Cross, worn without ribbon on the left breast or around the neck on a 55 millimetre wide ribbon, or as a sash.
  3. Order of the Netherlands Lion Archived 2009-08-31 at the Wayback Machine, official website; Commander, hangs from the ribbon, which is worn by men around the neck
  4. Order of Orange Nassau, official website; Grand Officer, hanging from the ribbon, which is worn by men around the neck
  5. Pour le Mérite; n.b., 1667, cross was worn around the neck from a long black, "watered ribbon"
  6. Medal of Honor, official website
  7. Legion of Merit Medal Ribbon; n.b., The Legion of Merit is one of only two United States military decorations to be issued as a neck order (the other being the Medal of Honor), and the only United States decoration which may be issued in award degrees (much like an Order of chivalry or certain Orders of Merit).


  • Duckers, Peter. (2004). British orders and decorations. Princes Risborough : Shire. ISBN 978-0-7478-0580-9; OCLC 55587484
  • Paul Hieronymussen, Paul and Christine Crowley. (1967). Orders, medals and decorations of Britain and Europe. London: Blandford Press. OCLC 431846008
  • McCreery, Christopher. 2005). The Order of Canada: Its Origins, History and Development. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. ISBN 978-0-8020-3940-8; OCLC 185201497
  • Peterson, James W., Barry C. Weaver and Michael A. Quigley. (2001). Orders and Medals of Japan and Associated States. San Ramon, California: Orders and Medals Society of America. ISBN 978-1-890974-09-1; OCLC 45437720
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