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Introduction

This page contains the text of the Royal Warrant which introduced the Albert Medal.

The Royal Warrant

VICTORIA by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith, etc.

To all these presents shall come, greeting:

Whereas We, taking into Our Royal consideration that great loss of life is sustained by reason of shipwrecks and other perils of the sea; and taking also into consideration the many daring and heroic actions performed by mariners and others to prevent such loss and to save the lives of those who are in danger of perishing by reason wrecks and perils of the sea; and taking also into consideration the expediency of distinguishing such efforts by some mark of Our Royal favour:

Now for the purpose of attaining an end so desirable as that of rewarding such actions as aforesaid, We have instituted and created and by these presents for Us, Our Heirs and Successors, institute and create a new Decoration, which we are desirous should be highly prized and eagerly sought after, and are graciously pleased to make, ordain and establish the following Rules and Ordinances for the government of the same, which shall from henceforth be inviolably observed and kept.

First:— It is ordained, that the Distinction shall be styled "THE ALBERT MEDAL" and shall consist of a gold oval-shaped badge or decoration enamelled in dark blue, with a Monogram composed of the letters "V" and "A", interlaced with an Anchor erect in gold, surrounded by a Garter in Bronze, inscribed in raised letters of gold "For Gallantry in Saving Life at Sea" and surmounted by a representation of the Crown of His Royal Highness the lamented Prince Consort, and suspended from a dark blue riband of five-eighths of an inch in width with two white longitudinal stripes.

Secondly:— It is ordained, that the Medal shall be suspended from the left breast.

Thirdly:— It is ordained, that the names of those upon whom We may be pleased to confer the Decoration shall be published in the London Gazette, and a registry thereof kept at the Office of the Board of Trade.

Fourthly:— It is ordained, that any one who, after having received the Medal, again performs such an act which, if he had not received such a Medal, would have entitled him to it, such further act shall be recorded by a bar attached to the riband by which the Medal is suspended; and for every such additional act an additional bar may be added.

Fifthly:— It is ordained, that the Medal shall only be awarded to those who, after the date of this instrument, have, in saving the lives of others from shipwreck or peril of the sea, endanger their own lives, and that such award shall be made only on a recommendation to Us by the President of the Board of Trade.

Sixthly:— In order to make such additional provision as shall effectually preserve pure this most honourable Distinction, it is ordained, that if any person upon whom such Distinction is conferred be guilty of any crime or disgraceful conduct which in Our judgement disqualifies him for the said Decoration, his name shall forthwith be erased from the registry of individuals upon whom the said Decoration shall have been conferred by an especial Warrant under Our Royal Sign Manual, and his Medal shall be forfeited. And every person to whom the said Medal is given shall, before receiving the same, enter into an engagement to return the same if his name shall be so erased as aforesaid under this regulation. It is hereby further declared, that We, Our Heirs and Successors, shall be the sole judges of the circumstances demanding such expulsion. Moreover, We shall at all times have power to restore such persons as any time have been expelled, to the enjoyment of the Decoration.
And whereas it has been represented to Us, that Mariners and others perform many acts in preventing loss of life from shipwreck and other perils of the sea, that are not of a character sufficiently daring and heroic to bring them under Our warrant above cited, and are yet worthy of some distinguishing mark of Our Royal Favour. And whereas We, taking into Our consideration that it is expedient to reward such mariners and others who perform heroic actions to prevent loss of life from shipwreck and other perils of the sea, are pleased in place of the Decoration created by Our Warrant of the 7th March, 1866, to institute and create two Decorations, which We are graciously pleased to make, ordain and establish the following Rules and Ordinances for the government of the same, which shall henceforth be inviolably observed and kept.

First:— It is ordianed that one of the said two Decorations shall be styled "THE ALBERT MEDAL OF THE FIRST CLASS", and shall consist of a gold oval-shaped Badge or Decoration, enamelled in dark blue with a Monogram composed of the letters "V" and "A", interlaced with an Anchor erect in gold, surrounded with a Garter in Bronze, inscribed in gold "For Gallantry in Saving Life at Sea", and surmounted by a representation of the Crown of His Royal Highness the lamented Prince Consort and suspended from a dark blue riband of an inch and three-eighths in width, with four white longitudinal stripes.

Secondly:— It is ordained, that the other of the two Decorations shall be styled "THE ALBERT MEDAL OF THE SECOND CLASS", and shall consist of the like shaped enamelled badge, save and except in this class it shall be entirely worked in bronze instead of gold and bronze, and suspended from a dark blue riband of five-eights of an inch in width, with two white longitudinal stripes.

It is ordained that each Medal shall be suspended from the left breast.

Thirdly:— It is ordained, that the names of those upon whom We may be pleased to confer either of these Decorations shall be published in the London Gazette, and a registry thereof kept in the Office of the Board of Trade.

Fourthly:— It is ordained, that anyone who, after having received either of the Medals, again performs an act which, if he had not received such a Medal, would have entitled him to it, such further act shall be recorded by a bar attached to the riband by which the Medal is suspended: and for every additional act an additional bar may be added.

Fifthly:— It is ordained, that the Medal shall only be awarded to those who, after the date of such Warrant of the 7th March, 1866, have, in saving or endeavouring to save the lives of others from shipwreck or other perils of the sea, endangered their own lives, and that such award shall be made only on a recommendation to Us by the President of the Board of Trade.

Sixthly:— It is ordained, that THE ALBERT MEDAL OF THE FIRST CLASS shall be confined to cases of extreme and heroic daring, and that THE ALBERT MEDAL OF THE SECOND CLASS shall be given in cases which, though falling within the cases contemplated by this Warrant, are not sufficiently distinguished to deserve the ALBERT MEDAL OF THE FIRST CLASS.

Seventhly:— In order to make such additional provision as shall effectually preserve pure this most honourable Distinction, it is ordained that if any person on whom such Distinction is conferred be guilty of any crime or disgraceful conduct which in Our judgement disqualifies him from the said Decorations, his name shall forthwith be erased from the registry of individuals upon whom the said Decoration shall have been conferred by an especial Warrant under Our Royal Sign Manual, and his Medal shall be forfeited. And every person to whom the said Medal is given shall, before receiving the same, enter into an agreement toreturn the same if his name shall be so erased as aforesaid under this regulation. It is hereby further declared that We, Our Heirsand Successors, shall be the sole judges of the circumstances demanding such expulsion. Moreover, We shall at any time havepower to restore such persons as may at any time have been expelled to the enjoyment of the Decoration.

Given at Our Court at St. James's this twelfth day of April, One thousand eight hundred and sixty-seven, in the thirteenth year of Our Reign. By Her Majesty's Command.

S.H. WALPOLE

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