Order of the Conception

Instituted in 1618, the Order of the Conception of the Blessed Virgin is a crusading order founded by Charles de Gonzague, duc de Nevers, and Ferdinand di Gonzaga, duca di Mantova. The order, confirmed by Pope Urban VIII in 1623, consists of the knights of Nevers’ Christian Militia established in 1616. The order includes houses in Charleville, the capital of Nevers’s sovereign principality of Arches, and in Vienna. The order has attracted only a small number of knights, as crusades against the Turks have been put aside due to the religious and dynastic wars spreading across western Europe.

The badge of the order is an eight-pointed cross of gold enamelled blue, with a gold rayed medallion featuring the Virgin Mary holding the infant Jesus in the center. The badge is worn around the neck on a sky blue ribbon.


Order of the Conception

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