Product Description: This Godet Oak Leaves and Swords to the Knights Cross is an extremely rare and supremely desirable award. This award was instituted on September 28, 1941, to recognize further achievements by those who had already earned the Knights Cross with Oak Leaves. There were only 150 recipients of this award over the course of the war, and these pieces with swords are extraordinarily rare. This is a textbook, original piece made by Godet in Berlin. Every detail is correct. The material is 900 silver (90 percent pure silver). The obverse shows beautiful, even patina to the silver, and nice shine as well as dark tones. There is no evident wear. The oak leaves show the correct die flaw on the central lobe’s raised side profile area. The reverse of this set of Oak Leaves and Swords is complete and intact, with no damage or repairs. It’s stamped with the silver content marking “900” as well as the PKZ code number “21” indicating manufacture by Godet. Few collectors will ever own this extremely prestigious Third Reich military award. This example is in excellent plus condition.
Historical Description: The Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross was instituted on September 1, 1939, and was awarded for skilled leadership, distinguished conduct, or individual acts of bravery in combat. At that time, it was the highest award for bravery that a German soldier could earn. On June 3, 1940, the Oak Leaves to the Knight’s Cross were introduced to further recognize extremely distinguished achievements by soldiers who had already been awarded the Knight’s Cross. The Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves award was in the form of a finely struck cluster of oak leaves, made of silver, and affixed to a suspension loop from which the Knight’s Cross would be suspended when worn. On September 28, 1941, two further grades of the Knight’s Cross were introduced. The Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords was nearly identical to the Oak Leaves but featured two crossed swords beneath the leaf cluster. The new highest grade, the Oak Leaves with Swords and Diamonds, was intricately made, and recipients were given one set with rhinestones and a second set with real diamonds. On December 29, 1944, with the war coming to an end, a highest and final grade was introduced, the Knight’s Cross with Gold Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds. Originally intended for the 12 most distinguished service members in the German military, made of real gold and diamonds, only one set was awarded before the end of the war.
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