Member of the Order of Merit
The Order of Merit was established in 1902 by King Edward VII. It recognises distinguished service in the armed forces, science, art, literature, or for the promotion of culture. Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, remains the youngest person ever inducted into the order.
About Member of the Order of Merit in brief
The Order of Merit is a Commonwealth order of merit recognising distinguished service in the armed forces, science, art, literature, or for the promotion of culture. Established in 1902 by King Edward VII, admission into the order remains the personal gift of its Sovereign. There may be, however, only 24 living individuals in the order at any given time, not including honorary appointees, and new members are personally selected by the reigning monarch of the realms. To date, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, remains the youngest person ever inducted into the Order ofMerit, having been admitted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1968, when he was 47 years of age. The order’s statutes were amended in 1935 to include members of the Royal Air Force and, in 1969, the definition of honorary recipients was expanded.
From its inception, the order has been open to women, Florence Nightingale being the first woman to receive the honour, in 1907. Several individuals have refused admission, including Rudyard Kipling, A. E. Housman, and George Bernard Shaw. Within the limited military division is a designated military division, with its own unique insignia. The insignia consists of a golden crown from which is solely a red pattee, enamelled by a blue-and-white chevron. The post-nominal letters OM are entrusted with the badge of the order.