Orders of the USSR

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Orders of the USSR

 

insignia constituting the highest awards conferred for special services in socialist construction and in the defense of the USSR.

The first Soviet order, the Order of the Red Banner, was founded by the All-Russian Central Executive Committee on Sept. 16, 1918 (Collected Statutes of the RSFSR, 1918, no. 69, art. 742), as an award to citizens who displayed outstanding courage in combat. In 1920 and 1921 the following combat awards were founded in several Soviet republics: the Order of the Red Banner, the Order of the Red Crescent, the Order of the Silver Star, and the Order of the Red Star. When the All-Union Order of the Red Banner was founded on Aug. 1, 1924, the awarding of republic orders was discontinued.

On Dec. 28, 1920, the Eighth All-Russian Congress of Soviets (Collected Statutes of the RSFSR, 1921, no. 1, art. 7) instituted the Order of the Red Banner of Labor of the RSFSR as an award for heroic labor and distinction in work. Other republics each had their own Order of the Red Banner of Labor. Later, the republic orders were superseded by the all-Union Order of the Red Banner of Labor.

According to Article 49 of the Constitution of the USSR (1936), the right to institute and award orders of the USSR belongs to the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. Women with many children are awarded the Order of Glory of Motherhood by the presidiums of the supreme soviets of Union and autonomous republics upon the authorization and on behalf of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR.

At present there are 20 orders of the USSR. The orders, listed by date, are as follows.

Order of the Red Banner (Aug. 1, 1924);

Order of the Red Banner of Labor (Sept. 7, 1928);

Order of Lenin (Apr. 6, 1930);

Order of the Red Star (Apr. 6, 1930);

Order of the Badge of Honor (Nov. 25, 1935);

Order of the Patriotic War First and Second Class (May 20, 1942);

Order of Suvorov First, Second, and Third Class (July 29, 1942);

Order of Kutuzov First and Second Class (July 29, 1942); Third Class (Feb. 8, 1943);

Order of Alexander Nevsky (July 29, 1942);

Order of Bogdan Khmel’nitskii First, Second, and Third Class (Oct. 10, 1943);

Order of Victory (Nov. 8, 1943; the highest military order);

Order of Glory First, Second, and Third Class (Nov. 8, 1943);

Order of Ushakov First and Second Class (Mar. 3, 1944);

Order of Nakhimov First and Second Class (Mar. 3, 1944);

Order of Mother Heroine (July 8, 1944);

Order of Glory of Motherhood First, Second, and Third Class (July, 8, 1944);

Order of the October Revolution (Oct. 31, 1967);

Order of Friendship of Peoples (Dec. 17, 1972);

Order of the Glory of Labor First, Second, and Third Class (Jan. 18, 1974);

Order for Service to the Motherland in the Armed Forces of the USSR (Oct. 28, 1974).

The Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR ratifies statutes for every order. The statutes list the special services to the state and society for which the order is to be awarded. They contain specific rules relating to the awarding and wearing of orders. Regulations concerning the awarding of orders of the USSR are dealt with by the General Regulations on Orders of the USSR, which were ratified on May 7, 1936 (Collected Laws of the USSR, 1936, no. 24, art. 220b), and by the Edict of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of Feb. 11, 1958, On Awarding Orders and Medals of the USSR (Vedomosti Verkhovnogo Soveta SSSR, 1958, no. 4, art. 87).

Orders of the USSR are awarded to individuals (Soviet citizens and foreigners), collectives, enterprises, institutions, organizations, republics, krais, oblasts, cities and other communities, and military units of various sizes.

Orders are worn on the chest. Those worn on the left side are the Order of Lenin, the Order of the October Revolution, the Order of the Red Banner, the Order of the Red Banner of Labor, the Order of Friendship of Peoples, the Order of the Badge of Honor, the Order of Glory, the Order of Glory of Labor, the Order of Victory, the Order of the Mother Heroine, and the Order of Glory of Motherhood. Those worn on the right side are the Order of Suvorov, the Order of Ushakov, the Order of Kutuzov, the Order of Nakhimov, the Order of Bogdan Khmel’nitskii, the Order of Alexander Nevsky, the Order of the Patriotic War, and the Order of the Red Star.

Several benefits are provided for persons who have been awarded the Order of Glory of all three classes. The work disability pension of award recipients is increased by 50 percent, irrespective of any ceiling. Recipients are given priority in the allocation of housing space. Housing is available to them and members of their families at 50 percent of the rent that other workers are charged. Award recipients who live in their own houses receive a 50 percent rebate on real estate taxes or on the agricultural tax. They pay for surplus housing space of up to 15 sq m at the standard rate. Recipients of orders are granted one free round trip a year on rail, water, air, or intercity highway transport. They also receive free use of city transit and, in rural areas, of intra-raion bus lines. Those who need sanatorium or resort treatment (upon the recommendation of a medical institution) are annually given a free pass to a sanatorium or house of rest.

Several benefits are provided for persons who have been awarded the Order of the Glory of Labor of all three classes and the Order for Service to the Motherland in the Armed Forces of the USSR of all three classes. These include a 15 percent pension increase, priority in the allocation of housing, and an annual free pass to a sanatorium or house of rest.

A person can be stripped of an order of the USSR only by a resolution of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR on the basis of a judicial sentence or for disgraceful conduct.

B. A. ZHALEIKO

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.