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     Home > IMPERIAL RUSSIA > Imperial Russian Badges

    Nikolaevskoe (Nicholas) School of Military Engineers, Graduate Badge, by Arnd, St Petersburg, 1910-1917.

    Nikolaevskoe (Nicholas) School of Military Engineers, Graduate Badge, by Arnd, St Petersburg, 1910-1917.

    Silver, solid gold (the Nicholas I cipher and crown), enamels. Measures 43.9 mm in height, 43.1 mm in width; weighs 19.8 g not including the wing nut. This massive and very intricately designed badge consists of four separate major parts: the golden imperial crown and Nicholas II cypher are superimposed on the enameled black and brick-red center medallion representing a star fort, superimposed in turn on a white Maltese cross. The reverse shows maker mark "ARND" (a part of the die), a cross-shaped logo, and two stamped silver hallmarks: 84 silver Kokoshnik with Greek alpha designating St. Petersburg assay inspection and a small Kokoshnik assay inspection hallmark. The center medallion has red enamelwork on the sides mimicking "layered" earth and stone construction of a bastion fort. The entire piece is of magnificent quality.

    The badge is in fine to very fine overall condition. The enamel is free of repairs or glaring flaws. The red enamel under the cypher has surface flaking but nevertheless retains nice luster. The black enamel is relatively well- preserved having some flaking along the outer edge, scratches and rubbing, no penetrating chips. The red enamel on the sides of the "fort" has only tiny chips and flakes but is largely intact. The white enamel has large chip on the right arm of the cross near its base, but because the damage does not penetrate to silver except in a tiny spot next to the center medallion, it is not too detractive. There are also minor contact marks and rubbing elsewhere on the cross, but no other significant chips or flaking. Overall, the enamel on this badge still looks very impressive despite the imperfections.

    The golden monogram of Nicholas I shows light wear to the high points, but its details are generally well-preserved. The cross on the crown is missing a tiny portion at the top - not too noticeable considering the overall scale of the badge. The wires on the reverse that hold the parts of the badge together have been repaired or strengthened with application of some low melting point solder. The parts are now firmly attached. The repair didn't affect the hallmarks; there is attractive patina to silver on the reverse. The screw post is original and measures nearly 14 mm in length, has not been reduced. The badge comes with a period wing nut which is probably original to it, showing a circular Kokoshnik hallmark. Interestingly, there is also what looks like a maker mark to one of the loops or "wings" of the nut, but is very poorly struck and illegible.

    This is badge number 1.5.1 on page 64 in Volume One of "The Badges of Russia" by Patrikeev and Bojonovich.

    Item# 32897


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