AskDefine | Define bowknot

Dictionary Definition

bowknot n : a knot with two loops and loose ends; used to tie shoelaces [syn: bow]

Extensive Definition

A rosette is a small, circular device that is presented with a medal. The rosettes are primarily for situations where wearing the medal is deemed inappropriate. Rosettes are issued in nations such as France, Italy and Japan. Rosettes are also sometimes called bowknots, due to their shape.
Moreover, a large rosette is sometimes pinned onto the ribbon which suspends a medal, usually the Officer (and sometimes Grand Officer)'s badge of certain Orders of Chivalry.

United States

In the United States, only one medal is currently issued with a rosette, the Medal of Honor. The rosette is authorized for civilian wear. The rosette is presented with the Medal of Honor neck ribbon and ribbon bar at the same time. During the presentation of the Medal to the family of Paul R. Smith, the rosette was placed, along with the medal and ribbon, in a shadow box.
Previously, the Purple Heart was also presented with a rosette, but now has been replaced by a metallic lapel pin. The lapel pin is designed to be a smaller version of the ribbon bar, also for use on civilian wear (an example below is the National Defence Service Medal). Most American military medals have the ribbon bar design scaled down to the size of a lapel pin.

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France

Several of the top decorations of France, including the Légion d'honneur and the Ordre National du Mérite, are presented with a rosette along with the medal. The Legion of Honor authorized a rosette for those who are the rank of officer or above. If the grade is higher, the rosette is adorned with gold and/or silver bars (or "half-knots") which are place beside each side of the rosette. The same manner is accorded to the Order of National Merit.
In occasions when ribbon bars are worn alone, the abovementioned half-knots and/or rosettes are pinned onto the ribbon bars as appropriate to denote the wearer's grade.

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