Structure

 CONSTITUTIONS
Text approved on August 13, 1965 New-York United States of America

National Council Offices

  • Grand Chancellor
  • Executive Grand Chancellor
  • Vice Chancellor
  • Grand Herald
  • Charge d'Affairs
  • Master of Ceremonies
  • Secretariat
  • Grand Treasurer
  • Chevalier in charge of Public Information
  • Chevalier - Historiographer
  • Chevalier - Guardian of the Grand Seal

AIM OF THE ORDER

1. — The aim of the Order is to strive for the maintenance of Christian ideals and Western Humanism, and for the perpetuation of liberty and dignity of human beings, and to oppose all forms of oppression.

ADMINISTRATION

2. — The High Council of the Order in the United States is invested with irrevocable authority and the moral responsibility to administer, govern and execute the affairs of the Order pursuant to its United States and ancient Heraldic charters. The Council of the Order is composed of the Grand Chancellor, Vice Chancellor, Charge d'Affairs, Secretariat and various Bailiffs. The Grand Chancellor is conferred by historical ascendancy and hereditary authority with full powers to represent, to govern and to direct the affairs of the Order, to protect its archives, to fix the magisterial office, to make and to reform the By-Laws and Regulations, to arbitrate all litigation matters in the United States, to appoint and to select all the dignitaries, to apoint, to promote and to dismiss the Chevaliers91of all ranks on the motion of the Council of the Order, to administer the Estate and property of the Order, and to ex-cercise and possess all of the privileges, honours, powers and prerogatives invested in the supreme power. All decisions shall be executive.

HIERARCHY

3. — The Order is composed of four distinct ranks:

  • Chevalier Grand-Cross
  • Chevalier Grand-Officer
  • Chevalier-Commander
  • Chevalier

SPECIAL RANKS

4. — Insignia and scrolls of the Order may be conferred upon those who have distinguished themselves by their deeds and services to their country and to mankind. Those singled for such merit honours need not be obliged to qualify for, or undergo the required steps of admission in the Order. The Chevalier of Grace or Cross of Merit Awards are conferred as follows:

  • Chevalier Grand-Cross de Grace
  • Chevalier Grand-Officer de Grace
  • Chevalier Commander de Grace
  • Chevalier de Grace

HERALDIC TITLE PRIVILEGE

5. — Every Chevalier is entitled to include in his Coat of Arms, the insignia of the Order and to make use on any occasion throughout his life, of the armorial bearings adorned in that manner. The right to refer to oneself as the holder of the Order, may be exercised, among other ways, by the person concerned by adding after his name the official abbreviation of the Order. (Example: "Knight-Commander John Doe" - John Doe, K. C., S.O.C.)

OBLIGATIONS AND EXCLUSIONS

6. — Chevaliers of the Order are required to lead a blameless life and to execute acts of charity. Loss of Civil Rights by a Chevalier is summarily followed by exclusion from the Order with the consequent compulsory return of the insignia.

QUALIFICATIONS AND LIMITATIONS

7. — The Order may be conferred upon any person of any nationality or social strata, who has distinguished himself in the service of his country and/or to mankind and upon which proof has been established concerning the importance and utility of his efforts in the struggle for a moral and social restoration of those principles which correspond to the aims and ideals of the Order.

No one may be accepted into the Order if that person has not submitted a personal request for investiture in the prescribed manner. The applicant must be introduced by two Chevaliers who take upon themselves the positive responsibility, for that person. Any false declaration leads to immediate expulsion of both applicant and sponsors. Distinguished persons proposed by the Grand Chancellory, known for their merits and contributions and their utility for advancing the principles of the Order, will be exempt "motu proprio" from submission of an application.

LOST OF CAPACITY TO BE KNIGHT

8. — A. Through resignation B. Through expulsion due to conduct, statements or writings which are contrary to the morals, honour or rules of the Order. C. Death. D. Loss of civil rights.

NUMBER OF MEMBERS

9. — All Chevaliers are otherwise accepted for life. The number of Chevaliers in the United States is fixed at five hundred; three hundred Chevaliers, one hundred Chevalier-Commanders, seventy Chevalier Grand-Officers, and thirty Chevaliers Grand-Cross. Heads of State, members of Diplomatic missions and distinguished members of clergy or Honorary Citations are not included in that number.

REGULATIONS OF THE ORDER

10. — These are fixed by the High Council and may not under any circumstance, deviate from the aims and principles set forth in the By-Laws as registered under the charter of the Order in the United States and that of the Magisterial seat of the Order in Rome, Italy. Modification of By-Laws may be made only by the action in writing of the High Council and upon the approval of the Grand Chancellor.

MAGISTRAL SEAT

11. — The Seat of the Grand Master (Magistere) until the said "Grand Maitre" has been elected remains with the Hereditary Grand Chancellor.

PROPAGATION OF PRINCIPLES

12. — For the diffusion of its stated objectives, principles and aims, the Sovereign Order of Cyprus has created the "Institute for High Moral and Social Studies" patronized and subsidized by the Order.

PRIZES AND AWARDS

13. — The International Arts, Sciences and Letters Prizes and Awards of the Sovereign Order of Cyprus have been established to honour and reward those who have made outstanding contributions in their respective fields of endeavor and to encourage all good and noble works that seek to advance the great causes of freedom and the dignity of human beings throughout the world.

Nominations will be received by a Special Council by January 15th of each year for consideration. Selections will be made after diligent reesarch has been effected. The awards are given annually in Arts, Sciences and Letters.

The Diplomatic Representatives of the Order represent the Order in their respective countries or territorial districts on matters pertaining to the Order itself.

Legally, the Order is a subject of International Law with a legal national status, not unlike a Sovereign Power, at least in title.

The Principal Seat or Magisterial Seat of the Order is the residence of its Hereditary Grand Chancellor, unless he decrees otherwise. He may also establish alternate Seats of the Order in appropriate localities.

All of the aforementioned Seats of the Order, following the precise institutional aims, traditionally enjoy the privileges of immunity usually granted to regularly accredited foreign diplomatic Representatives. The premises, the archives, and generally, all the documents which belong or are possessed by the Order, are therefore inviolable.

DIPLOMATIC AND CONSULAR CORPS

14. — The Hereditary Grand Chancellor, for the purpose of propagating the Order as a Subject of Internationla Law in such Countries in which it is represented and with the right of Active and Passive diplomatic representation and to guarantee and direct such representation in each and every place where its credentials have been presented, can appoint in addition to an Ambassador Extraordinaire, Minister Plenipotentiary for every Nation and a Consul with specified territorial districts. To the aforesaid Diplomatic and Consular Representatives there can be issued by the Order, according to International Customs, appropriate Diplomatic Passports. The prerogatives of the use of a Diplomatic Passport of the Order is extended, for reason of proper respect to the Hereditary Chancellor as well as to the Highest of Dignitaries of the Order. The Ambassadors Extraordinaire and the Ministers Plenipotentiary as well as Diplomatic representatives, have the right and are accorded the respectful title of "Excellency" and can be accredited with the respective Head of State where the Order enjoys special privileges or recognition. The title of Minister Plenipotentiary of the Order can, furthermore, be conferred by the Hereditary Gran Chancellor honorarily, to a person of recognized High Social Position and well deserving of the Order itself. The same is applicable to the office of Consul. Heads of State will have reciprocal courtesies for the ac creditation to the Order of suitable Diplomatic Representatives with commensurate titles.

THE HEREDITARY GRAND CHANCELLOR

15. — The Hereditary Grand Chancellor likewise legally represents the Order in all of its relations, in all of its acts and when dealing with third parties guarantees the constant, conscientious observance of the present constitutions, whether in their entirety or in their individual parts; protects the interests of the Order and controls their administration. In the exercise of His High Power, the Hereditary Grand Chancellor may summon as assistants, a certain number of Knights from among the most illustrious of the Order, to whom may be entrusted, at his discretion, offices and various duties with honorary and gratuitous titles, for an unspecified length of time or eventually with hereditary right such as—Grand Chancellor, Grand Herald, Master of Ceremonies, Grand Treasurer and the Grand Prior, of the Nations in which the Order is represented.

CHEVALIERS OF JUSTICE AND GRACE

16. — The Knights or Chevaliers and Ladies of the Order are distinguished by two categories, Justice and Grace. Those aspir­ing to the category of Justice must present, to the Heraldic Commission to gether with the application, an exact and legal documentation of paternal nobility. The requirement of nobility is not, moreover a catalyst in itself, but must commit the possessor of such nobility to folIow the examples of our ancestors in the maintenance of exemplary conduct in all facets of the spirit and of social life, so as to constitute an elite part of humanity.

The Knights of the Grand Cross of Justice have the right to be accorded the respectful title of Excellency.The rank of Knight of Grand Cross of Justice may also be confered with the right of transmission, in the line of the first-born, with out end.

THE PATRIMONY OF THE ORDER

17. — The patrimony of the Order, distinct from the patrimony of the Grand Chancellor, is composed of all the goods, personal property and real estate, as weIl as all the rights of possesions that the Order acquired, or that it already possesses as its own, which have been bestowed to it. The following are assigned to increase the patrimony:
  • The private income of the patrimony itself;
  • The contributions of the new knights of the Order, to be determined by appropriate regulation;
  • The eventual subsidies of Corporation and privatepersons;
  • The eventual donations, inheritances, bequests, the other unforeseeable proceeds and income of activities undertaken, as weIl as the surplus of income over expenses.

THE CORPS OF THE GUARD OF HONOUR

18. — The present Constitution encompasses a right to establish, within the Order, a Corps of the Guard of Honour, with appropriate military grades, uniforms, rank insignia, de­corations and banner, pursuant to the laws of the country in which the Order is established following the laws of the Nations in which the Order is represented. The Corps shall have the Honorary duty of serving during ceremonies and sessions of the Order.

DAMES OF THE ORDER

19. — The Order recognized the equality of all human beings, be they male or female. Accordingly, it has constitutionalized the conferment of the Order upon la dies of exceptional standing in the world community.

INTERNATIONAL RANKING SYSTEM

20. — The Grand Cross of the Order is generally conferred upon Heads of State, Ambassadors, Prime Ministers, Parlia­mentary and High Court Presidents, Lieutenant Generals, Ad­mirals, and others of equivalent rank.The Grand Officer of the Order is generally conferred upon Envoys, Extraordinary and Ministers Plenipotentiary, Parlia­mentary Vice-Presidents, Departmental Ministers, High Court Judges, Major-Generals, Vice Admirals, Rear Admirals and others of equal rank.
The Commander of the Order is generally conferred upon Attaches and Consuis of Embassy, First Secretaries of Embassy, Consuls-General, members of the Government, Presidents and representatives of scientific institutions, Appeal Court Judges, Colonels, Lieutenant-Colonels, Commodores, Captains and others of equivalent rank.
The Chevalier or the Knight of the Order is generally con­ferred upon First Secretaries of Legation.Second Secretaries of Embassies, Consuls, Mayors, Com­manders, Lieutenant Commanders and others deserving of such recognition and honour.

OATH OF THE ORDER

21. — I ..................................................... , in my status as ..................................................... of the Sovereign Order of Cyprus, promise and swear before Almighty God to observe faithfully the Constitution of the Order, of which I have precise knowledge; to remain forever faithful and obedient to the Grand ChancelIor, and, through him, als o to the other Dignitaries of Order in matters regarding the Order, its discipline, as weIl as its good conduct; always to be mindfuI of the noble purpose which the Order has set forth; to fulfill all the obligations inherent in the duties of my status; to observe and respect exemplarily the precepts of my Religion and the laws of my Country; to support and defend, by word and deed, the prestige of the illustrious Chivalrous Order to which I am honored to belong, and to fight with all means its eventual enemies; lastly, to be helpful in all works of Charity toward my fellow men, according to the means at my disposition, So help me God.