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The Order of Merit

The Royal Norwegian Order of Merit was founded by King Olav V in 1985. It is conferred on foreign and Norwegian nationals as a reward for their outstanding service in the interest of Norway.

His Majesty The King is the Grand Master of the Order. The Order of Merit is divided into three classes and two sub-classes:

  • Grand Cross
  • Grand Officer
    • Commander
  • Officer
    • Knight


The Insignia of the Order is the Cross of St. Olav, wrought in gold or silver, with a plain crown in each of the four corners formed by the arms of the cross, inlaid with a rounded, red cross in the centre with King Olav V’s monogram surmounted by a crown.

Officer of the Norwegian Order of Merit. Photo: Foto: Jan Haug, the Royal Court.

How the insignia is worn

The Insignia of the Order is worn in the same manner at that of the Order of St. Olav:

The Knight’s Cross is worn on the left breast, and the Commander’s Cross is suspended from a ribbon around the neck. The Grand Cross is attached to a broad sash worn passing from the right shoulder to the left side. Women wear the Knight’s Cross and Commander’s Cross on the left breast attached to a bow made from the Knight’s Cross ribbon.

The Insignia of the Order is returned to the Council of the Order in the event of the promotion or death of the recipient.


Nominations for order recipients should be addressed to His Majesty The King and submitted via the Department for Culture, Public Diplomacy and Protocol at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.



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