This list of highest military decorations is an index to articles that describe the highest military decoration awarded by each country in the world.

Country Image Name Date first awarded Number awarded Notes
Cruz "La Nación Argentina al Heróico Valor en Combate".jpg
Cross to the Heroic Valour in Combat 18 Last awarded in 1982
UK Victoria Cross ribbon bar.svg
The Victoria Cross for Australia 16 January 2009[1] 5 Replaced The Victoria Cross
Austria Military Merit Decoration.png
The Military Merit Decoration
বীর শ্রেষ্ঠ পদক.jpg
Bir Sreshtho 15 December 1973 7
Deco militaire services exceptionels.jpg
Military Decoration for gallantry or exceptional devotion 22 December 1873
Brazil militar condecoration.jpg
Order of Military Merit 1934 820
Орден «За храброст» I степен с мечове.gif
Order of Bravery 1 January 1880 Date established.
Victoria Cross (Canada) ribbon bar.png
The Victoria Cross of Canada 2 February 1993 0 Date established.
Replaced The Victoria Cross
Bkncn-20170612170038965-0612 05011 001 01p.jpg
Order of August First 12 June 2017 10
Colombia Order of San Mateo
Det Tapperhedskors Danmark.png
The Valour Cross 18 November 2011[2] 1
Vrijheidskruis III 3 Estland Civiel.jpg
The Cross of Liberty 24 February 1919 3,156 None has been awarded since 1925
Chevalier légion d
The Legion of Honour 15 July 1804 Conferred in five classes for military or civilian merit.
Ehrenkreuz Bundeswehr Tapferkeit 1.jpg
The Cross of Honour for Valour 6 July 2009 28
GR Metallio Andragathias.svg
Cross of Valor Gold Cross.png
Medal for Gallantry

Cross of Valour

The Medal for Gallantry formally replaced the Cross of Valour as the top military award in 1974, but it has never been conferred.
Magyar Szent István-rend Nagykeresztje.jpg
Order of Saint Stephen of Hungary 1764-1918, 1938–1946, 2011-
Param Vir Chakra 3 November 1947 21
Medal of Valor 19 January 1948 40[3] Replacement for the Hero of Israel.
None has been awarded since 1975.[3]
Medaglia d
Gold Medal of Military Valour 21 May 1793
Luxembourg Militay Medal obv.jpg
Military Medal 3 August 1945[4]
Sri Pahlawan Gagah Perkasa The Gallant and Valiant Warrior van Maleisie.jpg
Grand Knight of Valour 29 July 1960 30 The Grand Knight of Valour (Malay: Darjah Kebesaran Seri Pahlawan Gagah Perkasa)[5][6][7] is the highest federal award which can be presented in Malaysia. It was created on 29 July 1960 and was gazetted on 11 August 1960. The award is the highest ranking in the list of the Malaysian Federal Ranking of Awards, and is ranked higher than the Order of the Royal Family of Malaysia (D.K.M.) awarded to Malaysian Royalty.|
Aung San Thuriya 1st.png
Aung San Thiriya, 1st Class 1948 6
Militaire Willemsorde Ridder vierde klasse.jpg
Military William Order 30 April 1815 5,875
New Zealand
UK Victoria Cross ribbon bar.svg
The Victoria Cross for New Zealand 26 July 2007[8] 1 Replaced The Victoria Cross.
North Korea
DPRK Soldiers Honor Order 1st Class.png
Soldier's Medal of Honour (first class) July 1950 [9][10]
The War Cross with Sword 28 November 1941 285 A new sword is awarded each time a person, who already has the War Cross, distinguishes him- or herself in battle.[11]
Nishan-e-Haider (Left) Hilal-e-Kashmir (Right) 16 March 1957 11 On 30 November 1995, the Government of Pakistan initiated the gazette notification to declare its Hilal-e-Kashmir equivalent to Nishan-e-Haider.

All awards have been made posthumously.

Krzyż Złoty Orderu Virtuti Militari wz 1992.jpg
Order of Virtuti Militari 22 June 1792 Conferred in five classes. A wartime-only award.
1891-5-29 cavaleiro T&E b.JPG
Order of the Tower and Sword 1459 The Order of the Tower and Sword, as awarded by the Portuguese government today, comes in six classes
Keerzijde van een modern kruis van de Orde van Michael de Dapppere.jpg
Order of Michael the Brave Instated 26 September 1916
Disbanded 1948
Reinstated 23 July 2000
2,184 None has been awarded since 1944.
Hero of the Russian Federation medal.png
Hero of the Russian Federation Honorific title for service to the Russian state and nation, usually connected with a heroic feat of valor; precedes all other Russian military and civil orders and medals.
St Georges Cross 1st class.jpg
Order of St. George Highest military decoration of the Russian Federation.
Orden Belog orla sa macevima RS.gif
Order of the White Eagle with swords Highest military decoration of Serbia.
Laureate Cross of Saint Ferdinand 1 January 1812 336
Star Order of the Start of Somalia.svg
Order of the Somali Star 12 February 1961 Highest distinction award for military gallantry of Somalia.
Companion (4th Class) of the Honourable Order of Rama.svg
Order of Rama 22 July 1918 Date established.
Conferred in six classes for military merit.
United Kingdom
Victoria Cross.jpg
The Victoria Cross 26 June 1857[12] 1357[nb 1]
1354[nb 2]
United States
Medal of Honor 26 March 1863 3468[nb 1][13]
3449[nb 2]
Different types from each of the branches of the US military.

In the image, from left to right: The Army, the Coast Guard/Navy/Marine Corps, and the Air Force.

Vietnam The Military Exploit Order 15 May 1947 Individuals who have recorded outstanding and brave exploits in combat, combat service, training, force building, consolidation of the all-people defense and people's security, or have sacrificed their lives heroically, setting bright examples in the whole country.
Gold Cross of Zimbabwe - ribbon bar.png
The Gold Cross of Zimbabwe 3 Replaced the Grand Cross of Valour


  1. ^ a b Total medals awarded.
  2. ^ a b Total recipients of the medal.


  1. ^ "Australian SAS soldier Mark Donaldson awarded Victoria Cross". The Australian. News Limited. 16 January 2009. Archived from the original on 5 March 2009. Retrieved 7 August 2009.
  2. ^ "Dronningen overrækker nyt Tapperhedskors til hjemvendt soldat". Archived from the original on 2012-01-21. Retrieved 2013-07-15.
  3. ^ a b Shoval, Lilach. "'Heroes' from Independence War mostly gone, but not forgotten". Retrieved 15 July 2013.
  4. ^ "Actualités - Lëtzebuerger Arméi" (in French). Archived from the original on 2012-04-26. Retrieved 2011-12-31.
  5. ^ Shanmugam, Narendran Indi (31 July 2010). "Grand Knight of Valour". Retrieved 29 March 2013.
  6. ^ "Grand Knight of Valour". 31 July 2010. Archived from the original on 15 August 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2013.
  7. ^ "Stamp Gallery 2010". Retrieved 2018-08-24.
  8. ^ "Willie Apiata receives his VC". The New Zealand Herald. 26 July 2007. Retrieved 2007-08-03.
  9. ^ Vreeland, Nena (1976). Area Handbook for North Korea. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 327.
  10. ^ Weiser, Martin (8 January 2016). "Chests Full of Brass: A DPRK Political History in Orders, Medals, Prizes, and Titles". Sino-NK. Retrieved 14 December 2020.
  11. ^ "Direktiv for bruk og bæring av dekorasjoner, ordener og medaljer i Forsvaret Archived 2013-09-25 at the Wayback Machine". Retrieved 2013-08-16
  12. ^ Herold, Stephen. "The First Presentation of the Victoria Cross". Retrieved 15 July 2013.
  13. ^ "Medal of Honor Statistics". Retrieved 15 July 2013.