Rare 1st Class Japanese Navy Badge

My last post showed a 2nd Class badge; this one will show a 1st Class. A quick comparison will make it apparent that the 1st Class badges are of vastly superior quality, even considering that the 2nd Class badges are really well-constructed. Here is a 1st Class Seamanship Proficiency Badge.

a

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The design has the usual anchor, upon which is superimposed a gold Imperial mum crest. Around the latter is a wheel, which hints at the meaning of the badge. Enameled leaves are on either side. Really beautiful, and sturdily made. I am not sure if this is made of silver, but it looks and feels that way. Here is the reverse. 

b

This is also called the Operation Superior Ensign, and it was instituted on April 22, 1930.

The full name in Japanese is Kaigun Souda Yuutou Kishou (海軍操舵優等徽章). The 1st Class badges had the name of the badge, then Yuutou Kishou, while the 2nd Class badges have Yuutou-shou. I’m not really sure how to translate the difference, but anyway it is there in Japanese.

This badge was awarded to NCOs who piloted warships and submarines. The test consisted of compass reading, The methods of piloting different vessels, the targeting of enemy ships, maneuvering strategies, etc.

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