Founded in 1348 by Edward III, the Garter was England's highest and most coveted order of chivalry, having been revived in imitation of the Burgundian Order of the Golden Fleece by both Edward IV, who had built St. George's Chapel at Windsor, and Henry VII. Henry VIII, with his passion for ancient chivalric values and his policy of accentuating his own magnificence, would continue this tradition.

The Order comprised the sovereign and twenty-five elected Knights Companions, who were only replaced upon death or disgrace. Vacancies were filled at the annual chapter meeting. Each chapter was marked with a magnificent feast; at Windsor, this took place in St. George's Hall. The Knights wore "a blue velvet mantle with a Garter on the left shoulder, lined with white sarcanet, and scarlet hose with black velvet around the thighs". Each sported a light blue silk garter with a gold buckle and embroidered Tudor roses round his leg--the garter being the oldest item of the insignia--and the rich gold collar introduced by Edward IV or Henry VII

Henry VIII decreed in 1510 that the collar consist of twelve Tudor roses set within blue garters, interspersed with twelve tasselled knots; from it hung a "Great George"--a jewelled pendant of St. George slaying the dragon. The Knights were allowed to wear their insignia only on St. George's Day and the great feast days of the court, so in 1521 Henry instituted a smaller pendant, the "Lesser George" for everyday use. This was suspended from a gold chain or a blue ribbon, and might be set with a rare cameo.

List of the Knights of the Garter


(A list of Ladies of the Garter is at the end)

(Note: Numbered until 1939. Knights after 1939 from Chr. Buyers' list. Dates are those of installation before 1939, appointment after).

Ladies of the Garter


A list of all knights from 1348 to 1939, adapted from Edmund H. Fellowes: The Knights of the Garter 1348-1939, which is a catalogue of the stall-plates in St. George's chapel, Windsor.

There are a number of possible sources for lists of the knights of the Garter:

Fellowes, and therefore this list, relies on the lists of Betz (1841) and Shaw (1906). The numbering is that of Shaw. The dates are those of appointment or elevation (app), or investiture or installation (inv).
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