Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.

Bath Orderofthe

Bath, Order of the, or under its full title "The Most Honourable Order of the Bath," consists of two divisions, the military and the civil. The name undoubtedly originated from a certain portion of the ceremonies anciently attending the installation of each knight. The creations usually took place at the coronation of a king or queen, or at the creation of a prince or duke of the Royal family. The order can with certainty be traced back to the reign of King Henry IV., who on the day of his coronation conferred the honour upon forty-six esquires, who had, during all the previous night, watched in their armour in the chapel and bathed themselves. This occasion, according to many writers, was the institution of the order, but others are of opinion that the king herein simply revived the order. King Charles II. at his own coronation created sixty-eight knights, but the order was altogether neglected from that date until 1725, when it was revived and reconstituted by King George I. Since then it has undergone several alterations and modifications (civilians being admitted in 1847), and as at present constituted consists of three classes. The first class (exclusive of the sovereign and princes of the blood royal and such distinguished foreigners as may be nominated "Honorary" Knights) is to be limited for the military section to 50, and for the civil section to 25 Knights Grand Cross (G.C.B.). These have the privilege of using supporters with their armorial bearings. The second class consists of Knights Commanders (K.C.B.), who, after having been invested with the insignia of the order are entitled to the distinctive appellation of knighthood, and also take precedence of Knights Bachelors. The number is limited to 102 soldiers and 50 civilians. The third class are Companions (C.B.) only, and though they take precedence of esquires and wear the badge of the order are not entitled to the style or appellation of Knights Bachelors. The motto of the order, which appears upon all the stars and badges, otherwise varying for each class and for military and civil distinction, is "Tria juncta in uno." The chapel of King Henry VII. in Westminster Abbey is the chapel of the order, where are to be seen the banners of the knights suspended over their stalls upon which are their plates of arms.