A nice original example of the Hanseatic Cross awarded by the city of Hamburg. A sizeable length of original ribbon remains, but is somewhat fragile due to age. Enamel is in good condition but does show some wear which is visible in photos. Some silver finish is missing from the reverse. The Hanseatic Cross (Hanseatenkreuz) was a military decoration of the three Hanseatic city-states of Bremen, Hamburg and Lübeck, who were members of the German Empire during World War I. Each republic established its own version of the cross, but the design and award criteria were similar for each. The cross was awarded for merit in war, and could be awarded to civilians as well as military personnel. When awarded for bravery or combat merit, it was the three cities' equivalent of the Prussian Iron Cross.
There were approximately 50,000 awards of the Hanseatic Cross of Hamburg, the largest Hanseatic city.