THE IMPERIAL AND
THE SACRED MILITARY ORDER OF SAINT STEPHEN, POPE AND MARTYR
World Orders of Knighthood & Merit
Guy Stair Sainty, Editor
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Il Gran Maestro
©Guy Stair Sainty
The Medici, almost uniquely among mediaeval dynasties, did not attain their position as Florentine Sovereigns by conquest, inheritance or Imperial or Papal concession. Instead, they obtained political power through financial primacy and, despite a series of grand dynastic marriages were still viewed as parvenus by the more ancient ruling families. On receiving the title of "Duke of Florence" from the Emperor Charles V, they were faced with the task of developing the city of Florence and its adjacent territories (which included the cities of Pisa, Siena and Livorno) into a cohesive state. The establishment of a Religious Military Order of Chivalry had the advantage of providing a means of honoring the nobility, providing a focus for national loyalty which was irrevocably linked, through its Grand Magistery, to the Medici dynasty and guaranteeing a permanent naval force which was effectively subsidized by the officers (the knights) who served therein. Suppressed by Napoléon, the Order was reformed after the restoration of the Grand Duke; a further attempt to suppress the Order was made by the provisional government of Tuscany in 1859. Neither of these were successful as they infringed Canon Law and the Habsburg successors of the Medici Grand Dukes have continued to maintain the Order. Its award has been extremely sparing, however, with less than two dozen awards between the death of the last reigning Grand Duke in 1908 and 1985. Since then there have been just over forty awards, mostly to leading members of the Tuscan nobility, and the Order celebrates an annual Mass in its ancient Capitular church in Pisa. The present Grand Duke succeeded on his father's abdication in 1984. The Italian Republic has treated Saint Stephen as a "non-national" Order (as defined in the law of 1951) and seven knights have applied successfully to the Italian President for authorization to use and wear the cross of the Order in Italy.
The decision to found the Military Order of Saint Stephen, Pope and Martyr,  was announced on 15 March 1561, by Cosimo de Medici, Duke of Florence, to commemorate his victory over the French led by Marshal Strozzi at the battle of Marciano, on Saint Stephen's day, 2 August 1554. Duke Cosimo was authorized to proceed with the organization of the Order by a Brief of Pope Pius IV (Eximiae devotionis) of 1 October 1561,  and hold the Grand Magistery for him and "postreorum tuorum decus, et honorem"; this was confirmed in the Bull His, quae pro Religionis propagatione of 1 February 1562, putting it under the Rule of Saint Benedict.  The privileges of the knights and prerogatives of the Grand Master were further detailed in the Bull Altitudo divinae providentiae of 5 June 1562. Limited to Catholics of legitimate birth, it was obliged to defend the shipping of Christian nations against pirates, liberate Christians from the slavery of the Turks and, above all, defend the Church and the Catholic Faith. Its statutes were confirmed by Pope Pius V in a further Bull of the following year, in which Cosimo and his successors were declared Grand Masters of the Order in perpetuity, and the seat of the Order established at Pisa, where Cosimo established two Conventual Houses for the knights. Thus the Order was a Religious foundation of the Holy Roman Church, independent of secular jurisdiction and incapable of abolition by a secular authority without the consent and authorization of the Holy See. Furthermore, since the Grand Magistery was attached to the Medici as Dukes of Florence (a personal title which did not of itself confer sovereignty) and was unrelated to the Sovereignty of Tuscany, the Order was able to survive the abolition of the state of Tuscany in 1859. In 1567 Pius conferred on Cosimo the title of Grand Duke of Tuscany for him and his heirs and successors, with sovereignty over Florence, Lucca, Pisa, Siena and the surrounding territories, despite the objections of the Emperor and the King of Spain.
The knights were in action within two years of the foundation of the Order, coming to the aid of the knights Hospitaller at the siege of Malta in 1565. In 1571 they armed twelve galleys of the Order, which distinguished themselves at the Battle of Lepanto and played a significant part in the defeat of the Turkish armada. With the death of Cosimo, his son and successor, Francis (who became Grand Duke in 1571), was no less enthusiastic in his support for the Order and the galleys of Saint Stephen were engaged in skirmishes with the Turks along the Barbary coast in 1582, at Monastero in 1585, Chios in 1599 and the Albania coast in 1604. Francis was succeeded by his brother Ferdinand I (1587-1609), who supported the knights in their attempt to raise the siege of Famagusta in 1607; unfortunately they were repulsed but, with forty-five galleys, captured and pillaged the city of Bona in Algeria.  The Order reached the apogee of its power under the Grand Magistery of Ferdinand I, who was responsible for the construction of the Church of Saint Stephen in Pisa - the population of this city doubled between the foundation of the Order and 1613.
With Ferdinand's death, the Grand Magistery passed to his son, Cosimo II, whose premature death in 1621 led to a regency during the early years of his son Ferdinand II, who succeeded at the age of eleven. The costs of these naval expeditions had become increasingly burdensome to the Florentines, whose own economy was not as robust as it had been in the previous century, while the citizens of Livorno bitterly resented the war with the Turks with whom they had been engaged in immensely profitable trade for the previous two centuries. Confronted with the opposition of the citizenry, Ferdinand gradually reduced the military activities of the Order, selling the majority of the galleys to the French in 1647. In 1668 an agreement was made with the Turks by which the sultan permitted them to trade in Turkish waters, a protection already accorded to the navy of the Emperor. In 1678 the Turks attacked the Venetian ports along the Albania coast once again and the remaining galleys of the Order distinguished themselves in assisting the successful defense of the Venetian Republic. Although the Order was now relieved of the burden of constant warfare, it continued to maintain a number of galleys as Venetian auxiliaries, assisting the latter in their capture of Prevezza and Santa Maura in 1684. A few knights joined the crusade in Morea of 1716-1719, an unsuccessful attempt to drive the Turks permanently out of the Balkans, sailing on the galleys of the Order (which were not engaged in the fighting). During the remaining years of Medici rule the Order abandoned its naval role; during the previous century it had succeeded in liberating between six thousand and fifteen thousand Christian prisoners from the Turks. 
The Tuscan nobility had proved enthusiastic in their support for the Order, founding numerous benefices or commanderies jus patronatus over the two centuries following its creation. The Order was divided into three classes: Military Knights, or Soldiers (Cavalieri Militi, who were obliged to prove two paternal noble quarters for five generations and that their mothers descended from noble families, with four out of their eight quarters noble), Priestly Knights, or Chaplains (Cavalieri Sacerdoti), and Serving-Knights (Cavalieri Serventi); the first class were divided into those holding Commanderies (often called Prebends, or `Recettorie), and simple knights. The members of the second class were also divided into those holding benefices (who had to make the same proofs as the military knights), and those Chaplains of Obedience, who served in the Convent of the Order in Pisa. The members of the third class were divided into servants of arms, who were effectively knights of Grace, not being required to prove nobility, and servants of office who were not properly knights. The military knights had a splendid white ceremonial mantle over a red cassock with the red eight-pointed maltese cross of the Order embroidered on the front.
To join the Order a postulant had to be at least eighteen years of age, able to meet the financial obligations of membership (for the first class a donation of 300 scudi per annum was required), make the necessary noble proofs, and not to be descended from heretics. There was a Council of the Order which met regularly in one of the two Convents at Pisa, composed of twelve military knights or noble priestly knights, of whom five Grand Crosses were elected for five year terms at the Chapter-General of the Order, attendance at which was obligatory to all knights resident in Tuscany. The five elective officers of the Order were the Grand Constable (in charge of the regiment), the Grand Prior of the Convent (who superintended the religious life of the brothers), the Grand Chancellor (who regulated the judicial affairs), the Treasurer-General (who administered the Treasure and bank accounts), and the Conservator-General (responsible for the administration of the benefices), while the Grand Commander, the Admiral, the Grand Hospitaller, the Prior of the Conventual Church and the provincial Priors and Bailiffs all held office for life or at the pleasure of the Grand Master (they were obliged to vacate their office at the death of the Grand Master).
The commanderies were divided into two categories, of Religion and of Family (jus patronatus) - the former being in the gift of the Grand Master according to seniority of the knight, or by special grace for exceptional service to the Order, the latter being family foundations endowed with at least 18,000 scudi. The Grand Master could exempt postulants willing to found a commandery from part or all of the noble proofs and such admissions automatically conferred nobility on the new knight, however such commanderies required endowments of at least 50,000 scudi. If a future heir to a Priory or Bailiwick was lacking one noble quarter he was required to increase the endowment by a further 2000 scudi or 1000 scudi for simple commanderies and if the issue of a non-noble mother they had to have already been admitted as a knight and paid the full passage fee of 120 gold scudi for the first two classes and 75 scudi for the third. These carefully drawn up regulations not only ensured that the Order was well-endowed but encouraged gentlemen keen to improve their social standing to be particularly generous to the Order.  By the mid-18th century the Order possessed twenty-three Priories, thirty-five Bailiwicks, and well over one hundred commanderies jus patronatus.
The last Medici Grand Duke, Gian-Gastone (1723-1737), had initially adopted as his heir the Infant don Carlos, eldest son of Elisabeth Farnese by Philip V of Spain, who was to succeed first to the Duchy of Parma and later become King of Naples and Sicily.  The treaty realignments of 1733-36 changed the succession and Francis, Duke of Lorraine (1708-1765) was instead adopted as heir, exchanging his duchy of Lorraine (given to Louis XV's father-in-law) for the right to succeed to the Grand Duchy of Tuscany (which he did in 1737). Francis, who, following his marriage to the Archduchess Maria Theresa, had been elected Holy Roman Emperor in 1745, was succeeded at his death as Grand Duke of Tuscany and Grand Master of the Order of Saint Stephen by his second surviving son, Leopold (his eldest son Joseph becoming Emperor). Under Leopold the Order's galleys were once again engaged in combat, under the command of Sir Joseph Acton, uncle of the future Neapolitan prime-minister, defeating a Moroccan fleet at Cape Espartel in October 1773 and distinguishing themselves the following year in an unsuccessful attack on the Algerian coast. The new Grand Master was less than enthusiastic in his support for the Order, resulting in Acton's resignation and the sale of the remaining galleys. He had already reduced the status of the commanderies by converting them into long term leases for the founding family by a decree of 2 March 1769 and, in 1783, abolished almost all the privileges of the knights, limiting the succession to family commanderies to the eldest sons. 
Leopold himself became Emperor in 1790 and six months later, on 7 March 1791, abdicated Tuscany to his younger son, Ferdinand III (1769-1824), the founder of the present Grand Ducal House, who later proved to be a great supporter of the Order. Although Ferdinand had been the first European Sovereign to recognize the French Republic, he was forced to submit to the French authorities who occupied the Grand Duchy on 24 March 1799 (at which time the privileges of the knights were further curtailed), and, on 9 February 1801, he abdicated both Grand Duchy and the Grand Magistery of Saint Stephen.  The Grand Duchy of Tuscany was reconstituted as the Kingdom of Etruria under Lodovico, former Duke of Parma, and the new king became Grand Master of the Order by the terms of the peace of Lunéville on 9 February 1801. He died two years later and was succeeded by his four year old son Carlo-Lodovico, under the regency of his widow, the Infanta Maria-Luisa, who was forced to abdicate both the Etrurian Crown and the Grand Magistery on behalf of her son on 10 December 1807.  D. Neri dei principi Corsini, a senior member of the Order, now petitioned Napoléon to preserve the Order, as it was highly regarded by the Tuscan nobility, but on 1 May 1808 the trusts and majorats were suppressed. At first able to survive as a religious association, the Order itself was suppressed and its properties confiscated by a decree of the new Bonapartist Grand Ducal government of 9 April 1809; the family commanderies became the absolute property of their holders, the commanderies of grace were converted into life pensions and the Order's churches put under the jurisdiction of local ordinaries. 
Badge of a Grand Cross and Knight of Justice
Following the restoration of the Grand Duke Ferdinand III on 30 May 1814 (he had been proclaimed Grand Duke at Bologna on 25 April 1814), the revival of the Order was proposed. By a decree dated 15 August 1815 the Ripristinazione dell'Ordine dei Cavalieri di S. Stefano was proclaimed, announcing that a new Constitution and Statutes were being prepared, authorizing all the members of the Order before its suppression to reassume their previous rank and appointing five deputies, at Florence, Pisa, Siena, Arezzo and Pistoia, as a temporary government.  The new Constitution and Statutes were proclaimed on 22 December 1817, restoring the Order to the position it had enjoyed before 24 March 1799 and re-enforcing all the earlier statutes and the amendments thereto. Article III stated that the Grand Duke "assuming, and retaining for Us, and for Our Successors to the Throne the Dignity, and Grade of Grand Master",  restored the Council of the Order whose members would be nominated by him. To finance its activities the Order was assigned an endowment to provide an annual income of 350,000 scudi, drawn on the Grand Ducal estates, of which 200,000 scudi would be used to establish Commanderies of grace to provide annual income of between 40 and two hundred scudi for their holders.
By special provisions concerning the benefices drawn up later, it was determined that members of the Order, if granted permission by the Grand Master, could found various categories of family or giuspatronato benefices. These were Commanderies of State, for which an endowment of 50,000 scudi was required, two categories of Grand Cross benefices - Priories which required a capital endowment of 20,000 scudi and Bailiwicks which required 15,000 scudi  - and simple Commanderies for knights which required an endowment of 10,000 scudi. In the event of there being no male heirs to the commandery, it would pass to the Order with the provision that legitimate daughters of the last holder would be entitled to divide three per cent of the capital value as an annual income for their lifetimes. All members were required to be Roman Catholics (including non-Tuscan subjects, of whom there were always a number among the membership), and were divided into four classes, Military Knights of Justice (Cavalieri Graduati, required to prove nobility according to the original statutes) or Grace (Cavalieri Semplici, excused from some or all of the proofs), Priestly Knights (required to make the proofs of Justice), Chaplain Knights of Obedience (excused from noble proofs), and Servants of Office (or Tau). The first two classes were divided into the grades of Grand Cross and Knight, the former including those endowed with Priories or Bailiwicks.  These benefices were inheritable by primogeniture - if the senior line became extinct, the benefice could be inherited by a collateral branch of the family of the founder, with permission of the Grand Master. The inheritance of a benefice did not give an automatic right to membership in the Order, which could only be assumed after a candidate had requested and been granted admission by the Grand Master. Persons were admitted to the category of grace by concession of the Grand Master and could be accorded life-time tenure of the income from an existing benefice, which would revert to the Order on the death of the knight.
Grand Duke Ferdinand was succeeded as Grand Master in 1824 by his only son, Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany. Leopold was a popular and enlightened monarch, well-known to his subjects as he was accustomed to walk freely among them and, like King Ferdinand II of the Two Sicilies, was a supporter of scientific advances and new industrial technology. Although he granted his state a Constitution in 1848, the resulting political chaos caused him to flee for safety in Gaeta (courtesy of his brother-in-law King Ferdinand II, where he shared his exile with Pius IX). Following a referendum in late 1849 he was restored to his Grand Duchy and continued to rule as a nominally Constitutional Monarch. Using the pretext that Tuscany had refused to join Sardinia in the latter's war against Austria, his abdication as Grand Duke and Grand Master was forced in favor of his eldest son, who succeeded as Ferdinand IV on 21 July 1859. Victor-Emmanuel invaded the Grand Duchy, and the Grand Ducal family were forced to abandon their country without abdicating their rights, leaving Florence peacefully with their subjects wishing them good health and shouting Addio. The Grand Duchy was annexed to the Kingdom of Sardinia by Victor Emmanuel II on 22 March 1860, in spite of their protests. The Order of Saint Stephen was illegally suppressed by the new provisional government on 15 November 1859 and its properties confiscated by the state, but existing holders of the Cross were permitted to continue to wear the decoration, the prebends of Knights of Honor were converted into life pensions and the giuspatronato prebends reverted to the families of the founder with absolute title. As a Religious Order of the Holy Roman Church the sole authority able to abolish the Order of Saint Stephen was the Pope, and the Holy See has never recognized or confirmed its illegal suppression.
The Grand Ducal family moved to their estates in Austria and, as Archdukes of Austria and Royal Princes of Hungary and Bohemia, became Austrian citizens. The Grand Duke Ferdinand IV, who died in 1908, continued to award the Order (without any entitlement to a prebend),  until his death in 1908, when he was succeeded as Grand Master by his second son, the Archduke Joseph-Ferdinand.  In 1913 the new Grand Master proposed to Count Guelfo Guelfi that the Order be restructured on the lines of the Constantinian Order, which had recently been the object of several manifestations of papal support - unfortunately the onset of the First World War made further progress impossible. The idea of reviving it was again put forward in 1937 by some Tuscan nobles, but the occupation of Austria by Hitler (who hated the Habsburgs) put the Archduke in a difficult position and the idea was abandoned. In the same year a group of Italians led by Barone (later Count) Pompeo Aloisi proposed re-establishing the Order as an Italian State Order of Merit to be awarded for distinguished service in the Italian navy, but this came to nothing.  By a royal decree of King Victor Emmanuel III, dated 14 February 1939 (no 1433), an Institution of Knights of Saint Stephen Pope and Martyr was founded to maintain a living record of the Order and the traditions of the Italian navy and to fund scholarships for the sons of Italian sailors. This still flourishes and has sponsored studies of the naval history of the Mediterranean in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries as well as an annual conference. 
Star of a Grand Cross and Knight of Justice
The Archduke Joseph-Ferdinand died in 1942 having made only two awards of the Order, to Count Guelfo Guelfi (in 1913) and Count Ferruccio Pasini Frassoni (in 1921). He left two children by his morganatic marriage, and the succession passed to his next brother, the Archduke Peter Ferdinand, who died in 1948 but made no awards of the Order. The latter's eldest son and successor, the Archduke Godfrey (Goffredo 1902-1984), who had married Princess Dorothea of Bavaria, took a more active role as Grand Master than his father had done and appointed a Chancellor of the Order, Nobile Giorgio Cucentrentoli (whom he created Count of Monteloro). 
Two knights were admitted in the 1970's by the Grand Duke Goffredo but no further awards were made until 1989 when the Grand Duke Goffredo's son and successor as Grand Master, the Archduke Leopoldo, who succeeded in 1984 commenced a reorganization. A new Grand Chancellor, Count Neri Capponi, was appointed and, on 23 January 1993, new Statutes issued.  These statutes considerably simplify the structure of the Order and bring it more into line with the reforms of similar institutions during the course of the last century. The members are now divided into Cavalieri Militi, Cavalieri Sacerdoti and Cappellani, and ladies. The knights and dames are divided into Justice and Grace, the former having to prove (a) that their four grandparents were born noble, or were the children of ennobled fathers, or (b) that they were descended in the male line from knight of Justice of Saint Stephen or from someone inscribed before 27 April 1859 in the Libro d'Oro of the Grand Duchy, or (c) are nobles by birth or inheritance who hold high public office or have particularly served the Order, and in (b) and (c) that their mothers were born noble.
All knights and dames must be Catholic, although an exception is made for Sovereigns, Heads of States and members of royal families who are members of the other Christian denominations. They must also prove that they lead a virtuous life, that they have attained their majority, and are of suitable standing in society.  Knights can be accorded the Grand Cross, as can Royal Princesses, while the descendants in the male line of the holders of former priories, bailiwicks or commanderies may be accorded these titles on an honorary basis but without any special precedence. These statutes also require all members to lead a Christian life, among other particular obligations.
Among the first recipients was Marquess Aldo Pezzana Capranico del Grillo, appointed a knight of Justice, who in 1993 was granted permission to wear the decoration in Italy by the Italian President.  This may be regarded as recognition by the Italian Republic that the purported abolition of a Papal foundation, a Religious Military Order of the Church, in 1859, was ultra vires the authority of the Provisional Government of Tuscany. The Order's modern revival does not of course include its original purpose, to provide a naval force to defend the Italian coast from the Turks. Neither is it expected that there will be any person prepared to make the necessary religious or spiritual commitment to make profession, not presently authorized by the Holy See. Its benefices and properties have been alienated and so the modern revitalization of the Order will require some generosity on the part of the new members. Grand Duke Leopold visited Florence in 1985 in connection with the "anno Lorena" and was received enthusiastically but, even after the political disorders of the past three years, there is no serious movement for Tuscan independence.
THE ARMS OF THE GRAND DUKE SURROUNDED BY THE COLLAR OF ST JOSEPH
The Grand Duke Leopold abdicated his rights and as Grand Master of the Tuscan Orders on June 18th, 1993, and has been succeeded by his elder son, the Archduke Sigismond. On June 11th, 1994, the new Grand Master invited all the knights of Saint Stephen and the members of the Order of Saint Joseph to the Church of the Order in Pisa, where Mass was concelebrated by the Archbishop of Pisa, a Grand Cross. This was followed by a reception in the Palace of the Dodici at which the assembled members paid homage to their new Grand Master.  Almost the entire membership of the Order was present as well as members of the Accademia Stefania, and senior military, carabinieri and police officers from the region and a representative of the Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus. There are presently forty-four members, four Grand Crosses (two of them Sacerdotal), thirty-six Knights of Justice, three Chaplains, and one Dame of Justice. 
Gran Duca Sigismondo di Toscana
The badge of the Order is a gold and red enamel maltese cross, with fleurs de lys between each arm (as for the Order of Malta) and suspended from an enclosed royal crown (for knights of Honor) and a military trophy (for knights of Justice, graduato or semplice). The Grand Crosses wear the cross suspended from a riband over the right shoulder, other grades from a neck ribbon, while serving brothers wore the plain cross on the left breast. The Justice category also wear the badge of the Order imposed on a gold rayed star. The members of the Order formerly wore a Military Uniform consisting of a dark blue tunic and trousers with crimson collar and cuffs decorated with gold embroidery and a gold belt and epaulettes; there is gold braid down the sides of the trousers and the knights wore a cocked hat and spurs. Chaplains of the Order wear the red maltese cross on their cassocks while the ecclesiastical robes of the knights consists of a white robe with red lining and the cross of the Order imposed on the left shoulder.
Pope Stephen had been martyred by the Romans in the year 257 a.d.
"qui tu primus, quoad vixeris, et pro tempore existens Florentiae Dux esse debeat, ac certo Militum nobilium, et alia juxta dispositionem tuam, qualificatorum numero sub tua, ac pro tempore existenti Magistri hujusmodi obedientia, ac per te, tam a primaeva erectione, quam alias occurrente vacatione, ac per successores tuos Florentiae Duces, ipsius Militiae Magistros, perpetuo instituendorum ...". Extracted from Statuti dell'Ordine dei Cavalieri di S. Stefano reprinted with the additions from the time of Cosimo II and Ferdinando II and of the Emperor Francis I, at Pisa 1746 (extracted from Carmelo Arnone, Le Apprensioni d'Abito del S.M.O. di S. Stefano, in the Rivistà Araldica, May 1954, pp. 157-168).
"... ac eundem Cosmum, et pro existentem Florentiae Ducem, in Magnum Magistrum ejusdem Militiae, cum honoribus, oneribus, praerogativis et facultatibus, quibus alii aliarum Militarum, dicta auctoritate confirmatarum, Magistri inter suos Milites quomodolibet utuntur, fruuntur, et gaudent, similter perpetuo constituimus et deputamus, illique praedicta immutandi, et reformandi, ac alia quaecumque Ordinationes et Statuta ad ejusdem Militiae directionem facientia ..... See Arnone, op.cit., p.158. This Bull confirmed the non-territorial but family nature of the Grand Magistery by granting it to Cosimo "ad posteritatis suae decus et honorem".
This victory is commemorated by a series of frescoes painted by Bernardino Poccetti (1542-1612) in the Palazzo Pitti.
The figure of 6000 is given by Charles Zeininger de Borja in L'Ordre Sacre et Militaire de St Etienne Pape et Martyr, in Rivista Araldica, 1937, pp.457-464.
See Arnone, op.cit., pp.158-160.
 Hence succeeding Kings of the Two Sicilies retained the title of "Hereditary Grand Prince of Tuscany".
See Zeininger de Borja, op.cit., 1937, pp. 460-461.
Ferdinand was first given the newly created, and purely titular, Electorate of Salzburg but in 1805 was made Elector (Grand Duke in 1806) of Wurzburg.
The Infanta Maria-Luisa was given the specially created Duchy of Lucca by the treaty arrangements following the Congress of Vienna, on 22 November 1817, and died in 1824 when she was succeeded by her son Carlo-Lodovico (abdicating 15 October 1847). On 17 December 1847 he became Duke of Parma in succession to the Empress Marie-Louise - his grandson Roberto II, who succeeded following his grandfather's abdication and father's murder, was deposed as such in 1859.
See Zeininger de Borja, op.cit., 1937, p.461.
These were respectively, Cav. Priore Leopoldo Ricasoli, Cav. Beniamino Sproni, Cav. Bali Giulio Bianchi, Cav. Priore Carlo Albergotti Siri and Cav. Clemente Rospigliosi. For the full text of this decree, see Carlos Zeininger de Borja, L'Ordre de Saint Etienne, in Rivista Araldica, 1938, pp. 99-100.
Although this would appear to restrict the succession of the Grand Magistery, it was actually beyond the powers of the Grand Master to amend the system of succession laid down in the original Bull and giving the Order a dynastic character. See Arnone, op.cit., p.165.
In 1859 there were a total of forty-two Priories attached nominally to the following places: Arezzo, Ascoli, Austria, Bologna, Castiglione, Fiorentino, Chiusi, Colle, Cortona, Fano, Ferrara, Florence, Grossetto, Livorno, Lombardy, Lucca, Macerata, Mantua, Marches, Massa di Siena, Modena, Modigliana, Montalcino, Montepulciano, Naples, Parma and Piacenza, Perugia, Pescia, Pienza, Pietrasanta, Pisa, Pistoia, Pitigliano, Prato, Rome, Sanminiato, San Sepolcro, Siena, treviso, Umbria, Urbino and Volterra; and a total of twenty-five Bailiwicks: Arezzo, Colle, Cortona, Fiesole, Florence, Grossetto, Lucca, Livorno, Lunigiana, Macerata, Modena, Montalcino, Montepulciano, Perugia, Pescia, Pienza, Pisa, Rome, Ecclesiatical Romagna, Sanminiato, San Sepolcro, Siena, Senigalia, Viareggio and Volterra.
According to Arnone (op.cit. p.164), who analyzed the last Almanach of Tuscany of 1859, there were at that date 33 priors (out of a possible 42), 22 bailiffs (out of a possible 25), 49 knights of Justice with family commanderies, 179 knights of justice, 191 knights endowed with commanderies of grace, 9 knights of grace without commanderies and without any or complete noble proofs.
Among the nominations made by him were the Archdukes Joseph-Ferdinand, Peter-Ferdinand, Henry-Ferdinand, Leopold-Salvator (Leopold Wolfling), Francis-Salvator and Charles-Stephen, Baron Giuseppe Silvatici, Prince Johann of Hohenlohe-Bartenstein, Marchese don Ascanio Costaguti, and Count Fabio Fani.
Joseph-Ferdinand conferred several titles including those of Duke of Giglio, Count of Palazzo Vecchio and Marquess on Noble D. Emerico-Aloigi Stefanelli von Prenterhof und Hohenmaur, with the titles of Count and Countess and Don and Donna for all his descendants in the male line - see Ronald E. Prosser, The Royal Prerogative, Ravensthorn Press, Iowa 1984, p.64.
 It became clear that this suggestion was impossible without the voluntary abdication of the Grand Duke, and the assent of the other members of the family, to which the Grand Duke refused to consent. See Arnone, op.cit., p. 167.
 See Ordini Cavallereschi e Onorificenze, by Pier Felice degli Uberti, Milano, 1993, pp. 155-157.
 He also created Dr Rodolfo Bernardini, the President of the Institution of Knights of Saint Stephen, a Count. See Uberti, op. cit. supra p. 153.
 For the complete text, see Rodolfo Bernardini, Lorganizzazione interna del Sacro Militare Ordine di S. Stefano P. & M., in Nobilta, Jan-Mar 1994, pp. 197-205.
 If divorced, a candidate must be the innocent party.
 By virtue of article 7 of the law 178/1951See Uberti, op. cit. supra p. 154.
 Revised Statutes have also been granted to the Order of Saint Joseph (Ordine del Merito sotto il titolo di S. Giuseppe) by the Archduke Siismond on June 9th, 1994. These limit the number of Grand Crosses to thirty, of Commanders to sixty and of Knights to one hundred and fifty, excluding from these numbers those Sovereigns, members of Royal Houses, heads of State, Cardinals and Tuscan Metropolitan Archbishops who may be appointed to membership. Furthermore, Grand Crosses and those holding the great offices of Saint Stephen also receive the Grand Cross of St Joseph. Provision was also made for the admission of up to fifty ladies, who may also be given the Grand Cross but do not wear the Star.