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East German Medals
Communist East Germany issued medals for many purposes, but the general pattern for medals awarded by the armed forces and other official agencies is broadly similar and not difficult to understand.
Agency medals were of 2 basic types: merit and time-in-service. The merit medals varied in name and importance, as determined by the issuing agency. The Time-in-Service medals were officially called Medaille für Treue Dienste: Medal for True (or Loyal) Service. They were typically awarded every 5 years and ranked lower than merit medals. The general pattern is as follows:
Highest Precedence: Titles varied by agency.
* Ehrentitel “Verdienter . . .”
* Ehrentitel “Angehöriger . . .”
* Medaille für Hervorragende Leistungen . . .”
* Verdienstmedaille . . . Typically awarded in 3 levels: gold (highest), silver and bronze (lowest).
* Medaille für Verdienste . . . Typically awarded in 3 levels: gold (highest), silver and bronze (lowest).
* Medaille für ausgezeichnete Leistungen. Single level awards.
* Medaille für Treue Dienste: Medal for True (or Loyal) Service. Awarded in 3 or more levels, with gold the highest and bronze the lowest.
The variations between agencies in issuing these awards is explained in their respective sections.