The Order of Mapungubwe
This Order is awarded to South African citizens for excellence and
This Order can be awarded in three Classes:
- Class 1 = The Platinum Order of Mapungubwe (Platinum)
- Class 2 = The Gold Order of Mapungubwe (Gold)
- Class 3 = The Bronze Order of Mapungubwe (Bronze).
Symbolism / Design Elements
Central Motif / Symbolism
Mapungubwe: The Mapungubwe Kingdom existed in the northern
corner of our country a millennium ago. The Kingdom had a sophisticated
state system and developed agriculture. It also developed a mining and
metallurgy industry. The Kingdom traded with countries as far as China.
During its time, it represented excellence of human thought and
|1. Four corners of the globe - symbolise
the achievements of South Africans all over the world.
Rising sun - the new dawn emerging from Africa.
Mapungubwe Hill - forms the background, a sandstone hill on
mudstone deposit in an arid subtropical area with erratic summer
rains. Excavations showed that excellence grew out of the most
difficult natural circumstances.
4. Mapungubwe rhino -
the now most well-known artefact found in a grave at the excavation
site, a gold-plated figurine formed around a soft core, probably
sculpted wood, testimony to the excellence of human resourcefulness
present in the Kingdom.
|5. Mapungubwe scepter - emerging
from the gold melting pot on either side; another of the artefacts
found in a grave at the excavation site. |
6. Decorated gold
melting pot - the basic symmetric forms on the overflowing gold
melting pot symbolise the abundance of excellence, science and
creativity, testimony to the earliest achievements in metallurgy.
7. Furnace - the purifying and life-sustaining properties
of fire, employed since the Iron Age, to advance development and
excellence in societies and communities.