Knighthoods are back in Australia.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced that the Queen had agreed to reintroduce knights and dames to the Order of Australia.
“There won’t be very many knights or dames in the Order of Australia,” he said.
It will be a very select honour, with no more than four awarded each year.
The first new knight will be the incoming governor general Peter Cosgrove, who will become Sir Peter and his wife Lady Cosgrove.
The first new Dame will the outgoing governor general Quentin Bryce.
The Prime Minister, who was once executive director of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy, said the gesture was “a grace note in our national life”.
Mr Abbott said knights and dames will be approved by Her Majesty on the recommendation by the prime minister of Australia.
“People who may receive this honour will be those who have accepted rather than sought public office,” he said.
“The existing companions, officers and members of the order of Australia will continue.”
Previous knights of the order include Robert Menzies, John Kerr, Frank Macfarlane Burnet and Charles Court.
The last dame to be named was Alexandra Hasluck.
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