The original US military decoration of this name was instituted by George Washington in 1782 and awarded for bravery in action. It was simply a purple heart-shaped piece of cloth edged with silver braid and sewn onto the coat. Records show that only three men received it during the War of American Independence (1775-83), after which it was forgotten about for some 150 years. It was revived on 22 February 1932, the bicentenary of Washington's birth, this time as a medal in the form of a purple heart-shaped badge with bronze edges and a relief bust of Washington in military uniform. The reverse side has the inscription 'For Military Merit' and the recipient's name. Purple hearts was also a 1960s slang term for amphetamines.
A synonym for the rank of Roman emperor, derived from the colour of the emperor's dyed woollen robe, hence phrases such as ‘raised to the purple’. P
Decorations and medals are the two broad categories of award recognition given to military members for valorous acts, achievement, and service. Both
( dat sg -ce , gen pl -ek ) f medal ribbon ...