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Definition of the Order of the British Empire from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

the Order of the British Empire

 
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one of the British orders of chivalry. People who are appointed to this order receive one of five ranks within it: Knight Grand Cross (or Dame Grand Cross for a woman), Knight Commander (or Dame Commander), Commander, Officer or Member, and may put the appropriate letters after their name, such as CBE, OBE or MBE. The Order was started in 1917. Its full title is the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.

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