Manchukuo Empire:
Order of the
Auspicious Clouds
Imperial Japan
Medals and
3rd Class
4th Class (rosette on ribbon)
4th Class
The ‘Ching Yun Chang’ was established together with the higher orders by Imperial Edict March 1, 1934.  Eight classes
were established for award to recipients of the 1st through 8th Orders of Merit, and is the exact equivalent of the Japanese
Order of the Rising Sun.  It is known as Order of the Prosperous Clouds (also known as the Order of the Auspicious Clouds).

The badge has a yellow-enamel center encircled by a translucent red-enameled ring; from this extends four sets of three
rays; a long white-enameled ray flanked by two shorter yellow-enameled rays.  The badge displays the five colors of the
Manchukuo national flag and thus represents the five races.  In each angle is a cloud in the Chinese classical style,
enameled blue.  The cloud is regarded in China as an auspicious symbol, hence the name.  The area between the clouds
and the red circle is enameled black.  The suspension is an Imperial orchid crest with the petals enameled yellow.  The
reverse of all classes is of plain metal with a single screw head in the center and on the plain reverse of the suspension the
usual four characters; ‘Order of Merit Decoration’.  The ribbon is of watered silk, pale gray-blue with a red stripe set in from
each edge.  The colors of the ribbon represent ‘the Sincerity of Oriental Morals’.

1st Class (Grand Cordon):  Shoulder sash and breast star.
2nd Class:  Breast star and cravat-suspended neck medal.
3rd Class:  Cravat-suspended neck medal.
4th Class:  Gold-plated silver medal with rosette attached to ribbon.
5th Class:  Gold-plated silver medal without rosette.
6th Class:  Enameled silver medal.  (Same confusion arises for distinction of 5th and 6th class awards as with the
Japanese Rising Sun awards.)
7th Class:  Gold-plated silver medal without orchid suspension; with the center ring placed behind the rays.
8th Class:  Dull silver medal with center, long rays and the borders of the clouds brightly polished.

(Thanks to D. Bailey for this summary!)

The numbers minted I found from the official history of the Japanese Mint are as follows. Note that these include the years
1934 to 1945:

1st Class: 496                       2nd Class: 689                      3rd Class: 1,732
4th Class: 3,701                    5th Class:5.922                    6th Class: 13,914
7th Class: 20,259                 8th Class: 62,826
2nd Class set
1st Class set