The Most Illustrious Order of the Crown of Johor, or Seri Paduka Mahkota Johor, is a chivalrous medal awarded by the Sultan of Johor. It was first instituted July 31, 1886.
It is awarded in three classes:Knight Grand Commander (Dato' Sri Paduka-S.P.M.J.),
Knight Commander (Dato' Paduka-D.P.M.J.) and
Male recipients of these royal awards, the Dato' Sri Paduka Mahkota Johor (SPMJ) and the Dato' Paduka Mahkota Johor (DPMJ) are entitled to be addressed with the honorary title “Dato” (equivalent to ‘Sir’) and their female spouse “Datin” (equivalent to ‘Lady’). Female recipients are given the honorary title Datin Paduka (equivalent to 'Dame') but there is no accompanying title for their male spouse.
The Order of the Crown of Johor is the oldest royal order in the country, introduced some 30 years before any of the other Malaysian royal households introduced a similar order. The awards are bestowed based on three main criteria namely; loyalty, meticulous service and diligence. Since these royal awards were first conferred in 1886, only 712 individuals have been honoured, an average of only five honours per year making it reputedly the rarest and hence most prestigious ‘Datoship’ (or knighthood) to get in Malaysia. Awards are conferred at His Majesty's discretion, in conjunction with the birthday of HRH the Sultan of Johor. The annual Honours List is published in most mainstream Malaysian media and newspapers.