The phrase Grand Cross is used to describe the highest grade in many types of knighthood. Sometimes the person with the highest grade are called "knights grand cross" or just "grand crosses". Sometimes the actual medallion or ribbon is called "the grand cross" and not the person.
In some orders, the highest grade may be called the "grand cordon", "grand collar" or something like this. In those cases the rank of grand cross may come after another rank, but before the highest grade.
As an example:
- for the Portuguese Order of Saint James of the Sword, the Grand Cross is the 5th highest award, with the Grand Collar being a higher award above the Grand Cross.