Lot 9003: Paris 1900 Summer Olympics Gilt Silver Winner’s Medal ‘Concours De Sauvetage Sur Terre’
19th January 2017
Winner’s medal issued for the Paris 1900 Summer Olympics. Gilt silver, 42 mm x 60 mm, 57 gm, by Frederic Vernon, Paris. The front, inscribed “Republique Francaise, Exposition Universelle, Paris 1900,” features a winged goddess scattering laurels over the grounds of the Exposition; the reverse identifies the sport as the land rescue competition, “Concours de Sauvetage Sur Terre,” and depicts a victorious athlete upon a podium. Stamped “Argent” on the edge. This markedly unique winner’s medal is for the lifesaving event, which, along with other events like angling, ballooning, cannon shooting, fire fighting, and pigeon racing, was not formally recognized by the IOC. According to the 1900 Olympic Games Official Report, there were rescue competitions on both land and in water, with the former event featuring fire pumps and first aid assistance to civilian and military casualties. The land competition was held in the Vincennes velodrome, and the water competition was held in the River Seine.
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