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Medal - Melbourne Exhibition Prize, Victoria, Australia, 1854 Numismatics Reg. No: NU 34821

Summary:
Australia Victoria Melbourne
Melbourne 1854 Exhibition Prize Medal 1854 (AD)
Mint: Royal Mint London
Awarded to: H. Laing.
Other Details: A bronze prize medal (64 mm diameter) awarded to H. Laing from Bendigo for manufactured metals by the Melbourne 1854 Exhibition. It features a view by J.S. Wyon, whose name appears at the top right of the exergue, of the specially built exhibition building as it would have been seen from the Flagstaff Gardens together with an allegorical scene of a miner presenting a large gold nugget, a shepherd presenting a sheep and a farmer bearing a wheat sheaf to Britannia seated facing right and holding a trident in right hand and resting arm on a shield decorated with the Union Jack. The scene is framed by a tree and the Southern Cross is in the sky above Britannia. Entries from Bendigo were alloted a seperate class, VIII and all given 373 as their entry number for Melbourne. They were winners of a preliminary exhibition to select material for Melbourne, which in turn was to select entries for the 1855 Paris Exhibition. This medal was awarded for an entry of the Gold Cross he won at the Sandhurst Exhibition for the best machine or model exhibited (from 1854 catalogue p.36). The Exhibition opened on 17 December 1854 and ran for 30 days. Around 40,000 people attended - half of Melbourne's population. The exhibition building, at the site of the later Royal Mint in William Street, was based on the design of the Crystal Palace in London, which had hosted the Great Exhibition only three years earlier, in 1851. Melbourne's exhibition building had 200 ornamental windows and was lit by 306 gaslights. The exhibition included a modest 428 exhibits, mainly local industrial and agricultural products.
Description:
A bronze prize medal (64 mm diameter) awarded to H. Laing from Bendigo by the Melbourne 1854 Exhibition. It features a view by J.S. Wyon, whose name appears at the top right of the exergue, of the specially built exhibition building as it would have been seen from the Flagstaff Gardens together with an allegorical scene of a miner presenting a large gold nugget, a shepherd presenting a sheep and a farmer bearing a wheat sheaf to Britannia seated facing right and holding a trident in right hand and resting arm on a shield decorated with the Union Jack. The scene is framed by a tree and the Southern Cross is in the sky above Britannia.
Acquisition Information:
Transfer from National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), 1976
Discipline: Numismatics
Dimensions: 64 mm (Diameter)
Dimension Comment: Weight > 100 g

More information

Tagged with: exhibitions
Themes this item is part of: Public Life & Institutions Collection, J.S. & A.B. Wyon, Engravers, London, England, Royal Mint, London, Royal Mint, Tower Hill, 1809-1975, Early History of London Mints, to 1300, The Royal Mint
Primary Classification: MEDALS
Secondary Classification: Civil
Tertiary Classification: melbourne exhibition 1854
Series: Australian Exhibition Prize Medals
DateEra: 1854 AD
Obverse Description: At centre, a view of the specially built exhibition building by J.S. Wyon, whose name appears at the top right of the exergue, as it would have been seen from the Flagstaff Gardens; above, MELBOURNE EXHIBITION; in exergue: VICTORIA / 1854 and in small letters, J.S.WYON SC.
Reverse Description: Scene of a miner presenting a large gold nugget, a shepherd presenting a sheep and a farmer bearing a wheat sheaf to Britannia seated facing right and holding a trident in right hand and resting arm on a shield decorated with the Union Jack. The scene is framed by a tree and the Southern Cross is in the sky above Britannia.
Edge Description: PRIZE MEDAL * 373 * H. LAING (BENDIGO) * MANUFACTURED METALS *
Inscriptions: Edge: Impressed; PRIZE MEDAL * 373 * H. LAING (BENDIGO) * MANUFACTURED METALS *
Obverse: MELBOURNE EXHIBITION above the Exhibition building, in exergue: VICTORIA / 1854 J.S.WYON SC.
Reverse: no inscription
Material: Bronze
Issued By: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1854
Mint: Royal Mint, London
Artist: Joseph Wyon
Awarded To: H. Laing, 1854

Won medal for "Gold Cross, presented by the maker to the Exhibitors of the best machine or model at the Sandhurst Exhibition" (Melbourne 1854 Catalogue p.36).
References: Car. 1854/2
Bibliography:
  1. [Book], Official Catalogue of the Melbourne Exhibition, 1854, in Connection with the Paris Exhibition, 1855, Melbourne, 1855

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