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Medal - Melbourne Exhibition Prize, Victoria, Australia, 1854 Numismatics Reg. No: NU 34981

Summary:
Australia Victoria Melbourne
Melbourne 1854 Exhibition Prize Medal 1854 (AD)
Mint: Royal Mint London
Awarded to: Mrs. Watson
Other Details: A bronze prize medal (64 mm diameter) awarded to Mrs. Watson 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. The medal was awarded for a display of Seaweeds. 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. Some of these exhibits went to Paris for the 1855 Exhibition.
Description:
A bronze prize medal (64 mm diameter) awarded to Mrs. Watson for her Seaweed display 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, iconography
Themes this item is part of: Public Life & Institutions Collection, J.S. & A.B. Wyon, Engravers, London, England, J.S. & A.B. Wyon, Engravers, London, England, Williamstown Rifle Range, Victoria
Primary Classification: MEDALS
Secondary Classification: Civil
Tertiary Classification: exhibition prizes
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: Impressed; 494 * MRS. WATSON * SEAWEEDS * PRIZE MEDAL *
Inscriptions: Edge: Impressed; 494 * MRS. WATSON * SEAWEEDS * PRIZE MEDAL *
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: Wyon (Mint), London, England, Great Britain, 1854
Artist: Joseph Wyon
Awarded To: Mrs Watson, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1854

Prize won for a display of seaweeds
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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