Ashantee Medal 1873-4 Specimen medal without mount and ribbon.
This specimen medal was acquired by the Melbourne Branch of the Royal Mint to exhibit at the 1880 Melbourne International Exhibition, it was also shown at the 1888 exhibition. It is the medal to which artists competing for the Exhibition Prize medals were directed as an example for the obverse.

On 2 April 1872 the British took control of the port of Elimina over from the Dutch but stopped making payments to King Kofi Karikara for the right to use it. As a result in January 1873 an Ashanti army crossed the river Pra and attacked the pro-British tribes of the British Gold Coast. The British forces in the area were very small and it took until October before sufficient men were available to move towards the capital, Coomassie. The main battle in the war occurred on 4 February 1874 at Ardahsa, the bar COOMASSIE was awarded to those involved in that battle and the subsequent occupation of the capital. The medal was sanctioned in June 1874.

Obverse Description

Diademed head of Queen Victoria facing left, around, 'VICTORIA REGINA' and on the neck truncation the artist's name, 'L.C. WYON'.

Reverse Description

Scene of fighting in a forest between the Ashanti army and the advancing British forces. Designed by Sir Edward Poynter.

Edge Description


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