Australia Victoria Melbourne
Olympic Commemorative Medal 1956 (AD)
Other Details: The fifth of a series of medals issued by the Numismatic Association of Victoria (NAV), this medal commemorates the 16th Olympic Games, held in Melbourne in 1956. Its obverse represents a Greek coin struck about 300 BC for the 105th Olympiad, with the inscription 'XVI Olympina, Melbourne'. The 'l' was accidently replaced by a Greek lamda, but this has made the medal particularly appealing to collectors.
Lead trial for silver and bronze medals commissioned by the NAV to commemorate the Melbourne Olympic Games, 1956. Copy of ancient coin bearing head, behind an olive branch/ below, XVI / OLYMPINA / MELBOURNE the "L" being a Greek lamda (obverse) IN/THIS MEDAL/WE COMMEMORATE/THE OLYMPIC GAMES/HELD IN MELBOURNE/NOVEMBER 22/TO/DECEMBER 16/1956/NUMISMATIC ASSN OF VICTORIA/K G L(reverse)
Copy of ancient coin bearing bearded head of Olympian Zeus facing right, behind an olive branch; below, XVI / OLYMPINA / MELBOURNE (the "L" of OLYMPIANA being a Greek lamda)
IN / THIS MEDAL / WE COMMEMORATE / THE OLYMPIC GAMES / HELD IN MELBOURNE / NOVEMBER 22 / TO / DECEMBER 16 / 1956 / NUMISMATIC ASSN OF VICTORIA / K G L
This medal was commissioned by the Numismatic Association of Victoria to commemorate the 1956 Olympic Games. The inclusion of the Greek lamda in place of "L" in OLYMPIANA was a mistake by the artist, but the medal proved very popular as a result.
Transfer from National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), K.G.Luke (Australasia) Ltd, 15 Mar 1976
Mr. W. E. Curran - Numismatic Association of Victoria, Melbourne, Greater Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 1956
Carlisle names Curran as the artist, and in the article 'Medallic Issues of the N.A.V.', Australian Numismatist, 1972, Vol.17, No.2. Curran admits he was responsible for the accidental insertion of the Greek lamda. Curran was both Australian Numismatist Editor and NAV President in 1972.
Plain (edge) Copy of ancient coin bearing head, behind an olive branch/ below, XVI / OLYMPINA / MELBOURNE the "L" being a Greek lamda (obverse) IN/THIS MEDAL/WE COMMEMORATE/THE OLYMPIC GAMES/HELD IN MELBOURNE/NOVEMBER 22/TO/DECEMBER 16/1956/NUMISMATIC ASSN OF VICTORIA/K G L(reverse)
Type of item
Exhibition Collection Management
5 mm (Length), 38 mm (Outside Diameter)
Car 1956/6 but lead trial
[Article] 1962. Medallic Issues of the N.A.V. Australian Numismatist. 17 (2)