Have Medals Always Been Awarded at the Olympics?

The Olympics is an international sporting event that is held every four years. Those of us who follow the event closely know that the first place winner receives a gold medal, the second place winner receives a silver medal and the third place winner receives a bronze medal. This, however, was not always the case. Medals as prizes in the Olympics was only standardized in 1908. Before this date, winners did not always receive medals. In fact, winners at the 1900 Olympics in Paris received paintings. Wreaths made of olive or pine were also awarded to winners in earlier games.

Since 1908, all Olympics games winners receive medals but the medals have changed in composition over time. Gold medals are no longer made entirely of gold. A gold Olympic medal, as of 2014, is 92.5% silver and only plated with 6 grams of gold./p>

More about the Olympics:

  • The tradition of the Olympic games started in Ancient Greece, possibly about 776 B.C.
  • Women first competed in the Olympic games in Paris in 1900.
  • The Olympic flag has five rings, standing for the Americas, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia; it is symbolic of friendship.

Discussion Comments


What are modern sliver and bronze medals made of?

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