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Category: Exonumia



Bronze, AU

50 mm (1-7/8”), 56.7 grams

HISTORY: Sculptor and medallist Édouard Fraisse (1880‒1945) was born in Beaune, France. He studied in Paris and went on to create a brilliant career. In 1929, Fraisse was distinguished as a Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur.

OBVERSE: In this Art Deco medal, Fraisse poses a seated, nude athlete holding a laurel wreath. With a rising sun behind his head, the athlete gazes out upon a stadium with the racetrack curving at a turn. Inscribed on the parapet, next to the athlete’s left knee, is the artist’s signature, “E FRAISSE.” The scene is framed through the open aperture of a camera lens. The commission date for the creation of this medal is unknown but seems to have been continuously issued at special events for many years.

REVERSE: Sculpted by Henri Alfred Auguste Dubois (1859‒1943), it is uncertain exactly when this die was first cast. This oak-and-laurel wreath design was used for a number of years on numerous award medals, which may account for the less-than-sharp strike. Dubois was born in Rome, Italy, son of highly regarded medalist Alphée Dubois under whom he began his studies. In the exergue is the signature, “H·DUBOIS.”

Jean-Noël de Lipkowski (1920‒1997) was a French politician of Polish origin. He served as Député de Seine-et-Oise (1956‒1958), Député de Charente-Maritime (1962‒1973), and then again (1978‒1997). This medal was “OFFERT PAR JEAN DE LIPKOWSKI DÉPUTÉ,” most likely during, or following, his term as Député de Seine-et-Oise. He went on to become French Secretary of State (1968‒1974).

EDGE: Smooth, engraved with Paris Mint hallmark cornucopia followed by “BRONZE.”