A Brief History of Trophies
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A Brief History of Trophies

trophy is a specially-design reward given to indicate a certain achievement or recognition. The trophy is usually given during academic and athletic events. In prestigious sports events such as the Olympic games, the gold, silver and bronze medals serve as a sole award-giving trophy.


The word “Trophy” traces its roots from the French word “Trophee” meaning “A spoil of war and prize”. The English adapted the French term in the 1550’s to emphasize the victory of the 15th century English War. In Ancient Greece, the trophy is made from series of victorious Greek battles that were hung from a tree to symbolize the warrior’s triumph. The Ancient Greek trophy is made from inscribed contexts depicting the battle of the Gods. The Ancient Romans meanwhile festooned the creation of the trophy for home and memorial purposes.


During the 16th century Middle Age years, the Chalices were given as an alternative to trophy among winners from “New World” sporting events. The “Kyp Cup” is the first chalice given to horse racing champions in New England during the late-1600 years. Chalices are currently seen in prestigious sports events such as the The Stanley Cup, Davis Cup and World Cup. The “Oscar Trophy” for the Academy Awards is the first human-sized trophy created. The “Hugo Award” trophy is famous for its “spaceship” size. The “Man on the Moon” trophy is the second human-sized trophy conceptualized by MTV Networks for the MTV Video Music Awards.

There are three types of award-giving trophy designs that are specially created in terms of quality, motif and purpose:


• The Resin Trophy varies in generic quality, styling and overall finishes. Also known as the “Resin Awards”, the trophy is usually seen in academic recognition accolades such as commencement exercises. The resin trophy can be customized or molded, depending on the target theme.
• The “Loving-Cup Trophy” is the commonly used trophy made from two silver plate handles, creating a pedestal-like appearance.
• The Hunting Trophy features the head of an animal mounted on a solid surface. The trophy is usually given to distinguish accomplishments in the hunting industry.   In 1983, the first “Jules Rimet Trophy” design was stolen in Brazil. The World Football Association made a replica of the original Jules Rimet Trophy for private football match celebrations in 1966. The FIFA purchased the FA’s replica in 1997. However, the loss of the first Jules Rimet Trophy design paved way for the existence of the following:

• The Scottish Cup Trophy is the oldest trophy given during the seasonal Scottish Football Association Challenge Cup in United Kingdom.

• The FIFA World Cup Trophy is being awarded to the winners of the prestigious FIFA World Cup series. Designed in 1974, the previous winners of the FIFA World Cup were initially awarded with the Jules Rimet Trophy replica in 1949.

• The European Champion’s Cup Trophy is awarded to the winners of the annual UEFA Champions’ League. The EC Cup is the most prestigious trophy originated from the European Eastern Hemisphere.