Verdun Medal #A (obverse)

  • Anthony de Francisci, Verdun Medal #A (obverse), 1920, gilded bronze, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Anthony de Francisci, 1966.51.58

Luce Center Label

In 1920, Congress authorized a special gold medal honoring the sacrifice of the citizens of the French city of Verdun during World War I. The Battle of Verdun was one of the most devastating of the war and led to approximately 800,000 casualties. The United States Commission of Fine Arts, established by Congress in 1910, held a limited competition for medal designs in early 1920. Anthony de Francisci submitted two designs for the obverse of the coin. In this artist’s strike, or sample, Athena, goddess of war, appears with an American eagle bearing the olive branch of peace. With her left hand, she grasps the shield of Verdun, symbol of the city’s brave defense.

Verdun Medal #A (obverse)
On View
Not on view.
4 in. (10.2 cm) diam.
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Mrs. Anthony de Francisci

Mediums Description
gilded bronze
  • History – France – World War I
  • Allegory – place – Verdun
  • Animal – bird – dove
  • Dress – accessory – helmet
  • Figure female – full length
Object Number
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI