medals made of gold, silver, bronze and the Eiffel Tower

medals made of gold silver bronze and the Eiffel Tower

The medals that will be distributed to the victorious athletes during the Paris 2024 Olympic Games were revealed this Thursday, February 8. To make them unique, an idea emerged: integrating a piece of the Eiffel Tower into each charm.

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Gold, silver and bronze, they represent the reward of several years of work and sacrifice, the most coveted Holy Grail for most high-level athletes: the Olympic and Paralympic medals. Those of Paris 2024, the result of joint reflection by the COJO (Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games), the IOC (International Olympic Committee) and the athletes themselves, were unveiled Thursday morning at the headquarters of the Organizing Committee.

The design of these charms, specific to each edition of the Games, was entrusted to the jeweler Chaumet, a subsidiary of the LVMH group, partner of Paris 2024. And all parties seem to have very quickly agreed on the symbol to integrate to make the unique vintage 2024: the Eiffel Tower. But how can we illustrate the most visited monument in the world on this precious object of 85 millimeters in diameter which displays 455 and 529 grams on the scale?

The idea is to simply embed a piece of the Iron Lady. Eighteen grams, no more and no less, from pieces recovered during repairs or renovations, set in the heart of the medals described on both sides by Joachim Roncin, the design director of Paris 2024: “ On the front side, we will be able to see a hexagon made of puddled iron, which is the original metal of the Eiffel Tower. And around, there is a radiance which symbolizes the radiance of France, the radiance of an athlete when he wins. On the back of this medal, there is for the IOC side a design imposed since 2004, Athena Nikè in a stadium, with the Parthenon on the left, and we had the audacity to ask the IOC to add the Eiffel Tower on the right, what they accepted “. With, on the edge, the discipline for which the reward is awarded.

Truly a beautiful gem »

A largely successful design in the eyes of Koumba Larroque. The four-time world wrestling medalist, already selected for the Paris Games, had “ a little teary-eyed », when discovering the object. “ With this image, I can fall asleep with dreams in my head, so it’s crazy. It really is a beautiful gem. […] HASto see such a beautiful medal, so worked, it’s incredible. »

The front face will be identical for the Paralympic medals, except for the symbol, the agitos, which replace the rings. Another particularity: the inscription in international braille of the name of the host city and the year, all topped, this time, with a red ribbon, compared to a blue ribbon for the Olympic medals.

The medals from the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

5,000 medals are planned, which is more than the number actually awarded during the two Games. It is indeed necessary to take into account possible ex aequo, particularly in swimming events where competitors cannot be decided by a thousandth of a second. But also possible reattributions of medals a posteriori if there are cases of doping. Some of those which do not find a buyer will go to Olympic museums, the others will simply be melted down.

Comments collected by Christophe Diremszian.