Senior officer’s silver gilt Seringapatam Medal 1808


A very good example of the Seringapatam Medal in silver gilt, of which only 185 were awarded. This example has presumably been glazed as the medal itself is contained within a gilt ring. The disc in this case is as issued and has none of the more frequent piercing to enable it to be suspended from a ribbon. This one retains a length of very old yellow ribbon. The medal was awarded by the East India Company in 1808 to those who had taken part in the campaign against Tipoo Sultan in various grades from gold to pewter according to rank. The medal was always issued unnamed but the silver gilt and gold medals awarded to the more senior officers are sometimes found, like this one, suspended from a gilt bar. The yellow ribbon seems to be generally accepted as the one most commonly used at the time although no official ribbon was prescribed. Indian troops often wore theirs from a yellow cord through a hole punched in the medal. The obverse has a handsome image of the British lion triumphing over Tipoo’s tiger and the reverse shows a view of the battle. The date of the battle, 4th May 1799, is shown in Roman numerals in the exergue of the obverse.with the designer’s initials C.H.K. just above to the right. Medals were awarded in gold to general officers, silver gilt to field officers [majors and colonels], silver to junior officers, bronze to British troops, and pewter to Indian troops.

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