Skip to Content ☰ Open Filter >>

Object Results

Showing 1 of 1

Open Access

Portrait Medal of Victor Hugo

Artist: Alfred Borrel (1836 - 1927) Primary
Date: 1884
19th century
Dimensions: 2.7 in. (6.85 cm)
Dimensions Extent: diameter
Object Type: Medal
Creation Place: Europe, France
Medium and Support: Bronze
Credit Line: Museum purchase, 2016
Accession Number: 2016.18.01
On View: Bellarmine Hall Galleries, Print Case

French Romantic poet, author and dramatist Victor Hugo (1802-1885) appears on the obverse of this medal looking to the left; with his furrowed brow, loosened cravat, and gently rumpled coat, his appearance hearkens to the 19th-century Romantic ideal of the artist. The medallist Alfred Borrel included his signature and the date 1884 at the lower left. On the reverse, a palm of honor and a starburst emanating light appears beside NÉ À BESANÇON DOUES LE 26 FEVRIER 1802, commemorating Hugo’s birth on February 26, 1802 in Besançon. Hugo would die just a year after this medal was cast. He was buried with full state honors in the Panthéon in Paris, in a crypt shared with fellow authors Alexandre Dumas and Émile Zola.


Click a term to view other artwork with the same keyword

Refers to a broad range of alloys of copper, specifically any non-ferrous alloy of copper, tin, and zinc or other trace metals. Bronze was made before 3,000 BCE -- possibly as early as 10,000 BCE, although its common use in tools and decorative items is dated only in later artifacts. The proportions of copper and tin vary widely, from 70 to 95 percent copper in surviving ancient artifacts. Because of the copper base, bronze may be very malleable and easy to work. By the Middle Ages in Europe, it was recognized that using the metals in certain proportions could yield specific properties. Some modern bronzes contain no tin at all, substituting other metals such as aluminum, manganese, and even zinc. Historically, the term was used interchangeably with "latten." U.S. standard bronze is composed of 90% copper, 7% tin and 3% zinc. Ancient bronze alloys sometimes contained up to 14% tin.
Small pieces of metal, usually gold, silver, or bronze and bearing a relief design on one or both sides and having a commemorative purpose; resembling a coin, but not used as a medium of exchange.
public domain
Land owned and controlled by the state or federal government. Also, the status of publications, products, and processes that are not protected under patent or copyright.
Representations of real individuals that are intended to capture a known or supposed likeness, usually including the face of the person. For representations intended to be anonymous, or of fictional or mythological characters, see "figures (representations)."

Portfolio List

This object is a member of the following portfolios:

Does this record contain inaccurate information or language that you feel we should improve? Please contact the museum registrar at