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Replacement Medal, Replacement Copy

Replacement Medal, Replacement Copy.  A medallic item reissued or restruck to replace a previously issued medal which subsequently became lost or stolen. For military decorations the recipient, his agent, or sometimes a member of his family may be authorized to obtain such a copy. The medal may be drawn from stock if a quantity is on hand, or may require special striking, and/or engraving. Often a charge is made for such a second copy.

In Great Britain people once in military service may apply to obtain lost medals, and if still on active duty they receive these free. Retired personnel must pay for their replacement medals and wait a short period of time after date of application (sometimes lost medals show up during the waiting period). Campaign medals will not be replaced after the death of the recipient. At times in the past such British medals have been edgelettered:  replacement. Since most British medals are named, however, it is conceivable that a lost medal and its replacement medal could come together at some time in the future. In the United States all service personnel, or their families, can receive one medal free if authorized; all others must be purchased.

A replacement medal is a custom copy if in the same composition as the original. It is also called a replacement medal, a second medal, or sometimes, a jeweler's copy, as when a second set of medals is ordered, say, for a second uniform.  Should the replacement medal be ordered in a better-than-the-original composition – as in a more precious metal – it is a deluxe copy. If a second medal is ordered in a less-than-the-original composition it is a reproduction. See copies and replicas.

excerpted with permission from

An Encyclopedia of Coin and Medal Technology

For Artists, Makers, Collectors and Curators


Roger W. Burdette, Editor

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