Estimate: 3000 GBP
Price realized: 6500 GBP
Commemorative Medals, British Empire, David Livingstone (1813-1873), Missionary and Explorer, Royal Geographical Society, African Chief's silver Presentation Medal, 1874, by Alfred Benjamin Wyon, bust of David Livingstone three-quarters right, rev. legend in and around wreath, TO THE GREAT CHIEF CHITAMBO BY ALLAN WYON F.R.G.S. - PRESENTED IN MEMORY OF LIVINGSTONE THE NOBLE AND THE GOOD, 37mm, choice mint state
The obverse is the same as that on the Bearer's Medal (see lot 286), awarded to those Africans who carried Livingstone's body to the coast, with each medal named to the recipient and additionally "Faithful To The End"). Allan Wyon (1843-1907), himself a medallist and seal engraver, was the son of Benjamin Wyon and the younger brother of Joseph Shepherd and Alfred Benjamin Wyon. He was elected a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in 1875. Whether the Bearer's Medal developed from this private prototype is not known. There is no example of it at the Royal Geographical Society.
Livingstone died on 1 May, 1873 at Chief Chitambo's village, also named as Chitambo, near the edge of the Bangweulu Swamps in present day Zambia. In 1899 the Livingstone Memorial was built to mark the spot where the explorer died and where his heart was buried.
See also the footnote to the following lot.
The W. V. R Baldwin Collection of the Medals of Southern Africa (3000-5000 GBP)