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The E-Sylum: Volume 4, Number 8, February 18, 2001, Article 8


Last week your Editor asked:

"If a medal for a 100-year anniversary is a centennial medal, and a medal for a 150-year anniversary is a sesquicentennial medal, is there a name for a 125-year anniversary medal?"

Jim Porter's trigger finger was right on the buzzer - within minutes he replied that

"... the answer is "quasquicentennial". I'm citing this web page:"

"Quasquicentennial" ... Kinda rolls off the tongue, doesn't it? I ask because one of my local clubs is considering striking such a medal in 2003 on the anniversary of its founding in 1878. ANA Museum Curator

Robert Hoge concurs, as does D. Wayne Johnson who writes:

"The name for a 125th anniversary is quasquicentennial. When I was cataloging all the firm's medals for Medallic Art Company I compiled a chart of all the useful anniversary names.

Later I learned there are rules for these names. And that every year can have a word name (not just the major anniversaries). This was brought to my attention when reading Playboy (I look at the pictures in numismatic books, I read the text in the January 1975 issue of Playboy!) The year before our nation's 200th anniversary (Bicentennial, remember?) an author came up with the name for that year: the nation's 199th anniversary. I learned the formulae from this (and it works for any year).

For anyone interested I will email that Anniversary Name chart. But it will take some time to put that formulae into words (and find that old copy of Playboy). Contact:"

Finally, Bill Spengler writes:

"In your much-appreciated E-Sylum of Feb. 11 you asked: " there a name for a 125-year anniversary medal?" I don't know about its application to medals but I offer the following on the term itself.

By sheer coincidence, last week while driving on Interstate 80 in west-central Iowa I stopped in the hamlet of Casey (population around 500) to do a little antiquing. In one shop a few pieces of porcelain commemorating the 125th anniversary of li'l ole Casey in 1994 happened to catch my eye.

The reason was their carrying the word "QUASQUICENTENNIAL" in bold letters, a term I couldn't recall having seen before. At the time I had no idea this piece of trivia might come in handy so soon. But here it is for your consideration. It is not to be found in Webster's Unabridged, but I am told that the Casey city fathers were pretty sure of the accuracy of their etymology or they wouldn't have cast the term in porcelain!"

Wayne Homren, Editor

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