Victory Medal

Era: WWI

The Victory Medal (also called the Inter Allied Victory Medal) is a bronze medal that was awarded to all who received the 1914 Star or 1914-15 Star and, with certain exceptions, to those who received the British War Medal.  It was never awarded alone.  These three medals were sometimes irreverently referred to as Pip, Squeak and Wilfred. 

The WWI medal of which the basic design and ribbon was adopted by Belgium, Brazil, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, France Greece, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Siam, Union of South Africa and the USA in accordance with the decision as taken at the lnter-Allied Peace Conference at Versailles but in a particular form of a historic Greek monument as determined by each nation, with the exception of the nations of the far east who issued the medal but with a different design.

Eligibility for this award consisted of having been mobilized in any of the fighting services and having served in any of the theatres of operations, or at sea, between midnight 4th/5th August, 1914, and midnight, 11th/12th November, 1918.  Women who served in any of the various organizations in a theatre of operations were eligible, such as nurses, members of the Women’s Royal Naval Service, Woman Army Auxiliary Corps, Women’s Royal Air Force, canteen staff and members of the many charitable services.


Materials:   The majority of the British medals and clasps are made of solid silver, though some were issued in bronze versions, mainly to Indian non-combatants.  The majority of the British campaign awards are circular, usually 36mm in diameter.

Ribbons:    Medals are worn suspended from their own specific ribbons. These were first made of silk but cotton was increasingly used as the nineteenth century developed.  Their own colours often have a symbolic significance: the equal stripes of the ‘1939 to 1945 Star,’ for example, are dark blue to represent the service of the Royal and Merchant Navies, red, to represent that of the Armies and light blue to represent that of Air Forces.

Ribbon width can vary slightly though it is generally 32mm wide.

Ribbon – 32mm wide. Reading from the centre outwards, the colours are red, yellow, green, blue and violet merged into a rainbow pattern

Victory Medal ribbon
Victory Medal ribbon
Victory Medal ribbon with Mention in Despatches
Victory Medal ribbon with Oak Leaf for a Mention in Despatches

Type – Campaign medal.

Established – 1st September 1919

Eligibility – British and Imperial forces

Awarded for – Campaign Service.

Campaign – First World War 1914 -18

Total awarded – 6,334,522+

Ribbon – 32mm wide. Reading from the centre outwards, the colours are red, yellow, green, blue and violet merged into a rainbow pattern

Designer – W. McMillan

Suspension – The ribbon is threaded through a half-inch diameter ring, which passes through a loop fixed to the top of the piece.  The ring will move forwards and backwards but not sideways.

Naming – In faint impressed block capitals, giving recipient’s number, rank, name and unit.  In the case of medal awarded to officers the names of the regiment was omitted.

Description – Bronze disk, 36mm diameter.  Struck in bonze, 36mm diameter with ring suspender.  Obverse: the winged, full length figure of Victory, with her left arm extended and holding a palm branch in her right hand.  The remaining space is left bare.  Reverse: The inscription “THE GREAT WAR FOR CIVILISATION, 1914-19” surrounded by a wreath.

Clasps - None issued, though those personnel "Mentioned in Despatches" between 4 August 1914 and 10 August 1920 wear an oak leaf on the medal's ribbon


This guide will help you through all the parts and descriptions of military medals


Major L L Gordon ‘British Battles and Medals’

Some of the material on this page was also partially derived from

< Victory_Medal_(United_Kingdom) >

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