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5 Oldest Sports Trophies in the World

Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 11-28-2019      Origin: Site


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The exact source of the sports trophy is unknown, but the Ancient Greeks were probably the first to award sports trophies. During the earliest ancient Olympic games, winners were rewarded with valuable things, such as horses and bronze tripods. It is especially important for the Greeks to offer prizes to the winners of the game, and the word athlete itself comes from the Greek word "athlon", which means reward. After that, the Greeks standardized their prizes and awarded crowns made of leaves. Although these prizes have no monetary value, they represent the victory of the athletes, which usually gives them financial support and other rewards in their hometown.


These traditions established by the ancient Greeks have continued in modern competitions. Trophy and prize money have now become the standard for all major sporting events. The earliest trophy cups date back to the 18th and 19th centuries. The earliest non-cup trophies date back to the 16th and 17th centuries.


5. Claret Jug (Golf Champion Trophy)

 Year Created: 1872
 First Year Awarded:  1873
 Sport:  Golf
 Country of Origin:  Edinburgh, Scotland


Claret Jug

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons via Dan Perry

Claret Jug, officially known as Golf Champion Trophy, dates back to 1872. Although Claret Jug has become a fixed award for the annual Open Championship, the trophy is not the original prize of the game. The first Open was held in 1860 when the winner's prize was the Challenge Belt.

In late 1872, the three golf clubs that were going to host that year's Open – Prestwick Golf Club, the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, and The Royal and Ancient Golf Club – agreed to contribute no more than £ 15 (about £ 1,647.41 ($ 2,153.49 ) in 2018)) each toward a new trophy for The Open. As they reached an agreement in the second half of the year, the 1872 Open champion Tom Morris Junior did not win the Claret Jug Award . Instead, Morris won a medal called the "Golf Championship Trophy". However, Morris's name was the first to be engraved on Claret Jug and was first presented to 1873 winner Tom Kidd. Because they reached an agreement in the second half of the year, the 1872 Open champion Tom Morris Junior did not win the Claret Jug Award. Instead, Morris won a medal called the "Golf Championship Trophy". However, Morris's name was the first to be engraved on Claret Jug and was first presented to 1873 winner Tom Kidd.


4. America’s Cup

 Year Created: 1848
 First Year Awarded:  1851
 Sport:  Yacht Sailing Match Race
 Country of Origin:  Isle of Wight, England


America’s Cup

photo source: Wikimedia Commons

Despite the name of the America's Cup, the America's Cup trophy does not originate in the United States. The trophy is affectionately called "Auld Mug", named after the winner of the first game in 1851. The race is a group of wealthy Americans on a yacht called "America." Initially the trophy was called the 100 Guinea Cup.

The America's Cup was made in 1848 by Robert Garrard, a royal jeweller in London. It is made of high quality sterling silver. A few years later, the cup was bought by Anglesey's first Marquis, who handed it over to the Royal Yacht Squadron as a trophy. The America's Cup is considered the oldest trophy in international sports.


3. Royal Musselburgh Old Club Cup

 Year Created: c.1774
 First Year Awarded:  c.1774
 Sport:  Golf
 Country of Origin:  Prestonpans, East Lothian, Scotland


Royal Musselburgh Old Club Cup

photo source:  National Club Golfer

The history of the "Old Club Cup" hosted by the Royal Musée Fort Golf Club dates back to around 1774 and is based on the winners of the championship trophy. Although stated otherwise, the Musselburgh Golf Club believes that the Old Club Cup is "the oldest trophy still in use in the world".

The trophy was first awarded to the Musselburgh Club by first-place champion Thomas McMillan, who became captain of the club shortly after receiving the award. In addition to having one of the oldest sports trophies, Royal Musselburgh Golf Club is also one of the oldest golf clubs in the world, all of them from Scotland.


2. Scorton Silver Arrow

 Year Created: Unknown for sure – c.1673
 First Year Awarded:  1673
 Sport:  Archery
 Country of Origin:  Scorton, Yorkshire, England


Scorton Silver Arrow

photo source:  scortonarrow.com

The exact source of the Scotton Silver Arrow is unknown, but it was the first / original trophy (along with silver coins, pouches and silver brooches) awarded in the 1673 Antioch Silver Arrow competition. According to the history of the event, the silver archery competition is the oldest sporting event in the world. The Society of Archers in Scorton Village, Yorkshire, England, created the event to maintain and test their archery skills.

The real Silver Arrow is kept at The Royal Armories in Leeds and a replica Arrow is awarded in its place today. The trophy goes to the first archer to pierce the inner 3 in diameter of the target from 100 yards away. Many other trophies have also been awarded to various events. In addition, there are the silver horn of 1834, the gold medal of 1842 and the highest gold medal since 1845.


1. Carlisle Bells

 Year Created: sources differ - c.1559 or 1580s
 First Year Awarded:  1599
 Sport:  Flat/Thoroughbred Horse Racing
 Country of Origin:  Carlisle, Cumbria, England


Carlisle Bells

Image source: BBC News

The Carlisle Bells date back to sometime in the 16th century and are considered the oldest sports trophy in the world. The Carlisle Bells will be awarded to the winner of the Carlisle Horse Race in Carlisle, Cumbria, England. The first competition was held in 1599 and the bells are the only remaining part of larger prize from the 17th century.

Citizenship records show that in the early 17th century, the winner of Carlisle Bell gave away broad silver arrows with bells. Silver arrows and guns have been missing for many years, and even the Carlisle Bells have been lost for a long time. They were rediscovered in the 19th century and have since been used as trophies for the competition.

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