Awards are given out for many reasons and to many different types of people. From children winning a ribbon at a school sports day to a celebrity taking home an Oscar, awards and trophies have been given out for many hundreds of years. Today they continue to hold a significant part in our lives. Whatever they are given out for, trophies all have one main purpose, to award excellence within a chosen field.
Also known as the Oscars, the Academy Awards are held during the first part of the year to recognise films that premiered the previous year. The American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is responsible for awarding the Oscars and within this grand evening several Oscars are given out for different categories, such as Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Actress. The awards were first held in 1929 and now it is considered one of the most prominent award ceremonies in the world, being telecast live in over two hundred countries. In the recent 2011 Academy Awards the movie “The King’s Speech” won the Oscar for Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor, with this accolade going to British actor, Colin Firth.
A Nobel Prize is an international award given by Scandinavian committees recognising cultural and scientific advances. The Nobel Prize was first given in 1895, named after a Swedish chemist name Alfred Nobel, who invented dynamite. There are prizes in physics, chemistry, medicine, literature and peace and these are considered the highest prizes to receive within these fields. The prize is a gold medal, a diploma and a sum of money, which varies depending on the Nobel Foundation’s income within that year.
The Medal of Honour
The Medal of Honour is the highest military award given by the United States government and is given by the President. More than half of these medals awarded since the Second World War have been awarded posthumously due to the nature that the award is recognised for, which is for outstanding acts of bravery done by a person while putting their life at risk. There are three versions of the award, for the Navy, the Air Force and the Army.
The Victoria Cross
Another military honour, The Victoria Cross is given for valour during battle and is awarded to members of the Commonwealth armies. It was first introduced in 1856 by Queen Victoria to honour acts of bravery during the Crimean War. Since that time it has been awarded one thousand three hundred and fifty six times. Within Britain it is awarded by the King or Queen, and within other Commonwealth countries by the Head of State.
The FIFA World Cup
The FIFA World Cup is awarded to the winner of the World Cup soccer final, a soccer tournament held every four years for the competing nation’s senior men’s teams. The first tournament was held in 1930, and except for a break during the Second World War, it has continued to be held ever since. It involves thirty two teams and is watched on television by people from all over the world.