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Are the Olympic Gold Medals actually made of Silver?

Question by Guest | 20/02/2018 at 21:12

My uncle recently told us that the gold medals at Olympia are not made of gold at all. Instead, they should only have a thin layer of gold, while inside they are made of silver.

I honestly can not believe that. Olympia is a serious competition and you can not cheat like that! After all, silver is the material for the second place, that fools every real winner! Or is this rumor about the medals really true?



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It is indeed so. The gold medal consists of 92.5 % silver and only 1.34 % gold (only the outer layer). The remaining 6.16 % are even bronze - the material of the third place. In other words, the gold medal consists of even more shares of bronze than of gold.

The reason for this "dizziness" is simply the money. If you would make the gold medals out of pure gold, a single medal would cost over € 20,000 - nobody could afford that. By the way, the athlete will not care, it's all about the honor and not to take home as much gold material as possible.

Incidentally, there were actually gold medals made of real gold in the past. The last one was awarded in 1912 at the Olympic Games in Stockholm. At that time, however, the gold price was almost a hundred times cheaper than today.
21/02/2018 at 19:37

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