Coined to raise money for the orphans of French soldiers killed in WW1 this unique medallion was designed by the great Rene Lalique.
Entitled 'Orphelinat des Armees' it is shaped like a Maltese Cross and features a young woman in typical Art Nouveau dress, holding a young baby. She is very similar to the series of lovely semi clad maidens used in the crystal button designs.
Designed in 1915 by Lalique and issued in 1916 it bears the signature R Lalique. Only items produced during his lifetime are signed R Lalique. Everything made after he died is simply signed Lalique.
Fashioned from a pressed (Repousse) brass it is a medal and not a piece of jewelry, but it could easily be worn as it has a small hole at the top which is would be ideal to hold a chain or cord, but originally held a small blue, white and red ribbon.
Measuring 1 1/4" x 1 1/4" and with a small discoloured dot near her left shoulder it is otherwise in good Antique condition.
The idea for the medallion came from the Dean of the Sorbonne in Paris and was financed by Florence Schofield, the owner of the L'Hotel d'Lena, Paris and Ellinor Fell (sister of British Brigadier General Fell) and was sold mainly in New York to raise much needed funds for the French orphans of World War 1.
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