Wimbledon – the world’s oldest professional tennis tournament, is underway once again. Players are vying for top spots in the tournament’s five (nine if you’re counting junior league) championships; all of which have some elegantly designed silver prizes.
The Gentlemen’s Singles cup is beautifully crafted vermeil (gold-plated silver). It stands at an impressive 18 inches with gracefully curved handles, floral patterning, and a lid topped with a pineapple. Winners of the Ladies Singles Championship win something different – a partially gilded silver salver known as the “Venus Rosewater Dish,” or simply the “Rosewater Dish.” The salver is adorned with beautiful and intricate mythological motifs and decoration, such gods, goddesses, the elements, and even Minerva presiding over the seven liberal arts: astrology, geometry, arithmetic, music, rhetoric, dialectic and grammar.
Unfortunately, once the ceremonies are over, the champions are not allowed to keep the trophies. Instead, they each receive a three-quarter size replica. The runners-up (who receive an inscribed silver plate), and the champions of Men’s, Women’s, and Mixed Doubles (who each receive silver cups) are allowed to keep their trophies.