Goethe Medal for the Arts and Science # 3277
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This is considered the most prestigious and rare of all German awards. The "Goethe Medaille für Kunst und Wissenschaft" was founded in 1932 to reward outstanding service during the Goethe centennial. It was initially intended to be a one-time award, but President Hindenburg retained it as a national award and this practice was continued by Hitler. The medallion is in genuine silver measuring 2 3/4 inches in diameter and has the profile of Goethe on the obverse and the name "Goethe on the right. On the reverse is the stylized national eagle over the inscription "Für Kunst und Wissenschaft" or ("For Art and Science"). Engraved around the outer edge is the inscription that translates to: "Founded by Reich President von Hindenburg 1932. The Berlin sculptor Hanisch-Concee was responsible for the design of the medallion and his signature is found immediately under the neck of Goethe. The earlier-produced medals like this one have the recipient's name engraved in large, block letters around the edge. The proof mark on the edge is "835 PR ST. MB". This stands for the 835 silver designation and the Prussian State Mint. The Goethe Medal continued to be awarded even after the introduction of the German National Prize for Art and Science in 1937. As of January 1943, a total of 467 had been awarded. The recipient was "ERNST RÜDIN" as engraved along the edge. These medals were invariably personally presented by Adolf Hitler, himself, at a very grandiose ceremony and it certainly was the most respected civil award of the Reich next to the Eagle Shield of Germany and the National Prize for the Arts and Sciences, which was a replacement for the Nobel Prize since he had forbidden German citizens to accept the international prize.
Ernst Rüdin (1874"1952) was the founder of psychiatric genetics and was also a founder of the German racial hygiene movement. Throughout his long career he played a major role in promoting eugenic ideas and policies in Germany, including helping formulate the 1933 Nazi eugenic sterilization law and other governmental policies directed against the alleged carriers of genetic defects. In the 1940s Rüdin supported the killing of children and mental patients under a Nazi program euphemistically called "Euthanasia.
(Cased Goethe Medal for the Arts and Science)