Did you know ?
In April 1922, the Swedish Society for Anthropology and Geography presented Prince Albert I with the prestigious Vega Medal in recognition of his contribution to the advancement of geographical sciences.
Due to the Prince’s failing health, it was decided that he should not undertake such a long journey.
The Society, represented by its President, Professor Gunnar Andersson, therefore decided to organise for the medal to be presented to Consul Hugo Duhs, the Prince’s representative in Sweden, at the Grand Hotel in Stockholm. The prestigious event was attended by H.R.H the Prince Regent, Prince Carl, Princess Ingeborg and Princess Marguerite of Denmark.
Founded in 1880 in memory of Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld’s Vega expedition, the medal is awarded to individuals who have contributed to geographical research. There is a Rue de la Vega in Paris (in the twelfth arrondissement), a tribute to the feats accomplished during this expedition.
Excerpts of the speech by President Gunnar Andersson: “For us, two names here shine above the others: John Murray and Otto Pettersson, who won their medals in 1912 and 1907 respectively. This evening, we add another name to this three-starred constellation, one which, in the annals of our Society, shines above the science of the oceans: Albert I, Prince of Monaco. He grew up on the shores of the great Mediterranean, where he learned to love the blue sea and the clear sky. Among other gifts of fortune, he was blessed to receive one of the most precious a man can be granted: the inner need to seek out knowledge and science. The love of the sea stirred within him a need, which was never extinguished, to explore its great mystery. He became the ‘Prince Henry the Navigator’ of modern science [...]”
Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld by Georg von Rosen (1886), Nationalmuseum.