The Beijing Olympic medals, made of gold, silver, bronze and jade, embody Chinese and western cultures. Such distinctive medals have been fully approved by the International Olympic Committee, and will be cherished by the athletes. The medals are representative of glory and success. Possessing pronounced Chinese color and distinctive artistic features, they will become an extraordinary legacy of Beijing Olympics.
The obverse sides of the medals apply the standard design prescribed by the International Olympic Committee – the Goodness of Victory and Panathinaikos Stadium. The reverse sides of the golden, sliver and bronze medals are inlaid with white jade, light-grey jade and grey jade respectively. The metal centerpiece on the reverse is engraved with the Beijing Olympic emblem.
The medals have a diameter of 70 millimeters (2.756 inches) and a thickness of 6 millimeters (0.24 inch). Compared with the medals of the previous Olympic Games, Beijing Olympic medals break through the traditional style and display the perfect combination of Chinese culture and Olympic spirit. The noble and elegant Olympic medals are of strong Chinese features. The creative use of jade shows people's honor towards the winners and gives a wonderful interpretation of the Chinese culture.
In Chinese culture, jade is significant for it always represents virtue and honor. It symbolizes the profound Chinese culture and beautifully expresses the Olympic spirit of unification and friendship. Kunlun Jade has been chosen as the material of Beijing Olympic medals. It is native to Qinghai Province and has several varieties. Kunlun jade has a fine texture and is considered a quality jade of the world.
The ribbons and packing boxes of the medals also display vivid Chinese characteristics and national style. The square packing boxes adopt the traditional wooden lacquer boxes, sending the meaning of happiness and satisfaction. The red ribbons bring a festive, merry feeling. The certificates made of Chinese thin silk and rice paper, are perfect blends of Chinese traditional craftwork and modern printing.