History of the word “Trophy”
By en:user:Gaius Cornelius - Own work, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3455557

How did the trophy, get started? Where did it originate? What is the formal definition?

The word trophy (from Greek tropaion, from trope, “rout”), in ancient Greece, consisted of plunder from a battle hung upon a tree and inscribed with details of the battle. To destroy a trophy was regarded as a sacrilege since, as an object dedicated to a god, it must be left to decay naturally.

The Romans continued the custom but usually preferred to construct trophies in Rome, with columns or arches. The trophies were erected after a battle and used to bolster a politician's career.

1513 was the first recording of the word “trophy” as “a spoil or prize of war.” Figurative extension to any token or memorial of victory is first recorded 1569.

Often, the reward of the trophy is not simply in winning it; rather, those who win it cherish the legacy that also comes with the trophy.

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