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The Royal Anthropological Institute has six honours and distinctions at its disposal. These awards are announced in ANTHROPOLOGY TODAY.

Huxley Memorial Medal and Lecture

This distinction was instituted in 1900 in memory of Thomas Henry Huxley and is the highest honour at the disposal of the Royal Anthropological Institute.

It is awarded annually, by ballot of the Council, to a scientist, British or foreign, distinguished in any field of anthropological research in the widest sense.

The lecture is normally delivered at a special meeting of the Institute in November and is followed by the presentation of the medal. The Lecture is normally published by the Institute.

Prior Recipients


Rivers Memorial Medal

The Medal was founded in 1923 by the Council of the Institute in memory of its late President, William Halse Rivers, originally for `for anthropological work in the field'. However, in the 1960s the rules were amended to reflect anthropological work in a broader sense.

The Medal shall be awarded for a recent body of work published over a period of five years which makes, as a whole, a significant contribution to social, physical or cultural anthropology or archaeology.

The Medal will not normally awarded for a single meritorious work nor merely for an exceptional number of publications.

The Medal will normally be awarded , but the Council reserves the right not to make an award in any year, if in its opinion, the nominations fail to reach the required standard for a medal which should reward exceptional merit.

The Medal rewarded in any year shall be presented at the Annual General Meeting of the Institute, unless the Council has requested the Medallist to deliver a lecture in connection with the award, when the Medal shall be presented after the lecture.

The award shall be made by the Council. An award may be made by the Council at any meeting not less than on month before the Annual General Meeting of the Institute. Nominations  may be made by any member of the Council. They should be addressed to the President, and there should be seconder. The name of nominee should be accompanied by titles and dates of the publications adduced in support, together with a reasoned appraisal of the nominee's work. Nominations must have been submitted to the Committee on Honours and Awards.

The Medal will normally be awarded to persons with some British connections.

Prior Recipients


The Henry Myers Lecture

The Henry Myers Lecture on the Role of Religion in Society was founded by Henry Myers, a Fellow of the Insitute, in 1945 to further the study of man's mental and spiritual development.

The Lecture shall be nominated, and the subject proposed for the lecture shall be accepted by the Council of the Royal Anthropological Institute and shall be published in the Journal of the Institute.

Prior Recipients


The Curl Lectureship

The Council of the Royal Anthropological Institute approved the institution of a Curl Lectureship, to be awarded biennially and to alternate with the Henry Myers Lecture.

The first Lecture was held in 1963 and the Lecturer will be elected by the Council of the Institute.

Preference will be given to a topic from the fields of biological anthropology, archaeology, material culture, ethnomusicology and linguistics; and the lecturer should normally be under forty years of age.

Prior Recipients


Lucy Mair Medal for Applied Anthropology

The Lucy Mair Medal for Applied Anthropology is awarded annually by the Royal Anthropological Institute. First awarded in 1998, the Medal is intended to honour the application of anthropology to the relief of poverty and distress, and to the active recognition of human dignity. Persons may not apply, but consideration of the Medal Committee, which will make a recommendation to the RAI Council. The Medal may be awarded at any stage in a person's career, it is not intended to recognize contributions to anthropological theory, as well as to applied anthropology, are not thereby excluded from consideration. The Medal Committee may consider not only a nominees's publications, but also such work as practical advice to governments and voluntary organizations. There is no restriction as to  the nationality, residence etc. of nominees. Nominations for should be sent to the Director, RAI, 50 Fitzroy Street, London W1T 5BT by the 1st of April each year. It is recommended that nominations should be carefully argued and supported by appropriate documentation.

Prior Recipients


The Patron's Medal

The Patron's Medal shall be awarded from time to time for distinguished services to Anthropology and to the Institute. It is not intended that the Medal shall be awarded annually.

A recommendation shall be made to the Patron by the Council on the recommendation of the Committee on Honours and Awards.

Further details on the design of the Patron's Medal

Prior Recipients