Yesterday I was zapping across the TV channels and came to CNN where they were showing some Olympic statistics -> They said that Argentinia hasn't "medalled" yet.

It was the first time I ever heard (and saw) "medal" to be used as a verb, also all my dictionaries tell me it can only be used as a noun. Is this verbal usage of medal a newer one or was it just made-up for this particular situation?

Thanks for your info!

I am confident that it ('medalled') is made up. Probably just some sports announcer using his unique vernacular.

My guess, and it is only a guess, that "to medal" is to win a gold medal.

Argentina won its first gold medal at Athens on Saturday in football. Or they might have been referring to Argentina's upset victory over the US Basketball team. And although they beat the Americans, they haven't "medalled" yet. Though as I understand, Argentina is now playing in the gold/silver match in basketball, so they will win something.

I would have to hear more context to more accurately guess at the proper meaning. But I suspect that it is related to winning a gold medal.

Hi Mountainhiker,

thanks for your reply - I'm totally sure that it does mean "to win a(ny) medal" of course, no doubt about that! Emotion: smile
I was just wondering about the word itself as I haven't seen or heard it to be used as a verb before.

The reporter could also have said "Argentinia hasn't medalled before [this very moment]", as he certainly has referred to Argentinia's first success winning a medal... ehm... I mean Argentinia's first success medalling. ***

Thanks again!
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I think "gold" might be important here.

If you go the Olympic Medal Standings and drill down on Argentina, you will see that it currently has 4 medals.

Its bronze medal in tennis was won on the 21st. So if yesterday (27th) the Argentina Olympic Team had yet to "medal" then I think the announcer was referring to the gold medal.

Again, just guesses on my part, and a bit of sluething.


Now I don't want to meddle - I mean 'medal' - in your discussion, but maybe Argentina was just showing its mettle - I mean 'medal' - by showing what metal - I mean 'medal' - it's made of.

Too bad it wasn't a bicycle race. We could have worked "pedaling" into it, maybe even "petal". Emotion: smile


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Thanks, Mountainhiker!

Regardless if it refers only to 'gold' medals, or not, I was especially interested in the word itself - it's usage as a verb which I thought was strange. I was backed-up by a couple of friends who told me that "to medal" is definately a made-up word which they haven't heard before either.

This is interesting though and I'll keep an eye on this word; maybe it's on it's way into the dictionaries as a verb, too?! Emotion: wink