This weekend the Scottish Cup Third Round takes place and to whet the appetite, we look at the history of the trophy all teams are vying to lift on Saturday 27 May next year.
The Scottish Cup is a competition paved with history and the trophy is the best example of that, being the oldest existing trophy within the global game of association football.
First competed for in 1873/74 season, the trophy, along with a set of medals, were purchased at a cost of £56 12s 11d from Glasgow firm George Edwards & Sons.
They were displayed in the shop window of the store in Buchanan Street and Queen’s Park were first to lift the silverware after defeating local rivals Clydesdale 2-0 in the inaugural final.
During the amateur era of Scottish football, Queen’s Park were a successful and influential force and they would win the Scottish Cup 10 times in the first 20 years of competition.
It is no coincidence that the amateur club’s last success in the competition came in 1893, the year when professionalism was officially introduced into the Scottish game.
Today the original trophy is kept securely within its display case within the Scottish Football Museum at Hampden Park.
It very rarely comes out for events with the main exception being the day of the Scottish Cup Final.
The original trophy is still presented to the winning team at the end of the match and the players are allowed to take the trophy onto the field for a photo opportunity and to do the traditional lap of honour.
Once the lap of honour is over and the trophy is brought back into Hampden’s main stand it is exchanged for one of two replica trophies, with the original cup coming back under the custodianship of the Scottish Football Museum.
The original trophy is routinely inspected but is only cleaned twice a year (just before and just after Scottish Cup Final day) in order to minimise the amount of physical contact placed on such an historic piece of silverware.
This careful maintenance routine will ensure that the Scottish Cup remains a working trophy for many years to come as well as historic artefact.