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2020-12-17 Other articles >

Portugal's first paper money

Lisboa, 1798, 10$000 reis

The first paper money of Portugal owes its appearance to the Law of July 13, 1797, which authorized the issuance by the Royal Treasury of 6% of obligations in denominations from 5,000 reais to 20,000 reais.

The issuance of government obligations not backed by monetary metal was an extraordinary financial event for a country whose monetary system was built on the principles of bimetallism: since 1688, 1 real in coins was equal to 2.054 grams of gold, and since 1747 – also 28.046 grams of silver.

What was supposed to be a medium-term borrowing turned into a long-term one with additional loan issues in 1806 and 1807, for a reason that bears the name Napoleon Bonaparte. It was he who demanded that Portugal follow the Continental Blockade of England against the economic interests of Portugal and its colonies.
Portugal rejected napoleon's offer – the french general andoche junot stormed lisbon, and queen maria the pious of portugal with her son regent joao and another 15,000 people of her royal court were forced to urgently move to their colony of brazil - for a long 14 years.

In the absence of the monarch, in the presence of successive occupation troops, a bacchanalia began in the circulation of portugal - yes, not spontaneous, but confirmed by legislative acts:
  • the act of november 30, 1807 gave legal tender status to french and spanish coins;
  • the act of july 14, 1808 gave legal tender status to english gold coins.
Together with foreign and Portuguese coins, the paper obligations of 1798, which had become considerably devalued, continued to circulate, and the vicissitudes of the struggle for power in the royal family were reflected in their appearance.the

1826 – dies king joão VI, to inherit from him was his eldest son Pedro, the former at the time of the death of my father, king of Brazil is independent from 1822

The Fact of inheritance the eldest son reflected on the bills with a red stamp with the title of the new king of Portugal – D. Pedro IV.

But pedro did not want to change brazil to portugal and gave the portuguese throne to his daughter maria, and in order to help her as regent, he sent his brother miguel.

Starting with advice to his niece, Brother Miguel got into the taste of public administration and declared himself King of Portugal, starting to put a red stamp on bills – D. Miguel I.

Not agreeing with this kind of brotherly help, Pedro decided to return to his historical homeland and become the king of Portugal himself-probably also because in the XIX century, according to the movie hero Alexander Kalyagin, there were so many Don Pedro in Brazil-almost as many as wild monkeys.
The first paper money of Portugal-one-sided, size 15 mm x 9.7 mm, printed on thin paper, vertical lines are visible on the lumen.
On the front side are cherubim: on the left – a cherub on the way to the bee hive (a kind of Winnie-the-Pooh), on the right-a cherub entertaining a dog playing a pipe against the background of a medieval castle.

Between the figures is an oval vignette for the seal impression, but all the seals are stamped on the reverse side: the year and month presumably record the date of transfer of ownership to the interest-bearing obligation.

On my bill – 11 seals: for paper money, which collected seals from 1801 to 1814, the safety without torn parts from the bill is very rare.
My bill No. 62/538 came to me after years of searching for it, but it was worth it.

Первые бумажные деньги Португалии

10$000 реалов 1798, Португалия

Country : Португалия
Value : 10 000 реал
Year : 1798
Quantity :
Issuer :
Series :
Valid from :
Valid till :
Cancelled :
Alexander R.

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