Paper Money

Patriots of Argentina featured on note series

Heroes and heroines will be featured in the latest series of notes issued by the Central Bank of Argentina with two legendary patriots on the 10,000-peso bank note.

Images courtesy of the Central Bank of Argentina.

The Central Bank of Argentina put a new 10,000-peso bank note into circulation May 7. The note is equal to $11.25 in U.S. currency. The new note, and a 20,000-peso note expected at the end of the year, are in the “Heroines and Heroes of the Nation” series. Measuring 155 millimeters by 65 millimeters, the note is made of paper and features on the face the portraits of Manuel Belgrano and María Remedios del Valle, fighters in the War of Independence.

Biographies provided by the bank describe Belgrano as the creator of the national flag and one the heroes of the 1810 to 1818 War of Independence against Spain. Already a lawyer, journalist, economist, politician and diplomat, he took on military duties when the war broke out. He fought against the British attempt to seize Buenos Aires. During the War of Independence, he led military expeditions in Paraguay and in the Banda Oriental (East Bank of the Uruguay River) and commanded the Army of the North. He had a leading role in the Congress of Tucumán, where Argentine Independence was declared. He strongly advocated for educational, cultural, and economic development in the country.

María Remedios del Valle had to face all the prejudices and limitations of her era as a woman and Black. She was an assistant in the British Invasions, and, after the May Revolution, fought in the Army of the North. Belgrano appointed her captain for her bravery. She was wounded by a gunshot, captured by the royalists, and publicly flogged. After years of neglect and misery, her work was recognized by the state, and she attained the rank of sergeant major. In her honor, Nov. 8 is the National Day of Afro-Argentines.

The reverse has an artistic recreation of the pledge of allegiance to the Argentine flag on Feb. 27, 1812. The portrait of Belgrano is attributed to François Casimir Carbonnier, a French artist, and the one of del Valle is from the work La Capitana (The Captain) by Gisela Banzer, an Argentine artist.

The bank highlighted numerous security features including a watermark of del Valle and Belgrano and their initials. A red, three-windowed security thread has a dynamic effect as the note is tilted. A band with BCRA becomes visible when holding the bank note up to the light. Another image, with optical variability ink, changes from golden to green as the note is tilted, creating a three-dimensional dynamic effect.

A latent image with the initials RA becomes visible when the note is held up horizontally at eye level and to the light), and a see-through register where the obverse and reverse combine to form the 10,000 of the denomination.

For the visually impaired, the banknote has a series of raised, parallel lines along its short edges.

Original plans for the series called for 100-, 200-, 500- and 1,000-peso notes, but because of Argentina’s rampant inflation, only the 1,000-peso note was issued. The Belgrano/del Valle theme was originally intended for the 500-peso note. The 20,000-peso note will have a portrait of political theorist and diplomat Juan Bautista Alberdi.

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