The year 1951 for a 1000 francs Roman Temple!

Proposal to create 3 references for this 1000 francs Tunisia 1950.

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Can we still discover new variants (thus adding new references) on old banknotes that we regularly see on sale?

I think the answer is YES! There are so many undocumented things, that it is still possible. I will show you...

But as a preamble, I will remind you of the definitions of the terms "variant" and "reference".

By "variant", we mean a set of characteristics that differ for the same standard banknote, i.e. for the same vignette (design) of a banknote.

A reference is often associated with each variant to better identify/name them.

Collectors generally appreciate to have all the variants of a banknote in order to "contemplate" all the possible variations of this same banknote.

Concretely, among the most known criteria that define variants, we have :

  • Signature combinations

In the World Paper Money (Pick) books, we often find a reference for each signature variant. For example, for the banknote whose type (sticker) has the reference 61, we have:

  1. Reference P.61a for the first combination of signatures
  2. Reference P.61b for the second combination of signatures
  3. Reference P.61cfor the third... etc.
  • The years or dates of the issues

In his book of quotation of the banknotes of the Bank of France, Mr Fayette went down in more detail. He gave references for each year (or date) of issue.

For example, for the 20 francs NOIR (well rather "Bleu et Bistre" according to the official name of the BDF), reference F.09, we find 4 variants :

  1. F.09.01 : Mignot/Marsaud - 1874
  2. F.09.02 : Mignot/Marsaud - 1875
  3. F.09.03 : D’Anfreville/Giraud - 1904
  4. F.09.04 : D’Anfreville/Giraud - 1905

Later, in his last book "La côte des billets", Mr Dessal even differentiated the banknotes according to the length of the control number.

  1. F.09.01 : Mignot/Marsaud - 1874 - 7 digit number
  2. F.09.02 : Mignot/Marsaud - 1875 - 7 digit number
  3. F.09.02a : Mignot/Marsaud - 1875 - 8 digit number
  4. F.09.03 : D'Anfreville/Giraud - 1904 - 8 digit number
  5. F.09.04 : D'Anfreville/Giraud - 1905 - 8 digit number

  • The numbering format

For the 5 francs CCFOM from Equatorial Africa, in "The Banknote Book", Mr Linzmayer gave for example a reference for each numbering format ( banknote B401):

  1. B401a :Duval / Leclerc, number in blue with 2 letters prefix
  2. B401b :Postel-Vinay / Leclerc, number in blue with 2 letters prefix
  3. B401c :Postel-Vinay / Leclerc, number in black with 1 letter prefix
  4. B401d : Postel-Vinay / Leclerc, without number.

There are many other examples...

Moreover, the advantage of defining variants is that one can attribute a degree of rarity, thus a specific quotation for each of them. Thus (thanks to Mr Fayette) a 20 francs NOIR 1905 (36 alph.) is worth 3 or 4 times more than a 20 francs NOIR 1904 (724 alph.) and yet only the year of the banknote differs.

Anyway... all this you probably knew !... but you have to think about the beginners too !

I come back to my main subject.

Concerning the 1000 francs Roman Temple of Tunisia (1950) which has only one variant, thus only one reference, whatever the books consulted, I propose to add not 1, but 2 additional variants!

This banknote, which has only one signature combination, was issued during all the year 1950 (from January 16) then only a few days in 1951 (from January 2 to 4)!


So of course, a 1000 francs Roman Temple of Tunisia of 1951 is very rare and must have a specific quotation!...Mr Fayette, get out of this body!...

But I go further...

One realizes, that from December 1, 1950 (see table below), the bank of emission prints 2 alphabets per day and not only 1. They thus add the letter A or B on each side of the date (certainly to keep the rule 1 date = 1 alphabet).

So from alphabet 201 (December 1st) the date has an extra letter on each side.

Here we are with a 3rd variant !.... Mr Dessal, get out of this body too !...



Alph. from1 to 200 --> 1950 (JAN to NOV), date without letter

Alph. from 201 to 238 --> 1950(DEC), date with letter A or B

Alph. from 239 to 244 --> 1951 (JAN), date with letter A or B. (Very rare, only 6 alphabets !)

Please find below the days of issue by alphabet over the last 3 months.


Bravo, you have kept reading until now! It is that you are a "true" passionate collector.

Now it's your turn to play, find me a 5000 francs Emperor Vespasian banknote of December 1950 (the big brother)... it may have a letter in front of the date too ! So a third variant...


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