The 50 francs type 1935 “Large format” banknote (Ref. # P21, # B212 or # MK516) was put into circulation by the State Bank of Morocco in September 1936. The banknote was designed and produced by André Maillart and engraved by Camille Beltrand for the front and by Eugène Gaspérini for the back. Its dimensions are 173 x 106 mm. The note is printed in full color on white paper which has a watermark with a lion head in profile on the left. Description of the front: composition of patterns and arabesques on the total surface of the front with an arch decorated in the center framing the watermark. In the background, a small landscape of dunes and palm trees with the 8-digit banknote control number in black. The mention “BANQUE D'ÉTAT DU MAROC (State Bank of Morocco)” is printed in capital letters in dark brown on a line at the top of the frame and below the date of issue in black. The numbering and the alphabet are repeated twice in frames with a pale yellow background and printed in black. At the bottom, the value in letters and numbers as well as the law article are printed in dark brown.
Description of the back: composition of patterns and arabesques decorating two portals opening onto a rampart in the background. In the center, the location of the watermark. All texts are printed in black in the Arabic language. Three signatures are printed in a frame under the watermark.
The different variants of the 50 francs type 1935
This note was issued for almost 10 years between 1936 and 1947 (i.e. 11 separate issue dates) and includes three variants of signatures:
|References (1)||Issues dates||Series||Signatures|
|#P21/#B212a/#MK516a||23-9-36.||1 to 41.||Guessous / Desoubry / Moreau.|
|#P21/#B212b/#MK516a||23-9-36, 2-2-38, 5-5-38, 2-8-38, 6-3-41, 14-11-41 and 25-9-42.||71 to 657.||Guessous / Desoubry / Moreau.|
|#P21/#B212c/#MK516b||9-11-42.||658 to 737.||Guessous / Bapst / Moreau.|
|#P21/#B212d/#MK516C||1-3-45, 18-6-46 and 28-10-47.||738 to 3162.||Guessous / Spitzer / Oudot.|
(1) References : #P21 = Pick (World Paper Money), #B212 = The Banknote Book and #MK516 = Muszynski-Kolsky.
The two specifics of the 23-9-36 issue!
As you can see on the table presented above, the first date of issue of "23-9-36" is separated into two very distinct variants, because the banknote is known printed WITH and WITHOUT the names of the artist André Maillart and engraver Camille Beltrand in the lower margin on the front (see infographic below)!
a) The variant "WITHOUT printed names": this corresponds to the alphabets "1 to 41". The banknote numbered “V.41-249” and sold for € 122 at cgb.fr (Lot #b11_0403) is currently the largest note found printed without the names of Maillart and Beltrand. This variant seems quite rare, since I only found two other sales with a note numbered "Y.19-959" in VG grade also sold at cgb.fr (Lot #b11_0402) and a note numbered "B.27 -709" sold in VF grade at € 52 on delcampe ... on March 2, 2020 (Lot #485044502)!
b) The variant "WITH printed names": this corresponds to the alphabets "71 to 657". The note numbered "K.71-136" and sold $ 2.40 on delcampe in 2014 (Lot #274594754) is currently the smallest banknote found printed with the names of Maillart and Beltrand.
The specifics of Moroccan banknotes are unfortunately still little known to banknote collectors. If we pay more attention, these notes can offer you great surprises at very affordable prices. Finally, for all the collectors who would take the game to find the alphabet corresponding to the switch between the two variants, you only have 29 alphabets to watch between the "V.41" WITHOUT the names and the "K.71 WITH the names. And to all those who would try to find THE note marking the changeover, you will need to be patient because the difference is still 725,000 copies minimum (at the rate of 25,000 issued notes by alphabet)! So, good hunting ...