Czecoslovakia

Discover all the banknotes issued between 1919 and 1989.

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Historical context

Czechoslovakia is a central European country which no longer exists today but which has known several lives! The first Czechoslovak Republic (1918-1938) was created from former Austro-Hungarian territories populated by Czechs, Slovaks and Ruthenians, as well as a large German-speaking population located in the Sudetenland. The young parliamentary democratic republic experienced its first upheavals with the economic crisis of 1929 and the rise of Nazism in Germany. In 1938, the Sudetenland region was annexed by the Third Reich. The "Munich Agreement" gave birth to a second Czechoslovak Republic that was nipped in the bud with the invasion of the country by German troops on March 15, 1939.

After the Second World War, Czechoslovakia was reunited but nevertheless cut off from Ruthenia which was annexed by the Soviet Union. The period 1945-1948 marked the advent of the Third Czechoslovak Republic until the “Prague coup d'état”. The country suddenly falls into a communist regime and becomes the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic (1948-1989). A timid liberalization in 1968, called "Prague Spring", involves the intervention of the forces of the Warsaw Pact which derail what Alexander Dubček called the "last chance to save real socialism" and close the country for twenty years (1).

The "perestroika" organized by Gorbachev in the USSR and the "Velvet Revolution" of autumn 1989 in Czechoslovakia, precipitated the fall of the Czechoslovak communist regime and brought the dissident Václav Havel to power in the new Czech and Slovak Federal Republic from 1989 to 1992. But the historical and insoluble national sensibilities between Slovaks and Czechs lead in 1993 to a smooth partition of the country and to the birth of two new democracies: the Czech Republic and Slovakia (2).


CZE_100_KOR.jpg

Front of the 100 korun Type 1920 designed by Alfons Mucha. Dimensions: 170 x 85 mm.




CZE_20_KORv.jpg

Back of 20 korun Type 1988 designed by Albín Brunovský. Dimensions: 140 x 67 mm.




Notes

(1) “Czechoslovakia”, Wikipedia article.
(2) These two countries will soon be available in the Numizon catalog.


Our sources

  • "The Banknote Book: Czechoslovakia" by Owen W. Linzmeyer.
  • "Czechoslovakia" Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, 1368-1960, 12th edition (pages 420 to 429).
  • "Czechoslovakia" Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, 1961-present, 17th édition (pages 293 to 295).
  • Bank Note Museum: "Czechoslovakia".
  • Photos from the sales archives of cgb.fr, Heritage Auctions, Katz and Stack's Bowers.

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