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Madiba and the Rhinoceros: 10 Rand (South Africa, 2015)-Article

Updated: Nov 17, 2021

South African Rands are multilingual and are known for depicting African wildlife. They span the 11 official languages of South Africa, with English and Afrikaans (African Dutch) represented on all notes. This South African banknote represents the 1st denomination of the 2012 Sixth Issue (Rand) "Nelson Mandela".


The observe features South African statesman and revolutionary Nelson Mandela (1918-2013). The first president of post-Apartheid South Africa and the first ethnic African elected to the position. Mandela was also known as Madiba, by members of the Thembu tribe. The left side of watermark area features Omron rings, which function as an anti-counterfeit measure. First patented in 1995, by the Japanese Omron Corporation. This feature prevents certain banknotes from being photocopied. Omron rings can be hidden within certain text and numeral elements, such as the number “20” in the Series 2004 US Banknote. The South Africa Reserve Bank logo is present at the upper left.


The reverse features 2 white rhinos, South African Reserve Bank can be seen written in both Afrikaans and Swati. Both texts translate to "South African Reserve Bank". The watermark depicts Mandela with the number 10 beneath. Stylized outlines of White Rhinos and Springbok (“jumping antelope”) decorate both sides.

Watermark and Additional Security

Security is of a reasonable quality, in addition to Omron ring arrays. The note utilizes a tapered serial number, those familiar with Caribbean banknotes will recognize this feature. On the lower right is the center portion of a "Rhino" light puzzle. The windowed security strip displays the “SARB Logo” (South Africa Reserve Bank) and a vertical “10” in sequence. The watermark features Nelson Mandela (observe duplicate), with an electrotype “10”.

Ultraviolet light analysis shows a number of luminous features. The observe features 2 Springbok, one contoured to appear 3-dimensional (far right) and 1 silhouette (lower left). Additionally the observe half of the Rhino light puzzle (registration element) and a portion of the background are luminous green. The reverse features a UV-sensitive serial number, the serial number is slightly dimmer then usual. This can be attributable to a printing error. As this features usually displays equal brightness to the observe.

Ultraviolet Gallery

Additional Notes

  • This note's dimensions are 128 × 70 mm, based on the previous 1992 Fourth Issue Rand, popularly known as the "Big Five".

  • The 70mm wide format has remained standard, on all post-Apartheid note's.

  • As this currency currently active, this note has been digitally over stamped with text. Similar measure should be taken with other active currency, particular observe elements. As high-grade images of non-specimen notes, can lead to legal repercussions. Dependent on an individual's current jurisdiction.

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