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Marshal Da Fonseca, 1st President Of Brazil: 20 Cruzeiros (Brazil, 1963)-Article

Updated: Mar 28, 2022

This Brazilian banknote represents the 3rd denomination of the First Cruzeiro (1st Print, Series 1961 "Valor Legal"). It can be easily distinguished from its predecessor the 2nd Print Valor Recebido, issued from 1955-1960. Which used as brownish-orange ink, rather than US "Redback" Dollar inspired design seen here.

Another notable detail is this note was printed by the American Bank Note Company (ABNC). These ABNC produced notes circulated alongside British produced notes. Thomas De La Rue (TDLR) of London printed these supplementary notes. The two types can be identified by their stamp classifications, "Estampa 1A" (ABNC) and "Estampa 2A" (TDLR).


The observe depicts Marshal Deodoro da Fonseca (1827-1892), the 1st President of Brazil. He established the Republic of Brazil in 1889. After staging a coup against Emperor Pedro II. In which, he proclaimed himself the provisional president of Brazil. He was later elected in 1891 and was forced to step down in the same year. Due to political outrage, after he disbanded the National Congress.

The note's header reads (trans.) "Republic of United States of Brazil". The official name of the First Brazilian Republic (1889-1930). Directly below this header is a reference to the Brazilian "National Treasury", running along the top of the portrait. While below the portrait lists the note's (trans.) "Twenty Cruzeiros Legal Value".

Which is reinforced by numerous number "20"s, located throughout the note. Including it's borders and hidden amongst it's underprint. In regards to the main refence, the upper corners feature floral style guilloché backings. While the lower corners instead feature spade shape backing. Flanking the portrait are guilloché "wings", which feature small number "20"s at their ends.

Other notable features of the note includes its dual serial numbers (080477), which run diagonal from each other. Opposite of the serial numbers are series indicator (Estampa 1A), representing U.S. printer the American Bank Note Company. Additionally the signatures of the Director of Amortization and Minister of Finance can be seen, flanking the lower portrait.


The reverse depicts the painting "Proclamation of the Republic", by Cadmo Fausto de Souza (1901-1983). Cadmo Fausto is best known for work sponsored by the Brazilian government. Such as murals at public building and the artwork of the First Cruzeiro (1943-1967). This note depicts a helmeted República guarding the Brazilian constitution with a dagger.

The note's header and footer are read as a pair. Together they translate to, the "Republic of United States of Brazil". Besides the header are a pair of small number "5"s, representing the note's previous face value. Six additional number "20"s can be seen flanking the main art, on decorative guilloché backings.

Some minor staining can be seen from excess ink. This small defect can be seen in other US Dollar inspired banknotes of the era. Such as the Mexican 1 Peso printed by the American Bank Note Company, from 1936 to 1970.


Additional Notes

  • This note's dimensions are 156 x 67 mm or 6.14 x 2.64 in, slightly wider than a US Dollar.

  • The preferable method to preserve this note are standard sized protective sleeves.

  • The First Cruzeiro lacked an official ISO code, it used Cr$ as its official symbol.

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