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Notes Of the Royal Kip, The Deva: 1 Kip (Kingdom Of Laos, 1962)-Article

Updated: Apr 12

This small Laotian banknote represents the 1st denomination of Royal Kip (Series 1962). The Royal Kip replaced the French Indochinese Piastre at par (1:1), in 1955. The latter was the colonial currency of French Indochina. Which featured a French text observe and a reverse printed in the local language. These language included Vietnamese, Khmer, and Lao.

The banknotes of Royal Kip feature Lao script on their observe and French on their reverse side. Strangely the notes were printed by different printers, primarily British printers Thomas De La Rue and Bradbury Wilkinson & Co. The Royal Kip was formally replaced by the Pathet Lao Kip, in 1979.


The observe features a ornate illustration of a Deva, a Buddhist celestial being. In the Buddhism. the Devas are said to be god-like beings. Who are more powerful, longer-lived, and happier than humans. Their veneration is similar to the Nats of Myanmar, which are depicted with similar traits. With higher and lower hierarchies, within their ranks.

The Lao script header reads "ທະນາຄານ​ແຫ່ງ​ຊາດ​ລາວ", translated as the "National Bank of Laos". While the footer reads "ຜູ້ປອມແປງຈະຖືກລົງໂທດຕາມກົດໝາຍ", warning "The Counterfeiter Will Be Punished In Accordance With The Law".

Opposite of the portrait is a framed watermark area, featuring Erawan the three headed elephant. The Lao script header reads "ທະນາຄານ​ແຫ່ງ​ຊາດ​ລາວ", translated as the "National Bank of Laos". While the footer reads "ຜູ້ປອມແປງຈະຖືກລົງໂທດຕາມກົດໝາຍ", warning "The Counterfeiter Will Be Punished In Accordance With The Law".

At the note's center is additional text, on guilloché backing with floral embellishments. The first lint line of text reads "ໜຶ່ງກີບ", representing the note's "One Kip" value. The note's serial number "S 393137" can be seen below. This is followed by a pair of signatures, representing the Bank Governor and Censure. Their titles are given both in Lao and French.

There Lao numerals (໑) at 3 of the note corners, they represent the note's "1" Kip value. The upper left numerals rest on floral border, which spans beneath the header.


The reverse depicts Erawan, the three headed elephant. The royal symbol of the Kingdom of Laos from 1953–1975. Notably Erawan is also the Thai-Laotian name for Airavata. The white elephant mount of the Hindu god Indra, King of Svarga (Heaven) and the Devas (Gods).

Unlike the observe, the reverse features France language text. Although it mostly mirrors the same content. The header reads, the "Banque Nationale Du Laos". Translated as the "National Bank of Laos". While the footer reads, "Le Contrefactuer Sera Puni Conformement A La Loi". This is warning, it translates to "The Counterfeiter Will Be Punished In Accordance With The Law".

The footer read "Un Kip", representing the note's One Kip face value. Which is reinforced by four additional number "1"s, grouped in pairs. The first pair are located on the upper-left and right corners. While the second rests on a pair of ornate embellishments, which resemble "leafy pyramids.

1962 Royal Kip Gallery

(Gallery features the complete 1962 Royal Kip Series)


Additional Notes

  • The note's dimensions are 100 x 60 mm or 3.93 x 2.36 in, smaller than a US Dollar.

  • This banknote is wider and shorter, than a standard US Dollar (6.14 x 2.61 in).

  • It's recommended to use large protective sleeves cut to size, when preserving this note.

  • On 22 October 1953, the Kingdom of Laos was granted independence from France.

  • French Indochina included the modern nations of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia.


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