The Banknotes of Cape Verde after Independence

Peter Symes

Cape Verde

Cape Verde is a country of ten islands and five islets consisting of an area of some 4,033 square kilometres. Located immediately to the west of Dakar in Senegal, the name of the country is derived from ‘Cape Vert’ on the coast of Senegal. Some of the islands that constitute Cape Verde are mountainous volcanic islands and some are low flat islands. The ten islands are loosely broken into two groups, being the Barlavento (windward) islands and the Sotavento (leeward) islands. The country lacks consistent rainfall and has been subjected to significant droughts over the years. Less than twenty percent of the land is arable and Cape Verde is not self sufficient in its food production. The population of the country is about 450,000.

              When first discovered by the Portuguese in 1456, there were no permanent inhabitants on the islands that today form Cape Verde. However, it is believed that the islands had been visited by African people, including the Moors, to harvest the salt that can be found on some of the islands. Settled from 1462, the islands came under the crown administration of Portugal on 12 June 1466. The Portuguese quickly established farming communities which were worked by slaves brought from the Guinea coast of Africa. Cape Verde soon became a trading centre and one of the principal commodities was slaves.

              In 1533 the capital of Cape Verde, Ribeira Grande, became a city on the creation of the bishopric of Cape Verde. Although the governance of Cape Verde changed over the centuries—at various stages ruled by semi-autonomous ‘captaincies’, ruled as provinces, and ruled indirectly by Spain when they ruled Portugal—the islands were always under the control of the Portuguese. The British and French raided the islands from time to time, but they never established a permanent foothold in the archipelago.

              In 1650 Guinea-Bissau was administered from Cape Verde, with this arrangement lasting until 1879, when Guinea-Bissau gained its own administration. During the 1840s and 1850s the United States of America established its ‘African Squadron’ in Cape Verde, for the suppression of the African slave trade.

              In 1956 the Partido Africano da Independência da Guiné e Cabo Verde (PAIGC) was founded, with its purpose being to liberate the Portuguese colonies of Cape Verde and Guinea-Bissau. The leader of the PAIGC was Amilcar Cabral and under his leadership the PAIGC worked for many years to free the people of the two territories from Portugal’s colonial yoke. Cabral was assassinated on 20 January 1973 before independence for either colony could be achieved. While Guinea-Bissau declared its independence on 24 September 1974, Cape Verde did not declare its independence until 5 July 1975. In 1980 Luis Cabral, of the PAIGC, was overthrown in Guinea-Bissau, leading to the disbanding of the PAIGC in Cape Verde a year later. While Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde had maintained separate governments, both countries had been controlled by the one political party—the PAIGC. On the overthrow of the PAIGC in Guinea-Bissau, the party that had united and guided the destiny of the two colonies was reformed in Cape Verde as the Partido Africano da Independência da Cabo Verde (PAICV).

              With the adoption of a new constitution in 1981, the PAICV became the sole political party in Cape Verde. However, pressure from within and outside Cape Verde challenged the one-party political system that was enshrined in the constitution. Leading the challenge was the Movimento para a Democracia (MPD), which issued a manifesto in Paris in April 1990 that advocated multi-party government. Reacting positively to the challenge and the pressures, the PAICV removed the requirement for a one-party government from the constitution in September 1990. Multi-party elections have since been held for the National Assembly in 1991, 1995 and 2001.

              The 1991 elections saw the MPD secure fifty six of the seventy nine seats in the National Assembly. With the strong mandate obtained from the election, the constitution was modified in 1992. (It was subsequently amended in 1994.) The election of 1995 saw the MPD win fifty of the seventy two seats, while the PAICV won twenty one seats. The election of 2001 saw the PAICV regain power by winning forty seats in the National Assembly, while the MPD won thirty seats and the Democratic Alliance for Change two seats. The presidential elections are held separately to the elections for the National Assembly.

The Bank of Cape Verde

Prior to independence, banking and note issuing functions in the islands were controlled by the Portuguese Banco Nacional Ultrmarino (the National Overseas Bank). The privilege of issuing banknotes in the overseas territories of Portugal was granted to the National Overseas Bank by the law of 16 May 1864. In this law it was stipulated that an agency of the Bank would be established at Cape Verde within a year of the law being promulgated. Consequently, a branch office was opened at Praia on 4 October 1865 under the management of Clarimundo Martins. The National Overseas Bank then continued its banking and note issuing operation in Cape Verde for 111 years.

              Following the declaration of independence on 5 July 1975, Cape Verde asserted its right to issue its own currency. Under Law No. 25 of 1975, passed on 29 September 1975, the Banco de Cabo Verde (Bank of Cape Verde) was founded, granting it the exclusive right of issuing banknotes in Cape Verde and establishing it as a commercial and central bank. Law No.13 of 1976, passed on 26 June 1976, was an organic law that established the framework of the Bank and established its fixed capital at one hundred million escudos. (The fixed capital was raised to four hundred million escudos in 1981.)

              The Bank of Cape Verde commenced business on 1 July 1976, merging the local branches of the National Overseas Bank and the Banco de Fomento and taking over their assets and liabilities. On 1 July 1977, as part of the celebrations for the first anniversary of the operation of the Bank of Cape Verde, the first Escudos of Cape Verde were put into circulation. The new currency had a direct parity with the Portuguese Escudo and the new notes were substituted on a one-for-one basis during the period of conversion with the notes of the National Overseas Bank.

              In August 1993 a new organic law was passed, removing the functions of commercial banking from the Bank of Cape Verde and establishing it as a central bank and a regulatory authority, while maintaining its role as an issuing authority. Thus, on 1 September 1993 the Banco Comercial do Atlântico , the Commercial Bank of the Atlantic, took over the commercial banking activities of the Bank of Cape Verde.

Series I

Issued to celebrate the first anniversary of the operations of the Bank of Cape Verde on 1 July 1977, the three notes in this series—100, 500 and 1000 escudos—carry the date 20 January 1977. This date is the anniversary of the death of Amilcar Cabral, on 20 January 1973, and it is also a public holiday in Cape Verde, being known as ‘National Heroes’ Day. Printed by Bradbury Wilkinson and Company, the notes of this series share several common features, while maintaining distinctly individual features.

              Common to each note are the portrait of Amilcar Cabral, the watermark of Amilcar Cabral, the solid security thread, the latent image of ‘CV’, and the national emblem of Cape Verde. The national emblem consists of ears of corn (maize) and a sea shell encompassing a circular device containing the ‘pan-African star’ (dating from Marcus Garvey’s Pan-African movement), an open book, and a cog which is surrounded by the text ‘Unity, Work, Progress’ in Portuguese (i.e. Unidade – Trabalho – Progresso). Each note is signed by Amaro Alexandre da Luz, the Minister of Finance (O Ministro das Finanças), and Corentino Virgílio Santos, the Governor of the Bank (O Governador).

              The 100-escudos note is predominantly red and measures 106.5 x 68 mm. Dominated by the portrait of Amilcar Cabral, the note shows the common elements of the series, with the single distinguishing feature on the front of the notes being an illustration of a cimboa at the far left. A cimboa is a one-stringed fiddle played with a bow. Of West African origin, the cimboa was used as a musical accompaniment to the traditional music of the southern islands, particularly Santiago, called batuko. This is a rhythmic music that usually involves a group of women with one woman (and occasionally a man) leading the group in call-and-response songs, while members of the group clap hands or beat to the rhythm on rolled cloth. Often, one person will dance a torno, which is a dance involving rapid hip movements, while the batuko is being performed. The use of the cimboa is now uncommon.

              The back of the 100-escudos note displays an illustration of Mount Cano. The mountain is actually a volcano on an island that was originally called São Filipe, but which is now commonly known as Fogo in deference to the volcano, as ‘fogo’ means ‘fire’. The volcano is the highest point in Cape Verde, at 9281 feet. The active volcano had major eruptions in 1680, 1847 and 1951. An eruption took place in March 1962 and the most recent eruption was in March 1995. The glow from the cone of the volcano has often been used by seafarers for navigation. A coffee plant in fruit is in the small panel at the far right (and the leaves of a coffee plant are also in the bottom left foreground of the illustration of the volcano).

              The 500-escudo note is blue and measures 144 x 71 mm. This note pays homage to the marine life that surrounds the islands. In the small panel on the front of the note is a shark and in the corresponding panel on the back of the notes are several species of maritime fauna found around Cape Verde. The principal image on the back of the note is of Porto Grande (Great Port), the largest port in Cape Verde. Porto Grande is the port to the town of Mindelo on the island of São Vicente, which is one of the northern ‘windward’ islands. Mindelo is the second-largest city in the country.

              The 1000-escudo note is chestnut brown and measures 152 x 76 mm. The panel at the far left on the front of the notes depicts an odd looking electric lamp, designed in the form of a plant. The significance of the lamp is not known. The back of the note carries an illustration of men building a wall with large rocks, while in the background are maize plants. The illustration symbolizes the effort of the Cape Verdean people in their struggle for survival. Bananas on their stalk are illustrated in the small panel at the right.

              On the front of each note, in the area that bears the signatures, is a distinct pattern that is different for each denomination. These patterns are based on narrow strip cloths that have been woven in the Cape Verde islands for centuries, which are called panos. Shortly after the introduction of slaves into Cape Verde, the West African tradition of weaving was promoted by the Portuguese to produce the finest possible narrow-strip-weave textiles, which were then sewn together to make cloth and sold to elite Africans in return for slaves. Although the textiles are still being manufactured, the pano d’obra illustrated on the notes are of the most intricate or elaborate examples of the craft.

Series II

It is not known when the second series of notes was introduced, but it was almost certainly during 1989. The date on the notes is once again the anniversary of the death of Amilcar Cabral and National Heroes Day—20 January 1989. There are five denominations in this series—100, 200, 500, 1000 and 2500 escudos—and while each note in the series shares a common design, there are distinct elements for each denomination.

              The front of each note is dominated by a portrait of the mature Amilcar Cabral, but each note is of differing sizes, colours and incorporates different patterns. Common to each note are the watermark of Amilcar Cabral (a copy of the illustration on the front of the notes), the clear micro-printed security thread (with the micro-printing reading ‘BCV’ for Banco de Cabo Verde), the national emblem (on the back of the notes), a perfect registration device of a cob of corn, micro-printing of ‘BANCODECABOVERDE’, and fluorescent features. The fluorescent features on the front of the notes are the right-hand serial number, which fluoresces in gold, the left-hand serial number, which fluoresces in green, and the security thread that fluoresces in blue-green. On the back of the notes, viewed in portrait format, is a five-pointed star wrapped in a semi-circular scroll holding Banco de Cabo Verde and the denomination written above and below the insignia. Various inks on the back of each note also fluoresce. The notes are signed by General Pedro Verona Rodrigues Pires, the Minister of Finance, and Amaro Alexandre da Luz, the Governor.

              To the immediate left of the portrait of Amilcar Cabral on each note is a pattern based on old Pano d’obra (traditional strip-woven cloths) made in Tarrafal, on the island of Santiago. Each denomination has a different pattern based on a cloth constructed by classically designed narrow-strip-weave textiles. A square of the distinctive pattern is also used as a perfect registration device for each denomination, appearing beneath the signature of the governor of the bank. The cloth pattern on each note also contains a latent image, consisting of ‘BCV’ and the denomination of the note.

              The notes of this series were printed by Thomas De La Rue and Company.

              The 100-escudo note is predominantly red and measures 122 x 67 mm. The illustration on the back of the note carries the caption Festa do Pilão, which translates as the ‘Festival of the Pestle’. The island of Fogo (São Filipe) has a distinctive music known as pilão (similar to batuko), where the chanting and beating of drums forms the background to the grinding of corn with pestles. This ‘Festa’ is held in April each year, in the period prior to the festival of Bandeira de São Filipe (Flag of São Filipe). The volcano of Mount Cano is in the background of the illustration on the back of the note.

              The principal colour of the 200-escudo note is green and it measures 129 x 67 mm. A collage of forms of communication, with emphasis on aviation, forms the illustration on the back of this note. One of the aircraft depicted is a ‘Cape Verde Airlines’ aircraft. Although there is an airport at the capital of Praia, which receives regular flights from Dakar in Senegal, the Amilcar Cabral International Airport at Espargos on the island of Sal is the principal airport for the country. Sal is a low flat island and is the third smallest island in Cape Verde.

              The 500-escudo note is blue and measures 136 x 67 mm. Depicted on the back of this note are the maritime shipyards of São Vicente, with the bay of Porto Grande and the ‘Island of the Birds’ in the background. These were probably the state-owned CABMAR shipyards which, under agreements with the World Bank, were privatized towards the end of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first century.

              The 1000-escudo note is chestnut brown and measures 143 x 67 mm. The back of the note depicts Schistocerca Gregaria, the Desert Locust, in stationary and flying positions; with a butterfly at the top left. The illustration is an allusion to the struggle against the grasshoppers and locusts faced by the people. The habitat of the Desert Locust stretches right across the north African continent and, from its appearance on the banknotes, it is apparent that the insects affect the Cape Verde islands.

              The dominant colour on the 2500-escudo note is lilac and this note, the highest denomination of the series, measures 150 x 67 mm. The back of the note carries an illustration of the Palacio da Assembleia Nacional Popular, the Palace of the People’s National Assembly, the symbol of national sovereignty. The Assembly today consists of seventy-two deputies elected by universal adult suffrage. There are several interesting points to note about the illustration on this note, as they identify features that changed in the ensuing years. Firstly, the caption on the note identifies the building as the Palacio da Assembleia Nacional Popular and with the ascendancy of the MPD as the ruling party, the name of the Assembly was changed to the Assembleia Nacional. Secondly, the flag on the flag pole was changed in 1992, to remove the symbols associated with the PAIGC. Thirdly, and not directly related to the illustration, is the national emblem of Cape Verde, which is to the right of the illustration. This emblem was replaced in 1992 and a new emblem adopted.

Series III

The changes wrought by the first government of the MPD saw many changes to the symbols of Cape Verde. Not only were the flag and the national emblem changed, but a new series of banknotes was commissioned. While Amilcar Cabral was still recognized as a national hero, his portrait no longer appeared on the notes introduced under the new regime, although his image is retained in the watermark.

              Again printed by De La Rue, the notes of the new series were apparently released in 1992, although the specific date of their release is not known. This series initially contained three denominations—200, 500, and 1000 escudos—but a further two denominations followed several years later. The two new denominations are the 2000 and 5000 escudo notes, with the denomination of 2500 escudos being discontinued.

              The notes released in 1992 have many common features, being the same size and colour as the notes they replaced, although they no longer have a common illustration on the front. The perfect registration device of the cob of corn is continued from the previous series, as is the watermark of Amilcar Cabral, the clear security thread with ‘BCV’ micro-printed on it, the micro-printing of ‘BANCODECABOVERDE’, and the fluorescent features on the front and back of the notes. The latent image on each note is now simply the denomination of the note and the signatures are of José Tomás Wahnon Veiga, the Minister of Finance and Planning, and Oswaldo Miguel Sequeira, the Governor of the Bank of Cape Verde.

              On the back of each note is the new national emblem. The central device consists of a circle, containing a representation of water (three stripes) and a triangle overlaid with a torch, and with a plumb-bob at the apex of the circle. This emblem is surrounded by ten stars (five left and five right), the leaves of a plant (bottom left and right), and three links of a chain (bottom). Arching over the triangle within the circle is ‘Republic of Cape Verde’ in Portuguese. The stars represent the main islands of Cape Verde; the plumb-bob is symbolic of rectitude and virtue; the torch and triangle represent unity and freedom.

              The 200-escudos note is green and measures 129 x 67 mm. On the front of the note is an illustration of the Palhabote ‘Ernestina’ (Two-masted Schooner ‘Ernestina’). During the first half of the nineteenth century, whaling ships from the United States of America commenced enlisting crews from the Cape Verde Islands. Some of these sailors ultimately settled around Bedford, Massachusetts, and a Cape Verdean community in the United States was established. Immigration began between Cape Verde and Massachusetts and, as the age of steam arrived, many old sailing boats came on to the market at good prices. Members of the Cape Verdean community in America bought ships and arranged for further immigration of people from Cape Verde. One of the vessels was the ‘Ernestina’, which was built in 1894 (as the ‘Effie M. Morrissey’) and ultimately sold to Henrique Mendes of Cape Verde in 1948. In 1982 the 112-foot schooner was donated by the government of Cape Verde to the United States of America as a symbol of co-operation between the two governments. (Note: In the illustration the Ernestina is flying the international code pennant for ‘I am altering my course for port’.)

              The date appearing on the 200-escudo note is 8 August 1992 and this is the anniversary of the first trip of the ‘Ernestina’ with passengers bound for the United States of America. The back of the note carries the same illustration that is used on the back of the 200-escudo note of the second series.

              The 500-escudo note of this series is blue and measures 136 x 67 mm. The front of the note carries a portrait of Baltasar Lopes with the caption ‘1907 - 1989 Doutor Baltasar Lopes da Silva’. Baltasar Lopes was a celebrated writer, born on the island of São Nicolau. Lopes studied at the University of Lisbon and worked for several years in Portugal before returning to Cape Verde in the 1930s, where he took up a position at the secondary school Liceu Gil Eanes. He ultimately became its director until he retired in 1972. He was one of the founding members of a literary review established in 1936 and he published his greatest work, the novel Chiquinho, in 1947. A poet, novelist, short story writer, and essayist, he promoted literature in the country and championed the used of Crioulo the Cape Verdean dialect based on old Portuguese and African languages.

              The date appearing on this note is 23 April 1992, which is the anniversary of the birth of Dr. Baltazar Lopes who was born on 23 April 1907. The back of the note displays the maritime shipyards of São Vicente, with the bay of Porto Grande and the ‘Island of the Birds’ in the background. This image was used on the back of the 500-escudo note of the second series.

              The 1000-escudo note is again chestnut brown and measures 143 x 67 mm. The illustration on the front of the note is of a bird that carries the scientific name Acrocephalus Brevipennis Keulemans (which is also the caption to the illustration). First recorded in 1866, the Cape Verde Warbler is a medium sized warbler of 14-16 centimetres. It is dun-brown above with warm buff belly and flanks and creamy throat and breast. With a long, pointed bill, black legs and toes, it has an explosive song with clear whistles and blurred churring, heard throughout the year. The Cape Verde warbler is confined to the islands of Santiago and São Nicolau where, despite its adaptation to artificial habitats, its population is declining as a result of successive droughts and an increasing human population. It is classified as an endangered bird.

              The date on the 1000-escudo note, 5 June 1992, was the date commemorating of the world-wide day of the environment in the ‘Year of the Environment’. Obviously complementing the theme of the environment, the illustration of the Desert Locust, that was used in the previous issue, is again used on this note.

              In 1999 the first of the two new denominations was introduced. The 2000-escudo is multicoloured, with the dominant colour being blue, and measures 142 X 71 mm. In line with the previous use of significant dates on all banknotes issued by Cape Verde, the date appearing on this note, 1 July 1999, celebrates the twenty-third anniversary of the commencement of operations of the Bank of Cape Verde. The signatories for this note are Oswaldo Miguel Sequeira, still signing as Governor of the Bank of Cape Verde and Vasco Marta who signs as an Administrador, which is probably best translated as an ‘Executive Director’ (of the Bank of Cape Verde). Thus, the notes no longer carry the signature of a government minister.

              Immediately noticeable is the vertical format of this note, although the signatures, the date, the serial numbers, and the hologram of an open book are all designed to be viewed in horizontal format. The front of the note carries the portrait of Eugénio Tavares. Born on the island of Brava, Eugénio de Paula Tavares (1867–1930) spent most of his life as a civil servant. However, his great fame in Cape Verde is his literary talent as a writer of ‘mornas’, which is a characteristic literary form of Cape Verde. Although varying in composition and structure, a morna usually consists of poetry set to music, with the poetry usually written in crioulo. Subjects of mornas are typically: longing for loved ones, sadness, and nostalgia, although any subject can be addressed. At social functions on the island of Brava, Tavare’s morna ‘The Hour to Leave’ is traditionally the last item sung at the end of an evening.

              The back of the note carries lines from Morna aguada, a morna by Eugénio Tavares, written over a flower that is known in Cape Verde as the cardeal (cardinal). The title of Morna aguada is difficult to interpret. A literal translation is ‘Watery Morna, but the concept of ‘water’ probably refers to tears and to the water that separates loved ones (particularly apt for inhabitants of an island nation). The text from the Morna aguada can be translated as:

If I am to live in this misery

Which does not have

The one that wants me

Then I want to die without light

On my cross

With this pain

To give my life

To the martyrdom of love

Also on the back is a strip of reflective gold ink with ‘2000’ and a cardeal flower appearing due to the absence of ink. There are two watermarks, with the traditional watermark being of Eugénio Tavares, while there is also an electrolyte watermark of ‘2000’. The elaborate security thread is windowed on the back of the note and contains the text ‘BCV 2000’ and an image of the nib of a pen. The nib of a pen with ‘ET’ (for Eugénio Tavares) is used as a perfect registration device.

              While the national emblem of Cape Verde is no longer immediately apparent on the note, except as an image in the hologram, it is in fact printed in fluorescent ink on the back of the note, replacing the five-pointed star and scroll that had been previously used. The note includes various other fluorescent features, such as the red serial number, the security thread and numerous inks on the note.

              The 5000-escudo note was issued in 2000. Measuring 148 x 74 mm, the multi-coloured note is predominantly chestnut brown. The date on the note is 5 July 2000, which is the twenty-fifth anniversary of Cape Verde’s independence. Again in a vertical format, the note is designed along similar lines to the 2000-escudo note that was issued a year earlier. This note is printed by De La Rue and their imprint can be found on the back of the note. The signatories on this note are Olavo Avelino Garcia Correia, the Governor of the Bank of Cape Verde, and Vasco Marta, an Administrador.

              The front of the 5000-escudo note depicts a Cape Verdean woman carrying rocks on her head. It is understood that this image may refer to the role that Cape Verdean women played in the creation of roads in the country. After independence, the government employed many women for roles usually undertaken by men, due to the absence of men working overseas. The face of the woman is also used as the watermark on the note. The back of the note depicts the Royal Fort in the ‘Old City’ and the caption indicates this in Portuguese, i.e. Portaleza Real – Cidade Velha. The Cidade Velha, or ‘Old City’, refers to the settlement of Ribeira Grande on the southern coast of Santiago, the largest island in Cape Verde. This is the location of the first Portuguese settlement in Africa, established shortly after 1460. Ribeira Grande was attacked numerous times, including by Sir Francis Drake in 1585, before the capital was shifted to Praia in 1769. As well as the fort, the ‘Old City’ contains the ruins of a cathedral built in 1693. The illustration on the banknote shows the main gate of the fort, while to the left and right of the illustration are patterns based on glazed tiles from the cathedral.

              The security features on this note are similar to those on the 2000-escudo note. There is a gold-foil hologram on the front of the note, a windowed security thread with the text ‘BCV 5000’ worked into a pattern, a perfect registration device of a cannon, a strip of gold reflective ink on the back of the note that contains ‘5000’ and a cannon, and numerous fluorescent features, including the national emblem on the back of the notes. Peculiar to this note is patch of gold ink on the front of the note that contains an image of a lamp-post, but which also contains a latent image of ‘5000’. (The lamp-post is also depicted over the hologram as part of the printing.)

              In 2005 the 500- and 1000-escudos notes of Series III appeared on the collector market with dates of 1 July 2002. Apart from changes in date, the only other change to the two notes was the signatories. For these two notes Olavo Avelino Garcia Correia signs as the Governor and Dr. João de Andrade Lopes signs as the Adminstrado. The issue of these notes, which have apparently been held in storage for some years, suggests that it may be some time before these denominations are issued in Series IV.

Series IV

In 2005 a new series of notes was commenced. This series was introduced due to the sock of existing notes being depleted and the recognition that improved security features had to be introduced to the notes. To date, only one note of this fourth series has been introduced, this being the 200-escudo note.

              Measuring 121 x 62 mm, the note is predominantly green, although a different colour green to that previously used for this denomination. Following the trend established with the last notes of the third series, the note is designed in vertical format. Once again, the date on this note is the anniversary of the death of Amilcar Cabral and National Heroes day. However, according to the Bank of Cape Verde, 20 January 2005 is just the date of issue.

              The front of the note carries an image of the Palhabote ‘Ernestina’, the ‘Two-masted Schooner Ernestina’, as did this denomination of the previous series. Above the ‘Ernestina’ is a disc representing the firmament. The back of the note carries the same image of several forms of communication that has been used in the previous two series for this denomination.

              The signatories of the new note are Carlos Augusto de Burgo (Governor) and Dr. João de Andrade Lopes (Manager). Amilcar Cabral’s image is continued as the watermark (the same as that used for Series II and III) and a simple solid security thread is used for the note. The only fluorescent features on the note are the two serial numbers and a block of ink on the front of the note that holds the denomination of the note. According the Central Bank, the notes are covered with a layer of platinum to increase their durability.

              This brings us to the end of the banknote emissions by the Central Bank of Cape Verde. The notes are reasonably easy to obtain and at a relatively low cost. The opportunity still exists for collectors to purchase all notes in this series and they are, like most banknotes of a nation, an opportunity to open up the history of a country—at least as an introduction to the country and its history.

* * * * *

Assistance with the translation of the morna and other issues was provided by Olav Aalberg.


   the web site of the Bank of Cape Verde (August 2005).

   (August 2005)

            International Wildlife Encyclopaedia Marshall Cavendish, New York, 1990.

            Lobban, Richard and Marilyn Halter Historical Dictionary of the Republic of Cape Verde, The Scarecrow Press, Inc., Metuchen, New Jersey, 1988.

            Sadie, Stanley [Editor] The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, Grove (Macmillan Publishers Limited), 2001.

            Stringall, Stephen C., and Delores Broyles Cape Verde International Travel Maps, Vancouver, 2000.

            Turner, Barry The Statesman’s Yearbook 2005, Palgrave Macmillan, London.

            Turner, Jane [Editor] The Dictionary of Art, Grove (Macmillan Publishers Limited), 1996.

This article was completed in November 2005
© Peter Symes