Author Topic: Coinage of Madagascar  (Read 4196 times)

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Offline <k>

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Coinage of Madagascar
« on: March 08, 2019, 09:08:54 PM »

Map of Madagascar.



From Wikipedia:

The Republic of Madagascar, previously known as the Malagasy Republic, is an island country in the Indian Ocean. It has a population of around 25 million and its capital city is Antananarivo. The country lies approximately 400 kilometres (250 miles) off the coast of East Africa. The nation comprises the island of Madagascar (the fourth-largest island in the world) and numerous smaller peripheral islands. Following the prehistoric breakup of the super-continent Gondwana, Madagascar split from the Indian subcontinent around 88 million years ago, allowing native plants and animals to evolve in relative isolation. Consequently, Madagascar is a biodiversity hotspot; over 90% of its wildlife is found nowhere else on Earth.

Human settlement of Madagascar occurred between 350 BC and 550 AD by Austronesian peoples, arriving on outrigger canoes from Borneo. These were joined around the 9th century AD by Bantu migrants crossing the Mozambique Channel from East Africa. Other groups continued to settle on Madagascar over time, each one making lasting contributions to Malagasy cultural life. The Malagasy ethnic group is often divided into 18 or more subgroups, of which the largest are the Merina of the central highlands.

Until the late 18th century, the island of Madagascar was ruled by a fragmented assortment of shifting sociopolitical alliances. Beginning in the early 19th century, most of the island was united and ruled as the Kingdom of Madagascar by a series of Merina nobles. The monarchy ended in 1897 when the island was absorbed into the French colonial empire, from which the island gained independence in 1960.

Madagascar belongs to the group of least developed countries, according to the United Nations. Malagasy and French are both official languages of the state. The majority of the population adheres to traditional beliefs, Christianity, or an amalgamation of both.


 
« Last Edit: March 08, 2019, 09:38:52 PM by <k> »
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Offline <k>

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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2019, 09:13:42 PM »
Madagascar's first modern coins were issued in 1943. At this time France, the colony's ruler, was under the control of the Nazis. However, the Free French were still in control of Madagascar. This can be seen from the traditional French symbols on the coins, such as the cockerel and the Cross of Lorraine.

The coins were minted in South Africa. The designs were the work of South African engraver Coert Laurens Steynberg.

Below you see the 50 centimes of 1943.
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Offline <k>

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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2019, 09:17:16 PM »
The 1 franc denomination was the only other coin in this set. Both were issued in 1943 only.

Images courtesy of numisbids.com.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2019, 09:21:24 PM »
Madagascar's next colonial coins were issued in 1948. They were the 1 and 2 francs and were made of aluminium.

The obverse shows Marianne, symbol of France, wearing a winged Phrygian cap. The ships in the background indicate that this is an oversea colony. The design was the work of French engraver Lucien Bazor.

See also: Designs that show ships or boats sailing in the background.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2019, 09:43:26 PM »
The reverse of the 1 franc coin features the heads of three zebus. This attractive design was once more the work of French engraver Lucien Bazor.

A sprig from a coffee plant (left) and some rice stalks (right) also decorate the design.

See also: Many heads on one design.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2019, 09:44:24 PM »
The reverse of the 2 francs coin, also first issued in 1948, carried a similar design.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2019, 09:48:20 PM »
1953 saw the release of an aluminium 5 francs coin. Its obverse and reverse designs were similar to those of the 1 and 2 francs coins.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2019, 09:59:10 PM »
In 1953 the final two coins were added to the series. These were the 10 and 20 franc coins, minted in aluminium-bronze.

The common obverse once more featured Marianne. Below you see the "essai" version. The standard version looked exactly the same, except that the word "ESSAI" was omitted.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2019, 10:06:17 PM »
The reverse of the 10 francs coin carried another stunningly beautiful design by Lucien Bazor. In the centre lies a map of Madagascar, with the wavy lines presumably representing the surrounding sea. The word "FRANCS" is superimposed on a pair of zebu horns. Coffee plants, rice stalks, vanilla plants and maize also appear in the design. The island map appears to be flanked by a carving that represents butterflies, topped by a cross within a circle, while an animal, perhaps some sort of dog or wolf, stands at the very top.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2019, 10:10:58 PM »
The reverse of the 20 francs coin carried the same design, though with the relevant denomination.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2019, 11:44:03 PM »
From Wikipedia:

The flag of Madagascar was adopted on 14 October 1958, two years before the independence of that nation, as Madagascar prepared for a referendum on its status in the French Community.

The colors of the flag represent Madagascar's history and traditional peasant classes. Red and white were the colors of the Merina kingdom, which succumbed to France in 1896. They were used in the flag of the last Merina monarch, Queen Ranavalona III. They may indicate the ethnic origins of the Malagasy people in Southeast Asia, and are shared by the flag of Indonesia. Green was the color of the Hova, the largest class of peasant commoners, who played a significant role in anti-French agitation and the independence movement.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2019, 11:44:56 PM »
Madagascar became independent from France in June 1960, with the official name of the Malagasy Republic. The country had adopted an official national seal in December 1959. This is the equivalent of the coat of arms in other countries. The seal shows the top of a traveller’s tree (Ravenala madagascariensis - Strelitziaceae), a zebu's’s head, and two ears of rice.

The motto reads:

• REPOBLIKA MALAGASY • FAHAFA­HANA •  TANINDRAZANA •  FANDROSOANA 

In English: Republic of Malagasy, Freedom, Fatherland, Progress.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #12 on: March 08, 2019, 11:49:05 PM »
From Wikipedia:

The ariary is the currency of Madagascar. It is subdivided into 5 iraimbilanja and is one of only two non-decimal currencies currently circulating (the other is the Mauritanian ouguiya). The names ariary and iraimbilanja derive from the pre-colonial currency, with ariary (from the Spanish word "real") being the name for a silver dollar. Iraimbilanja means literally "one iron weight" and was the name of an old coin worth ​1⁄5 of an ariary.

The ariary was introduced in 1961. It was equal to 5 Malagasy francs. Coins and banknotes were issued denominated in both francs and ariary, with the sub-unit of the ariary, the iraimbilanja, worth ​1⁄5 of an ariary and therefore equal to the franc. The ariary replaced the franc as the official currency of Madagascar on January 1, 2005.

In 1965, 1 franc (1 iraimbilanja) and 2 francs (venty sy kirobo) coins were issued, followed by 5 francs (1 ariary) in 1966 and 10 and 20 francs (2 and 4 ariary) in 1970. The term "venty sy kirobo" derives from names used in the 19th century for ​1⁄6 and ​1⁄4 of a silver dollar or 5 francs piece, since ​1⁄6+​1⁄4=​5⁄12 of 5 francs is approximately 2 francs.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2019, 11:53:21 PM »
The common obverse of the 1, 2 and 5 franc coins featured a poinsettia flower.
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Re: Coinage of Madagascar
« Reply #14 on: March 08, 2019, 11:53:44 PM »
Poinsettia flowers.
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