The history of Armenian money dates back to the 3rd century B.C.

Hasmik Dilanyan
Public Radio of Armenia

November 22 will mark the 20th anniversary of the Armenian dram. The Central Bank of Armenia organizes a number of events on this occasion.

“The history of the Armenian currency: Finances for Everyone” exhibition was launched in the city of Hrazdan today and will continue through September 29.  Victors will have an opportunity to watch the items on display and learn about the history of Armenian coin-cutting.

The oldest known Armenian coins were cut in the second half of the 3rd century B.C by the Armenian kings of Tsopk. This is where the history of Armenian money starts from.

Gevorg Mughalyan, numismatist at the Central Bank of Armenia, draws special attention to the coins cut during the rule of Tigran the Great. Those were the unique coins picturing the Armenian crown.

“We had no Armenian currency in the Bagratid Kingdom of Armenia. However, there is an interesting fact. King Kiurike II (second half of the 11th century) of the Lori branch of Bagratuni/Bagratid Dynasty issued a unique coin, only one copy of which has been preserved. This is the first coin with Armenian inscriptions,” he said.

The inscriptions on almost all the coins cut in the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia were in the Armenian alphabet, although there were coins with Latin and Arab inscriptions, as well, the expert said.

Specialists say contemporary Armenians banknotes are no worse than the best banknotes in Europe with their quality and level of protection.

The oldest banknote displayed at the Hrazdan exhibition dates back to 1899. Besides, the expo presents 36 ancient coins, more than 100 banknotes used at different periods of time, 175 memorial coins cut in the recent years.

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