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Panamanian 1 balboa coin

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1 balboa
1-balboa-panamc3a1-2011
2011 coin obverse
General information
Country

Flag of Panama Panama

Value

1.00 balboa

Years
Commemoratives
Measurements and composition
Mass
Click to
  • 26.73 g (1931-1985 silver)
  • 22.68 g (1968-1982 CuNi; 1999)
  • 22.4 g (1982-1984 commemorative)
  • 15 g (1988 silver)
  • 7.2 g (2011)
Diameter
Click to
  • 38.1 mm (1931-1985)
  • 37.8 mm (1982-1984 commemorative)
  • 32 mm (1988 CuNi)
  • 38.1 mm (1988 silver)
  • 44 mm (1999)
  • 26.5 mm (2011)
Composition
Click to
Appearance
Shape

round

Obverse
Click to
  • Standing figure, state title, silver content, year (1931-1953)
  • Coat of arms of Panama, state title, year (1966-1974; 1983-1985)
  • Coat of arms of Panama, state title, value (1968-1982; 1988; 2011)
  • Mireya Moscoso, value (1999)
Reverse
Click to
v · d · e

The 1 balboa coin was first issued by the National Bank of Panama in 1931 and was initially minted until 1947.[1] A similar issue was introduced from 1966 to 1974, and then again from 1983 to 1985.[2][3] The obverse of the 1 balboa coin was changed in 1975, and the new coin was produced until 1982.[4] A new general issue 1 balboa coin coin was issued in 2011.[5]

Commemorative coins of this denomination were minted in 1953, 1978, from 1982-1984, in 1988, and in 1999.[4]

HistoryEdit

First issuesEdit

Balboa 1931

A 1931 balboa coin.

The first Panamanian 1 balboa coin was issued in 1931. It was composed of .900 fine silver, weighed 26.73 grams, and measured 38.1 millimeters in diameter. Its composition, size, and mass were intentionally made identical to those of the United States Peace dollar. A female figure leaning on a simplified Panamanian coat of arms holding a fasces in one hand and an oak branch in the other was depicted on the coin's obverse. The state title of Panama (inscribed as "REPVBLICA DE PANAMA") was separated by the figure, and the year of minting was displayed underneath the depiction. To the right of the female figure was a display of the coin's silver fineness (as "LEY. 0.900") and its mass (as "GR. 26.73"). A portrait of Spanish conquistador and explorer, Vasco Núñez de Balboa flanked by two branches was displayed on the reverse, with the value (as "VN BALBOA") inscribed above. Panamanian artist Roberto Lewis designed the coin's obverse, and American sculptor William Clark Noble designed the reverse. A total of 925,020 of these coins were produced, with the largest amount (500,000 coins) being produced in 1947, the final year of minting for the issue, and the lowest amount (200,020 coins) being produced in 1931. Twenty of the coins minted in 1931 were proofs.[1]

Commemorative balboa coin 1953

Commemorative 1953 balboa coin.

In 1953, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Panama's independence, a special issue of Panamanian coins was introduced, which included a commemorative 1 balboa coin. It had the same dimensions, mass, and composition as the original issue. The design on the obverse was very similar to the one used on the previous coin; however, the angle of the coat of arms was slightly altered, the design of the female figure was simplified, and a smaller font was used for the text. A more detailed image of Vasco Núñez de Balboa was used on the reverse of the commemorative coin. The legend around the perimeter below Balboa read "CINQUENTENARIO" (500th Anniversary), while the text above indicated the coin's value. Both groups of text were separated from each other by two branches on each side of the coin. A total of 50,000 of the 1953 commemorative 1 balboa coins were produced.[6]

Balboa 1966

A toned coin from 1966.

In 1966, a new issue of the 1 balboa coin was introduced. Its composition, size, and mass were identical to those of the previous coins. The coin's obverse was almost entirely changed. The female figure leaning on the Panamanian coat of arms was replaced by the full arms of the country. Inscribed above the arms was the state title of Panama, and underneath it was the coin's year of minting flanked by two branches. The coin's silver fineness was displayed to the left of the coat of arms, and its mass was inscribed to the right. William Clark Noble's design from the first issue of coins was reused for the second issue's reverse, and was identical in appearance to those of the previous coins. A total of 471,081 of these coins were minted until 1974. All the coins of this issue were proofs, except for 300,000 coins minted in 1966.[2]

A coin similar to the second issue was introduced in 1983. The diameter of the first two issues was retained, but the silver fineness was dropped to 0.50, which in turn lowered the mass to 20.74 grams. Some slight alterations were made to the coin's obverse. It still displayed the Panamanian coat of arms, but it had been slightly reduced in size. Also, the font around the coin's circumference was changed, the coin's silver fineness was displayed as "LEY 0.500", and its mass inscription was removed. The reverse, however, managed to retain the original portrait of Balboa and the value. Only 3600 of these coins were produced until 1985, with the highest number (1602 coins) being minted in 1983, and the lowest number (954 coins) being produced in 1985.[3] Cupronickel pattern coins were produced in 1986, but were never issued.[4]

Second Balboa portraitEdit

Balboa 1977

A silver 1977 coin.

In 1975, the third general issue 1 balboa coin was introduced. The first were struck in cupronickel clad copper or .925 fine silver. In 1980, the silver coins' silver content was reduced to being .500 fine. All measured 38.1 millimeters in diameter, but the masses varied as a result of the different compositions. The cupronickel clad copper coins weighed 22.68 grams, the initial .925 silver coins weighed 26.73 grams, and the .500 silver coins had masses of 20.74 grams. A small Panamanian coat of arms was displayed on the obverse of each coin. The state title was inscribed above the arms, around the coin's circumference, and the coin's value was displayed below it, also inscribed around the circumference. The silver content of the silver coins was displayed underneath the coat of arms. A left-facing portrait of Vasco Núñez de Balboa was used on the coin's reverse. His name was inscribed above the portrait, and below it was the coin's year of minting. Twenty-two thousand erroneous cupronickel clad copper coins from 1975 to 1976 were minted with "LEY .925" on their obverses underneath the Panamanian coat of arms, and 11 coins of the same composition were struck in 1982 with "LEY .500" in the same location. Between 1975 and 1982, a total of 31,206 cupronickel clad copper coins (including errors), 8570 .925 silver coins, and 7099 .500 silver coins were minted.[4]

In 1978, in commemoration of the 75th anniversary of Panama's independence, special 1 balboa coins were struck in cupronickel clad copper and .925 fine silver. Their masses and diameters were identical to those of the corresponding 1 balboa coins circulating during the time. The words "75o ANIVERSARIO" were inscribed above the coat of arms and underneath the state title on the coin's obverse. Both coins' obverses featured the design used on the third issue balboa coins. Four thousand were struck in cupronickel clad copper, and 13,000 were struck in silver.[4]

Torrijos commemorative coinEdit

Balboa Torrijos 1982

A 1982 Torrijos commemorative coin.

General Omar Torrijos, an important Panamanian governmental figure, died in 1981 as a result of a plane crash near Penonomé, Panama. A year later, in 1982, a commemorative 1 balboa coin was minted in his honor. It was composed of cupronickel, weighed 22.4 grams, and measured 37.8 millimeters in diameter. The coin's obverse was identical to those of the third and fourth general issues of 1 balboa coins, featuring the Panamanian coat of arms, the state title of Panama, and the coin's value. A portrait of General Torrijos was engraved on the reverse. His name was inscribed around the coin's circumference above the portrait (as "GENERAL OMAR TORRIJOS H."), and the year of minting was displayed under Torrijos' portrait. A total of 600,250 of these commemorative coins were minted between 1982 and 1984. Two hundred fifty examples produced in 1982 were minted in proof quality and bore a "frosted" luster. All these proof examples bore a frosted obverse, but a majority (200 pieces) also bore a frosted reverse.[7]

1988 commemorative coinsEdit

The National Bank of Panama issued ten different medallic commemorative 1 balboa coins in 1988. These coins were subsequently declared illegal by the Panamanian Minister of Finance because their issue was unauthorized, and they became marketed in Germany. Four were minted to commemorate the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Canada, another four commemorated the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. Martin Luther King, Jr. was featured on one coin, and another displayed U.S. President John F. Kennedy. Each coin was struck in cupronickel or pure silver. The cupronickel coins weighed about 14.3 grams, while the silver pieces weighed 15 grams. Typically, 70,000 examples of each coin were produced, with 50,000 struck in cupronickel and 20,000 in silver. Even though the reverse of each 1988 commemorative balboa coin varied, the obverse was uniform. Like many of its predecessors, the Panamanian coat of arms was engraved in the center of the coin's obverse, with the state title inscribed above around the circumference. The coin's value (as "1.00 VN BALBOA") was displayed underneath the arms.[4]

Reference number Mass Diameter Composition Subject Reverse Mintage
X#1 32 mm Cupronickel 1988 Winter Olympics Ski jumper, Olympic rings, "XV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE INVIERNO", "CALGARY 1988" c. 50,000
X#1a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#2 Cupronickel Freestyle skiier, Olympic rings, "XV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE INVIERNO", "CALGARY 1988" c. 50,000
X#2a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#3 Cupronickel Biathlon skiier with rifle, Olympic rings, "XV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE INVIERNO", "CALGARY 1988" c. 50,000
X#3a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#4 Cupronickel Ice hockey players, Olympic rings, "XV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE INVIERNO", "CALGARY 1988" c. 50,000
X#4a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#5 Cupronickel 1988 Summer Olympics Fencers, Olympic rings, "PANAMA", "XXIV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE VERANO", "SEOUL 1988" c. 50,000
X#5a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#6 Cupronickel Tennis player, Olympic rings, "PANAMA", "XXIV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE VERANO", "SEOUL 1988" c. 50,000
X#6a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#7 Cupronickel Woman on horseback, Olympic rings, "PANAMA", "XXIV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE VERANO", "SEOUL 1988" c. 50,000
X#7a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#8 Cupronickel Gymnast on bars, Olympic rings, "PANAMA", "XXIV JUEGOS OLIMPICOS DE VERANO", "SEOUL 1988"
X#8a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000
X#11 33.1 mm Cupronickel Martin Luther King, Jr. Martin Luther King, Jr., church, "MARTIN LUTHER KING", "1929-1968", "EL VIVIÓ Y MURIÓ POR EL PAZ Y LA LIBERTAD" c. 50,000
X#11a 15 g 32 mm Pure silver c. 20,000
X#12 33.1 mm Cupronickel John F. Kennedy John F. Kennedy, Liberty Bell, "JOHN F. KENNEDY", "1917-1963", "EL VIVIÓ Y MURIÓ POR EL PAZ Y LA LIBERTAD" c. 50,000
X#12a 15 g Pure silver c. 20,000

1999 commemorative coinEdit

Balboa Moscoso 1999

The 1999 commemorative coin.

In 1999, to commemorate the reversion of the Panama Canal, a special 1 balboa coin was minted. It was composed of cupronickel clad copper, weighed 22.68 grams, and measured 38.1 millimeters in diameter. The coin bore a reeded edge. Then-President Mireya Moscoso was featured on the coin's obverse, flanked by the dates of her presidency (1999 to 2004). To the left of the portrait was the coin's value, and to the right was an inscription denoting the coin's mass. Moscoso's name was inscribed above her around the circumference, and underneath the portrait was a legend reading "PRESIDENTA DE PANAMA", also around the circumference. In the center of the coin's reverse, an image of a ship moving down the Panama Canal was displayed, with a Panamanian flag in the foreground above a decorative ribbon bearing the state title. To the right of the image was a legend reading "AÑO 1999", denoting the coin's year of minting. "REVERSION DEL CANAL DE PANAMA" was inscribed above the image around the coin's circumference, and "JUNTOS HACIA EL NUEVO MILENIO" ("together into the new millennium") was written below. A total of 350,000 1999 commemorative coins were issued. Two thousand of these examples were minted in proof quality.[8]

2011 issueEdit

The National Bank of Panama introduced its most recent general issue 1 balboa coin in 2011. It is bimetallic, consisting of an outer ring composed of nickel and steel, and a center of nickel, brass, and steel. The coin weighs 7.2 grams, measures 26.5 millimeters in diameter and 2 millimeters in thickness. An image of Vasco Núñez de Balboa was engraved in the nickel-brass-steel center of the coin's obverse. Above the portrait, Balboa's name was inscribed in the coin's outer ring, and the year of minting was displayed below the image, also in the outer ring. The Panamanian arms were displayed in the center of the coin's reverse. The state title of Panama was inscribed in the ring above the arms, and the coin's value was written underneath the arms, also in the ring.[5]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

 v · d · e
Panamanian balboa
Banknotes 1 B5 B10 B20 B
Coins ½ c1 c1¼ c2½ c5 c10 c25 c50 c110 B¼ B½ B1 B2 B5 B10 B20 B25 B50 B75 B100 B150 B200 B500 B1000 B1500 B

Non-balboa: ½ c$20

Miscellaneous CentesimoFixed exchange rateLeper colony moneyPalo SecoUnited States dollar

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