2020 Banknote of the Year

Remember when we talked about women on South American currency? This continues the theme, for North America. Mexico has a winner according to the International Bank Note Society (IBNS). The IBNS has chosen one international banknote each year since 2004 for its artistic, imaginative design or for security features.

The winner for 2020 was the Mexican 100 Peso Sor Juana bill! Great looking and it has a popular security feature – it’s printed on polymer rather than paper.

Sor Juana 100 Peso Bill Photo: Banco de México
Monarch Biosphere side of the Mexican 100 Peso Bill Photo: Banco de México

This new Sor Juana bill entered circulation in November of 2020. Sor Juana lived in the 1600s. Sor means Sister; a nun. She was born Juana Inés de Asbaje y Ramírez. Juana became a nun so she could continue studying and writing. Now a famous Mexican poet, she’s even called the tenth muse. Sor Juana is the first known feminist writer of the Americas.

The Mexican polymer bill shows her portrait on one side and the mountain Monarch butterfly reserve on the reverse. The attractive design of the 100 Peso bill beat out Scotland’s violet 20 pound note featuring Kate Cranston and two red squirrels with a love poem quote. What about Canada to complete our picture of North America; in 2019, they won the prize for their beautiful blue and purple $10 bank note featuring Social Justice icon Viola Desmond on one side and the Canadian Museum for Human Rights on the other.

All I know is that the United States is not in the running for a contest that rewards featuring art, historical women, and bright colors on money. I do encourage the US Treasury to prove me wrong with the Harriet Tubman bill…in 2028? Wait, didn’t we put someone on the moon in only a little more than that time?

What is the best looking currency in your country? Or, if you live in the US, which currency have you seen elsewhere that you like?

Like what you read? Please click like and follow. ¡Gracias, amigos! –Rebecca

Mexican States. Image: Alex Covarrubias
Rebecca Cuningham

16 thoughts on “2020 Banknote of the Year

  1. Apart from joining in the general disgruntlement at the poor representation of women, and the general lack of diversity exhibited in the choices of Noatables made, I don’t tend to think that much about banknotes. Must try harder!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Margaret for your comments. I must admit that I use my bank cards more than paper money these days, especially during Covid. It would be a nice change to see a woman’s face on a banknote here, when using cash is back.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Having lived in Europe for several years, I really enjoyed the bank notes, colorful and of all sizes. Not only are they a pretty rainbow to look at, but they’re also very functional when it come to distinguishing them easily! Same goes for the coins, as the one and two-euro coins are super-useful for little purchases. Wish that the US currency could spice up the color a bit!

    Liked by 1 person

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