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New exhibit at the NBP Money Centre: Romania’s polymer 20-lei circulation banknote

19 Maj 2022

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A new exhibit is on display at the NBP Money Centre. It is the latest Romanian 20-lei circulation banknote. The National Bank of Romania, which is Romania’s central bank, has for the first time issued a circulation banknote featuring a woman as an authentic historical figure. The 20-lei banknote commemorates Ecaterina Teodoroiu, the Romanian army lieutenant of World War I and, at the same time, the first female lieutenant in the history of the Romanian army.

Born in 1894, Teodoroiu initially served as a nurse during World War I. She joined the army after her four brothers had died in a battle. She climbed the career ladder and was awarded distinctions for valour. She died at the age of 23 on the frontline in 1917.

The idea to present women on Romanian currency originated in 2018, when Janina Nectara, the fashion journalist, prepared a list of 100 female figures, including Teodoroiu, scientists, physicians, artists and professors who should be commemorated.

The dimensions of the banknote, exhibited in the Laboratory of Authenticity room of the NBP Money Centre, are 136mm x 77mm. On the front of the banknote there is, among others, a portrait of Ecaterina Teodoroiu (1894-1917), a bouquet of crocuses, a badge of the Romanian Scouts, a stylised depiction of the infantry insignia and the name of the issuing bank. The back shows, among others, the Mărăşeşti Mausoleum, the winged figure of Victory on the Victory Medal and a lily flower.

NBP Money Centre Team