Know Your Currency: The 2012 Edition
Day 315 – June 1, 2012
In the past, I have written pieces about the currency used here in Peru.
I’ve talked about the one-centimo piece.
I’ve rambled on about the 20-nuevo soles note and the 100-nuevo soles bill.
I’ve even written about who is honored on the 50-nuevo soles bill and the 10-nuevo soles piece of paper.
Last year, I wrote a post about how the Peruvian equivalent of the United States Mint was channeling the same spirit that inspired the U.S. Mint to create the Fifty States Quarters project because nuevo soles coins were appearing with different designs. Last year, I saw one-nuevo sol coin featuring a tumi and a representation of Machu Picchu.
Well, the fun continues in 2012 as I came across a one-nuevo sol coin with a new design.
Quick aside…and new slang term…for you to know if you ever find yourself in Peru and want to blend in.
The slang term for a one-nuevo sol coin is a luca (pronounced lou-ka).
A fifty-centimo piece is also known as a china (pronouced chee-na).
Therefore, something that costs S/. 1.50 is said to cost luca-china.
Back to the new design…drum roll, please…
The image on the back of this coin is a representation of Piedra de Saywite. This artifact is a rock monolith with more than two hundred geometric and zoomorphic figures carved into it. This item is located in the Abancay province in the Apurímac region of the country, which is southeast of Lima and west of Cusco.
Finally, the text underneath “DE SAYWITE” reads “S. XV d.C.”. What this translates to is “fifteen century A.D.”. The “S” stands for siglo, the Spanish word for “century”. “XV” is the Roman numeral for 15. “d.C.” stands for desde Cristo, which is Spanish for “after Christ”. I am taking the guess that this date is when the Saywite was discovered by the Spanish and not when the site was built.
This place looks interetsing enough that I guess I should add this location to our list of places to see.