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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Provisional Government: 40 Rubles (1917)


Denomination: 40 Rubles

Year of First Issue: 1917

Governing Body: Provisional Government


Although the banknote does not have a year printed anywhere on it, 1917 is known to be the year when this note was first introduced into circulation. A new feature on the Provisional notes is the fact that the double-headed eagle at the top is very similar to the double-headed eagle used by the Imperial Government, but lacks four key features:

1. The 3 crowns seen on the Imperial eagle have been removed.

2. The chest plate with St. George slaying the dragon on the Imperial eagle has been removed.

3. The orb and sceptre seen in the claws of the Imperial eagle have been removed.

4. The family coats of arms seen on the sings of the Imperial eagle have been removed.


Despite being in existence for less than a year, the Provisional Government introduced its own banknotes quickly and offered new denominations that were not seen before. The 40 Ruble note was the first time a 40 Ruble denomination was offered - the Imperial Mint had never issued a banknote in that denomination. This trend of creating denominations that were not seen before was also seen in the 20 Ruble note issued that same year. The 40 Ruble banknote's shape was also unique: The 40 Ruble note resembles a square, with dimensions of 47 mm x 62 mm, a size and shape that has not seen before with the Imperial banknotes. Even though the denomination and the banknote is small, minor security features have been added to this note to prevent counterfeiting: fine, wavy green lines can be seen in the background of the note's front and back sides.