Israeli pound

Last updated
Israeli pound
  • לירה ישראלית (Hebrew)
  • جنيه إسرائيلي (Arabic)
Israel 500Lirot 1975 Obverse & Reverse.jpg
IL 500 note (obverse and reverse) issued in 1975
ISO 4217
CodeILP
Unit
Pluralpounds (לירותlirot)
Symbol ל"י (Hebrew), IL (Latin)
Denominations
Subunit
11000 mil (1951–1952)
pruta (1952–1960)
1100 agora (1960–1980)
Plural
mil (1951–1952)
pruta (1952–1960)
prutot (פרוטות)
agora (1960–1980)agorot (אגורות)
BanknotesIL 5, IL 10, IL 50, IL 100, IL 500
Coins1, 5, 10, 25 agorot, IL 12, IL 1, IL 5
Demographics
Replaced by First shekel
User(s)Flag of Israel.svg  Israel (1952–1980)
Issuance
Central bank Bank Leumi (1952–1955)
Bank of Israel (1955–1980)
Valuation
Pegged with £1  stg at par (1952–1954)
This infobox shows the latest status before this currency was rendered obsolete.
A passbook issued before the official adoption of prutot, and denominated in pounds and mils Israeli Passbook 1952-1953.jpg
A passbook issued before the official adoption of prutot, and denominated in pounds and mils

The pound or lira (Hebrew : לירה ישראליתLira Yisra'elit, Arabic : جنيه إسرائيليJunayh ʾIsrāʾīlī; abbreviation: IL [1] in Latin, ל"י in Hebrew; code ILP) was the currency of the State of Israel from 9 June 1952 until 23 February 1980. The Israeli pound replaced the Palestine pound and was initially pegged at par to £1  sterling. It was replaced by the shekel on 24 February 1980, at the rate of IS 1 = IL 10, which was in turn replaced by the new shekel in 1985.

Contents

Before the new currency was brought in, the Anglo-Palestine Bank issued banknotes denominated in Palestine pounds. They were in Hebrew לירה א״י (lira E.Y. i.e. lira Eretz-Yisraelit ) and Arabic junayh filisṭīnī (جنيه فلسطيني). [2]

On 1 May 1951, all the assets and liabilities of the Anglo Palestine Bank were transferred to a new company called Bank Leumi Le-Yisrael (Israel National Bank) and the currency name became: lira yisraelit (לירה ישראלית) in Hebrew, junayh ʾisrāʾīlī in Arabic, and Israeli pound in English. [3] The new currency was issued in 1952, and entered circulation on June 9. From 1955, after the Bank of Israel was established and took over the duty of issuing banknotes, only the Hebrew name was used. [4]

History

The British Mandate of Palestine was created in 1918. In 1927 the Palestine Currency Board, established by the British authorities, and subject to the British Secretary of State for the Colonies, issued the Palestine pound (£P) which was legal tender in Mandate Palestine and Transjordan. £P1 was fixed at exactly £1  sterling. It was divided into 1,000 mils.

The Mandate came to an end on 14 May 1948, but the Palestine pound continued in circulation until new currencies replaced it. In Israel, the Palestine pound continued in circulation until the Israeli pound was adopted in 1952. The Israeli pound was subdivided into 1,000 prutot. The Israeli pound retained the Palestine pound's sterling peg. In August 1948, new banknotes were issued by the London-based Anglo-Palestine Bank, owned by the Jewish Agency.

The new coins were the first to bear the new state's name, and the banknotes had "The Anglo-Palestine Bank Limited" written on them. While the first coins minted by Israel were still denominated in "mils", the next ones bore the Hebrew name prutah (Hebrew : פרוטה). A second series of banknotes was issued after the Anglo-Palestine Bank moved its headquarters to Tel Aviv and became the Bank Leumi (Hebrew : בנק לאומי "National Bank"). The peg to sterling was abolished on 1 January 1954, and in 1960, the subdivision of the pound was changed from 1,000 prutot to 100 agorot (singular agora, Hebrew : אגורה ,אגורות).

Because lira (Hebrew : לִירָה) was a loanword from Latin, a debate emerged in the 1960s over the name of the Israeli currency due to its non-Hebrew origins. This resulted in a law ordering the Minister of Finance to change the name from lira to the Hebrew name shekel (Hebrew : שקל). The law allowed the minister to decide on the date for the change. The law came into effect in February 1980, when the Israeli government introduced the 'Israeli shekel' (now called old Israeli shekel), at a rate of IL 10 = IS 1. On 1 January 1986, the old shekel was replaced by the Israeli new shekel at a ratio of IS 1,000 :  1.

Coins

Israel's first coins were aluminium 25 mil pieces, dated 1948 and 1949, which were issued in 1949 before the adoption of the pruta. Later in 1949, coins were issued in denominations of 1, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100 and 250 prutah. The coins were conceived, in part, by Israeli graphic designer Otte Wallish.

All coins and banknotes issued in Israel before June 1952 were part of the Palestine pound.

In 1960, coins were issued denominated in agora. There were 1, 5, 10 and 25 agorot pieces. In 1963, IL 12 and IL 1 coins were introduced, followed by IL 5 coins in 1978.

Mil (1949)

ImageValueDiameter (mm)Mass (g)CompositionObverseReverseDate of issueDate of withdrawal
25 mil coin - the State of Israel's first coin.png 25 mils 303.1—3.8 aluminium 97%, magnesium 3% Grape, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic Value, olive ornament06.04.194906.09.1950

Pruta (1949–1960)

ImageValueDiameter (mm)Mass (g)CompositionObverseReverseDate of issueDate of withdrawal
Israel 1 Prutah 1950 Obverse & Reverse.gif 1 pruta211.3 aluminium 97%, magnesium 3% Anchor, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic Value, olive ornament25.10.195022.02.1980
Israel 5 Prutah 1950 Obverse & Reverse.gif 5 prutot203.2copper 95%, tin 3%, zinc 2% Lyre, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 28.12.195022.02.1980
Israel 10 Prutah 1950 Obverse & Reverse.gif 10 prutot276.1 Amphora, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 04.01.195022.02.1980
10-Pruta-aluminium-hatashyab-RJP.jpg 10 prutot24.51.6 aluminium 97%, magnesium 3% Amphora, palms, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 18.09.195222.02.1980
Israel 10 Prutah 1956 Obverse & Reverse.gif 10 prutot24.51.6 Amphora, palms, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 27.12.195622.02.1980
Israel 25 Prutah 1950 Obverse & Reverse.gif 25 prutot19.52.8copper 75%, nickel 25% Grape, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 04.01.195022.02.1980
Israel 50 Prutah 1949 Obverse & Reverse.gif 50 prutot23.55.6 Grape, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 11.05.194922.02.1980
Israel 100 Prutah 1949 Obverse & Reverse.gif 100 prutot28.511.3Palm, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 25.05.194922.02.1980
Israel 100 Prutah 1955 Obverse & Reverse.gif 100 prutot25.67.3steel 90%, nickel 10%Palm, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 21.04.195522.02.1980
Israel 250 Prutah 1950 Obverse & Reverse.gif 250 prutot32.214.1copper 75%, nickel 25% Hordeum, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 11.10.195022.02.1980
Israel 500 Prutah 1952 Obverse & Reverse.gif 500 prutot37.125 silver 50%, copper 37,5%, nickel 12,5%Three pomegranates, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 22.05.195222.02.1980

Agora (1960–1978)

ImageValueDiameter (mm)Mass (g)CompositionObverseReverseDate of issueDate of withdrawal
1-Agora-hatashlad-RJP.jpg 1 agora211.3 aluminium 97%, magnesium 3% Barley, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic Value, date12.05.196022.02.1980
Israel 5 agorot 1960 Obverse & Reverse.gif 5 agorot17,52.31960—1975: copper 92%, aluminium 6%, nickel 2%

1976—1979: aluminium 97%, magnesium 3%

Three pomegranates, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 20.10.1960
Israel 10 agorot 1960 Obverse & Reverse.gif 10 agorot21,551960—1977: copper 92%, aluminium 6%, nickel 2%

1978—1979: aluminium 97%, magnesium 3%

Date palm, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 06.05.1960
25-Agorot-hatashlag-RJP.jpg 25 agorot25,56.5 copper 92%, aluminium 6%, nickel 2% Lyre, "Israel" in Hebrew and Arabic 17.03.1960
Israel half pound 1963 Obverse & Reverse.gif IL 1224,56.8 copper 75%, nickel 25%The state emblem, "Israel" in Hebrew, Arabic and English 12.09.196331.03.1984
Israel 1 pound 1963 Obverse & Reverse.gif IL 127,59
1 Israeli Lira coin.jpg IL 127,59Three pomegranates, the state emblem, "Israel" in Hebrew, Arabic and English Value, date, two stars1967
Israel 5 pound 1978 Obverse & Reverse.gif IL 53011,2Lion, the state emblem, "Israel" in Hebrew, Arabic and English 21.09.1978

Banknotes

In 1948, the government issued fractional notes for 50 and 100 mils. The Anglo-Palestine Bank issued banknotes for 500 mils, 1, 5, 10 and 50 pounds between 1948 and 1951. In 1952, the government issued a second series of fractional notes for 50 and 100 prutah with 250 prutah notes added in 1953. Also in 1952, the "Bank Leumi Le-Israel" took over paper money production and issued the same denominations as the Anglo-Palestine Bank except that the 500 mils was replaced by a 500 prutah note.

The Bank of Israel began note production in 1955, also issuing notes for 500 prutah, IL 1, IL 5, IL 10 and IL 50. In 1968, IL 100 notes were introduced, followed by IL 500 notes in 1975.

Bank Leumi series (1952)

ImageValueDimensionsMain ColourDescriptionDate of
ObverseReverseissueceased to be legal tender
Israel 500 Pruta 1952 Obverse & Reverse.jpg 500 prutah (IL12)148 × 72 mmOlive-green on light-blueThe denomination in centre and above "Bank Leumi le-Israel B.M." all in Hebrew; all surrounded by guilloches.The denomination and "Bank Leumi le-Israel B.M." all in Arabic and English; all surrouned by guilloches.9 June 19527 February 1961
Israel 1 Israel Pound 1952 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 1150 × 75 mmGreen-pink
Israel 5 Israel Pound 1952 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 5155 × 80 mmRed-brown
Israel 10 Israel Pound 1952 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 10155 × 80 mmGray-pink
Israel 50 Israel Pound 1952 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 50160 × 85 mmBrown-green

First series (1955)

ImageValueDimensionsMain ColourDescriptionDate of
ObverseReverseWatermarkissueceased to be legal tender
Israel 500 Pruta 1955 Obverse & Reverse.jpg 500 pruta (IL 12)130 × 72 mmRedRuins of an ancient synagogue at Bir'am in the Upper Galilee.An abstract design. Menorah with an imprint of cyclamen.4 August 195531 March 1984
Israel Lira 1955 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 1135 × 72 mmBlueView of the Upper Galilee. Menorah with an imprint of anemones. 27 October 1955
Israel 5 Lirot 1955 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 5140 × 78 mmBrown Negev landscape with a settlement and farm equipment. Menorah with an imprint of irises.
Israel 10 Lirot 1955 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 10150 × 82 mmGreenView of the Jezreel Valley depicting settlements and cultivated fields. Menorah with an imprint of tulips.4 August 1955
Israel 50 Lirot 1955 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 50160 × 87 mmBlueThe road to Jerusalem. Menorah with an imprint of oleander.19 September 1957

Second series (1959)

ImageValueDimensionsMain ColourDescriptionDate of
ObverseReverseWatermarkissueceased to be legal tender
Israel HalfLira 1958 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 12130 × 70 mmGreen Pioneer-woman soldier holding a basket of oranges against a background of fields. Tomb of the Sanhedrin in Jerusalem.The profile of the woman.15 October 195931 March 1984
Israel Lira 1958 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 1135 × 75 mmBlueFisherman carrying fishing gear against a background of a bay.Mosaic from the floor of an ancient synagogue at lssafiya on Mt. Carmel.The profile of the fisherman.
Israel 5 Lira 1958 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 5140 × 78 mmBrownLabourer holding a sledge-hammer against a background of an industrial plant.Roaring lion depicted on an ancient Hebrew seal found at Megiddo.The profile of the labourer.
Israel 10 Lir 1958 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 10150 × 82 mmPurpleScientist in a laboratory.Passage from the Book of Isaiah and the Dead Sea Scrolls.The profile of the scientist.
Israel 50 Lira 1958 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 50178 × 93 mmBrownTwo young pioneers against a background of an agricultural settlement in the Negev. Menorah from the ancient synagogue of Nirim in the Negev.The profile of the pioneers.9 December 1960

Third series (1970)

ImageValueDimensionsMain ColourDescriptionDate of
ObverseReverseWatermarkissueceased to be legal tender
Israel 5 Sheqalim 1968 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 5150 × 75 mmLight bluePortrait of Albert Einstein.The Atomic reactor at Nahal Sorek.Profile of Albert Einstein.13 January 197231 March 1984
Israel 10 Lirot 1968 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 10160 × 82 mmYellow-ivoryPortrait of Chaim Nachman Bialik. Bialik's home in Tel-Aviv.Profile of Chaim Nachman Bialik.6 August 1970
Israel 50 Lirot 1968 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 50170 × 84 mmBrown-redPortrait of Chaim Weizmann.The Knesset Building in Jerusalem.Profile of Chaim Weizmann.13 January 1972
Israel 100Lirot 1968 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 100180 × 90 mmBluePortrait of Theodor Herzl.The Emblem of the State of Israel surrounded by the emblems of the twelve tribes.Profile of Theodor Herzl.27 February 1969

Fourth series (1975)

ImageValueDimensionsMain ColourDescriptionDate of
ObverseReverseWatermarkissueceased to be legal tender
Israel 5 Lirot 1973 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 5128 × 76 mmBrownPortrait of Henrietta Szold; Hadassah Hospital on Mt. Scopus in Jerusalem. Lion's Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem.Profile of Henrietta Szold.11 March 197631 March 1984
Israel 10 Lirot 1973 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 10135 × 76 mmPink-purplePortrait of Moshe Montefiori; the Mishkanot Shaananim quarter in Jerusalem with the windmill. Jaffa Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem.Profile of Moshe Montefiori.30 January 1975
Israel 50 Lirot 1975 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 50141 × 76 mmGreenPortrait of Chaim Weizmann; the Wix Library at the Weizmann Institute of Science. Damascus gate in the Old City of Jerusalem.Profile of Chaim Weizmann.26 January 1978
Israel 100Lirot 1973 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 100147 × 76 mmBluePortrait of Theodor Herzl; the entrance gate to Mt. Herzl in Jerusalem. Zion Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem.Profile of Theodor Herzl.14 March 1975
Israel 500Lirot 1975 Obverse & Reverse.jpg IL 500153 × 76 mmIvory-brownPortrait of David Ben-Gurion; the library at kibbutz Sde Boker. Golden Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem.Profile of David Ben-Gurion.26 May 1977

See also

Citations

  1. "Bank of Israel Law, 5714–1954*" (PDF). 3 September 1954.
  2. One Palestine Pound, IL: Bank of Israel, archived from the original on April 27, 2006
  3. One Israeli Pound, IL: Bank of Israel, archived from the original on 2007-09-27
  4. First Series of the Pound, IL: Bank Le-Israel, archived from the original on 2007-09-27

General and cited references

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