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1 Pound 1980, Lebanon

in Krause book Number: 61c
Years of issue: 1980
Edition: --
Signatures: Joseph Oughurlian, Michel El Khoury
Serie: 1964 Issue
Specimen of: 1964
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 135 х 66
Printer: TDLR (Thomas de la Rue & Company), London

* All pictures marked magnify are increased partially by magnifying glass, the remaining open in full size by clicking on the image.

** The word "Specimen" is present only on some of electronic pictures, in accordance with banknote images publication rules of appropriate banks.

1 Pound 1980



watermark watermark

Two eagles. I draw an analogy with the stone relief of the eagle on the central stone, over the columns of the temple of Jupiter, in Baalbek, Lebanon.


1 Pound 1980

The whole relief of the banknote shows the patterned reliefs of the temple of Jupiter in Baalbek.

Baalbek Baalbek

The surviving columns on the south wall of the Temple of Jupiter (Roman Heliopolis) complex in Baalbek, Lebanon.

Baalbek (Arabic بعلبك) (Balbec, Baalat, in ancient times - Rome Heliopolis (the city of the sun) is an ancient city in Lebanon.It is located 80 km to the northeast of Beirut at an altitude of 1130 meters.

Known unimaginable in its size of the architectural complex of the three temples dedicated to Venus, Bacchus and Jupiter. And much of what was erected remained intact until today, despite numerous wars, earthquakes resisted, for example, six columns supporting the pediment of the temple of Jupiter. Columns reaching a height of almost 22 meters, and now still produce a very impressive impression.

The construction of the temples began in the last quarter of the 1st century BC, and was nearing completion, in the last years of the reign of Nero (37-68). The Great Courtyard of the Jupiter Temple complex, with its porticoes, altars and basins, was built in the 2nd century AD, The construction of the Bacchus temple was also started, at about this time. In a number of sources one can meet the claim that the temple of Jupiter was built during the time of Emperor Antoninus Pius. However, Antoninus Pius is a Roman emperor who ruled from July 10, 138 to March 7, 161. Meanwhile, archaeologists, in fact, refer to this emperor the construction of the temple of Bacchus, and the temple of Jupiter is dated a hundred years earlier. This date is based on the discovered signature, which was left by one of the workers of the Bricklayers' Brigade on August 2, 60 AD (Seyrig 1937, 95-97, Cf. IGLS 6.2733; Hajjar 1977, no. 78; Freyberger 1998, 63 No. 816). Given the position of the inscription - at the very top of one of the temple columns, at this point the construction should be virtually completed, although the project may have started several decades earlier, following the founding of the Beirut colony in 15 BC, the most ancient Roman colony in the Middle East, whose territory was then Heliopolis. The foundation in 15 BC is attested in the Jerome Chronicle (Rudder 1956, 166; Millar 1990; Hoffman 1998; 285; Freyberger 1998, 63). The data are taken from the article: Kropp and Lohmann "Construction Techniques at Heliopolis and Jerusalem".

From 97 BC. In the Roman Empire human sacrifices in any form were banned. When the peristyle of the Baal sanctuary was completed, the mason, at the top of one of the columns, engraved graffiti, which begins with these words: "For good luck in 371, on the second day of the month of Loos (August 60 AD)," trim "their beards".

The construction of temples was a massive undertaking. The work is believed to have begun in 60 BC. and the great temple of Jupiter was nearing completion only 120 years later, in 60 AD, during the reign of Nero. Later, under Antony Pius, a series of complex extensions was undertaken, including works on which about 100,000 slaves worked for centuries. The original number of columns of the temple of Jupiter is 54. Blocks of architrave and frieze weigh 60 tons each, and one corner block - more than 100 tons, they are all raised to a height of 19 meters (62.34 feet) above the ground. It was believed that this was done with the help of Roman cranes. Roman cranes were not able to lift such heavy stones, however, by combining several cranes they might have been able to lift them to this height. If necessary, locating washers could be used as a crane arm, which supported the blocks while they were being hooked on the other side.


The height of the columns of the temple of Jupiter is 22 meters. They were cut in the quarries of Aswan, in Egypt, and sent along the Nile and the Mediterranean to Tripoli and from there along the old Roman road, through Homs, were taken to Baalbek. Fantastic work! Cut, deliver, ship and install columns of this diameter, even with the help of modern technology - not an easy task. The splendor of the temple complex evokes a sense of delight and admiration for the skill of architects, builders and artisans who lived almost two thousand years ago. But, alas, time is ruthless to the creations of human hands. It is not for nothing that the great thinkers of the past tirelessly repeated that the best of all temples is that built in the human heart. The temple of Jupiter is built on a majestic base, 300 meters long. Of the 54 columns of the temple there are only 6. And these are the largest columns in the world - 22.9 m high and 2.2 m in diameter. And the world's largest stone blocks were laid in the foundation of the temple of Jupiter. The largest of them, measuring 19.5 by 4.3 m, weighs 1,000 tons. The staircase led to twelve-ten-meter columns of pink granite, with capitals of gilded bronze. These were propylaea - the vestibule of the temple. In the shadow of the twelve-columned portico of the propylaea, up to a thousand people could gather. From both sides of the portico, like sentries, stood massive towers. To the deaf walls of the towers were placed pilasters of the same height as the columns, and with bronze capitals of the same shape. From this propylaea seemed even wider and even more grandiose.

Baalbek Baalbek

In the lower right corner is a vignette with Jupiter (with a solar aura around the head) and two eagles - the sun god, as a symbol of the Roman Heliopolis ("sun city" in antiquity) or Baalbek today.

With this vignette, there is still much to be understood.


It seems that there is such a stone relief that was found in Baalbek. But the photos of the relief with the eagles, at the foot of the sun god Jupiter, I have not yet found. But they found a photo of a sarcophagus with the image of Jupiter, which was found in Baalbek and is now exhibited in the Museum of Lebanon in Beirut.

Denomination is in Arabic numerals are in lower left and top right corners.


1 Pound 1980

The Jeita Grotto The Jeita Grotto

The Jeita Grotto (Arabic: مغارة جعيتا‎) is a system of two separate, but interconnected, karstic limestone caves spanning an overall length of nearly 9 kilometers (5.6 mi.). The caves are situated in the Nahr al-Kalb valley within the locality of Jeita, 18 kilometers (11 mi.) north of the Lebanese capital Beirut. Though inhabited in prehistoric times, the lower cave was not rediscovered until 1836 by Reverend William Thomson; it can only be visited by boat since it channels an underground river that provides fresh drinking water to more than a million Lebanese.

In 1958, Lebanese speleologists discovered the upper galleries 60 meters (200 ft.) above the lower cave which have been accommodated with an access tunnel and a series of walkways to enable tourists safe access without disturbing the natural landscape. The upper galleries house the world's largest known stalactite. The galleries are composed of a series of chambers the largest of which peaks at a height of 120 meters (390 ft.).

Aside from being a Lebanese national symbol and a top tourist destination, the Jeita grotto plays an important social, economic and cultural role in the country. It was one of top 14 finalists in the New 7 Wonders of Nature competition.

Ancient vestiges of a foundry were found in a smaller cave near the Nahr al-Kalb river, suggesting that the cave was used in antiquity to produce swords.

The modern discovery of the underground river of Jeita in 1836 is credited to Reverend William Thomson (an American missionary) who ventured some 50 meters (160 ft.) into the cave. Reaching the underground river, he fired a shot from his gun and the resulting echoes convinced him that he had found a cavern of major importance.

In 1873 W.J. Maxwell and H.G. Huxley, engineers with the Beirut Water Company, and their friend Reverend Daniel Bliss, president of the Syrian Protestant College (later the American University of Beirut) explored these caverns. In two expeditions carried out in 1873 and 1874, they penetrated 1,060 meters (3,480 ft.) into the grotto before finding their progress blocked by an underground waterfall. The waterfall became known as "Hell's Rapids", as the torrents break onto razor sharp rocks. Dr. Bliss, Mr. Maxwell and the other engineers recorded their names and the year on "Maxwell's Column", a great limestone pillar some 625 meters (2,051 ft.) from the entrance. About 200 meters (660 ft.) further on, in the so-called "Pantheon", they wrote their names and details of the expedition on paper, sealed it in a bottle and placed it on top of a stalagmite. The lime-impregnated water has since covered the bottle with a thin white film, permanently fixing it to the stone.

Between 1892 and 1940 further expeditions were carried out by English, American and French explorers. Their expeditions brought them to a depth of 1,750 meters (5,740 ft.).

Since the 1940s, Lebanese explorers have pushed even deeper into the Jeita grotto. Many of these spelunkers are members of the Speleo Club du Liban (Lebanese Caving Club) founded in 1951 by the first Lebanese speleologist Lionel Ghorra. Their expeditions revealed a great underground system which is now explored to an overall length of nearly 9 kilometers (5.6 mi.).

In 1958 the lower caverns were opened to the public, meanwhile exploration was still underway mainly by the Lebanese Caving Club. This exploration led to the discovery of the elevated dry branch of the grotto later referred to as the upper galleries.

In 1962, the Spéléo Club contributed to a study of the upper galleries aiming to provide an access tunnel which was to be dug for touristic development purposes. Work on the access tunnel was begun in 1968. Its opening was followed by the installation of a series of walkways which permitted tourists safe access to the upper galleries without disturbing the natural landscape.

In 1969, a concert with electronic music by the French composer Francois Bayle was held in the cave to celebrate the inauguration of the upper galleries. This event was organized by the Lebanese artist and sculptor Ghassan Klink. Other cultural events have taken place in this unusual surrounding, including a concert by the world acknowledged German composer Karlheinz Stockhausen in November 1969, and more recently, in 2008 a classical music concert by Lebanese-Armenian composer and pianist Guy Manoukian.

The caverns closed to the public due to the Lebanese civil war in 1978 both tunnels leading to the lower and upper galleries were used to store munitions, the outside buildings for military purposes. The caves reopened in 1995 and remain one of the country’s key natural attractions.

Also on banknote are Stalagmites & Stalactites.

When discussing mineral formations in caves, we often talk about stalactites and stalagmites. A stalactite is an icicle-shaped formation that hangs from the ceiling of a cave, and is produced by precipitation of minerals from water dripping through the cave ceiling. Most stalactites have pointed tips.

A stalagmite is an upward-growing mound of mineral deposits that have precipitated from water dripping onto the floor of a cave. Most stalagmites have rounded or flattened tips.

There are many other types of mineral formations found in caves. For example, flowstones are deposits of minerals from water flowing over the floor or walls of a cave. As layers of flowstone become thicker, their shape becomes rounded. Well-defined crystals growing underwater in cave pools are known as pool spar. (

Denomination in words is in French language. In numeras are in top corners.