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5 Francs 1941, Algeria

in Krause book Number: 77b
Years of issue: 09.09.1941
Edition: --
Signatures: Le Secretaire General: Pierre de Roux, Le Caissier Principal: Frédéric Sebald
Serie: 1938 - 1943 Issue
Specimen of: 24.01.1941
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 128 x 88
Printer: Banque de France, Chamalieres

* 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.

5 Francs 1941



5 Francs 1941 Algeria watermark 5 Francs 1941 Algeria

I've been looking for the relationship between the images on the note, and this is what I found.

On the bill, presumably, the profile of the queen Dahii al-Kahin with silver earrings Berber women - The Chaoui people. In general, all the images on the bill, in my opinion, made in the region of Aurès Mountains, in the north-east of Algeria. But about this, please, see the descriptions of obverse!

And now about the queen from watermark:

Dihya or Kahina (Berber: Daya Ult Yenfaq Tajrawt, ⴷⵉⵀⵢⴰ Dihya) was a Berber warrior queen, religious and military leader who led indigenous resistance to the Muslim conquest of the Maghreb, the region then known as Numidia. She was born in the early 7th century and died around the end of the VII century in modern-day Algeria.

Her personal name is one of these variations: Daya, Dehiya, Dihya (ⴷⵉⵀⵢⴰ), Dahya or Damya (with Arabic spelling it is difficult to distinguish between these variants). Her title was cited by Arabic-language sources as al-Kāhina (the priestess soothsayer). This was the nickname used by her Muslim opponents because of her reputed ability to foresee the future.

She was born in the early VII century. Arab historians wrote that she was a Jewish "sorcerer", and because of this fact she was able to defeat the Arab Islamic invaders who retreated to eastern Tripolitania.

For five years she ruled a free Berber state from the Aures mountains to the oasis of Gadames (695-700 AD.).

But the Arabs, commanded by Musa bin Nusayr, returned with a strong army and defeated her. She fought at the El Djem Roman amphitheater but finally died around the end of the 7th century in modern-day Tunisia in a battle near Tabarka.

Accounts from the XIX century on claim she was of Jewish religion or that her tribe were Judaized Berbers. According to al-Mālikī relates that she was accompanied in her travels by an "idol", possibly an icon of the Virgin Mary or one of the Christian saints, but certainly not something associated with Jewish religious customs.

The idea that the Jrāwa were Judaized comes from the medieval historian Ibn Khaldun, who named them among a number of such tribes[according to whom?]. Hirschberg and Talbi note that Ibn Khaldun seems to have been referring to a time before the advent of the late Roman and Byzantine empires, and a little later in the same paragraph seems to say that by Roman times "the tribes" (presumably those he had listed before) had become Christianized.

In the words of H. Z. Hirschberg, "of all the known movements of conversion to Judaism and incidents of Judaizing, those connected with the Berbers and Sudanese in Africa are the least authenticated. Whatever has been written on them is extremely questionable." Hirschberg further points out that in the oral legends of Algerian Jews, "Kahya" was depicted as an ogre and persecutor of Jews.

Over four centuries after her death, Tunisian hagiographer al-Mālikī seems to have been among the first to state she resided in the Aurès Mountains. Just seven centuries after her death, the pilgrim at-Tijani was told she belonged to the Lūwāta tribe. When the later historian Ibn Khaldun came to write his account, he placed her with the Jrāwa tribe.

According to various Muslim sources, al-Kāhinat was the daughter of Tabat, or some say Mātiya. These sources depend on tribal genealogies, which were generally concocted for political reasons during the 9th century.

Ibn Khaldun records many legends about Dihyā. A number of them refer to her long hair or great size, both legendary characteristics of sorcerers. She is also supposed to have had the gift of prophecy and she had three sons, which is characteristic of witches in legends. Even the fact that two were her own and one was adopted (an Arab officer she had captured) was an alleged trait of sorcerers in tales. Another legend claims that in her youth, she had supposedly freed her people from a tyrant by agreeing to marry him and then murdering him on their wedding night. Virtually nothing else of her personal life is known.

Dihya succeeded Caecilius as the war leader of the Berber tribes in the 680s and opposed the encroaching Arab Islamic armies of the Umayyad Dynasty. Hasan ibn al-Nu'man marched from Egypt and captured the major Byzantine city of Carthage and other cities (see Muslim conquest of North Africa). Searching for another enemy to defeat, he was told that the most powerful monarch in North Africa was "the Queen of the Berbers" (Arabic: malikat al-barbar) Dihyā, and accordingly marched into Numidia. The armies met near Meskiana in the present-day province of Oum el-Bouaghi, Algeria. She defeated Hasan so soundly that he fled Ifriqiya and holed up in Cyrenaica (Libya) for four or five years. Realizing that the enemy was too powerful and bound to return, she was said to have embarked on a scorched earth campaign, which had little impact on the mountain and desert tribes, but lost her the crucial support of the sedentary oasis-dwellers. Instead of discouraging the Arab armies, her desperate decision hastened defeat.

Another, lesser known account of Dihyā claimed that she had an interest in early studies of desert birds. While this view may or may not be plausible, some evidence has been recovered at the site of her death place, modern-day Algeria. Several fragments of early parchment with a painting of a bird on them were found, although there's no way to conclude the fragments were hers. However, it is possible that she began her interest while in Libya, as the painting was of a Libyan bird species.

Hasan eventually returned and, aided by communications with the captured officer adopted by Dihya, defeated her at a locality (presumably in present-day Algeria) about which there is some uncertainty. Before the battle, foreseeing the outcome, she sent her two biological sons over to the Arab Islamic army under the care of the adopted son, and Hasan is said to have given one of them charge of a section of his forces. According to some accounts, Dihya died fighting the invaders, sword in hand, a warrior's death. Other accounts say she committed suicide by swallowing poison rather than be taken by the enemy. This final act occurred in the 690s or 700s, with 703 AD given as the most likely year. In that year, she was, according to Ibn Khaldun, 127 years old. This is evidently yet another of the many myths which surround her.

According to Muslim historians, her sons Bagay and Khanchla converted, and led the Berber army to Iberia.


5 Francs 1941

Kabyle girl Kabyle girl

On a banknote the Algerian girl of the Kabyle nationality (Berber group). Apparently, judging by the fact that this girl is present at different denominations of Algerian banknotes of the time, she serves as the personification of the country (like Marianne of France).

The Kabyle people (Kabyle: Iqvayliyen) are a Berber ethnic group native to Kabylia in the north of Algeria, one hundred miles east of Algiers. They represent the largest Berber-speaking population of Algeria and the second largest in the continent of Africa.

Many of the Kabyle have emigrated from Algeria, influenced by factors such as the earlier French conquest of the area, deportation, and latterly industrial decline and unemployment. Their diaspora has resulted in Kabyle people living in numerous countries. Large populations of Kabyle people settled in France and, to a lesser extent, Canada.

The Kabylians speak the Kabyle Berber language. Since the Berber Spring of 1980, they have been at the forefront of the fight for the official recognition of Berber languages in Algeria.

The inscription under the portrait: "Banque de l'Algérie; Cinq Francs; L'Article 139 du Code Pénal Punit des Travaux - Forcés a Perpétuité le Contrefacteur".

In English: "Bank of Algeria; Five francs; Article 139 of the Penal Code Punishes Work - Forced Perpetuity the Forger."

Denominations in numerals are lower right, in words - on top.


5 Francs 1941


In the foreground Algerian woman in a scarf "Hayek", with a tray of fruit.

For Algeria, it is the white color that is peculiar, is traditional for women's outerwear. That is why the classic hayek will be mostly bright.

Hayek (heque, hayque, alhaique, haiique, haic, haiik) - traditional Algerian outerwear.

To Hayek often, but not always, is attached Ajar, in classical Arabic is called El-Tan. A light piece of cloth on the string or rubber, often embroidered or embossed. Serves to cover the lower part of the face.

In fact, Hayek is such a white (light) large cloth, which today, decently, is given, mainly, to the wedding. In fact, it is very simply to drape in it - no needles or strings are used. But you can do nodes. There are several ways of draping and wearing. It is also possible to use one end of a hayek as a purse, a knot was made on the end of the fabric, and money was in the bundle.

It is put on top of home clothes or some dress, used not for outside wear, at the entrance to the guest house or your own women taking it off.

harbor harbor harbor

Against the background is the harbor of the port of Algiers (the capital of the country), the Admiralty lighthouse and the Admiralty building.

Lighthouse Penon, also known as Amirauté (Admiralty), built in 1834 (laid earlier 1700), height 16 meters.

It is also a fortress of the XVI century in the center of the Admiralty (Amirauté) - a complex of historical buildings, and was connected, initially, with several small islands, near the coast. In Arabic, this stronghold was simply called "El Djazaïr" ("islands"); "Alger" and "Algeria" are a distortion of this Arabic name. The lighthouse itself is located on a small island, which today connects with the mainland road.

harbor harbor

The original Spanish port was destroyed and rebuilt by Khair-ad-Din Barbarossa (circa 1478-1546), a pirate of Greek-Turkish descent, an Ottoman admiral and a Pasha of Algeria. The French significantly expanded the port and occupied the Palais de l'Amirauté (Admiralty Palace) in a neo-Mauritanian style. In the Bedeker guidebook of the 1911 edition of the Mediterranean, Seaports and Sea Routes: A Guide to Travelers, the following is said: "You can cross Rampe de l'Amirauté and walk along the old wharf of Khair al-Din." This ancient quay, or pier, connects old French port on the mainland (once the Turkish sea gate) with the former island of Penon, which later became "Presqu'île de l'Amirauté, Admiralty peninsula".

Denomination in numeral is in lower left corner.


Designer: Clement Serveau.

Obverse engraver: Emile Deloche.

Reverse engraver: Rita.

Printing method: Intaglio.