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20 Rubles 1917. Kerenka, Russia

in Krause book Number: 38
Years of issue: 1917
Signatures: no signature
Serie: 1917 Issue
Specimen of: 1917
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 61 x 49
Printer: Петроградская бумажная фабрика (1914-1924), Петроград

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20 Rubles 1917. Kerenka




Wavy lines with dots (similar to carpet).


20 Rubles 1917. Kerenka

The release of these treasury marks began under the Provisional Government in September 1917, but the bulk was produced already under Soviet rule (the latter date back to 1921). They were printed in sheets of 40 pieces (5 wide and 8 long), cut by hand, do not have varieties and dates. Since the decree on the start of the issue was signed by Kerensky, this money was called "Kerenki". In total, a kerenok was issued for almost 22 million rubles, they were exchanged until October 1, 1922.

The front side has a patterned background, on top of which there is a rectangular frame with an ornament, divided into two parts. Below, surrounded by a floral pattern, there is the text: "OBLIGATORY TO CIRCULATE ALWAYS WITH CREDIT BILLS". Above inside there is another intricate figured frame with a double-headed eagle in the middle (without symbols of royal power), on the sides there is a denomination: the number "20", under it the word "RUBLES"; at the top there is a stylized ribbon with the inscription: "TREASURY BILL 20 RUB". Under the coat of arms in full width on a dark background the face value in words: "TWENTY RUBLES".


In 1917, after the abdication of Nicholas II, the question arose about a new state emblem. "To clarify" this issue, a group of experts gathered: V. K. Lukomsky, S. N. Troinitsky, G. I. Narbut, I. Ya. Bilibin. They were excellent connoisseurs of heraldry, but their decision was distinguished by expectancy. They did not recognize it as possible to decide the issue of the state emblem of Russia before the convocation of the Constituent Assembly, but believed that it was permissible to use the two-headed eagle without any attributes and without George the Victorious on his chest "in all cases provided for by law". On March 21, 1917, the Minister-Chairman of the Provisional Government, Prince G. Lvov and the Minister of Foreign Affairs P. Milyukov, approved the sketch of the coat of arms for the seal of the Provisional Government, made by the artist I. Bilibin.

During the period of the Provisional Government, the swastika also competed with the two-headed eagle - a running cross, once a solar sign and a symbol of eternity, prosperity, progress. Apparently, it was in this capacity that she "liked" the Provisional Government, which elected her along with the two-headed eagle and the image of the Tauride Palace (where the State Duma was located) as symbols of a new, democratic Russia. ( .rus)


20 Rubles 1917. Kerenka

The reverse side has a background in the form of a geometric ornament, in the corners there are small guilloche rosettes with numbers "20". In the middle there is an oval frame consisting of a wavy line (there are multiple horizontal lines around), inside it, at the top, there is a large rosette with the number "20"; on the sides the word "RUBLES", divided into two parts ("RUB" and "LES"); at the bottom of the central oval there is an inscription in three lines: "FORGERY IS PROSECUTED BY LAW."


In early August 1917, Kerensky became the new chairman of the Provisional Government. The course for the continuation of the war remains the same, while the economic devastation is only intensifying. On August 28, 1917, the issue of new banknotes in denominations of 20 and 40 Rubles was announced.

They did not go for the design for a long time, but took as a basis the tsarist stamp of consular mail worth 10 Rubles. The stamps were used for consular duties when processing documents for entry and exit from the Russian Empire.

The new banknotes lacked the number, series, signatures, year of issue. However, there was a watermark in the form of a carpet pattern. The workmanship was low, and the money was immediately called by the people "from kvass label". But in history, banknotes are better known by another nickname - "kerenki". The postal origin of the banknotes was also reflected in the fact that they were printed in sheets of 40 pieces. In such an uncut form, they entered circulation, and the inhabitants themselves cut and tore them. Collectors have sheets for both the maximum amount (800 and 1600 rubles, respectively), and for intermediate amounts, multiples of 20 or 40 rubles. People liked cutting sheets so much that there are kernels cut into 2 or even 4 parts. Thus, signs with a face value of up to 5 rubles were obtained. The Provisional Government managed to stamp more than 500 million rubles in kernels. They continued to publish them after October 1917, bringing the money supply to 22 billion.

What did the kerenki serve during the revolution and civil war, in addition to their direct purpose. They pasted over the walls instead of wallpaper. The merchants wrapped them around sausage and herring. In severe winters, they were burned in stoves. Finally, they were simply used as writing paper, due to its scarcity. They printed money wherever there was a printing house, paper and suitable ink. Naturally, the simplicity of manufacture gave rise to a lot of fakes, which further exacerbated the financial crisis and inflation. There are many types of fake kernels. They are currently a separate collectible.

The population reacted with distrust to the new banknotes. It has become a practice among peasants and bourgeoisie to hide old Romanov banknotes for a rainy day, and exchange new ones for old ones at a gradually increasing rate. The end of the Kerenoks came in 1922, when they were finally withdrawn from circulation. ( .rus)