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1 Pound 1989, Cyprus

in Krause book Number: 53c
Years of issue: 01.11.1989
Edition: AF 000001 - AJ 1000000 4 000 000
Signatures: Director: Afxentis Afxentiou
Serie: 1987 - 1992 Issue
Specimen of: 01.11.1989
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 140 х 72
Printer: Francois-Charles Oberthur Fiduciaire SA, Colombes

* 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 1989




The Cyprus mouflon (Ovis orientalis ophion) - national animal of Cyprus.

The mouflon is the biggest animal of the Cyprus Fauna. Its former scientific name was Ovis orientalis orientalis. However, in recent years following long and in depth studies a new scientific name was given to it, Ovis gmelini ophion.

The Cyprus mouflon is a kind of wild sheep and is found only in Cyprus. Other kinds of mouflon can be found in various Mediterranean countries such as Turkey, Syria, the island of Sardinia etc.

The mouflons are very shy and agile; they move very fast on the steep slopes of the Paphos forest and are very difficult to approach, especially when they are frightened. The mature male mouflon is a strong, well-built and beautiful animal. It has a thick and plentiful hide which in winter is of a light brown colour, with light grey on the back and an elongated black patch round the neck. In summer its hide becomes short and smooth, with a uniform brown colour and white underparts.

The male mouflons have heavy horns in the shape of a sickle. The length of the horns of the mature animals is between 55 and 60 cm. The weight of the male is around 35 kilos while the female weighs around 25 kilos. Its height is around one meter.

Its seasonal activity pattern is considerably variable. During summer, the animal is active in early morning and late afternoon, whereas in winter is active over the entire day.

During the summer, the mouflons live on the high mountains of the Paphos forest, like the Tripilos region. The Tripilos Mountains stand at 1.362 metres and overlook the Cedar valley. In winter, when the high peaks of the mountains are covered with snow, the mouflons come down to lower pastures in search of food. At times, when there is not enough food in the forest, the mouflons venture to move to the edge of the forest to search for food.

The same can happen during summer when available food is very scarce in the forest. During this season mouflon causes considerable damages to various agricultural crops.

In autumn, during the mating period, the mouflons form herds in groups of 10-20 male and female animals. In spring, however, when the delivery time is approaching, the herds are divided into small groups of two to three animals, or even one in the case of male mouflons which roam about alone.

The female mouflons give birth to either one or rarely two young ones in April or May. The newborns are very lively from the moment they are born so that they can face the many dangers that threaten them.

There is enough evidence to prove that in the past, at least in all the mountainous and semi-mountainous regions of the island, mouflons existed in abundance. In excavated mosaics it appears that the mouflon was very well known during the Hellenistic-Roman period.

During the Middle Ages, in the documents of various visitors, the mouflon is also mentioned. The mouflon was generally referred to as ""ram" or "wildsheep" and in several cases it was included in the descriptions of the hunting expeditions organized by the aristocracy of that period. At that time the hunting of the mouflon was carried out with dogs.

The mouflon is an animal that loves the forest. It can be found in small herds in the Paphos forest which covers an area of 60.000 hectares with natural vegetation consisting mainly of pine trees (Pinus brutia), cedar trees (Cedrus brevifolia), golden oaks (Quercus alnifolia), Strawberry trees (Arbutus andrachne etc).

The mouflon feeds on various kinds of wild growth that flourish in the shady valleys of the forest. In summer, when the wild growth tends to wither, the mouflons wander out of the forest to look for food. It is during this time that the passers-by are able to see the mouflons in forests with low vegetation or in fields that are close to the forests.

In 1878, when the island became a British colony, despite the fact that the number of mouflons had been reduced although they concentrated in the Paphos forest, their number was still quite high. Unfortunately, during the years that followed and due to the appearance of hunting guns it became much easier to kill the mouflons. The increase in the number of hunters and the non-existence of a suitable policy for the protection of the mouflon resulted in the drastic reduction of this animal in the Paphos forest. Until 1937, the only people who were worried about the decrease in the number of mouflons were the foresters.

In 1938, the hunting law was revised in order to provide a greater protection to the mouflon. Both the Forestry Department and the police were especially seconded for the protection of the mouflon against poaching. In 1939, the whole of the Paphos forest was declared as Game Protected Area for hunting, primarily for the protection of the mouflon. Later, with the declaration of the Cyprus Republic, additional measures were taken to protect the mouflon. A considerable part of the Paphos Forest has been declared as Nature Reserve under the Forest Law. Additionally, the whole area will be included in the European network of protected areas, the "Natura 2000". Four sites of the forest have been proposed as "Sites of Community Importance" (24.000 ha.), whereas the whole area has been declared as "Special Protected Area". Today, their number has increased to a satisfactory level and any danger of their disappearance has been eliminated. The mouflon is an indispensable part of our natural heritage and one of the symbols of Cyprus.

1 pound 1986 Cyprus 1 pound 1986 CyprusIn my collection I also have 1 silver pound 1986 of Cyprus with Cyprus mouflons.


1 Pound 1989


This mosaic is located in Neo Paphos, Paphos, Cyprus, in the house of Dionysus.

Piece of the ancient mosaic, which depicts a scene of the myth, according to which, the god of wine Dionysus sends secret of winemaking to Ikarios.

On the banknote depicted Erigone (Acme), in Greek mythology - the daughter of Ikarios, mother of Stafylos.

Ikarios (or Icarius) was an Attican man who was instructed by the god Dionysos in the making of wine when he first arrived in the country.

According to some ancient authors, Icarus was the king of Athens, but according to others - the gardener, and that as such it is, apparently, is shown in this mosaic. Icarus offered hospitality to Dionysus when the latter visited Athens, and in return the god taught him to grow grapes and produced from its fruit wines, introducing thus mankind viticulture. However, Ikaria Dionysos warned that that should be hidden as the wine, otherwise he and his family suffer misfortune. Unfortunately, Icarus did not heed the advice of God and returning home after the first vintage, offered some of his precious drink a few shepherds, happened to be passing by. Shepherds drunk and believing himself poisoned, attacked and killed him Ikaria. Such was the sad end of the first man, preparer wine, and this story was probably on purpose, because of its morality, chosen to decorate this part of the portico.

mosaic mosaic mosaic

Left to the god of wine, Dionysus, sitting on a bench, holding a bunch of grapes. It seems that he offers her nymph Acme, sitting in front of it and drinking from the cup of wine. Both figures topped with vine leaves and berries. Acme is not a known character in Greek mythology, but its identification is certified by the inscription above her head. In Greek, the name is the culmination or end (usually the century), and it is difficult not to consider her presence here is symbolic. If so, it must designate a state of mind, caused by appropriate and moderate use of wine. Indeed, it seems that Ikari points to it in a rather meaningful manner.

The very legend:

Some have said that he is Icarus, father of Erigone, to whom, on account of his justice and piety, Father Liber [Dionysos] gave wine, the vine, and the grape, so that he could show men how to plant the vine, what would grow from it, and how to use what was produced. When he had planted the vine, and by careful tending with a pruning-knife had made it flourish, a goat is said to have broken into the vineyard, and nibbled the tenderest leaves he saw there. Icarus, angered by this, took him and killed him and from his skin made a sack, and blowing it up, bound it tight, and cast it among his friends, directing them to dance around it. And so Eratosthenes [Greek writer C3rd B.C.] says: "Around the goat of Icarus they first danced".

Others say that Icarus, when he had received the wine from Father Liber [Dionysos], straightway put full wineskins on a wagon. For this he was called Boötes. When he showed it to the shepherds on going round through the Attic country, some of them, greedy and attracted by the new kind of drink, became stupefied, and sprawling here and there, as if half-dead, kept uttering unseemly things. The others, thinking poison had been given the shepherds by Icarus, so that he could drive their flocks into his own territory, killed him, and threw him into a well, or, as others say, buried him near a certain tree. However, when those who had fallen asleep, woke up, saying that hey had never rested better, and kept asking for Icarus in order to reward him, his murderers, stirred by conscience, at once took to flight and came to the island of the Ceans. Received there as guests, they established homes for themselves.

But when Erigone, the daughter of Icarus, moved by longing for her father, saw he did not return and was on the point of going out to hunt for him, the dog of Icarus, Maera by name, returned to her, howling as if lamenting the death of its master. It gave her no slight suspicion of murder, for the timid girl would naturally suspect her father had been killed since he had been gone so many months and days. But the dog, taking hold of her dress with its teeth, led her to the body. As soon as the girl saw it, abandoning hope, and overcome with loneliness and poverty, with many tearful lamentations she brought death on herself by hanging from the very tree beneath which her father was buried. And the dog made atonement for her death by its own life. Some say that it cast itself into the well, Anigrus by name. For this reason they repeat the story that no one afterward drank from that well. Jupiter [Zeus], pitying their misfortune, represented their forms among the stars. And so many have called Icarus, Boötes, and Erigone, the Virgin, about whom we shall speak later. The dog, however, from its own name and likeness, they have called Canicula. It is called Procyon by the Greeks, because it rises before the greater Dog. Others say these were pictured among the stars by Father Liber [Dionysos].

In the meantime in the district of the Athenians many girls without cause committed suicide by hanging, because Erigone, in dying, had prayed that Athenian girls should meet the same kind of death she was to suffer if the Athenians did not investigate the death of Icarus and avenge it. And so when these things happened as described, Apollo gave oracular response to them when they consulted him, saying that they should appease Erigone if they wanted to be free from the affliction. So since she hanged herself, they instituted a practice of swinging themselves on ropes with bars of wood attached, so that the one hanging could be moved by the wind. They instituted this as a solemn ceremony [i.e. the Aiora on the third day of the Anthesteria festival], and they perform it both privately and publicly, and call it alétis, aptly terming her mendicant who, unknown and lonely, sought for her father with the god. The Greeks call such people alétides.

In top center is the coat of arms of Cyprus.

coat Cyprus

The coat of arms of the Republic of Cyprus depicts a dove carrying an olive branch (a well-known symbol of peace) over “1960”, the year of Cypriot independence from British rule. The background is a copper-yellow colour; this symbolises the large deposits of copper ore on Cyprus (chiefly in the form of chalcopyrite, which is yellow in colour). The arms is not violating the rule of tincture, since the dove is not argent (silver) but blazoned as of the colour proper, i.e. it has the colour it would have in nature, in this case white.

The name of the bank in Greek and Turkish languages.

The island of Cyprus on the bottom.

Denominations in numerals are lower left and top right corners. Centered in words.


1 Pound 1989


Bellapais Abbey or "The Abbey of Peace" is the ruin of a monastery built by Canons Regular in the XIII century on the northern side of the small village of Bellapais, now in Turkish-controlled Northern Cyprus, about five kilometers from the town of Kyrenia.

bellapais bellapais

The ruin is at an altitude of 220 m. above sea level, and commands a long view down to Kyrenia and the Mediterranean sea. During the period of British control of Cyprus (1878-1960), the British Army initially took control of Bellapais. In 1878 they cemented the floor of the refectory, which they then used as a hospital.

bellapais bellapais

Unfortunately, the soldiers also fired off small arms in the refectory; one may still see bullet holes in the east wall. Then in 1912 George Jeffery, Curator of the Ancient Monuments of Cyprus, undertook repairs of the abbey.

Only after the Second World War, when the British began to seriously study the historical monuments of Cyprus, they discovered that the abbey is a unique architectural complex of medieval Gothic.

The buildings of the abbey are an example of Gothic French architecture and are similar to those of the same period in Piedmont, in the south of France (since the monastic Order of the Premonstrants, founded in France, was involved in the construction).

Denominations in numerals are in top left and lower right corners. Lower in words.


You can listen the audio guide for NeoPaphos here.

Banknote with a slightly beige background on reverse! Printer - Francois-Charles Oberthur Fiduciaire SA.

There are two varieties, with a beige background and without.

This bill I got in the port of Limassol, Cyprus. Our ferry to Athens (Piraeus) - Haifa (Israel) made a brief stop there at October 9, 1991.

The British introduced the pound sterling unit to Cyprus in 1879 at a rate of one to 180 Turkish piastres. It remained equal in value to the pound sterling until 1972 and was initially divided into 20 shillings (σελίνι / σελίνια, şilin). The shilling was divided into 9 piastres (γρόσι / γρόσια, kuruş), thus establishing a nomenclature link to the previous currency. The piastre was itself divided into 40 para (like the kuruş). The para denomination did not appear on any coins or banknotes but was used on postage stamps.

In 1955, Cyprus decimalized with 1000 mils (μιλς, mil) to the pound. Colloquially, the 5 mil coin was known as a "piastre" (not an exact equivalence) and the 50 mil coin as a "shilling" (an exact equivalence). The subdivision was changed to 100 cents (σεντ, sent) to the pound on 3 October 1983. At that time, the smallest coin still in circulation was that of 5 mils. This was renamed as ½ cent, but soon was abolished. Mil-denominated coins are no longer legal tender.