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5 Patacas 1981, Macau

in Krause book Number: 58c
Years of issue: 08.08.1981
Edition: --
Signatures: Concelho de gestao: António D. Ribeiro Maçarico, Director geral do departamento de Macau: Abílio do Nascimento Martins Dengucho
Serie: No Serie
Specimen of: 08.08.1981
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 124 x 64
Printer: Imprensa Nacional, Casa da Moeda S.A., Lisboa

* 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 Patacas 1981




5 Patacas 1981

A-Ma Miu temple of BarraA-Ma Miu temple of Barra or Ma Ge Miao temple.

The oldest temple in Macao, which has a history of over 500 years. It is so alleged that over 400 years ago when Portuguese reached Macao and landed on the sea promontory opposite the A-Ma Temple, they noticed the temple of goddess and asked the local inhabitants the name of the whole place who misunderstood they were denoting the temple and answered "Ma Kok". In this way, the Portuguese transliterated into "Macau" which was the origin of the Portuguese name for Macao.

Built in 1488 on a Barra hillside in the name of goddess Tin Hau or A-Ma (as it was the name of Macau, since the A-Ma-Gao in Chinese means "Bay of the goddess Ma"). The temple plays an important role in the lifestyle of sailors since the XVI century.

In fact, the name "Macao" was based on the name "A-Ma-Gau". According to popular legend, the little girl by the name of A-Ma was taken on board of the fisherman boat, who took pity on her, when all the other rich boat owners refused to take her. Storm sank all the boats in the sea, except for good fisherman's boat, who saved the A-Ma. When their boat arrived in Macau, A-Ma suddenly disappeared, and then returned as a goddess. After the fishermen decided to build a temple on the very spot, where the goddess reappeared.

A-Ma Miu temple of Barra"The temple of T'in Hau Barra is a charm." (...) "Picturesque, beautiful, is the place. The secular trees darken; the paths furrow as if drawn to taste dragon; granite boulders bearing, recorded, poets thoughts and tears of calligraphic co genius ". (...) The temple to the picturesque corner background with the housing attachments to say with humility bhúdica is the ideal residence for everyone who wishes to associate the divine natural beauty. "(...)

"The facade is richly ornamented and magnificent roof that covers it. The center ripping a huge circular window, a piece of granite. Everywhere, outside and inside, figures depicting scenes of Chinese life, fabulous animals, maximum Buddhists decorate the building, marrying every detail harmoniously with one another. "(...) Is a charm. (...)

"It is the ideal residence for everyone who aspires to live with nature, with poetry, with the gods - hours to contemplate the sea, the flowing waters of the river and the border river; hours reading the inspired cliffs, to listen to the musical trees, to go the ways of dragon; hours to get high with the Buddhas and to rise with them to the regions in final peace; hours to snore in the depths of non-being ...". Excerpt from article by Manuel da Silva Mendes (1867-1931) - lived in Macau between 1901 and 1931 - published in the 11/06/1929 issue of the "Journal of Macau".


Lower, centered, is the Portuguese colonial coat of arms.

The coat of arms of Portugal was officially adopted on 30 June 1911, along with the republican flag of Portugal. It is based on the coat of arms used by the Portuguese Kingdom since the Middle Ages.

After the official recognition of the Kingdom of Portugal as an independent country in 1143 (it had been declared in 1139), silver bezants were added to the Burgundian flag, symbolising coins and the right the monarch had to issue currency, as leader of a sovereign state. Eventually, and given the enormous dynamism of medieval heraldry, it is believed that the shield degraded and lost some elements in battle, eventually losing the cross format. This is how King Sancho I inherited the shield from his father, Afonso Henriques, with no cross and the quinas (the five escutcheons with the silver bezants) in its place. Later, the number of silver bezants in each escutcheon would be reduced from eleven to five by King Sebastian I, and modern explanations interpret them as the five wounds of Jesus Christ, although this is highly improbable.

It was during the reign of Afonso III that the red border with golden castles (not towers, as some sources state) was added. Although the number of castles could vary between eight to twelve, Afonso IV would define them as twelve and Sebastian I would finally fix them as seven. They supposedly represent the Moorish castles conquered by the Kingdom of Portugal during the Reconquista. Their origin is probably Castilian, but unlike Spanish castles, which usually have their gates coloured blue (hence opened), Portuguese castles were always depicted with gold gates (hence closed). As a matter of fact, Afonso III was the second son of King Afonso II of Portugal and thus was not expected to inherit the throne, which was destined to go to his elder brother King Sancho II of Portugal. As a second son, the coat of arms of Afonso III included both the arms of his father and the arms of his mother Urraca of Castile, thus the Castillan red border with golden castillan castles, around the Portuguese shield inherited from his father.

An important element of Portuguese heraldry since the 15th century, the armillary sphere was many times used in Portuguese colonial flags, mainly in Brazil. It was a navigation instrument used to calculate distances and represents the importance of Portugal during the Age of Discovery, as well as the vastness of its colonial empire when the First Republic was implemented.

The coat of arms sported different crowns during imperial rule of Portuguese and foreign crowns.

1)Pre mid-1500s the coat of arms had an open imperial crown

2)Crown of the House of Habsburg

3)Various crowns of the House of Braganza (1640-1817)

4)Crown of João VI (1817-1910)

Denominations in numerals are in all corners. Centered in words.


5 Patacas 1981

The Praia GrandeThe view at Baía da Praia Grande in XIX century.

The Praia Grande (Portuguese for large beach) is a bay in Macau, a former Portuguese colony in China. Located on the east side of the Macau Peninsula, it served as the chief promenade in Macau. It was the site of the governor's palace, the administrative offices, the consulates, and the leading commercial establishments. It has been credited as probably the "most depicted view of XIX-century Macau", and its most characteristic landmark for many years. The bay was confined by the Fortress of St. Francis in the north-east and the Fortress of Bomparto in the south-west. Only a few colonial buildings remain, and the landscape has been largely altered by land reclamation and high-rise buildings.

Seal of the bank with a junk ship on the left side.

Denominations in numerals are in all corners.