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Scientists have revealed the secret of the "impossible" Peruvian coin of the late 19th century

Added Thu, 08/02/2024
Дата публикации
Thu, 08/02/2024

Scientists from the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru have revealed the secret of the Peruvian dinero (small coin) issued in 1899. The monetary unit has baffled numismatists, since such a currency could not exist in Peru during the specified time period. The study is published in the scientific journal Heritage Science.

The mysterious dinero was bought by the university from a local antiques dealer as part of a batch of other historical items as test materials for graduate students in chemistry. The find attracted the attention of experts, because in 1899, dinero was not minted in Peru.

Scientists have suggested that they are dealing with a fake created for the purpose of hoax. However, an analysis of the composition of the dinero showed that the coin most likely corresponds to the specified period of the late XIX and early XX centuries.

According to the researchers, the "impossible" coin could have arisen as a result of historical circumstances. At the end of the century before last, Peru's economy was struggling to recover from the civil war. The government has concentrated on printing large-denomination paper money. Due to the serious shortage of silver, ordinary citizens had to pay with the currency of neighboring countries by cutting and re-stamping coins.

Scientists have suggested that unknown counterfeiters decided to take advantage of the instability in Peru and earn money by producing their own money. At the same time, they probably were not in the country and might not even know that during this period the official Peruvian currency was silver salt.

Experts have called on collectors of Peruvian coins to examine their sets in search of other samples of historical fakes.

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