Spanish peseta

Spanish peseta

Infobox Currency
currency_name_in_local = peseta española es icon
image_1 = 500 pesetas-reverse.jpg
image_title_1 = 3 × 500 pesetas
image_2 = Spagna 200 pesetas Madrid Capitale Europea della Cultura.jpg
image_title_2 = 200 pesetas - Madrid European Capital of Culture - 1992
inflation_rate = 1.4%
inflation_source_date = Cámara Gipuzcoa, 1998
pegged_by = Andorran peseta (ADP) Equatorial Guinean peseta [ RASD Peseta]
iso_code = ESP
using_countries = Spain, Andorra
ERM_since = 19 June 1989
ERM_fixed_rate_since = 31 December 1998
euro_replace_non_cash = 1 January 1999
euro_replace_cash = 1 January 2002
ERM_fixed_rate = 166.386 ₧
subunit_ratio_1 = 1/100
subunit_name_1 = céntimo
subunit_inline_note_1 = because of inflation, céntimos were no longer in use.
symbol = ₧ (rare, see article)
nickname = pela (1 ₧),
duro (5 ₧),
talego (1 000 ₧),
kilo (1 000 000 ₧)
frequently_used_coins = 5, 25, 50, 100, 500 ₧
rarely_used_coins = 1, 10, 200 ₧
frequently_used_banknotes = 1000, 5000, 10.000 Pts
rarely_used_banknotes = 2000 Pts
issuing_authority = Banco de España
issuing_authority_website =
mint = Fábrica Nacional de Moneda y Timbre
mint_website =
printer = Fábrica Nacional de Moneda y Timbre
printer_website =
obsolete_notice = Y
The peseta (ISO 4217 code: ESP, standard abbreviation: Pta., Pts., or Ptas., symbol: ₧ (rare) was the currency of Spain between 1869 and 2002. Along with the French franc, it was also a "de facto" currency used in Andorra (which had no national currency with legal tender). It was subdivided into 100 "céntimos" or, informally, 4 "reales", but these subunits were completely out of circulation by the 1970s.


The name is believed to have been derived from the Catalan word "peceta", meaning "little piece" (i.e., the diminutive of "peça", "-eta" being the usual feminine diminutive) [ Its possible etymology in a Catalan dictionary] . Translation: maybe from "peceta", diminutive of "peça", that may past to Castilian "peseta" (official in 1868), or Castilian diminutive of "peso" that means 'pound' with Catalan- or French-like ending "-eta"] ] . However, it is also possible that the name is the diminutive of "peso", an already-existing currency whose name derives from a unit of weight; this is consistent with such other currencies as the British pound. "Peseta" is also the term used in Puerto Rico for a U.S. quarter-dollar coin.


The peseta was introduced in 1869 after Spain joined the Latin Monetary Union in 1868. The Spanish Law of June 26, 1864 decreed that in preparation for joining the Latin Monetary Union (set up in 1865), the peseta became a subdivision of the peso with 1 "peso duro" = 5 "pesetas". The peseta replaced the "escudo" at a rate of 5 "pesetas" = 1 "peso duro" = 2 "escudos".

The peseta was equal to 4.5 grams of silver, or 0.290322 gram of gold, the standard used by all the currencies of the Latin Monetary Union. From 1873, only the gold standard applied.

The political turbulence of the early twentieth century caused the monetary union to break up, although it was not until 1927 that it officially ended.

In 1959, Spain became part of the Bretton Woods System, pegging the peseta at a value of 60 pesetas = 1 U.S. dollar. In 1967, the peseta followed the devaluation of the British pound, maintaining the exchange rate of 168 pesetas = 1 pound and establishing a new rate of 70 pesetas = 1 U.S. dollar.

The peseta was replaced by the euro in 2002, following the establishment of the euro in 1999. The exchange rate was 1 euro = 166.386 pesetas.


In 1869 and 1870, coins were introduced in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10 and 50 céntimos, 1, 2 and 5 pesetas. The lowest four denominations were struck in copper (replaced by bronze from 1877), with the 50 céntimos, 1 and 2 pesetas struck in .835 silver and the 5 pesetas struck in .900 silver. Gold 25 pesetas coins were introduced in 1876, followed by 20 pesetas in 1878. In 1889, 20 pesetas coins were introduced, with production of the 25 pesetas ceasing. In 1897, a single issue of gold 100 pesetas was made. Production of gold coins ceased in 1904, followed by that of silver coins in 1910. The last bronze coins were issued in 1912.

Coin production resumed in 1925 with the introduction of cupro-nickel 25 céntimos. In 1926, a final issue of silver 50 céntimos was made, followed by the introduction of a holed version of the 25 céntimos in 1927.

In 1934, the Second Spanish Republic issued coins for 25 and 50 céntimos and 1 peseta. The 25 céntimos and silver 1 peseta were the same size and composition as the earlier Royal issues, whilst the 50 céntimos was struck in copper. In 1937, an iron 5 céntimos coins was introduced along with a brass 1 peseta. The last Republican issue was a holed, copper 25 céntimos in 1938.

During the Civil War, a number of local coinages were issued by both Republican and Nationalist forces. In 1936, the following pieces were issued by the Nationalists:

The 50 pesetas coins issued between 1990 and 2000 were the first Fact|date=February 2007 that featured the Spanish flower shape.

Andorran peseta

The Andorran peseta (ADP) was a 1:1 peg to the Spanish peseta. As Andorra used coins and banknotes from Spain, there was no separate Andorran peseta, and they were convertible into normal pesetas.

After the euro

The peseta was replaced by the euro (€) in 1999 on currency exchange boards. Euro coins and notes were introduced in January 2002, and on March 1, 2002, the peseta lost its legal tender status in Spain (also in Andorra). The exchange rate was 1 euro = 166.386 ESP

Peseta notes and coins that were legal tender on December 31, 2001, remain exchangeable indefinitely at any branch of the central bank.


Traditionally, there was never a single symbol nor special character for the Spanish peseta. Common abbreviations were "Pt", "Pta", "Pts" and "Ptas", and even using superior letters: "Ptas".

Common earlier Spanish models of mechanic typewriters had the expression "Pts" in a single type (₧), as a shorthand intended to fill a single type space () in tables instead of three (Pts).

Later, Spanish models of IBM electric typewriters also included the same type in its repertoire.

When the first IBM PC was designed circa 1980, it included a "peseta symbol" ₧ in the ROM of the Monochrome Display Adapter (MDA) and Color Graphics Adapter (CGA) video output cards' hardware, with the code number 158. This original character set chart becomes later the MS-DOS code page 437.

Some spreadsheet software for PC under MS-DOS, as Lotus 1-2-3, employed this character as the peseta symbol in their Spanish editions.

Subsequent international MS-DOS code pages, like code page 850 and others, deprecated this character in favour of some other national characters, so the "peseta symbol" life was brief.

In order to guarantee the interchange with previous encodings (namely, the code page 437 in this case), the international standard Unicode includes this character as U+20A7 PESETA SIGN in its Currency Symbols block. Out of that, the use of the "peseta symbol" standalone is extremely rare, and it is outdated since the adoption of the euro in Spain.

See also




External links

Standard numismatics external links
world_coin_gallery_1_url = Spain
world_coin_gallery_1_name = Spain
banknote_world_1_url = spain
banknote_world_1_name = Spain
dollarization_1_url =
dollarization_1_name =
gfd_1_url = Spain
gfd_1_name = Spain
gfd_data_1_url = 4023
gfd_data_1_name = Spain Peseta
show_gfd_excel = Y

* [ Overview of the peseta from the BBC]
* [ Banco de España: last peseta issues]
* [ Coins from Spain with pictures]

Related articles

* Latin Monetary Union (1865-1927)
* Spanish-American War (1898)
* First World War (1914-1918/1919)
* Spanish Civil War (1936-1939)
* Latin Union (Since 1954)
* European Union (Since 1957)
* Euro (From 1999/2002)
* Spanish euro coins
* Commemorative coins of Spain
* Economy of Spain

# 1999 by law (on financial markets and business transactions only), two currency units used (the Spanish peseta still had legal tender on all banknotes, coins and personnal bank accounts) until 2002.

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