Topics of coins

The 20 zloty Note

We had all been “millionaires” until 31 December 1994, because prices and salaries were expressed nominally in millions of złotys. A day later a redenomination of the Polish złoty was carried out. On 1 January 1995, a banknote of the face value of 10,000 złoty was replaced with a 1 złoty coin, and 1 million złoty became 100 new złoty. Even a grosz gained in value. In 1995, banknotes of the denominations of 10 zł, 20 zł, 50 zł, 100 zł and 200 zł were put into circulation, whereas a 500 złoty banknote was introduced into circulation in 2017. The new series with the images of Polish rulers on banknotes was designed as usual by Andrzej Heidrich, the “king of Polish banknotes”.

Andrzej Heidrich (1928–2019) began to collaborate with Narodowy Bank Polski in 1960. At that time, he was invited to take part in a closed competition for the design of a new 1,000 złoty banknote. His design and two others won awards. Over the years, he was commissioned by NBP to make dozens of banknote drawings and designs, however only in 1975 was the first banknote designed by him put into circulation. It was a 500 złoty note depicting Tadeusz Kościuszko. “I was really moved,” he said. ”When I paid with the banknote or saw other people paying, I often caught myself thinking: it’s my work.”

Andrzej Heidrich designed the banknote series called “The Great Poles” (designs made in the years 1974–1993, in circulation in the years 1975–1996) and “The Polish Rulers” (designs made in 1994, in circulation from 1995 till the present day).

Jan Żaryn

In 2023, Narodowy Bank Polski inaugurated the series of gold collector coins “Banknotes in Circulation in Poland” struck with proof finish.

The gold collector coin with a face value of 20 złoty, featuring a stylised image of a contemporary circulation banknote with a face value of 20 złoty, was issued as the second coin of the series.

On the reverse, in the central part, a portrait of King Boleslaus the Brave is depicted in a decorative medallion. An outline of a Romanesque portal can be seen in the background of the inscriptions. On the right of the portrait, there is an oval with fragments of a crown, and a stylised oak underneath.

In the centre of the obverse, there is an image of a silver denarius – a coin from the period of the reign of Boleslaus the Brave. On the left of the denarius, there is an image of a rotunda; an oval with fragments of a crown can be seen above. On the right, a lion climbing a plant strand is depicted.