Central Bank of Brazil Museum of Money

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SBS Quadra 3
Block B
Brasília DF
Tel: +(61) 3414-2093


The Central Bank of Brazil’s original Museum of Money was inaugurated in Rio de Janeiro on August 1972 as part of the 150th anniversary of Brazil’s independence. When the country’s federal capital was moved to Brasília, a new central bank building was constructed and the Museum was also transferred there, opening September 1981.

The Museum of Money’s collection includes about 125,000 items of Brazilian and foreign origin, covering ancient to modern means of payment. This includes decorations, medals, historic documents, jetons and signet seals, and both private and government securities such as debentures, shares, bonds, checks, policies, and credit cards. In addition, the collection includes documents and objects related to the technological progress of minting, such as casts for banknotes, dice, color studies, monetary discs, and original drawings of banknotes and coins.

Four Exhibition Rooms

The exhibition covers about 14,000 square feet (1,300 square meters) in four rooms: Brazil Room, World Room, Gold Room, and the Brazilian Central Bank Issuance Room. The informational text is displayed in both Portuguese and English, and printed publications are distributed free at the Museum in English, Spanish, and Portuguese.

The Brazil Room displays coins, banknotes and other printed valuables formerly circulating within the country. Part of the history of means of payment and investment are disposed in a course related to the Colonial and United Kingdom periods. One of the highlights is a gold 1822 6,400-reis coin with the laureate bust of Pedro I. There were only 64 pieces struck as the coronation piece, but 57 were melted down. The monetary systems of 55 countries are on display in the World Room, which is supplemented by photographs featuring widely known images of different regions of the world.

The Gold Room

The Gold Room has eight displays of different forms of gold, foundry instruments, coin and investment gold, gold used in medals, signet seals, and gold delivery ingots that are traded on international gold exchanges. There are also several ingots and nuggets, among which is the largest nugget found in Brazil. This weighs about 132 lbs (60 kg) and was found in Serra Pelada, State of Pará, in 1983. It is considered, for its geological features, one of the rarest nuggets in the world.

The Central Bank Issuance Room was inaugurated on March 1997 and exhibits those Brazilian coins and banknotes issued since 1964, the date of the Central Bank was established, until the present. Also on display is a minting press donated by the Brazilian Mint to the Museum. This press, in operation from 1937 to 1973, features a minting capacity of up to 110 pieces a minute and is used for the distribution of medals as gifts to visitors.

This text was written by Howard M. Berlin and first published in his book Numismatourist in 2014.

You can order his numismatic guidebook at Amazon.

Howard M. Berlin has his own website.

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