Before the Islamic Republic Banknotes (printed by Thomas de La Rue of England) were ready to be placed into circulation, the Central Bank of Iran applied three different overprints on the existing banknotes. These are known as the

 Provisional Overprints.

The Second Provisional Overprint has the arabesque design on Shah's bust plus a circular lion and sun over the watermark area. The overprints (mainly in black) are different in size depending on the denomination.

The Provisional Issue, Type II (known as “two overprints”)

Catalog #




Pick #117a

50 R

Black type B overprint on Pick #101c

Pick #117b

50 R

Black overprint on Pick 101d

Pick #117c

50 R

Black overprint on Pick 101e

Note on Pick 117, 50 Rial.  The only signature variety common and available in market is #117a.   In this banknote the prefix is in 150-158 range.

The other two signatures, #17 and #18 are very scarce, and have fractional prefix.   Pick price of $500 and $300 for 117b and 117c respectively is justified.


Pick #118a

100 R

UNC, Black overprint on Pick 102c

Pick #118b

100 R

UNC, Black overprint on Pick 102d

Note on Pick 118, 100 Rial.  Pick 118a was rather common till a few years ago, but not as freely available as P-118b.   I have sold many P118a in $20-$50 range.   However, I do not have nay in stock and it is getting almost impossible to find.    $80-$100 will be a reasonable price range.

Pick 118b has always been common, but still not available in quantities of 10 and more.


Pick #119a

200 R

UNC, black type E overprint on #103d

Note on Pick 119, 200 Rial.  In the new edition of Pick, #119b has been removed making life easy for this denomination.   So; there is only one kind of 200 Rial, Pick 119a, with a fractional prefix.   Most prefixes seen are either 1/1 or 2/1.   Pick price has been increased from $35.00 to $60.00


Pick #120a

500 R

Black type F overprint on #104b, very scarce

Pick #120b

500 R

UNC, same overprint but on #104d.

Note on Pick 120, 500 Rial.  Again there are two signature varieties on this denomination, P120a is signature #16, which is very scarce, Pick price has been increased from $1100.00 to $2000.00, and Pick 120b, with signature #18.   This is a fractional prefix and the ones seen are 27/1 and 28/1.


Pick #121a

1000 R

Black type G overprint on Pick 105b SEE ANOTHER IMAGE

Pick #121b

1000 R

Brown type G overprint on Pick 105b SEE ANOTHER IMAGE

Pick #121c

1000 R

Black type G overprint on Pick 105d

Note on Pick 121, 1000 Rial.  There is one addition to this family, that is 121b, which is listed with a wrong price!

Pick 121a is a rare note, it has signature #16, Pick price has been increased from $No price to $3,000.00.   Pick 121b, is the same note, same signature, except the overprint is in Brown, even more scarce than P-121a, so the price should not be $45.00 but rather in $2000 range.

Pick 121c with signature #18, is probably the only 1000 Rial you can afford to put in your collection.   Pick has kept the $45.00 price, which is below the market, a $75-$100 will be more justified.


Pick #122a

5000 R

Type H overprint on #106b, signature #16.  Pick catalog price $2750.00

Pick #122b

5000 R

Type H overprint on #106c, signature #17.  Pick catalog price $3000.00

Pick #122c

5000 R

Type H overprint on #106d, signature #18.  Pick catalog price $1750.00

Note on Pick 122, 5000 Rial.  You should have bought this note a few years ago when it was in $100-$300 range.  All three-signature varieties are scarce, third being a bit lower in price.  You may still be able to find VF-XF condition, if you like to have a sample in your collection.   From the three different Provisional overprints, by far this 5,000 Rials is the most scarce and hard to find.  In the past few years I have sold XF or AU notes in $300 to $500 range, but those days are gone.

ONE LAST NOTE.  Forget the very expensive Provisional banknotes, but make sure you have the common ones, (the ones listed and priced in these three pages).   I have been buying and selling Iranian banknotes for many years (started during the Revolution when I was in Tehran in 1979), and have seen constant increase in prices – especially these last three years.    These notes are NOT available in Iran (the main source of supply), most dealers have sold their stock, there are no hoards, no per-10s, not even in consecutive pairs, if you find the singles, BUY THEM.  Gold, Silver and Gas prices will fluctuate up and down, but the prices for the Iranian banknotes will ONLY GO UP.



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For additional information, please contact us:

Armen Hovsepian, P. O. Box 15204, Lenexa, KS 66285-5204, U.S.A.

Tel: (913) 631-7909

International Bank Note Society; Life Member #106