Bulgaria’s new two-leva coin went into circulation on December 7, the country’s central bank said. In the long run, the coins will replace the two-leva bills, but all banknotes currently in circulation will remain legal tender and the Bulgarian National Bank has yet to announce plans to withdraw them.
The coin depicts Paisii Hilendarski, who is considered a key figure in the Bulgarian Revival period in the 18th-19th centuries for writing the first work of Bulgarian historiography, the Slavonic-Bulgarian History.
Slightly larger than the existing one-leva coin (26.5mm in diameter to the one-lev’s 24.5mm), it is also slightly heavier at nine grammes. Where the one-lev coin is made of an outer ring of yellow metal surrounding a white circle, the two-leva coin has a white ring surrounding a golden-coloured circle – the metal itself, however, is not gold but an alloy of copper, nickel and zinc.
(Photo of the new two-leva coin by Bulgarian National Bank.)