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HomeWorld CoinsWorld Coin Profiles: 1970 Guyana One Dollar FAO Coin

World Coin Profiles: 1970 Guyana One Dollar FAO Coin

1970 Guyana FAO One Dollar Coin "Cuffy"


Guyana is a South American country that is located on the northern coast of the continent situated between Venezuela to the west and Suriname to the east. A former British colony, Guyana is the only South American nation that uses English as its official language. Although a small country, Guyana benefits from tremendous biodiversity, a climate that allows for the growing of a number of profitable crops, and rich mineral resources. Infrastructure and debt remain problems, and the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) program in Guyana was originally built to assist the country in sustainable food production and distribution to the hungry, responsible forestry and fisheries management, and technological assistance. Today, the FAO continues these projects and also works with policy makers to help deal with new problems that have arisen due to climate change.

The Coin

Guyana’s first FAO Coin, the 1970 $1, was issued in commemoration of the Berbice Slave Revolt, which began on February 23, 1763. The revolt is considered by some historians to be the first anti-European revolution in the Americas.

The coin also honors the establishment of the Republic of Guyana, which was officially recognized by the International community as a Republic on February 23, 1970.

Included in two official FAO offerings, the Guyanese $1 of 1970 was also offered to collectors by the Bank of Guyana at PO Box 658 Georgetown, or through Crown Agents Coin Bureau in England. Uncirculated coins were sold individually for 90 cents USD, each, through the Bank of Guyana, or 7 shillings 6 pence through Crown Agents. 5,000 proofs were also struck by the London Mint. Sales of these coins was handled by Crown Agents, which sold them for 2 pounds 1 shilling and 8 pence, or, $5.50 each ($3.92 for orders of 10 or more) plus $0.60 shipping and handling.

Condition: Business Strikes: The Guyana FAO $1 was struck on a copper nickel clad planchet and as is typical for the period, the issue is not without its problems. The typical example will show the presence of annealing chatter on Cuffy’s cheek, slight weakness in the ear and hair detail, and weakness in the area of the cow’s right eye. Hits and scrapes are also typical.

While not rare, the certified population of this issue in business strike and Proof formats is low. PCGS top population in BU is MS68 (population 1) and in Proof, Proof 68. In Proof, this issue comes fully brilliant. In the NGC census, a single examples sits atop the business strike population at MS66. The typical grade of this issue as struck would fall in the range of MS64-66.

1970 Guyana One Dollar "Cuffy" Reverse


Cuffy, with an attractive head of hair and pointed goatee faces to the left, around his neck a rope necklace with a small ornament hanging in the front. In large capitalized letters, the inscriptions BERBICE REVOLT, FEBRUARY 23, 1763 wrap around the perimeter of the coin, surrounding the central device. In small letters “CUFFY” appears below the bust. Small denticles surround a thin raised rim.


Large numeral “1”, centered, to the left a cow’s head, to the right two sugarcane plants. Wrapping around the top of the design, the legend: REPUBLIC OF GUYANA. Underneath, in the center, in smaller text: FOOD FOR ALL. Below the large numeral one, centered, is the denomination, date, and issuing authority, written as: ONE DOLLAR, 1970, BANK OF GUYANA. Two florets bookend the bottom inscriptions. Small denticles surround a thin raised rim. 

At the time of publication, one Guyanese Dollar (GYD) trades for approximately $0.0048 USD.

Coin Specifications:

Country:  Guyana
Year Of Issue:  1970
Denomination: One Dollar (GYD)
Mint:  Royal Mint (UK)
Mintage:  500,000 (+50,000 Proof)
Alloy:  Copper Nickel
Weight:  19 grams
Diameter:  35.6 mm
OBV Designer  Patrick Munroe / William Gardner
REV Designer  Patrick Munroe / William Gardner
Quality:  Business Strike / Proof


Keep up with all the latest coin releases from the world mints by clicking on CoinWeek’s World Coin Profiles Page.


CoinWeek IQ
CoinWeek IQ
With CoinWeek IQ, the editors and writers of CoinWeek dig deeper than the usual numismatic article. CoinWeek IQ provides collectors and numismatists with in-depth information, pedigree histories, and market analysis of U.S. coins and currency.

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