1957 - Sri Lanka - 1 Rupee
Buddha Jayanthi 2500th Anniversary

Two commemorative coins were issued by the Central Bank of Ceylon in April 1957 for the 2500th anniversary of the passing away of Buddha and the Birth of the Nation. An one rupee cupro-nickel coin was issued for circulation together with a five rupee crown-sized silver coin.

DenominationRupees one
Diameter28.50 mm
Thickness2.2 mm
Weight11.31 gms
1957_Rs1_obverse 1957_Rs1_reverse
KM# 125

Obverse : The Dhamma Chakra over which is impose a stupa and the numeral 2500 below it.
Reverse : A design based on the traditional Sinhala design using the Pineapple motif. The value in Sinhala and the year of issue 1957 is superimposed in the center. The value ONE RUPEE in English on left and Tamil on right and in Sinhala `Sri Lanka' at the apex and the anniversary `Buddha Jayanthi' at the bottom.

These coins are popularly referred to as the Buddha Jayanthi coins.

Scholars generally agree on 563 BC as the year of the birth of Buddha (563-483 BC). Despite all efforts, the dates of the Buddha's birth and death remain uncertain. The various Buddhist sources agree that the Buddha lived for 80 years, but they disagree on the precise dates. Modern Theravada countries place his birth in 623 BC, and his death in 543 BC, but these dates are rejected by most Western and Indian historians. The ancient chronology, based on Sinhalese sources in Sri Lanka places the Buddha's Parinibbana 218 years before King Asoka's consecration.

The Maurya Dynasty (321-185 BC) emerged following the withdrawal of Alexander the Great from India in 325 BC, when the dynasty's founder, Emperor Chandragupta reigned for twenty-four years (321-297 BC) before abdicating his throne in favour of his son, Bundusara. His system of government continued under Bundusara, who left no noticeable mark upon the empire. Bundusara was succeeded by his son, Asoka, in 273 BC, although, as was usual, Asoka was not consecrated as Emperor until 265 BC. This puts Buddha's death in 483 BC. Buddha attained enlightenment in 528 B.C. The Buddhist Era start in 543 B.C. by Ancient tradition ignoring the 60 year error.

The coins were scanned at 300dpi and the images are displayed at 200dpi. The uncirculated commemorative coin were obtained many years ago from the Central Bank of Ceylon.