The escudo is the official currency of the Republic of Cape Verde since 1914, when it replaced the Cape Verdean real. The Banco Nacional Ultramarino introduced the first notes in denominations of 4, 5, 10, 20 and 50 centavos, followed by the 1, 5, 10, 20, 50 and 100 escudos in 1921. In 1945, a new series was issued, omitting the 1 and 5 denominations, and introducing the 500 escudos note. The 1, 5 and 10 escudos notes were replaced by coin between 1945 and 1953. After the independence in 1975, notes were issued in denominations of 100, 500 and 1000 escudos, followed by 200 and 2500 in 1989. In 2014, the Banco de Cabo Verde introduced a new banknotes series in denominations of 200, 1000, and 2000 escudos, followed by 500 and 5000 escudos in 2015.
The 500 Cape Verdean escudos note front design features Roberto Duarte da Silva (1837 – 1889), a Cape Verdean chemist who was distinguished for his research to enrich organic chemistry, surrounded by chemistry chains. A seal in the shape of a mortar, the National emblem, the snake entangled in the cup (symbol of pharmacy and medicine) and the denomination complete the design of this side of the note. The reverse note side illustrates a “trapiche” in Santo Antão, the island where Roberto Duarte da Silva was born, a seal in the shape of a mortar and the denomination. The lettering in the note is in the Portuguese language. This note is part of the 2007 series, and its color is green, yellow and red on a multicolor underprint.
Text: Banco De Cabo Verde, O Governador, O Administrador, Quinhentos Escudos, Roberto Duarte Silva, Banco De Cabo Verde, Quinhentos Escudos, 25 De Fevereiro De 2007, Trapiche – Ilha De Santo Antão, FCOF, 500.