The Guatemalan Quetzal is the official currency in Guatemala and was named in honor of the national bird “resplendent quetzal”. It was introduced in 1925, replacing the peso. The first coins were issued in denominations of 1, 5 and 10 centavos, ¼, ½, and 1 quetzal. In 1932 were added ½ and 2 centavos coins followed by 1 quetzal in 1998. However, the ½ and 1 quetzal notes were introduced to replace equivalent notes at the end of the 1990s.
The 1 Centavo coin front design features the National Coat of Arms (composed of the national bird of Guatemala, the Quetzal, a scroll with the date on which Central America became independent from Spain, on September 15, 1821; two crossed rifles, with bayonets, two crossed swords and a laurel wreath). The reverse coin design has the bust of Fray Bartolomé de las Casas (1484 – 1566), who was a 16th-century Spanish landowner, famed as a historian and social reformer. He arrived in Hispaniola as a layman then became a Dominican friar and priest. The denomination accompanies the bust. This coin is part of the 1999 – 2008 series, its rim is plain, and its color is silver.
Text: Un Centavo, Republica de Guatemala, el 15 de septiembre de 1821, Fray Bartolome de las Casas, 2007.