For the last six months, an embarrassing typo printed on 46 million $50 Australian bank notes has gone undetected.
Now that the slip has been spotted, it is hard to notice anything else. The bill in question features a portrait of the first female member of Australian parliament, Edith Cowan. Behind the picture are rows of microscopic print quoting her inaugural speech; “It is a great responsibility to be the only woman here, and I want to emphasize the necessity which exists for other women being here,” the BBC reported.
It is in these lines of text that the typo can be found. Look a little closer and you will find that the word “responsibility” was printed without one of its I’s as “responsibilty.” The RBA confirmed the mistake on Thursday and assured that it would be corrected in all future prints of the bill.
Fortunately for those in possession of the note, it is still valid currency.
“These banknotes are legal tender and can continue to be used as normal. It does not affect their validity and functionality in any way,” a Reserve Bank of Australia spokeswoman said in a statement to CNN.
There have been several other currency blunders in the past, some far more embarrassing than the RBA’s. In 2008 the Chilean Mint made a glaringly obvious mistake when it misspelt the country’s name on thousands of 50-peso coins, Investopedia noted. Instead of “Chile” the coins were stamped with the word “Chiie” with the letter i.
Back on home soil several years ago, thousands of U.S. $100 bills were printed with blank spaces where the anti-forgery features should have been, The Daily Beast noted.
These misprints may be the source of humiliation for many countries, but these bills or coins may actually be valuable, according to OldCurrencyValues.com. As the website pointed out, notes or coins with “very impressive” errors could likely be “worth good money.”