Spain 500 Pesetas banknote 1940

Spain Banknotes 500 Pesetas banknote 1940 The Burial of the Count of Orgaz by El Greco
Spain money currency 500 Pesetas banknote 1940 Cathedral of Toledo

Spain Banknotes 500 Pesetas banknote 1940
Bank of Spain - Banco de España

Obverse: Detail of the painting The Burial of the Count of Orgaz by El Greco.
Reverse: View of the Cathedral of Toledo, engraved by José Luis López Sánchez Toda.
Size: 149 x 95 mm. Circulation: 3,050,000 notes. In circulation from February 1947.

Spain Banknotes - Spain Paper Money
1940 Second Issue

The Burial of the Count of Orgaz by El Greco
The Burial of the Count of Orgaz is a painting by El Greco, a painter, sculptor, and architect of the Spanish Renaissance. Widely considered among his finest works, it illustrates a popular local legend of his time. An exceptionally large painting, it is very clearly divided into two sections, heavenly above and terrestrial below, but it gives little impression of duality. The upper and lower sections are brought together compositionally.
   The theme of the painting is inspired from a legend of the beginning of the 14th century. In 1312, a certain Don Gonzalo Ruíz, native of Toledo, and Señor of the town of Orgaz, died (his family later received the title of Count, by which he is generally and posthumously known). The Count of Orgaz was a pious man who, among other charitable acts, left a sum of money for the enlargement and adornment of the church of Santo Tomé (El Greco's parish church). He was also a philanthropist and a right-thinking Knight. According to the legend, at the time he was buried, Saint Stephen and Saint Augustine descended in person from the heavens and buried him by their own hands in front of the dazzled eyes of those present.
   The painting was commissioned by Andrés Núñez, the parish priest of Santo Tomé, for the side-chapel of the Virgin of the church of Santo Tomé, and was executed by El Greco between 1586–1588. Núñez, who had initiated a project to refurbish the Count's burial chapel, is portrayed in the painting reading.
   Already in 1588, people were flocking to Orgaz to see the painting. This immediate popular reception depended, however, on the lifelike portrayal of the notable men of Toledo of the time. It was the custom for the eminent and noble men of the town to assist the burial of the noble-born, and it was stipulated in the contract that the scene should be represented in this manner.
   El Greco would pay homage to the aristocracy of the spirit, the clergy, the jurists, the poets and the scholars, who honored him and his art with their esteem, by immortalizing them in the painting. The Burial of the Count of Orgaz has been admired not only for its art, but also because it was a gallery of portraits of the most eminent social figures of that time in Toledo. Indeed, this painting is sufficient to rank El Greco among the few great portrait painters.

Toledo Cathedral
The Primate Cathedral of Saint Mary of Toledo (Spanish: Catedral Primada Santa María de Toledo) is a Roman Catholic cathedral in Toledo, Spain, see of the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Toledo.
   The cathedral of Toledo is one of the three 13th-century High Gothic cathedrals in Spain and is considered, in the opinion of some authorities, to be the magnum opus of the Gothic style in Spain. It was begun in 1226 under the rule of Ferdinand III and the last Gothic contributions were made in the 15th century when, in 1493, the vaults of the central nave were finished during the time of the Catholic Monarchs. It was modeled after the Bourges Cathedral, although its five naves plan is a consequence of the constructors' intention to cover all of the sacred space of the former city mosque with the cathedral, and of the former sahn with the cloister. It also combines some characteristics of the Mudéjar style, mainly in the cloister, and with the presence of multifoiled arches in the triforium. The spectacular incorporation of light and the structural achievements of the ambulatory vaults are some of its more remarkable aspects. It is built with white limestone from the quarries of Olihuelas, near Toledo.
It is popularly known as Dives Toletana (meaning The Rich Toledan in Latin).