Notability Banknotes



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Glossary Of Terms

We pride ourselves with selling quality and rare banknotes that we apply a very strict grading standard, those of the International Bank Note Society (I.B.N.S.). Any imperfection or other faults such as edge tears, foxing, pin holes or ink marks will be mentioned.

Our philosophy at Notability Banknotes is to grade very hard, as your satisfaction is pivotal to our future and business. We understand there is nothing more disappointing than for a collector to receive a over graded note. With this in mind we strive to keep a high emphasis on grading, but sometimes mistakes are made. If you are not completely satisfied with any item that we have supplied we are more than happy to refund any returned item as stated in our terms and conditions.

As well as selling banknotes in their raw state, we at Notability Banknotes also sell items that have been encapsulate "Slabbed" and have been graded by a third party grading company. Such companies like PMG, PCGS and ICG.

We find that a selection of our customers base prefer slabbed material and we are happy to cater for both groups of collectors. Again like with the raw banknotes if you are not completely satisfied you can return them for a complete refund. With slabbed materials the only preconditions is that they have not been removed from the encapsulation or it has not been tampered with, again as stated in our terms and conditions.

IBNS Standard Grading Guide - Definition of Terms


A perfectly preserved note, never mishandled by the issuing authority, a bank teller, the public or a collector. Paper is clean and firm, without discoloration. Corners are sharp and square, without any evidence of rounding. (Rounded corners are often a telltale sign of a cleaned or "doctored" note) An uncirculted note will have its original natural sheen.

NOTE: Some note issues are most often available with slight evidence of counting folds (creases). Also, French-printed notes usually have a slight ripple in the paper. Many collectors and dealers often refer to such a note as AU/UNC.

About Uncirculated

A virtually perfect note, with some minor handling. May show very slight evidence of bank counting folds at a corner or one light fold through the center, but not both. An AU note cannot be creased, a crease being a hard fold which has usually "broken" the surface of the note. Paper is clean and bright with original sheen. Corners are not rounded.

NOTE: Europeans will refer to an About Uncirculated or AU note as "EF-UNC" or as just "EF". The extremely fine note described below will often be referred to as "GVF" or "Good Very Fine".

Extremely Fine

A very attractive note, with light handling. May have a maximum of three light folds or one strong crease. Paper is clean and bright with original sheen. Corners may show only the slightest evidence of rounding. There may also be the slightest sign of wear where a fold meets the edge.

Very Fine

An attractive note, but with more evidence of handling and wear. May have a number of folds both vertically and horizontally. Paper may have minimal dirt, or possible colour smudging. Paper itself is still relatively crisp and not floppy. There are no tears into the border area, although the edges do show slight wear. Corners also show wear but not full rounding.


A note which shows considerable circulation with many folds, creases and wrinkling. Paper is not excessively dirty, but may have some softness. Edges may show much handling with minor tears in the border area. Tears may not extend into the design. There will be no center hole because of folding. Colours are clear but not bright. A staple hole or two would not be considered unusual wear in a Fine F note. Overall appearance is still on the desirable side.

Very Good

A well used note, abused but still intact. Corners may have much wear and rounding, tiny nicks, tears may extend into the design, some discoloration may be present, staining may have occurred and a small hole may be seen at centre from excessive folding. Staple and pinholes are usually present and the note itself is quite limp but NO pieces of the note can be missing. A note in VG condition may still have an overall not unattractive appearance.


A well worn and heavily used note. Normal damage from prolonged circulation will include strong multiple folds and creases, stains, pinholes and/or staple holes, dirt, discoloration, edge tears, centre hole, rounded corners and an overall unattractive appearance. No large pieces of the note may be missing. Graffiti is commonly seen on notes in Good condition.


A totally limp, dirty and very well used note. Larger pieces may be half torn off or missing, beside the defects mentioned under the Good category. Tears will be larger, obscured portions of the note will be bigger.


A "rag" with severe damage because of wear, staining, pieces missing, graffiti and larger holes. May have tape holding pieces of the note together. Trimming may have taken place to remove rough edges.