Do you know the true meaning of a dollar?
Few people do. Now an expert on arcane symbolism uncovers the fascinating secret meanings behind the design of the money we use every day.
In The Secret Symbols of the Dollar Bill, David Ovason explores the visual complexity and magic behind the world's most influential currency. Lively and readable, this extraordinary book invites you to take a dollar bill in hand and set off on a visual adventure. You will discover dazzling explanations of its secret contents -- from the symbols derived from the Great Seal to the extraordinary strands of numerology interwoven into its structure, to sur-prising hidden alignments.
Once you discover the magic and mystery revealed in The Secret Symbols of the Dollar Bill, you will find that the dollar in your wallet is worth so much more than what you can buy with it.
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About the Author
David Ovason has spent more than a decade researching the architecture and zodiacs of Washington, D.C. He teaches astrology and has studied the life and writings of Nostradamus for more than forty years. He is the author of several books, including The Secrets of Nostradamus and Nostradamus: Prophecies for America. Mr. Ovason lives and works in England.
Read an Excerpt
The Secret Symbols of the Dollar Bill
A Closer Look at the Hidden Magic and Meaning of the Money You Use Every Day
1. The symbol $ for the dollar does not appear on the dollar bill.
It is a curious fact that the official symbol for the dollar, does not appear on the bill. The word DOLLAR appears only twice -- once on either side of the note.
2. The word dollar came to America from Germany.
The word dollar is derived from the German taler. The name taler was first given to silver coins made in 1519. This metal was mined in Joachimsthal (Joachim's valley, or thaler), in what was then Bohemia.
The obverse of one thaler showed the crucified Christ. On the reverse was the image of a serpent, hanging from a cross.
Near the serpent's head are the two letters NU, and on the other side of the cross, the number 21. This is a reference to Numbers, chapter 21, of the Bible.
In this chapter, we learn of the people of Israel who began to speak against God because of their tribulations and because they feared that they would die in the wilderness. As punishment, God sent against them fiery serpents. These bit many of the Israelites, as a result of which a number died. The people of Israel recognized their sin and begged for forgiveness. God instructed Moses to make a fiery serpent and set it upon a pole. Thereafter, anyone who looked upon that image would be cured. Moses did as he was ordered and raised a brazen serpent on a pole; all those who gazed upon it lived. It is this healing metal serpent that is shown on the reverse of the thaler.
In this image, the pole has become a cross, as the artist wished to draw a parallel between the magical healing power of this brass serpent and the healing power of Christ, who hung upon the cross.
It is this origin that has led some historians to claim that the thaler image of the serpent-cross is the origin for the dollar sign,
The idea that the dollar symbol was derived from the cross of Christ was remembered in American literature in 1920, fifteen years before the new dollar bill was designed.
In his novel Main Street, Sinclair Lewis reports a conversation between "the half-Yank and half-Swede," Bjornstam and the heroine of the novel, Carol. Bjornstam, lamenting the power of bankers, points out that the dollar sign has "chased the crucifix clean off the map." This half-joke would have meaning only for those who knew that the dollar sign, $, had been derived from a crucifix: a few lines later on, Bjornstam admitted that he was a bookworm.The Secret Symbols of the Dollar Bill
A Closer Look at the Hidden Magic and Meaning of the Money You Use Every Day. Copyright © by David Ovason. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The Secrets of the Dollar Bill by DAVID OVASON The main characters are some of the presidents of the USA like Ben Franklin. They describe how they first made the dollar bill. The presidents made the dollar bill using some Egyptian facts . They also used it to make the seal. The plot of the story is they are trying to uncover the secrets of the dollar bill. They try to figure out why the Egyptians had something to do with the dollar bill. Some of our signs are hieroglyphics that we use today. The dollar bill sign used to mean the symbol of the devil. They try to uncover why they they used Egyptian culture. Ben Franklin used some of the us culture to make the seal. The setting of the story is in Washington DC. They also travel around the would to Egypt. The underling of the story is the author wanted to inform the people some of the secrets of our history. He wants us to know that we used some of ancient facts to make the dollar bill. I liked Secrets of the Dollar Bill because it talks about our world history. I also liked this book because talks about our ancient history. If you really like things that involve history this would be a great book for you. Some of the cool facts are that if you look very closely on the eagle one the dollar bill you can see 13 stars. Also number 1 appears on the back of the dollar bill 10 times including the pyramid and the eagle. How I connected to the story is by learning about Egypt in school and facts about them , the book told us facts and artifacts about the Egyptians that related to what I learned in school. Plus I really like history. This book connects to other books like National Treasure because it also talks about our world history. The book The Secrets of the Dollar Bill relates to the world because I discovered after reading this book that the world actually influenced the creation of the dollar bill. If you think these facts are cool you should read this book.
This book was a gigantic let-down. I was misled by the title--it could have been more appropriately titled 'Mere Observations About the One Dollar Bill that Just About Anyone with the Time and Patience Can Make'. Facts like 'George Washington's right eye is in the center of the bill' and 'The eagle in the Seal holds 13 arrows', those are secrets? The author, like my suggested title would have you know, makes mere observations without ever really explaining the 'secrets' behind them.
I have no doubt the author of this book knows his facts. However, I am not impressed with the way the book was written and would not recommend it. I had to force myself to finish reading it. In my opinion, the book is written as an ameteur college report and does not explain in detail what the author is talking about. I believe this author could have easily written the book in a more experienced manner.