General information. The Bikram Samwat era
The dating system in Nepal is called the Bikram Samwat (also spelled as: Bikram Sambat, Vikram Samwat or Vikram Samvat; abbreviated as BS or, more often, VS). In order to get a Gregorian date out of the Bikram Samwat date, you should subtract 57 years from the VS date. For example: 2067 VS = (2067 – 57) AD = 2010 AD. This difference occurs because the Bikram Samwat calendar is believed to have been founded by Vikramāditya, a legendary emperor of Ujjain, India, in 57 BC.
Before the Bikram Sambat era came into official use, another dating system had been used in Nepal. Historians call it the Saka era (also Shaka Sambat or Shalivahana era). Its year zero begins near the vernal equinox of the year 78 AD; therefore, the Saka era is 135 years “younger” than the Bikram Sambat era. Some Nepalese monetary circulation experts say that the Bikram Samvat was officially introduced in Nepal in 1888 AD (this year corresponds to the Saka era's year 1810 and the Bikram Samwat era's year 1945).
According to other sources of information, the Saka era (or Shaka Sambat era) was discontinued in its 1823rd year and was replaced by the Bikram Samwat era for official use in its 1958th year. Hence, the era replacement year falls on 1901 AD.
Along with Nepal itself, the Bikram Samwat is nowadays widely used in the West and North-West of India as well. These are the places where in ancient times the Indo-Scythian Kingdom was located.
There’s a huge variety of ways of writing of Nepalese digits, so here is a list of possible variants:
Indian digits (which are nowadays used on Nepalese coins) are written as follows:
Nepalese digits proper are written as follows:
To see pictures of Sikh coins that also bear the VS (Vikram Samvat) date, but written in Arabic, visit this site, called “Sikh Coins Group”, or this one.
The system of monetary denominations in present day Nepal
The National currency of Nepal is the Nepalese Rupee. 1 Nepalese Rupee is divided into 100 pice. Bank notes ranging in value from 1 to 1,000 Nepalese Rupees can be found in circulation, as well as 1, 2 & 5 rupee coins, along with small coins valued 5, 10, 25 and 50 pice. However, coins rarely circulate.
Information about the most recent updates to the converter
Update @March 24, 2011: a set of numerals has been extended in direct converting. Those newly added images of numerals are typical for old variants of Nepalese coins.
Update @March 28, 2011: some more variants of Nepalese numerals were added into the direct conversion. Moreover, now both in direct and reverse conversion extra information about the corresponding years of the Nepalese eras is available.