Object ID
F2014.71
Object Name
Currency
Date Created
1943
Material
Paper
Object Description
Greek 5000 drachmas bill:
Obverse: The bill has a green background with a orange overlay of a carving depicting men and bulls at the harvest. There is an image over the carving panel of a woman in ancient dress. On either side of the image are the words, "5000 drachmas, five-thouseand, payable on showing in Athens on July 19th, 1943. The border header says "Bank of Greece" with small 5,000s on the corners. The bill is numbered ET 710807.
Reverse: It has an orange swirled background with a picture of a relif on the back of two men riding horses wearing capes. On each side of this panel are large number 5000s. The border header says "Bank of Greece" and have small number 5000s on each corner.
Origin
Greece went through its worst inflation in 1944. In 1942, the highest denomination was 50,000 drachmai. By 1944, the highest denomination was 100,000,000,000 drachmai. In the 1944 currency reform, 1 new drachma was exchanged for 50,000,000,000 drachmai. Another currency reform in 1953 replaced the drachma at an exchange rate of 1 new drachma = 1,000 old drachmai. The overall impact of hyperinflation: 1 (1953) drachma = 50,000,000,000,000 pre 1944 drachmai. The Greek monthly inflation rate reached 8.5 billion percent in October 1944.

Start and End Date: May 1941- Dec. 1945
Peak Month and Rate of Inflation: Nov. 1944, 13,800%
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Citation
Currency, 1943, National Hellenic Museum, https://collections.nationalhellenicmuseum.org/Detail/objects/10518. Accessed 03/03/24.