Notgeld, which is German for "emergency money", is the term used for certain types of paper currency issued in Germany and other countries during and after World War I. Notgeld became necessary when federal banking systems did not have enough currency to put into circulation.
The most well-known Notgeld comes from Germany during the period surrounding World War I. Due to inflation and the enormous cost of war, there was not enough currency available in the federal banking system left to meet the demands of everyday commerce. Notgeld was introduced in different localities to make up for the lack of sovereign currency available, and was often specific to certain industries and even individual businesses. Although Notgeld is now commonly associated with Germany and its former territories, other countries such as France and Austria issued emergency currency out of necessity during the same time period.