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German Democratic Republic / 10 Products

The German Democratic Republic (more known as East Germany) was a Central European country that existed from 7 October 1949 to 3 October 1990. Following the Second World War, Germany was split into two sides. Before its establishment, the German Democratic Republic was administered and occupied by Soviet forces. The German Democratic Republic was dominated by the Socialist Unity Party of Germany from 1949 to 1989. After the Revolutions of 1989 against communist states, the country was democratized and liberalized, eventually leading to its unification with West Germany (German Federal Republic) and the establishment of modern Germany. 

Geographically, the German Democratic Republic bordered the Baltic Sea to the north, Poland to the east, Czechoslovakia to the southeast, and West Germany to the southwest and west. Its capital is East Berlin, its largest city. 

The German Democratic Republic adopted the deutsche mark on 20 June 1948, replacing the reichsmark and rentenmark. However, the reichsmark and the rentenmark remained valid in the Soviet zone. The sudden influx of notes entering the Soviet zone resulted in inflation. As an emergency measure, the Soviet zone imposed a limit of 70 reichsmark per person and stamps were adhered to reichsmark and rentenmark notes. These stamped notes were called Klebemark (sticker marks) or Kuponmark (coupon marks). Only stamped notes could be exchanged when the Deutsche Notenbank issued deutsche mark notes following the currency reform. The Klebemark notes were withdrawn on 27 July 1948. 

On 24 July 1948, the Deutsche Notenbank (German Note-issuing Bank) circulated a completely new series of banknotes. The currency maintained its official name deutsche mark von der Deutschen Notenbank until 1964. However, it was colloquially known as the Ostmark (east mark). Specific goods were in short supply and were only purchasable through Punktkarte (point cards) in conjunction with banknotes. 

The first series of Ostmark notes featured the denomination and bank guilloches. The 50-pfennig and 1-deutsche mark notes were withdrawn in 1955. The remaining denominations—2 deutsche mark, 5 deutsche mark, 10 deutsche mark, 20 deutsche mark, 50 deutsche mark, 100 deutsche mark, and 1,000 deutsche mark—were demonetized in 1957. 

In 1955, the German Note-issuing Bank issued a new series of notes. These notes have similar designs and different color schemes. The denominations included are 5 deutsche, 10 deutsche mark, 20 deutsche mark, 50 deutsche mark, and 100 deutsche mark. These notes were demonetized in 1965. 

The East German mark was officially designated as the mark der Deutschen Notenbank (MDN) in 1964. In response, the German Note-issuing Bank issued a new series of notes and withdrawn the 1955 series. Unlike the earlier notes, the 1964 series featured notable people and landmarks. 

On 1 January 1968, the name of the currency changed to Mark der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik (Mark der DDR). However, the first series of notes to carry the new currency name were not issued until 1 June 1973. These notes were issued by the new State Bank of the German Democratic Republic (Staatsbank der DDR). In 1985, two new denominations—the 200 mark der DDR and the 500 mark der DDR—were introduced to meet the need for higher denominations. However, their issuance was canceled due to pending reunification. Four years later, a commemorative 20 mark der DDR note was issued to commemorate the opening of the Brandenburg Gate. The commemorative note was never legal tender.

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