Bielefeld Intro.

Article Index

The following scan shows another piece of Bielefeld stoffgeld. It has a face value of 500m and is 1 of 3. The 3 different pieces (you can get a set of 3 made of linen and a set of 3 made of silk) have small verses down the left handside of the reverse. They have a preceding number of either 1,2 or 3. The note is dated 1.7.1923 and can come with the stamp mark or without it.

Bielefeld 500m linen (verse '3') - GP42c




The following article was submitted by one of my long term GNCC members, notgeld colleague and very knowledgeable friend, Kim Zbitnew:

FRONT OF NOTE

The central illustration is the figure of a woman carrying bags of money, exposing her breasts,
while men look on with lust. Underneath is some text: 
“Dich lieben wir börse, vielmehr als die verse“, which means
“We love you, bourse, rather than the verse”

The verse in question is indicated below the figure in small letters below, and is a quotation 
from the Holy Bible, Matthew 23:17, which says: “You blind fools, which is greater, the gold, 
or the temple that makes the gold sacred?”

The left illustration is an impoverished looking man, and around the illustration are references 
to two verses of the Holy Bible: 
Jeremiah 2:16 “Also, the men of Memphis and Tahpanhes have shaved the crown of your head”, and
Job 16:11 “God has turned me over to evil men and thrown me into the clutches of the wicked”
The right illustration is a figure representing President Woodrow Wilson, holding a “dollar sack”
Above it says “Frieden vorschlag” (Peace Proposal) and below “Wilson 1918”. 

Around this figure are two references to the Holy Bible:
Habbakuk 3:16 “I heard and my heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound, decay crept into my
bones, and my legs trembled. Yet I will wait patiently for the day of calamity to come 
on the nation invading us”, and 
Habbakuk 3:10 “The mountains saw you and writhed; Torrents of water swept by; 
the deep roared and lifted its waves on high”.
REVERSE OF NOTE

Bielefeld500mreverse
The central illustration is of naked people trampling over stricken Germany and Austria, dancing around a statue of a golden calf. Above the calf is the figure of someone with a bag, money coming out of his pockets and floating to the ground. Under the 2 value indicators of 500 are a total of 6 'M's,
with the cynical comment: 'Many Men Make Mighty Mouths Mobile'. Next to that at the side in the border is :
'To be German means to be good, faithful
and pure, to fight for freedom
Truth and Right.'

The left illustration is a naked figure passing by a sack of Dollars; the sky is cloudy and there are palm trees and a ladder going into the sky. Around the figure it says 'The dollar rises', dollar 4.2 mark 1914, 118,000 Mark 1923 (The notes catalogued Grabowski-Mehl 103.16 say 4650 Mark 1922). The left illustration is a naked figure beside a sack of Pounds, the sky is sunny and there are palm trees in the background. Around the figure it says: 'The egg rises afterwards. An egg, 5 pf. 1914, 1500 Mark 1923' (the notes catalogued Grabowski-Mehl 103.16 say 30 Mark 1922). The words at the top of the back say: “Wenn die menschen aller sorten tanzen um die goldnen kalber, halte sest, du hast am ende doch vom leben nur dich selber“, which mean: “If people of all kinds dance to the golden calf, stop, you have at the end of your life only yourself.” The reference here is to the story in the Holy Bible in the book of Exodus. The backs of the notes have different texts in the sidebars. On the left sidebars is a series of three extracts from an author, named (I believe) Johanna Wolff. They are numbered 1, 2 and 3. Here is the German followed by a rough English translation: 1. Ich hatte einst ein schönes Vaterland, Da liegt mein Saitenspiel, ich habs zerschlagen; Wenn sie mich draußen nach der heimatfragen, Ich winke müde, müde mit der hand Und sage abgewandt: Ich hatte ein schönes Vaterland. 1. I once had a beautiful homeland, There lies my lyre, I have broken it; If they ask me outside about the homeland, I wave tiredly, tiredly with my hand and say turned away: I had a beautiful homeland. 2. Ich hatte einst ein schönes Vaterland Wer wollte noch mit Stolz von Deutschland sprechen; Der Gram will mir das herz, die Odem brechen; Ich lehn den grauen Kopf an fremde Wand, Faß meines kindes hand: Wir hatten einst ein schönes Vaterland 2. I once had a beautiful homeland Who wanted to speak with pride of Germany; Grief will break my heart and spirit; I lean my gray head on the unfamiliar wall, Holding onto my children’s hand: We had once a beautiful homeland 3. Und dennoch lieb ich dich mein Deutsches Land! Wach auf mein kind, für Deutschland sollst du leben Um die zertretne Heimat aufzuheben Deutsch sind wir beide, Sohn! Frei seis bekannt; Trotz Schmach und Schand, Wir haben doch ein Deutsches Vaterland 3. And yet I love you my German Land! Awake my child, for Germany shall you live and the trampled homeland will be lifted up We are both German, son! Free be known; Despite reproach and shame, we still have a German Fatherland On the right sidebars, the text is as follows. The numbers refer to the number on the left sidebar. The original German is followed by a rough English translation, except for #3: 1. Deutsch sein heißt gut sein, treu sein und echt, kämpfen fur freiheit, Wahrheit und Recht German means good, loyal and true, to fight for freedom, truth and justice 2. Streben laßt uns, Immerzu streben, stärker und reiner; Jede Minute, die wir leben, fällt draußen einer. Jede Minute, die wir nicht nützen, wird uns zum Kläger; Dankbar denkt derer, die unsbeschützen als Bannerträger Let us strive, constantly striving, stronger and purer; Every minute, that we live, falls outside. Every minute, that we are not useful, will make us those plaintiffs; Thankfully thinking of those, our protectors like standard bearers. 3. Another quotation from the Holy Bible 1 Corinthians 9:9 - 'For it is written in the law of Moses: Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain. Is it about oxen that God is concerned?'