In 1946 Gyorgy Faludy, a Hungarian poet, received 300 bn pengo for a new edition of his works.
The sum would have been worth $60bn before the second world war.
But after the Nazis departed with Hungary's gold reserves and the Russians occupied its territory,
the country's currency was not what it was—and becoming even less so.
After collecting the money, Faludy rushed to the nearby market and spent it all on a chicken, two litres of cooking oil and a handful of vegetables.
For those not enduring it, hyperinflation can seem mind-bendingly abstract. The numbers are hard to fathom.
In Venezuela's faltering economy, prices rose by 223.1% last month alone,
according to Angel Alvarado, an economist and opposition politician (the government has long ceased publishing official statistics).
Each day throngs of Venezuelans rush across the 300m Simon Bolivar bridge joining their country to the economic sanity of Colombia,
where they hope to obtain medicines, food and a better-preserved currency.
Venezuela's inflation could reach 1m percent for the full year, according to a (somewhat loose) forecast by the IMF.
Such a figure is far from unprecedented, however. In the worst month of its postwar hyperinflation, Hungarian prices rose by 41,900,000,000,000,000%.
The government had to print a 100 quintillion note (with 20 zeroes), the highest denomination ever produced.
One elderly gentleman used one to line his hat, according to Victor Sebestyen, a historian.
If Venezuela's monthly inflation gets no worse, its hyperinflationary horror will rank only 23rd out of the 57 episodes
identified by Steve Hanke of Johns Hopkins University and Nicholas Krus.