Monday, October 24, 2011

Well done boys ! (cont’d)

As an answer to my last post here is the souvenir sheet issued today by the New Zealand post to celebrate the victory of the All Blacks.

The picture in the middle of the sheet is taken at the end of the match when the team has received the trophy. The sheet re-uses the black stamps picturing the silver fern. The score of the match (New Zealand 8 – France 7) is written on the sheet also, making it a nice souvenir for the victory.

But, even if we did not win, France has also issued a stamp to pay tribute to the team. Here is the oval stamp that is issued today to thank the team for their game.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Well done boys !

Well, I can not hide it. I'm disappointed that France has lost the final against New Zealand in the 2011 Rugby World Cup today. And they only lost for one point! Too dab. The French team did play a very good game, so nothing to be ashamed of. And, to be fair, on the whole duration of the competition, New Zealand surely deserves the victory. Congratulations to the All Blacks for having won the 7th rugby world cup. This is the second time that New Zeland wons the Rugby World Cup.

As a tribute to the All Blacks I would like to share with you two souvenir sheets I have received recently. Both are sheets of personalized stamps. The first one is composed of stamps picturing the silver fern, the very well known emblem of the New Zealand rugby team, with labels attached to the stamps picturing All Blacks players. An impressive tribute I think!

The second one contains stamps picturing the emblem of the 2011 rugby world cup attached to label picturing the emblems of all participating countries: Argentina, Australia, Canada, England, Fiji, France, Georgia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Namibia , New Zealand, Romania, Russia, Samoa, Scotland, South Africa, Tonga, USA, Wales.
I wonder if the New Zealand post will issue a commemorative stamp to celebarte the victory of its team. Well, I will keep you informed!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

New frog and cow stamp from Portugal

A recent issue has triggered my attention because it contains several items that fall into my topics of collection.

Four stamps and one souvenir sheet have been issued by Portugal on the 7th of September 2011 to celebrate the “world veterinary year”.

Indeed, as I wrote in a previous post about a recent French stamp issue, this is the 250th anniversary of the foundation of the first veterinary school by Claude Bourgelat. It can also be considered as the 250th anniversary of the veterinary profession. In this respect 2011 was elected the world veterinary year (you can find more details on the official website: Vet 2011).

The four stamps of the set illustrate, in a rather colorful way, various aspects of the veterinary profession by picturing various domestic or farm animals.

The first stamp picturing a pig is associated to the animal protection and health. The stamp with the DNA symbol inside the horse stands for the genetic research for improvement of animal breeding. The cat stamp pictures the medicines and medical products used for animal. And the last stamp, the one that pictures a cow producing milk is associated with public hygiene. One more stamp for my cow stamp collection!

The souvenir sheet is associated to “The Centro de Recuperação de Animais Silvestres de Lisboa - LxCRAS, a structure under the City Council of Lisbon and part of the National Network of Centers for the Recovery of the Fauna. It is located in the Biodiversity Space in Monsanto Forest Park. It was officially inaugurated on 15 October 1997 to meet the growing demand and request of the citizens of Lisbon for the collection, reception and recovery of autochthonous wounded or weak wild animals.

The souvenir sheet therefore pictures animals of the forest.

And if you look in the bottom left corner you will see a green frog! So one more item for my frog collection!

I rather like this set, don’t you?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Frog on a new souvenir sheet from South Africa

I would like to stay in the same country than for last post, South Africa, in order to share with you a souvenir sheet I recently got for my frog collection. The sheet has been issued on the 23rd of September 2011 and contains ten different stamps. Here is the item.

The souvenir sheet is dedicated to the Cape floral protected region. This region, that includes eight different protected areas, is the sixth UNESCO world heritage site in South Africa. It was included in 2004. The eight areas of the Cape floral protected region are:

- Table mountain
- De Hoop Natural reserve
- Boland mountain complex
- Groot Winterhoek wilderness area
- Swartberg mountain
- Boosmansbos wilderness area
- Cederberg wilderness area
- Baviaanskloof

The souvenir and the stamps designed by the artist Tobie Beele picture the diversity of flora and fauna in this area. Anti-clockwise, and starting with the frog stamp, the species pictured on the souvenir sheet are:

- the Purcell’s ghost frog (Heleophryne purcelli)
- the African clowless otter (Aonyx capensis)
- the bird of paradise (Strelitzia reginae) that takes it scientific name from Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz the queen consort of King George III
- the mealie heath (Erica patersonii)
- the Cape sugarbird (Promerops cafer)
- the Cape Aloe (Aloe ferox)
- the King protea (Protea cynaroides)
- the caracal (Caracal caracal)
- the Cape vulture (Gyps coprotheres)

This souvenir sheet reminds me a lot about another one issued in 2004 and dedicated to the Table Mountain area.

In this sheet the frog is a Table mountain ghost frog (Heleophryne rosei) that belongs to the same family (Heleophrynidae) than the one pictured on this new sheet.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Rugby emblem from South Africa

The 2011 Rugby World Cup goes one, next weekend France will play against England for the quarter final. I’m a bit disappointed by the performance of the French team so far but I’m anyway happy they could qualify for the quarter final.

As a spin off the Rugby World Cup, the South African postal administration has issued on the 19th of August 2011 an interesting souvenir sheet picturing the evolution of the emblem of the national rugby team through history.

The South African Rugby Union team is called “the springboks”. This name dates back from 1906 when Paul Roos, one of the first captains of the South African team used this nickname for the first time during a press conference in the first international tour of the team. The springbok is a type of antelope which was widely used at this time as a national symbol but mainly among the white community. This is the reason why the emblem has evolved over the years.

At the end of apartheid the usage of the springbok as a national symbol was highly questioned. Several sport teams decided to rename themselves into “the proteas” which is the national flower of South Africa. The rugby team kept the name “springboks” but they added protea flowers to their emblem as shown on the stamp picturing the emblem of the 1992-1995 and 1996-2003 period.

If you look at the two last stamps, on the right and bottom corner you see that the protea has disappeared from the emblem. Well this is not exactly true. If you look at the jersey used by the rugby team these days, they have the springbok on one side of the chest, and a badge with the protea on the other side. There is a funny anecdote linked to that. For the 2011 Rugby World Cup there as an issue because the jersey must also include the logo of the competition and it was too much logos on the front side of the jersey. The solution has been to move the springbok from the chest to the sleeves (keeping the protea on the chest). This has obvisouly triggered some debate…

It shows how important are all these symbols used in sport…

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Cover from Japan

Every international stamp exhibition is the opportunity for the receiving postal administration to issue set of stamps to commemorate the event. This is the case of Japan postal administration that issued several stamps for Phila’Nippon, the international stamp exhibition that took place from the 28th of July 2011 until the 2nd of August 2011 in Yokohama. One of these stamps has been used on this nice cover that I received from Japan.

The stamp I speaking about is the one on the right, the stamp attached to a label. The label pictures the logo of Phila’Nippon 2011, with the rabbit riding a horse. The stamp is part of a set of ten stamps that picture ten of the thirty-six views of Mount Fuji.
The “thirty-six views of Mount Fuji” is a series of woodblock prints made by the artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849), each print picturing a different view of the Mount Fuji. These prints were made from an image carved in wood and then printed on paper (each color needing a different carved woodblock!). Despite its name, the full series actually contains 46 views, ten have been produce later after the public success of the first 36.

The stamp used on the cover pictures the city of Hodoyaga on the Tokaido road.

You can see the whole series of prints by clicking here.

The ten stamps of the set have been issued as a souvenir sheet; here is a picture of the full sheet coming from the Japan Post website. As you can see, each stamp has a different label attached. A nice set I think.

The second stamp used on the cover is a prefecture stamp (i.e. a stamp issued in a specific prefecture). This one is from Kanagawa prefecture and is part of a set of ten stamps issued on the 21st of May 2010 to celebrate the National Reforestation Campaign. The objective of this campaign is to promote the adoption of the “green attitude”.
The stamp pictures a flower native from Japan, the Lilium auratum. The particularity of this set is that on the margin of each stamp is pictures the seeds of the corresponding flower as you can see on the cover.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

300 to go

300 days to go. 300 days before the official kick off of the London 2012 Olympic Games. Well actually it is now 296 days to go at it was 300 on the 1st of October. This is crazy how quickly time is flying. I remember so well when the official nomination of London was announced (and when we understood that Paris won’t have them…).

In order to celebrate these 300 last days to go, Royal Mail has issued on the 4th of October a set of four definitive stamps bearing the logo of the competition.

The logo is a representation of the number 2012, with the Olympic Rings embedded within the zero. It is the first time that the same essential logo is to be used for both the Olympic and Paralympic games.

The standard colors of the logo are green, magenta, orange and blue. The logo has been a subject of very vivid debate; few people seem to appreciate it. Early public reaction to the logo was largely negative: more than 80% of votes gave the logo the lowest possible rating.

I must admit that the design of the logo is not really my taste. And therefore I do not find the resulting stamps very attractive.

To be noted that this Olympiad will be the 30th one, already celebrated by 30 stamps issued by Royal mail! Who is speaking about inflation of the number of stamp issues?

Monday, October 03, 2011

Two frog cards from Costa Rica

Here are two nice pre-stamped cards issued by the postal administration of Costa Rica that I have just purchased for my frog collection. They are part of a set of seven touristic cards that were issued on the 17th of March picturing endangered species or natural reserves of Costa Rica.
The first card pictures a type of poison frog. These types of frogs have always a very bright color in order to warn their predators that they are toxic!

The second card pictures the red-eyed tree frog with it nice colors.

On both cards a “stamp” is printed re-using the design of the card. These two items are really a nice addition to my collection.

Just to be complete let me share with you an image of the five other cards that are in the set.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Born in 1966

If you read my blog regularly you know that I was born in 1966. And you probably know also that I am collecting all stamps issued this year. I know this is a collection I will never be able to complete, because there were too many stamps issued.  Also some of them have a price that exceeds than what I accept to pay for a stamp. Nevertheless I go on with my accumulation of stamps issued in 1966.

I’m always happy when I complete one of the steps: complete a country or complete an “omnibus” series. There are several “omnibus series” issued in 1966, such as the one for the Soccer World Cup. Or also as the Europa series that I recently completed. I have now all Europa stamp issued in 1966!

Europa stamps have been issued for the first time in 1956. At this time 6 countries have participated, the six members of the ECSC (European Coal and Steel Community). It was handed over to CEPT (European Conference or Postal and Telecommunication Administrations) in 1959, and more recently, in 1993, to PostEurop.In 1956 all stamps issued had the same design. The principal of a unique design was used from 1958 until 1973.  Since 1974 the Europa stamps shares a common theme but not a common design (with exception of 1984, for the 25th anniversary of the CEPT and in 2000).  In 1966 the common design was still the rule. This year the design was a symbolic ship representing the CEPT steady progress on a calm sea.  Nineteen countries have participated to the 1966 Europa issue (with the first participation of French Andorra) but only seventeen have used the common design, representing 34 stamps. Some countries have issued monochrome stamps, others have issued multicolored ones. Interesting to notice that for two countries (Belgium and Netherlands) there are four wave lines below the boat while for the others there are only three. I wonder why there is such a difference?
Andorra (Fr)





Two countries did not follow the common design, Spain and San Marino. I do not know if they are counted as official Europa issue in this case? The Spanish stamps picture what I interpreted as Europa from the Greek mythology, the woman being seduced by Zeus transformed into a bull (except that in this case the bull should be white as in the legend…).

The one from San Marino pictures a painting from Joaquin de Angulo, "Alma Mater Europae" - Our Lady of Europe, ridipinta da un'antica tavola del 1502 della Punta d'Europa, a Gibilterra. repainted in 1502 from an old table of the Punta Europa, Gibraltar.

I have decided to start a new website to display my collection of stamps from 1966. This is only the beginning and when it is advanced enough I will share the link with you (I would need several lives to complete all what I would like to do…)