Monday 30 April 2012
My recent blog about the secession of Azawad of course had no relevance to collectors of Commonwealth stamps but the story of the new country's secession from Mali brings to mind the thought that a number of Commonwealth members or non-Commonwealth countries which were once part of the British Empire started off as secessionist states - some were successful in surviving and others are mere footnotes in the pages of history. The earliest territory to break away from being part of a larger state actually comprised 13 territories and these were of course the British settlements in North America which combined together to declare themselves to be independent of Great Britain and called themselves The United States Of America. They famously proclaimed their independence on 4 July 1776 and it would take a war with Britain which would last until 1783 and, more importantly, the military intervention of Britain's arch-enemy, France, for the Americans to finally succeed with their secession. The stamp below shows the first flag of The United States, the Continental Colours or the Grand Union Flag, which curiously initially retained the Union Jack in the canton and was first raised by the rebel Americans at Prospect Hill in Somerville on 1 January 1776 but ceased to be used after the declaration of independence.
Sunday 29 April 2012
On 23 June 2010, Maldives issued a miniature sheet which commemorated the rather enigmatic "350". The sheet contained five stamps and commemorated the first ever meeting by a national government's cabinet under water. The attending ministers wore scuba diving equipment and are depicted on four of the values.
Friday 27 April 2012
The date of issue of Antigua-Barbuda's "Princess Diana's Visit to Barbuda" set and miniature sheet which I have previously mentioned, was 12 July 2011. This is about the only set of stamps issued by the pair of islands in 2011 whose subject matter had any direct relevance to them and therefore the only stamps produced during that year which I have bought from there for my collection. Unfortunately the "Princess Diana Beach" issue is really rather expensive since there are 2 stamps in the set each with a value of EC$10 (£2.28) but made more expensive since they are generally being sold in (admittedly very attractive) sheetlets of five along with a EC$50 miniature sheet. The total cost is therefore EC$150 or about £34.24p. The two EC$10 stamps show pictures of a very relaxed and informal princess during her visit to Barbuda in April 1997.
Wednesday 25 April 2012
Monday 23 April 2012
This posting does not do what it says on the can and is not about the stamps of a Commonwealth country but the subject still interests me although it will not affect my stamp collecting habits.
Sunday 22 April 2012
On this day thirty years ago, 22nd April 1982, Argentina philatelically staked its claim to The Falkland Islands, having militarily occupied them twenty days earlier, by issuing a single stamp which had the design of a rosette in Argentinian colours with the inscription "Las Malvinas Son Argentinas" ("The Falklands Are Argentinian") printed in blue across it in four lines.
Saturday 21 April 2012
On 21 July 2011 Bangladesh issued a miniature sheet containing four stamps which featured coins issued during the reigns of the four Sultans of Bengal who reigned during the period 1334 to 1432. They were only issued in miniature sheet format and the stamps appear to be the first in a series on this theme since the upper border of the sheet bears the inscription "Coins of The Independent Sultans of Bengal".
Thursday 19 April 2012
New Zealand has revealed the designs of its six Diamond Jubilee stamps. They are everything one would want in the design of a stamp which is marking a royal occasion, being dignified and linking the subject depicted directly to the country issuing the stamp. The 70c value depicts the official Diamond Jubilee portrait of the Queen:-