16 April 2014

New stamps on EUROPA 2014


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Date of Issue : 28 April 2014

Serbia Post issued a set of two stamps on EUROPA 2014 theme “ National Musical Instruments”. Musical instrument is an important element of the musical tradition of a nation. Musical instruments take numerous forms, and by their origin they can be indigenous or adopted from another culture, but can also become national because of its use.


According to classification of musical instruments of Germam ethnomusicologists Curt Sachs and Erich M. Hornbostel, which takes as the criterion any material as the source of the sound and the way the sound is produced by these instruments, musical instruments can be divided into four groups, namely: 1. Idiophones; 2. Membarnophones; 3. Chordphones and 4. Аеrophones.

In Serbian traditional practice idiophone (self-sounding) instruments are relatively rare and their structure is usually relatively simple. Their function ranges from ritual via signal to literally musical (bell, clapper, jew’s harp).

Membranophone instruments (producing sound by a vibrating membrane) are relatively rare, and are characteristic by their musical function (drum/tapan, darbuka, tambourine i.e. def, cupa or begesh).

Chordphone (string) instruments produce sounds by plucking (striking) or by dragging a bow between two stretched fixed points (tambura, tambura ensemble, gusle (single-string fiddle), gusle ensemble).

Aerophone (aer–air, greek) instruments can be: free (leaf, grass and onion feather) and wind instruments. Wind instruments in Serbia are undoubtedly the most numerous and are present in almost all existing groups, such as labial/ folk flutes (fife-duduk-flute, ocarine, twin pipes, cevara (pipe instrument)); fifes played with tongue/folk clarinets (leika, zurle, bagpipes, diple), and fifes that produce sounds by vibration of lips/trumpet (tree bark trumpet, rikalo-punched, wind–brass orchestra).

Fife (duduk/flute) belongs to the family of so-called folk flutes. It is made of wood and has six holes for playing. It can be made in more sizes. Sound produced by the longest instruments is often “boosted” by a characteristic tone coming out of player’s throat.

Bagpipes belong to so-called folk clarinets since the source of their sound is a beep through a single reed. In musical practice in Serbia there are two types of bagpipes: two-voiced bagpipes (southern Morava-Macedonian and Vlach) and three-voiced bagpipes (Svrljig and Banat bagpipes).

EUROPA 2014 stamps from Romania and Gibraltar

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Date of Issue : 5 May 2014

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Date of Issue : 2 May 2014

From our Readers…

Dear Friend


India is surging through another “Democracy Yagna” at the moment, the biggest till the date, the Indian General Elections to constitute the 16th Lok Sabha of the Republic of India. Mammoth efforts are being made by everyone concerned, from the Election Commission of India to the public in general. Postal Department of India, the India Post may not be an exception. The department has to do a lot of exercises to play it’s part in the success of the elections. Postal Ballots are one more important aspect of the elections, where Postal Department is involved directly.

It will be a very interesting story and a very important chapter of the Indian Postal History to document the role of the Postal Department in the General Elections / Elections.

There may be a lot of elements comprising the role of the department in the elections; postmarks, slogan postmarks, schedules, stationery, Ballot envelopes etc etc.

We invite the interested writers / philatelists to take on the task and write an article on India Post’s Role in Elections in India. The Year Book of Indian Philately will publish the study in the 2014 edition of the Year Book, with all the due credits to the author/s. The copyright of the article will also remain with the author/s.

We expect some good write-ups on the subject from some interested writers / philatelists who have followed the earlier elections too. We expect a very important and interesting addition to the next (2014) edition of the Year Book of Indian Philately. AAMIN.

With high expectations,

Madan Middha

Editor, Year Book of Indian Philately

15 April 2014

New stamps on Music



Date of Issue : 5 April 2014

In the organization of PostEurop, special stamps with the EUROPA logo that every year has a unique central theme for all its members are issued. The theme for 2014 is folk musical instruments, Croatian Post issued a set of two stamps featuring  Herzegovinian pipes and dual flutes (dvojnice), instruments that were made and played by the ancestors, and are played till this day.


Dual flutes or Herzegovinian instruments are in fact two flutes that are made from one piece of wood in that way both can be played simultaneously. It is most often made out of dry maple wood, plum, cherry, cornelian cherry or “kljen” wood. Every hole has a labial opening, separated for a couple of centimeters from the above end, in which are located whistles from ash wood. The holes for screening are punctured in a parallel manner, on one side three or four, and on the other side four to five. The melody is always dual from the dual flute, and six tones can maximally be played from each octave.


Herzegovinian pipes are also a dual instrument that have on each side an equal number of holes and are attached to tanned animal skin (goat’s or sheep). On the jugular part of the pipe is placed the top part of maple wood or elder wood with dual flutes in which there are placed two whistles. As decoration, on the front and one back leg are placed boar tusks, while on one back leg and anal opening a wooden decorative box 10 -12 cmof size is placed in order for the bellow to close. In the central part of the abdominal part, a blower is placed that has an irreversible vent. Specificity of playing Herzegovinian pipes is that the melodic follow up is played on the top two or three arrays of holes, and the melody is played on the lower remaining array of holes.

From our Readers…


The Politics of Stamps

It has finally happened. The politics of the Post. For the first time in the history of Independent India, the matter of issuance of Stamps has figured in the Manifesto of a Political party.

In its manifesto issued at Bhubaneswar on the 2nd of April 2014, the Bharatiya Janata Party, Odisha, has mentioned that if elected into office, it would ensure that Odisha is adequately represented by way of its personalities, history, culture and natural assets depicted on the Stamps issued by India Post.

The Eastern India Philatelic Association had written to the three mainstream political parties in the State, asking them to ensure that Odisha gets due representation on stamps. While the other parties ignored the suggestion, the BJP found it an important enough issue to be included it in its manifesto.

The manifesto of a political party is issued to show the priorities that will stretch across the political spectrum for the next five years. Manifestoes usually cover extensive policy areas, but miss out some which affect the citizens. Election campaigns should be about what the voters want to say, not just what the politicians talk about. A Manifesto is a vision document which every political party is duty bound to execute as it is a written promise. All the other promises made in election speeches are just political discourse.

This is a feather in the cap for philatelists. They should take up the matter of promotion of Philately with their elected representatives.

N.B. It is another matter that yours truly, i.e. Anil Dhir, was part of the Manifesto Committee of the Party and steam rolled the proposal through in spiteof stiff opposition. I also promise that once we have a NDA Government in place in the Centre, adequate measures will be taken to promote the hobby of philately both by India Post and the Government. In fact, a proposal to make Philately a curriculum subject (as is prevalent in China) till the middle school level will be mooted. District, State and National Level exhibitions based on a fixed schedule calendar will be done. Good days ahead for Indian philately!

: Anil Dhir – Bhubaneshwar

email : anildhir2k5@hotmail.com


News Clippings

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Sanjay Goenka with his collection of odd shape and unique stamps

- The Telegraph 4 April 2014

Festivals of India - Hanuman Jayanti




Hanuman Jayanti

Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated every year by the people in India to commemorate the birth of Hindu Lord, Hanuman. It is celebrated annually in the Hindi month of Chaitra (Chaitra Pournima) on 15th day of the Shukla Paksha. Hanuman Jayanti 2014 is being celebrated by the people all over India today on 15th of April.  Here is a special article on Bazar Cards featuring Lord Hanuman by noted philatelist and author Mr Naresh Agarwal .



By By Naresh Agarwal


India 1906 Advert Bazaar Card shows Hanuman God carrying a mountain


Stamps are considered as mirror of art, culture, history, religion, mythology and other aspects of any country or society but it is not only stamps but other postal material and stationery also shares their part for the same purpose. Various philatelic materials depict and project various such aspects through the quotes, slogan, text or pictorial advertisements, vignettes printed on them and also through cancellations, labels and private text and sketches drawn / written on them.

British India period around the start of 20th centaury saw a great revolution in changing trends of postal cards which were in immense use during that period. Postal cards gave new direction to postal culture and gave new dimensions to the utility of this mode of postal communication for various social, religious, business promotional and propaganda activities. Apart from those which had pre paid printed stamps issued by postal administration, that period saw a new culture of substantial use of private printed postal cards. Such post cards were developed mainly by the merchants of major cities of all over India who advertised their products or business through text or pictorial matters printed on the either side of the post cards or postal covers which used postal stamps affixed on them for payment of postage.



India 1905 Bazar Picture Postcard -Hanuman GOD

1900-30 "Bazaar" cards and covers were in fact illustrated advertising postcards and envelopes from various merchants in larger cities (Bombay, Delhi, Madras, Poona City, etc) promoting their products. These private printed post cards also showed printing of various pictures/ glimpse of various religions of India which were either printed by individual merchants / traders giving specific quotes and pictures or were also available in market with some standard pictorial printing done on either side of the cards. Such private printed post cards which were also on common sale in the market for usage even by non- merchants. Because those cards were mainly used by the merchants of bazaars of India for their business transactions and communication; the cards were known as bazaar cards.


Lord ram and His wife Sita : British India Bazaar 1906 Postcard

Some of the cards had pictures of heroes of various mythological epics of India showing various deities, gods, scenes / images of the episodes of the epics. These cards certainly helped in promotion of religious awakening and enthusing religious spirits in India. One will certainly see a consideration of the relationship between Indian bazaar art shown on bazaar cards of that era and the formation of a modern, pan-Indian Hindu religious identity. It is seen that the popular, mechanically reproduced lithographs of Hindu mythological heroes have attracted more attention than they have so far received from scholars of religion.

While some scholars in other fields have written politically about these images but one should take seriously their religious genealogy and treat them as vernacular religious texts where these images act as sources of insight into the formation of a modern Hindu religious identity. It is assumed that there is such an entity as Hinduism that is “Sanatana Dharma”

A close study of such cards revealed that there was a huge variety of such cards which highlighted Hindu Mythology on them as one could see the glimpse of Heroes of Ramayana, Mahabharata, various Hindu deities and gods & scenes / images of various other epics on the pictures imprinted on the cards covering partial, half or in some cases full side of such the cards and covers. These prints were similar to business card or letterhead known as ‘Corner Card’. It usually included a return address. These Indian Bazaar Cards also falls in this category.


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Rama and his wife Sita, seated, with Rama's brother Lakshmana fanning them, and Hanuman, the Monkey God, kneeling in front of them. From the great Hindu epic, the Ramayana

Ramayana has been the main epic of Indian mythology and is followed by every Hindu. The main story of the Ramayana is about Lord Rama. In short the Ramayana is about Rama who was born in a royal family and was supposed to be the king, but because of his step- mother, he was forced to exile from his kingdom for fourteen years. During this period his consort Sita was kidnapped by a demon called Ravan, who was the king of Lanka. Rama with the help of his brother, Lakshman, and an army of monkeys under the leadership of Hanuman, rescued Sita.

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Valmiki wote Ramayan in Sanskrit Sant Tulsidas wote Ram Chritmanas

Ramayana was originally written by a sage Valmiki in the Sanskrit language and later on it was translated into other languages in different versions. Sant Tulsidas wrote Ram Chritmanas giving details of deeds of Ramayana in poetic form. The main story of the Ramayana is about Lord Rama. In short the Ramayana is about Rama who was born in a royal family and was supposed to be the king, but because of his step- mother, he was forced to exile from his kingdom for fourteen years.

But the Ramayana isn't only about Lord Rama and his attempt to rescue his consort Sita. Ramayana is also about devotion, loyalty, family roles and respect to elders.

The Ramayana does not begin with the life of Rama, but actually with the people on earth who suffered from the demon named Ravan, a cruel king who terrorizes the people of earth.


Ravana : The Villain had ten faces

Rama gets married to Sita. Sita is an adopted daughter of another king. In order to win her hand, he won the contest of bending a bow, which belonged to Lord Shiva.




King Dasrath intended to inherit his kingdom to his eldest son, Rama. But Sumitra another wife of Dashraths was provoked by her maid asks for exile of fourteen years in forests to Rama and her son Bharat to heir kingdom. King Dasrath who is in great dilemma and pain, eventually bows to her demands

Rama accepts his father's decision without any argument. He along with his wife moved out for exile. His brothers Lakshman also decides to join his brother in exile. They moved in to forests, crossed rivers..


Bazar card 1905 - Rama’s Exile : Ram and Laxman,Sita roamimng in forests.

They came across various demons. There in one forest,a female demon, Surpanakha fall in love with Rama and she tried to seduce him. Rama being a loyal husband refused to her flirts, so she tries to kill Sita. At this point Lakshman took his sword and cut the demon's nose. She went to her brother, Ravan, and told him of the disgrace that happened to her. Ravan decided to avenge this humiliation by kidnapping Rama's wife Sita. He even noticed that she is very beautiful and desired her.


Ramayana Boat Imag : India Indore State 1907 illustrated Bazar Card

To kidnap Sita, Ravan planted a beautiful deer near Rama’s hut in forest which Sita saw and urged Rama to get it. Rama ran after deer to get it. Later, Laxman also followed rama. And then, Ravna kidnapped Sita and flew to Lanka with her and placed her in a garden.



Ramayana Archery : Ram and Laxman chasing deer as requested by Sita Mata

Indore State 1906 illustrated Bazar card

When Rama returned, a vulture who had fought Ravna to rescue Sita, was found dying told them that Ravan kidnapped Sita. Rama and Lakshman decided to find out Sita.


Rama and Lakshman needed an army to find and fight Ravan and they got this help from the monkeys. The king of monkeys who was exiled by his brother got Rama's help to fight and slain his brother. After regaining his throne the monkey king assigned one of his commanders, Hanuman to serve Rama in his assignment to find Sita.


Lord Hanuman could fly: Flying over Rawana’s Sri lanka : Bazaar King Edward Postcard

After reaching Lanka, Hanuman met Ravan who did not offer Hanuman a chair to sit. Hence Hanuman created his own thorn by extending his tail long enough and then sitting in front of Ravana.



India Bazaar Card 1905 – Ramayana image : Ravana surprised as Hanuman sits on his elongated/extended coiled tail

Ravana was shocked to see this and called his demons to set Hanuman's tail on fire. When Hanuman went to Lanka Ravana's soldiers tied Hanuman's tail with rags fabrics and Hanuman made the tail longer and longer. The exhausted demons set fire to his tail.

Now it was Hanuman's turn he jumped all over Lanka setting the entire city ablaze with his tail still on fire.In the fight between Ram and Ravana to free Sita, Ravana made an assault on Ram Seeing this, Hanuman, roving his club, came close to Ravana. To show the might of Hanuman, he did not hit Ravana with his "Gada", the Club, but gave a big blow with his free hand. Ravana's entire body and his ten heads were terribly shaken.

Hanuman who was capable of flying, flown to Lanka and found Sita in Ravna’s garden guarded by female demons, in a depressed mood. He proved to her that he was Rama's messenger and offered to carry her back.But to vindicate her honor she preferred that Rama himself should rescue her. Hanuman promised that Rama would come and rescue her.


Lord Hanuman Ji reached Sri Lanka

India Gwalior State QV 3p on illustrated Bazar Card 1904

After Hanuman's return, Rama planned his way to reach Ravan's island. Rama and his advisers planned a bridge to Lanka in the sea with trees and rocks from forests and arrived Lanka and offered Ravna a peaceful solution but Ravna’s refusal set a war in which even Rama and Laxman got hurt. The monkeys also began to get weak because Ravan's forces use biological weapons, which weaken their senses. So a medical expert in Rama's forces claimed that to neutralize that a special herb named Sanjeevani booti was required which existed in a far away mountain, named Mahodaya (Dronagiri in Himalayas).


Hindu Deity Veer Hanuman :Checking Herbs to find Sanjeevani Booti


Hanuman flew to that mountain and found out that the mountain was full of different herbs, so he brought the whole mountain to Lanka. Slowly the forces got back to their senses.


Bazaar Card 1905 : Hanuman Ji carrying the Sanjeevni Parvat

Eventually after many battles Ravan faced Rama and after two continuos days of battles Rama kileds Ravan and visited Sita. But the Ramayana does not end here. The fact that Sita lived in another man's palace caused some rumors about her chastity. She was obliged to take a fire test in which she sat in a fire but came out unharmed and therefore was purified from charges.


Lord Rama with his brothers, wife and Sri Hanuman

India Indore State 1907 illustrated Bazar Card

In the original version of the Ramayana, after Rama and Sita returned to Ayodhya, the capital of Kosala the rumors about Sita's adultery in Ravan's captivity continued and therefore the people disrespected her. So Rama, who was now the king, decided to banish Sita from his kingdom. In the forests she met a sage named Valmiki, who later on wrote the Ramayana. In Valmiki's ashram Sita gave birth to two twins of Rama, Lav and Kush. Those two children learnt from Valmiki to sing the Ramayana as a poem and they went everywhere and started telling everyone the Ramayana, meaning Rama's story. They even arrived into Rama's court and told him his story and so Rama recognized his sons. He brought back his wife Sita who decided to prove her loyalty to Rama by asking Mother Earth to swallow her if she was loyal to Rama and so Mother Earth to testify her loyalty, opened up and swallowed her and Sita disappeared into earth. Later on Rama himself jumped in the river to end his life, followed by many.

- Naresh Agarwal : email : nareshkumar1992@yahoo.co.in


14 April 2014

New stamps on Ships and Explorers..


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The new set of four stamps from the Tristan da Cunha Post Office depicts Arctic and Antarctic Explorers and Personalities who have journeyed in Tristan waters. Each stamp depicts an image of one of these seafarers together with the ship most closely associated with them and Tristan da Cunha.

35p – James Weddell and “Jane”

Born in 1787 and although initially a member of the Royal Navy (1796–1815) where he rose to the rank of Master, he left and became a Merchant Mariner. In 1819 he persuaded the owners of the Brig Jane to entrust him with command of a sealing expedition to the South Shetland Islands and having returned with a full hold, he was able to persuade the owners to let him return on a second mission.

45p – George Nares and “HMS Challenger”

Having spent 27 years in the Royal Navy and having reached the rank of Captain, George Nares was given command of the Challenger expedition of 1872–76. This scientific exercise made many discoveries which were to lay the foundation of oceanography.

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70p – Carsten Borchgrevink and “SS Antarctic”

Carsten Borchgrevink was an Anglo-Norwegian born in Norway in 1864.At the age of 24 he migrated to Australia and in 1893 he signed on to the Norwegian whaling and sealing vessel Antarctic under Leonard Kristensen.

Over the course of two years of travel they visited Tristan da Cunha, and many points further South. Their landing at Cape Adare (originally named by Captain James Ross) was the first confirmed landing on the Antarctic continental mainland and Borchgrevink claimed that he was actually the first human to set foot there, although this was disputed by two others in the company.

£1.50p – Dr Alexander Macklin and “Quest”

Alexander Macklin was born in India in 1889, the son of a Doctor and he was of course to follow in his father’s footsteps.Soon after qualifying he applied to join Sackleton’s Imperial Trans Antarctic Expedition and was accepted as one of two doctors. As well as his surgeon’s duties he was put in charge of the ship’s dogs and was also assigned a team of sledge dogs to drive.

Club News

A Booklet on MY STAMP


A Booklet on MY STAMP - Philately-Encyclopaedia of knowldge & Fun, by

India Post, Phlatelic Bureau, Patna , was released by Dr R.S. Gandhi a noted philatelist on 12th April 2014.

- Anil K Saxena, Gaya  email  saxenaak273@yahoo.co.in

13 April 2014

Sign language on stamps



Date of Issue : 8 April 2014

Israel Post issued a stamp sheet  of 10  definitive stamps on Israeli Sign Language. Israel is home to some 750,000 people who are deaf and hard of hearing, approximately 15,000 of whom use sign language.The signs that appear on the stamps are presented as images comprised of a hand shape and the location of the sign. The tabs of the stamps also show different expressions of sign language.

Wedding stamp from Israel

Another beautiful definitive stamp issued by Israel  Post  feature Wedding greetings.


Greetings (Definitive Stamp) Mazal Tov for Marriage Stamp Sheet

The Mazal Tov wedding stamp ( definitive ) has been issued as My Own stamp sheet. Each sheet contains 12 pairs of stamps ( postage stamp with personalized tab ) and the sheet also serves as a gift - both personal and official.

Club News

Special Cover on Jainism

A special cover  will be released to mark Mahavir Jayanti on 19th April at Mumbai.


- Kapil Gorgi – Mumbai

12 April 2014

International Day of Human Space Flight




Yuri Gagarin, the world's first cosmonaut to have travelled in outer space

The United Nations (UN) celebrates the International Day of Human Space Flight on April 12 each year. The day remembers the first human space flight on April 12, 1961.

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April 12, 1961, was the date of the first human space flight, carried out by Yuri Gagarin. This historic event opened the way for space exploration. In 2011 the UN declared April 12 as the “International Day of Human Space Flight” to remember the first human space flight and to promote the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes and to the benefit of humankind.

Club News

From the Readers…

Error Variety on 2012 India - Israel Joint Issue Stamp


While going through the recent stamps, I noticed an error in the Diwali stamp of 2012 - India Joint Issue with Israel stamp issue.

I name it as 'Ring of Fire' variety - a small ring in yellow color above the letter 'A' in 'INDIA' .This stamp is from the full sheet, which means, it is not from the sheetlet.

I am not sure whether this is a constant error (i.e. similar stamp can be found in each sheet at the same position of this stamp in row and column). so, stamp collectors can check and see if they find any similar stamp in their collection.

- Kasinath R. - Tanjore


New pictorial cancellation from Germany

On May 8th a new pictorial cancellation (FDI-postmark) will be issued at 53113 BONN. The cancellation is featuring the head of a White-tailed Sea Eagle(Haliaeetus albicillia). Interested philatelists may please contact: Wolfgang Beyer, Vice Chairman of the German Philatelic Collector Group ARGE ZOOLOGIE. Mail: Wolfgang.beyer1@aol.de. Postage rates:
2,90 Euro Registered AIRMAIL( Registered mail possible only).

Courtesy: Mr.Wolfgang Hölzl from the IG New Guinea(www.i-ng.org.)

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