Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Belgium: Eurasian Jay and Eurasian Golden Oriol

On Saturday I got four postcards: three from Belgium and one from China.

Two of the cards from Belgium are about this year's EUROPA stamps. Both cards were signed by Kris Maes, the designer of the stamps.

The first card shows an Eurasian Jay. The Eurasian Jay is a bird species living in wide parts of Eurasia, where it inhabits mixed woodland. Before humans began planting the trees commercially on a wide scale, Eurasian Jays were the main source of movement and propagation for the English Oak, as one bird has the ability to spread more than a thousand acorns every year.


With a matching stamp:
EUROPA (from set of two) (issued 16-06-2019)
The stamp can be scanned to listen to the bird.
with First Day Special Postmark


The other shows an Eurasian Golden Oriol. The Eurasian Golden Oriole is a passerine bird breeding in Northern Hemisphere temperate regions. It is a summer migrant in Europa and Western Asia and spends the winter season in Africa.


With a matching stamp:
EUROPA (from set of two) (issued 16-06-2019)
The stamp can be scanned to listen to the bird.
with First Day Special Postmark


Thank You very much Gerda!

Belgium: Tongeren

On Saturday I got four postcards: three from Belgium and one from China.

One of the cards from Belgium shows Tongeren in Flanders. Tongeren was once a Roman administrative capital. It is the oldest city in Belgium.


Stamp:
Geometry in Nature - The Star Shape (from set of five) (issued 16-06-2019)
with First Day Special Postmark


Thank You very much Gerda!

China: Shaanxi History Museum

On Saturday I got four postcards: one from China and three from Belgium.

The card from China shows the Shaanxi History Museum in Xi'an. The Shaanxi History Museum is one of the largest and most important museums in China. It was established in 1991, which makes it also one of the oldest modern museums in China. The museum houses over 370000 relics from the Shaanxi province and Xi'an, which was the ancient imperial capital of China and the seat of more than 13 feudal dynasties including the Zhou, Qin, Han, and Tang dynasties.


Stamps:
Tangshan International Horticulture Exposition (from set of two) (issued 29-04-2016)
150th birthday of Sun Yat-sen (from set of four) (issued 12-11-2016)
It is a joint issue with Hong Kong and Macau.
Children’s Sports and Games (from set of six) (issued 31-05-2017)
Seasons (from set of four) (issued 20-03-2017)


Thank You very much Yutong!

cover from Spain

On Saturday I got not only four postcards but also a cover from Spain.

Stamp:
EUROPA (issued 25-04-2019)
The stamp can be scanned to listen to the bird.
with a special postmark from Avilés


Thank You very much William!

Malaysia: National Museum

On Friday I got two postcards: one from Malaysia and one from Italy.

The card from Malaysia shows the National Museum in Kuala Lumpur. The National Museum is a museum about Malaysian history and culture and the largest museum in Malaysia. It was opened in 1963. 


Stamp:
Exotic Cuisine of Malaysia (from set of three) (issued 19-02-2019)


Thank You very much Bei Hao!

Italy: Turin

On Friday I got two postcards: one from Italy and one from Malaysia.

The card from Italy shows various views of Turin. Turin became the capital of the Duchy of Savoy in 1563 and in 1861, when the House of Savoy became Italy's royal family, Turin became the first capital of the unified Italy. Turin already lost the status as capital in 1865, but soon became an important centre of industry, especially of the automotive industry. In 1902 and 1911 the city hosted the Universal Exposition and in 2006 the Winter Olympics. Today is Turin the fourth largest city of Italy and the capital of the Piedmont Region. 


Stamps:
Italian Mail (from set of three) (issued 01-07-2010)
70 years UNICEF (issued 20-11-2016)
with a special postmark about the Turin International Book Fair


Thank You very much William!

cover from Germany

On Thursday I got a cover from Germany.

Stamp:
Day of the Music - 275 years Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra (issued 03-05-2018)
with a special postmark about the 60th anniversary of the Motivgruppe Musik


Sunday, 23 June 2019

Poland: Monument of Nicolaus Copernicus in Toruń with Postcrossing postmark

On Wednesday I got two postcards: one from Poland and one from Japan.

The card from Poland shows the monument of Nicolaus Copernicus in Toruń. Nicolaus Copernicus was a mathematician and astronomer in the Renaissance. He formulated a model of the universe that placed the Sun rather than the Earth at the center of the universe, which is considered to have been one of the most important events in the history of science. He was born in Toruń in 1473. The monument was unveiled in 1853.


The card was signed during the recent Postcrossing meet-up in Toruń.
Stamp:
EUROPA (issued 24-04-2019)
with a special Postcrossing postmark showing Nicolaus Copernicus



Thank You very much Monika!

Japan: Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History & Human History

On Wednesday I got two postcards: one from Japan and one from Poland.

The card from Japan shows a view of the Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History & Human History. The Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History & Human History is a museum about the natural history, archeaology and history of the city Kitakyushu in Fukuoka prefecture. It opened in 2002.


With a nice stamp:
G20 Summit in Osaka (from set of five) (issued 14-06-2019)
with First Day Special Postmark


Thank You very much Keiko!

Germany: Angela Merkel

On Tuesday I got a postcard from Germany.

It is a satirical card of Angela Merkel. Angela Merkel was born in 1954. She grow up in the German Democratic Republic. In 1986 she obtained a doctorate in quantum chemistry and worked as a research scientist until 1989. In 1990 she became a member of the Bundestag for the Christian Democratic Union. Already one year later she became Federal Minister for Women and Youth. Following the 2005 federal election, Merkel was appointed Germany's first female chancellor at the head of a grand coalition, which she remained until today. As such she is considered to be the most powerful woman in the World.
I bought this card some time ago and now used it for a special postmark.


Stamp:
25 years Haus der Geschichte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland (issued 06-06-2019)
with First Day Special Postmark


Åland Islands: MS Amorella

Last Saturday I got three postcards: one from the Åland Islands and two from France.

The card from the Åland Islands shows MS Amorella. MS Amorella is a cruiseferry operated by Viking Line between Sweden, the Åland Islands and Finland. She was built in Yugoslavia in 1988.


On the backside is a cachet from the MS Amorella.
With a matching stamp:
Personalised Stamp "MS Amorella"
with a special ship postmark



Thank You very much Anita!

France: Chartreuse Mountains

Last Saturday I got three postcards: two from France and one from the Åland Islands.

One of the cards from France shows various views of the Chartreuse Mountains. The Chartreuse Mountains is a mountain range in South-Eastern France, which is a part of the French Prealps. Grande Chartreuse (lower row middle), the head monastery of the Carthusian religious order, is located in this region. 


With a nice stamp:
New Marianne
60 years Asterix (from set of twelve) (issued 03-06-2019)
with a special postmark from the philatelic shop in Les Abrets


Thank You very much William!

France: Albertville

Last Saturday I got three postcards: two from France and one from the Åland Islands.

One of the cards from France shows various views of Albertville. Albertville is a commune in the Savoie department in South-Eastern France. In 1992 it hosted the Winter Olympics.


Stamps:
New Marianne
500 years Château de Chambord (issued 03-06-2019)
with a special postmark from the philatelic shop in Albertville


Thank You very much William!

cover from Spain

Last Saturday I got not only three postcards but also a cover from Spain.

Stamps:
The Generation of the 70s (from set of four) (issued 16-07-2017)
Malaga Film Festival (issued 16-04-2017)
The stamp is transparent.
King Felipe VI (from set of six) (issued 02-01-2016)
King Felipe VI (from set of five) (issued 19-01-2015)
with a special postmark from Monforte de Lemos


Thank You very much William!

Friday, 21 June 2019

Åland Islands: Postcrossing Maxicard

Last Friday I got a postcard from the Åland Islands.

It is a maxicard of Åland's new Postcrossing stamp, which was issued on the 7th June 2019. The Åland Islands are now the 20th country with a Postcrossing stamp and the first with a shaped one. The postmark used on the card is not the official First Day Special Postmark, but a postmark about the Postcrossing Meet-up held in Mariehamn to commemorate the new stamp.


The card is prepaid and was cancelled with the same postmark as on the frontside.


Thank You very much Anita!

Åland Islands: White-tailed Eagle

Last Thursday I got four postcards: one from the Åland Islands, two from Germany and one from France.

The card from the Åland Islands shows a White-tailed Eagle. The White-tailed Eagle is widely distributed across Eurasia, but due to human activities it is endangered or even extinct in several countries. Luckily some populations recovered due to governmental protections and dedicated conservationists and naturalists.

The card is a maxicard. The stamp is this year's EUROPA stamp of the Åland Islands (issued 09-05-2019).


The card is prepaid and was added with two stamps:
EUROPA (issued 09-05-2019)
Birds (from set of three) (issued 03-01-2000)
with a special postmark about the Postcrossing Meet-up in Mariehamn


Thank You very much Anita!

France: Chambéry

Last Thursday I got four postcards: one from France, one from the Åland Islands and two from Germany.

The card from France shows various views of Chambéry. Chambéry is a city in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France. It was the traditional capital of the Savoy region and the residence of the House of Savoy, which became the ruling dynasty of Italy in 1861. The city often changed hands between France and the Duchy of Savoy, but was finally annexed by France in 1860 due to a political agreement with Savoy that began the final steps in the process of unification of Italy. Today it is the capital of the department of Savoie. In 2006 it was the Alpine Town of the Year.


With nice stamps:
60 years Asterix (two from set of twelve) (issued 03-06-2019)
with a special postmark from the philatelic shop in Chambéry


Thank You very much William!

Germany: German Architecture Museum

Last Thursday I got four postcards: two from Germany, one from France and one from the Åland Islands.

One of the cards from Germany is from a recent exhibition at the German Architecture Museum in Frankfurt am Main. The German Architecture Museum is a museum about the history of architectural development in Germany. It was opened in 1984.



Stamp:
Endangered German Whale Species - Porpoise (issued 02-01-2019)


Thank You very much Martin!

Germany: Otzberg Castle

Last Thursday I got four postcards: two from Germany, one from France and one from the Åland Islands.

One of the cards from Germany shows an old painting of Otzberg Castle. Otzberg Castle was first mentioned in 1231. Between 1985 and 2019 the castle housed a museum, where this painting was shown as copy.



Stamp:
Endangered German Whale Species - Porpoise (issued 02-01-2019)


Thank You very much Martin!

cover from France

Last Thursday I got not only four postcards but also a cover from France.

With a nice stamp:
New Marianne
60 years Asterix (from set of twelve) (issued 03-06-2019)
with a special postmark from Paris


Thank You very much William!

Portugal: Estremoz Clay Figure

Last Wednesday I got a postcard from Portugal.

It shows an Estremoz Clay Figure. Estremoz Clay Figures are made for more than 300 years ago. First there were only figures of saints and about the nativity, but nowadays there are figures about many aspects of the daily life of the people in Portugal's Alentejo region. The Craftmanship of Estremoz Clay Figures is since 2017 an Intangible Heritage of the UNESCO.


With a matching stamp:
UNESCO Intangible Heritage (from set of three) (issued 31-08-2018)


Thank You very much Rui!

cover from Slovenia

Last Wednesday I got not only a postcard but also a cover from Slovenia.

Stamps:
EUROPA (whole set) (issued 31-05-2019)
The stamps can be scanned to listen to the birds.
with First Day Special Postmark


Thank You very much Mateja!

Wednesday, 19 June 2019

My Trip to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern

Last week I was on a trip to some places on the German Baltic Sea coast in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The first stop was Wismar followed by Rostock, Warnemünde, Stralsund and the island Rügen. Everywhere I went I bought some cards for my collection.

Wismar was an early member of the Hanseatic League and after the Thirty Years' War it became a part of Sweden. Large parts of the town and especially of the old town were damaged in World War II, but after they were rebuilt Wismar turned into an important tourist destination and is today the sixth largest city in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. 


Like many cities on the Baltic Sea coast Wismar is home to important buildings in the style of the Brick Gothic. Especially the three big churches, Saint Nicholas, Saint Mary and Saint George, are worth the mention.


The Saint Nicolas' Church was built between 1381 and 1487 as church of the seafarers and fishermen. Of Wismar's three big churches only this one survived World War II without big damages.


Another famous sight of Wismar are the gabled houses.


Rostock is the largest city in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Last year it celebrated its 800th birthday and this year the 600th founding anniversary of the university is celebrated. The city was a founding member of the Hanseatic League in 1259. After destructions in World War II Rostock became the largest port, the most important shipbuilding place and a district capital in the German Democratic Republic.


The Town Hall of Rostock dates back to the 13th century and is thus the oldest secular building in Rostock. It is considered to be one of the most important buildings in the style of the Brick Gothic, although big parts of the Medieval building are covered by Baroque additions. While I was in Rostock, the city prepared for a run-off for the mayoralty on the 16th June. The winner was the Danish citizen Claus Ruhe Madsen, who became the first foreign mayor of a German big city.


The Saint Mary's Church is the Lutheran main church of Rostock. It was built between 1290 and the middle of the 15th century and is one of the most important buildings in the style of the Brick Gothic. Its rich features include an astronomical clock.






The Saint Peter's Church is the oldest and tallest of the three big churches in the city. It was the place where the Reformation was introduced to Rostock.



The Kröpelin Gate was built around 1270 and is one of the largest gates of Rostock's former city wall. As it was located on the street to Lübeck and Wismar, the gate was designed as symbol of Rostock's Hanseatic importance.


The Zoological Collection Rostock is a scientific university collection and associated with the zoological department of the University of Rostock. The collection was founded in 1775. It is used both for teaching and research.



The Cultural History Museum of Rostock was founded in 1859 and is thus one of the oldest museums in Northern Germany.




Warnemünde was first mentioned in 1195. In 1323 it was bought by the prosperous Rostock and due to this belonging Warnemünde did not have it its own rights. For 300 years, between 1567 and 1867, own trade, seafaring and handicraft were forbidden. In the 19th century Warnemünde turned into a seaside resort and ferry port. Today is Warnemünde one of the World's busiest cruise ports.


I have sent this card to myself during my trip.


The Warnemünde Lighthouse was put into service in 1898. In 1968 the Teepott was erected next to it after an older pavillon burned down in 1945. With its curved roof it is one of the most famous examples of East German architecture.


Stralsund was founded in 1234 as city with Lübeck Law. Due to its favourable location it grew quickly. It joined the Hanseatic League in 1293 and soon became one of its most important cities. In 1370 the Treaty of Stralsund was signed by Denmark and the Hanseatic League, which is considered to be league's peak of power. In the 15th and 16th century Stralsund's importance decreased and the Thirty Years' War meant another setback. Between 1648 and 1815 the city belonged the Sweden and then became a part of Prussia.


I have sent this card to myself during my trip. The stamp I used commemorates the 750th anniversary of Stralsund's Saint Catherine's Monastery (issued 13-06-2001).


One of my favourite cards bought during my trip shows an aerial view of Stralsund. Since 2002 is the Historic Centre of Stralsund together with the one of Wismar on the UNESCO World Heritage List.


The German Oceanographic Museum is a museum about the oceans and everything connected with them. It was founded in 1951 and is housed in the former Saint Catherine's Monastery. Next to its exhibits it is also home to nearly 50 aquaria.



The Ozeaneum is a museum and aquarium, which belongs to the German Oceanographic Museum. It was opened in 2008 and quickly turned into a popular tourist destination. Thanks to it the German Oceanographic Museum is today the most visited museum in Northern Germany. In 2010 the Ozeaneum got the European Museum of the Year Award.





The Saint Mary's Church is the largest church in Stralsund. It is considered to be a Late Gothic masterpiece in Central Europa. Between 1549 and 1569 and again from 1573 to 1647 it was the tallest building in the World.





The Saint Jacob's Church is the youngest of Stralsund's three big churches. Currently it is used as cultural venue and not for services.




The Saint Nicholas' Church is the oldest of Stralsund's three big churches. It was not only a place of worship but was also used as council church.




The Town Hall of Stralsund is located next to the Saint Nicholas' Church. The construction began in the late 13th century and it was frequently added to until the 20th century. It is considered to be one of the most important secular buildings in the Baltic Sea area. In 1370 it was the place were the Treaty of Stralsund was signed.


The Stralsund Museum was founded in 1859 and is thus the oldest museum in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Just like the German Oceanographic Museum it is housed in the former Saint Catherine's Monastery. Its current name it just got in 2015. Earlier it was known as Cultural History Museum.





Rügen is the largest, most populous and second-most visited German island.


The Rügen Bridge connects Rügen with Stralsund. It was opened in 2007. Already earlier Rügen was connected with the mainland by the Rügen Causeway, which is still in use today.



Binz is the largest seaside resort on Rügen. It is known for its historical resort architecture.



The Granitz Hunting Lodge is located near Binz. It was built between 1837 and 1846. Once it was a popular holiday destination for European nobility and prominent people and today it is the most visited castle in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.


The Colossus of Prora is a colossal Nazi-planned holiday resort on Rügen and a particularly striking example of Third Reich architecture. It was built between 1936 and 1939 as a Strength Through Joy project and was designed to provide affordable holidays for the average worker, but was never used for this purpose. Later the buildings were used by the East German National Peoples Army. In recent years it was sold and redeveloped.


The Rügen narrow-gauge railway is a steam-powered narrow-gauge railway that connects various seaside resorts. It is nicknamed Rasender Roland, Raging Roland.


The Jasmund National Park was founded in 1990. It is home to the largest coherent beech forest of the German Baltic Sea Coast and the largest chalk cliffs in Germany. It is the smallest national park in Germany. The beech forests of the Jasmund National Park were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List together with four other Ancient Beech Forests of Germany in 2011.


During my trip I was also able to get a few cards of places I have not visited myself.

The Doberan Minster is the remaining part of the former Cistercian Doberan Abbey, the first monastery in Mecklenburg which was once the region's religious centre. It is a masterpiece of the Brick Gothic architecture and of all former Cistercian churches in Europa it has the largest amount of the original interior remaining intact.


The Heinrich Schliemann Museum in Ankershagen is a museum about the life of Heinrich Schliemann, the discoverer of Troy. Originally opened in 1986, it was recently closed for renovation and just reopened in early June 2019.




The Molli railway is a narrow-gauge steam-powered railway connecting Bad Doberan, Heiligendamm and Kühlungsborn.