Sunday, 20 August 2017

Castles in the Air

1932: Definitive 'Coffee Plantation'
We've got a busy day ahead, time to get buzzing with a fine cup of coffee from Colombia
1939: Definitive
on the way out perhaps passing by these workers on the coffee plantation.  Lets head to the teleporter which will beam us across the seas to the city of Prague
1918-1919: Definitives
and Hradcany Castle. This was the design of Czechoslovakia's first stamp which appeared in December 1918 just after the first world war as the country emerged from provinces of the collapsing Austro-Hungarian empire. The limited technical equipment available at the time meant that there are many plate flaws and varieties so it can be a popular subject for a specialist collection, with the added attraction that the stamps were designed by the great art nouveau artist Alphonse Mucha.  He chose the ancient Hradcany Castle (also known as Prague Castle) which dates from the 9th Century as the subject because "the palladium embodys the past and future history" of the country.  In this ancient home of kings, emperors and presidents somewhere, in a hidden room, are the Bohemian Crown Jewels.

There are a lot more castles to explore
The Castles of Trencin, Bezdez and Kost

there seem to be hundreds in the country, so no wonder it was a popular subject for Czechoslovakia Post
The Castles of - Pernstejn and Kremnica
and indeed is still a popular subject for what are two countries today.
The Castles of Karestejn, Smolenice and Kokorin
This is an incomplete set of the 1960s definitives, the one missing is Krivoklat Castle which today is a museum.

Feel like doing something more sporty? 
1950: Tatra Cup Ski Championship
Lets zoom down a mountainside and the Tatra Mountains would be a beautiful destination although I think my preferred option might be to watch this championship competition
although I'll miss out on the efficiency badge.
2006: Christmas Cards from 1931 'Painters of Canada'
This skier is enjoying the view and a sun bathed landscape, illustrated by Edwin Holgate he called it  'Contemplation' so lets contemplate another natural wonder and
1957: National Wild Life Week
this beautiful waterbird, the Common Loon whose eerie call I would love to hear for real across a northern lake.  The designer is Lawrence Hyde (1914-1987) and one can see why he was famous for his wood engravings in this attractive stamp.
The Grand Cayman thrush that once flew over mangrove swamps but became extinct in the 20th Century due,it is thought, to habitat loss which was a mix of deforestation and storm damage from hurricanes in 1932 and 1944.  A creature that once was also once found in the Cayman Islands was
1982: Reptiles
a small species of crocodile now only found in Cuba so yes is called the Cuban Crocodile but only found in two swamps and is described as 'critically endangered' due to human hunting but captive breeding programmes are in place to  help the species recover.

An entry to the Sunday Stamps II -  this week's prompt is the letter C - so welcome to the countries of Colombia, Czechoslovakia, Canada, Cayman Islands and Cuba - drink the coffee, see the castles, watch the championships, contemplate a skiing Christmas, hear the Common Loon, mourn the Cayman Thrush and beware the small but feisty Cuban Crocodile.
C more at See It On A Postcard.


violet s said...

A cornucopia of Cs!
The call of the loon is indeed hauntingly beautiful. It is used pretty much for every nature or cottage country travel or provincial parks advert. It's been a long time since I've heard it in the wild. (need to get camping again!)

Heleen said...

A wonderful collection of C stamps!

Good to see the hard working workers to remind me of the fact that my dear morning coffee is special and that we need to pay a fair prize for it (here in the Netherlands there is 'Fair Trade' coffee, to reach this aim, maybe in your countries too?).

The castle stamps I would have missed (usually I don't really watch stamps showing buildings that closely), if not you mentioned the designer of the Hradcany Castle stamps, Mucha. Such a beautiful design, and indeed immediately his style is clear. And as I love birds, the (mail?!) doves / pigeons on bottom of these three stamps are a pleasure to see!

viridian said...

Lovely stamps today! I did not know Mucha designed stamps.

Bob Scotney said...

Clever to link caslles with 'C' countries. Great selectionn especially Canada and Cuba wildlife.

FinnBadger said...

What an amazing selection of Cs. Thanks for sharing.

FinnBadger said...

What an amazing selection of Cs. Thanks for sharing.