Thursday, August 16, 2012


Monte Titano, San Marino
Image:  Wikimedia Commons

This is not a post about Sicily, but the Serenissima Repubblica di San Marino, which I have visited only once and loved.

In Italy for Beginners, the humourist George Mikes wrote,

"The Italians cannot - and do not even try to - spoil the fun San Marino has with postage stamps.  A treaty exists between Italy and San Marino, under which Italy makes an annual payment ..... and in return San Marino forgoes her right to print money, grow tobacco, distil alcohol or impose duties of any kind.  She is, however, allowed to print her own stamps..... Magnificent and impressive stamps pour from the printing presses every month or so to the delight and despair of collectors.

Mikes was writing in 1956 and Italy and, no doubt, San Marino are very different today but the book still contains nuggets of truth that anyone who has had an extended stay in Italy will recognise with a wry smile.  I particularly recommend the last section of Mikes's chapter on San Marino, in which he is mistaken for a spokesperson for the Duke of Gloucester, to you. 

The Sammarinesi continue to produce beautiful stamps and this week they have unveiled a special edition which will be sold in order to raise funds for reconstruction work in the areas affected by the Emilia-Romagna earthquake earlier this year.

Image: via Meteoweb

The slogan for the edition reads, "Hold your hand out to rebirth" and, as you see, the leaf resembles a hand.  It is holding a brick, which symbolises reconstruction.  The release date for the stamp is 30th August but it can be purchased on the internet from 20th August.

Let's hear it for San Marino!


Rosaria Williams said...

Wow! This is a stunning stamp! Thanks for sharing this info.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I'm pleased that you like it as much as I do, Rosaria.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Cheers to San Marino and the beautiful postage stamp it designed to help the earthquake victims of Emelia Romagna!

rochambeau said...

Hi Patrizia!
Thank you for this post, for you made me aware of San Marino and after looking it up in wiki, realized that it is the oldest surviving sovereign state and constitutional republic in the world!!

You are always offering up such fine tidbits!
Hope AlL is well!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Pat. Yes, I think it's a great initiative. Hi, Constance. Glad you like these little items of news - thank you. x


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