Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Eli
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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Greek Mythology Stamps - The Twelve Labours of Hercules

Driven mad by Hera (queen of the gods), Hercules (Greek: Heracles) slew his son, daughter, and wife Megara. After recovering his sanity, Hercules deeply regretted his actions; he was purified by King Thespius, then traveled to Delphi to inquire how he could atone for his actions. Pythia, the Oracle of Delphi, advised him to go to Tiryns and serve his cousin King Eurystheus for twelve years, performing whatever labours Eurystheus might set him; in return, he would be rewarded with immortality. Hercules despaired at this, loathing to serve a man whom he knew to be far inferior to himself, yet fearing to oppose his father Zeus. Eventually, he placed himself at Eurystheus's disposal.

Monaco issued six sets of stamps, a set each year, depicting the twelve labor of Hercules. The stamps issued in years 1981-1986 and were surcharged to raise donation to the Monaco's Red Cross Society. They designed by Pierrette Lambert and engraved by Claude Haley. Here are the stamps:


Issued on November 5, 1981:

Hercules fighting the Nemean lion:

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Hercules fighting the Lernaean hydra:

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Issued on November 8, 1982:

Hercules capturing the Erymanthian boar:

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Hercules slaying the Stymphalian birds:

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Issued on November 9, 1983:

Hercules capturing the golden hind:

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Hercules cleaning the Augean stables:

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Issued on November 8, 1984:

Hercules capturing the Cretan bull:

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Hercules stealing the Mares of Diomedes:

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Issued on November 7, 1985:

Hercules and the cattle of Geryon:

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Hercules obtains the girdle of Hippolyta:

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The last set was issued on October 28, 1986:

Hercules stealing the Hesperides apples:

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Hercules fighting Cerebrus:

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The Iliad - The great Greek epic by Homer (II)

After an invocation to the Muses, the Iliad starts towards the end of the Trojan War between the Trojans and the besieging Greeks. During the war, the Greeks used the Trojan horse to enter the city of Troy and win the war.

The Trojan horse, both on the stamp and the postmark, issued by Turkey on December 31, 1956. The postmark is from the city of Truva (Troy in Turkish):

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Chryses, a Trojan priest of Apollo, offers the Greeks wealth for the return of his daughter Chryseis*, a captive of Agamemnon, the Greek leader. Although most of the Greek army is in favor of the offer, Agamemnon refuses. Chryses prays for Apollo's help, and Apollo causes a plague to afflict the Greek army.


Agamemnon was the king of Mycenae. When Helen, the wife of Menelaus, was taken to Troy by Paris, Agamemnon commanded the united Greek armed forces in the ensuing Trojan War. This stamp, issued by Greece on December 8, 1976, depicting the mask of Agamemnon, discovered by Heinrich Schliemann in 1876 at Mycenae:

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After nine days of plague, Achilles, the leader of the Myrmidon contingent, calls an assembly to deal with the problem. Under pressure, Agamemnon agrees to return Chryseis to her father, but also decides to take Achilles's captive, Briseis, as compensation. Angered, Achilles declares that he and his men will no longer fight for Agamemnon, but will go home. Odysseus takes a ship and brings Chryseis to her father, whereupon Apollo ends the plague.

Achilles, the Greek hero of the Trojan War and the central character and greatest warrior of the Iliad, issued by Greece on December 19, 1983:

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The best way to declare that the papers you produce and sell is to call your company "Achilles" :) :) , meter from Maikammer, Germany, 1988:

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Briseis, Queen in Asia Minor at the time of the Trojan War and Achilles's captive, painting by Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640), issued by Bhutan on February 20, 1991:

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*Help!!! Please, show your stamp/s depicting Chryseis!! :!: :!: :!:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Here is an image of an airmail semi-postal (charity) stamp depicting Pharaoh (on the right) making an offering to the Egyptian gods Horus and Hathor, designed and engraved by French artist Jacques Derrey (1907-1975), and issued for use in (French) Somali Coast on August 28, 1964 to publicize UNESCO's campaign to save the Nubian monuments, Scott No. CB4.

- nethryk


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Buddhist Mythology Stamps - Weekdays Statues of Buddha

According to Buddhist Lao tradition, the day of the person birth influences its characters, personality and destiny. Each day of the week has a special Buddha statue that protects the person and brings him good luck. The Lao believe that the day of the person birth affects the person characters in the following ways:

Sunday – The person would have many wives but a misfortune life
Monday – The person would be happy and a rich man.
Tuesday – The person would be happy and have long life.
Wednesday – The person would be a rich man and would marry a good wife.
Thursday – The person would be a wise man but his life will be short.
Friday – The person would be happy and have long life.
Saturday – The person would marry many wives and have many children and long life.

Here are the weekdays statues of Buddha issued by Laos on May 15, 2005:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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The Iliad - The great Greek epic by Homer (III)

Achilles becomes very upset when Agamemnon's messengers take Briseis away. He asks his mother Thetis, goddess of water, to ask Zeus to bring the Greeks to the breaking point by the Trojans, so Agamemnon will realize how much the Greeks need Achilles. Thetis does so, and Zeus agrees.

Zeus and Thetis, by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (1780 – 1867), issued by Togo to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the death of Ingres:

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"She sank to the ground beside him, put her left arm round his knees, raised her right hand to touch his chin, and so made her petition to the Royal Son of Cronos" (Iliad, I.)

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Zeus sends a dream to Agamemnon, urging him to attack Troy. Agamemnon heeds the dream but decides to first test Greek army's morale, by telling them to go home. The plan backfires, and only the intervention of Odysseus, inspired by Athena, stops a rout.

Odysseus, coat of arms of the Island Ithaca, issued by Greece on July 20, 1964:

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Athena, goddess of war and wisdom, Designed by Prof. Émile Gilliéron, engraved by Louis-Eugène Mouchon and issued by Greece on March 25, 1896 to publicize the first modern Olympic Games held in Athens:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

Post by MrSamoa »

Hi Eli,

Stampboard member Joel is always offering free giveaways. As soon as I saw these Myths of Singapore, I thought of you. Joel sent them to me, and I will send them out to you tomorrow:

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Best,
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MrSamoa wrote:Hi Eli,

Stampboard member Joel is always offering free giveaways. As soon as I saw these Myths of Singapore, I thought of you. Joel sent them to me, and I will send them out to you tomorrow:

Best,
Marty
This is wonderful, Marty, and thanks for asking the stamps for me. They will be a great addition to my collection. I just sent you a private message.

Regards, Eli

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Eli-

My pleasure, but all the thanks should go to Joel.

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Aphrodite (Venus), goddess of Love and Beuty, in Art
Aphrodite of Milos Statue

Aphrodite (Roman: Venus) was a goddess of love and beauty. She symbolizes sexuality and free love, helps any one who feels true love and passion and punishes those who disrespect love.

Aphrodite of Milos, better known as the Venus de Milo, is an ancient Greek statue and one of the most famous works of ancient Greek sculpture. The statue is named after the Greek island of Milos, where it was discovered. Created sometime between 130 and 100 BCE, it is believed to depict Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love and beauty (Roman: Venus). From an inscription that was on its plinth, it is thought to be the work of Alexandros of Antioch. It is currently on permanent display at the Louvre Museum in Paris.


Here is a small selection from my collection depicting the statue:

Greece, issued in 1937:

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France, issued on January 29, 2007:

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Dahomey, issued on February 17, 1968:

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Madagascar, issued in 1994:

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Upper Volta (Burkina Faso), designed by Georges Bétemps, engraved by Jacques Gauthier and issued on July 1, 1964:

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Buddhist Mythology - The Nang Sangkhan Legend (Kabilaprom and his seven daughters)

The legend tells about Dharmabarn, the smartest man alive. He had the ability to speak with birds. Another smart man named Kabilaprom heard of Dharmabarn's abilities. Kabilaprom had seven daughters.

Kabilaprom challenged Dharmabarn with a riddle in which the looser must sever his own head. The riddle is: In the morning, at noon and in the evening, where is the human wheel of life?
Dharmabarn heard two eagles talking about the wheel of human life. The birds revealed to him that: In the morning, the wheel of life is on its face- that is why we wash our faces every morning. At noon, the wheel of life is at its chest- that is why we wear perfume on our chests. In the evening, the wheel of life is at its feet- that is why we wash our feet before going to bed.

Dharmabarn was correct hence Kabilaprom cut off his own head. His seven daughters feared that if the head fell into the earth, a great fire will engulf the planet. If the head is hurled in the air, the planet will suffer a drought. If the head fell into the ocean, it would dry up. They decided to keep the head suspended in a cave of a mountain. Every year, one of the daughters would retrieve the head and parade around with it.

Kabilaprom and his seven daughters, issued by Thailand on April 7, 2016:

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One of the ceremonies takes place in the New Year Festival (PI Mai) in Laos is Sand Stupas building ceremony. The stupas symbolizing Mount Sumeru, where King Kabilaprom's head was kept by his seven daughters according to the legend "Nang Sang Khan". The stupas sprinkled with scented water, decorated with flags and covered with yellow cloths symbolizing Buddhism. The stupas, with their offerings are than offered to the monks, thus people gain merits.

Sand Stupas building ceremony, issued by Laos on April 13, 2001:

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From my postcard collection:

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From this, on the third day of Pimai, Lao Buddhists choose a young lady to be the one who is bestowed the task of retreiving Kabilaprom's head. The young lady is surrounded by six others representing the other six daughters of Kabilaprom. In modern day, this selection is done via a beauty pageant.

The girls given different names according to the day the third day of Pi Mai falls:

Sunday - Nang Sangkhan Tongsa
Monday - Nang Sangkhan Korark
Tuesday - Nang Sangkhan Rarks
Wednesday - Nang Sangkhan Munnaka
Thursday - Nang Sangkhan Kirinee
Friday - Nang Sangkhan Kimita
Saturday - Nang Sangkhan Mahotorn


Nang Sangkhan ceremony in Pi Mai, issued by Laos on April 13, 2001:

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From my phonecard collection:

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Volcano Goddesses of the Pacific

Volcano Goddesses of the Pacific, issued by Palau on May 29, 1997 to publicize the International Stamp Exhibition "Pacific '97" held in San Francisco, USA:

Darago of the Philippines
A volcano goddess who demanded a human sacrifice once a year to stop the volcanoes from erupting.

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Fuji of Japan
Sakuya-bime is the goddess of Mount Fuji and all volcanoes and keep Mount Fuji from erupting.

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Pele of Hawaii
In Hawaii, Pele is the goddess of fire, lightning, wind and volcanoes and the creator of the Hawaiian Islands. According to legend, Pele lives in the Halemaʻumaʻu crater Kīlauea.

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Pare of the Maori
Pare fell in love with Hutu but he, knowing that he could never marry such a noble maiden, ran away, leaving her to die of grief. Hutu then traveled to the underworld and brought her soul back to the land of the living where she married him.

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Dzalarhons of the Haida
Dzalarhons, in the mythology of the Haida people (an indigenous people from the Pacific Northwest coast of North America), is a mountain spirit known as Volcano Woman who rules the earth's creatures and punishes those who abuse them.

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Chiginadak of the Aleuts
Cleveland mountain is the most active volcano of the Aleutian island arc located on the western portion of the uninhabited Chuginadak Island, Alaska. Chuginadak is the Aleut goddess of fire who is believed to reside in the volcano.

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Mythology of the Philippines - Mythological Creatures

Mythological creatures, issued by the Philippines on April 24, 2015 to publicize the Taipei Philatelic Exhibition.

Nuno Sa Punso ("old man of the mound") is a dwarf-like creature in Philippine mythology. It is believed to live in an anthill or termite mound, hence its name, literally "Ancestor / Grandparent living in the anthill":

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The Sirena is a mythological sea creature from Filipino culture . In some regions of the Philippines, Sirenas are known as Magindara and portrayed as vicious mermaids. Like Sirens of Greek mythology, Sirenas are often portrayed as mermaid-like creatures who live under the sea. In Philippine mythology, the Sirena is a mythological aquatic creature with the head and torso of a human female and the tail of a fish. The Sirena is an Engkanto – the Filipino counterpart of English mermaids. Engkantos are classified as one of the Bantay Tubig, a Fillipino term used to describe mythical guardians of the water:

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Malakas and Maganda (literally, Strong One and Beautiful One) are Filipino versions of Adam and Eve. They are said to have sprung from a large bamboo tree pecked by a Sarimanok known as Magaulancealabarca:

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The legend of Malakas and Maganda

Maria Sinukuan is the diwata (fairy) or mountain goddess associated with Mount Arayat in Pampanga, Philippines, and is a prominent example of the mountain-goddesses motif in Philippine mythology, other prominent examples being Maria Makiling of Los Baños and Maria Cacao of Cebu.

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Hindu Mythology - The Ramayana, the adventures of Lord Rama

Many new items depicting Ramayana epics were issued during the last year. One of the is a spectacular SS issued by the UN on April 29, 2016 I received from Marco (Matmex). The SS celebrates the International Dance Day and depicting a Ramayana scene performed by Thai Lakhon dancers. Lakhon features a wider range of stories, including folk tales and Jataka stories. Dancers are usually female and perform as a group rather than representing individual characters.

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Hanuman Monkey-god:

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Thank you very much, Marco! :)

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

Post by Matmex »

My pleasure Eli,

I really like contributing to your interesting thread (and collection).

Cheers,

Marco

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Sea Goddesses of the Pacific

Sea Goddesses of the Pacific, issued by Micronesia on May 29, 1997 to publicize the International Stamp Exhibition "Pacific '97" held in San Francisco, USA:

Information: Sea Goddesses of the Pacific

Walutahanga of Melanesia
The eight-fold snake goddess was born to a human mother; the woman was afraid of her husband and hid the serpent girl. But he discovered the deception and was so shocked he cut Walutahanga into eight pieces. After eight days of rain, the girl’s body rejoined into a whole.
Walutahanga traveled through the islands, tormenting humans in retaliation for her murder. Captured, she was again chopped into eight pieces; everyone, except a woman and her daughter ate the body, and threw her bones into the sea. It rained for another eight days. Then the bones under the sea again formed themselves into the goddess.
To punish humanity, Walutahanga covered the islands with eight huge flooding waves, which killed everyone but the woman and her child, the only ones who had not eaten the goddess’ flesh. The goddess gave these two many gifts, including the coconut and clear-water streams, before again retreating to the ocean.


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Tien-Hou of China
Tien-Hou is the Chinese Goddess of fishermen. She was once a mortal woman named Lin Moniang with four brothers who were all sailors, each with his own ship. One day while they were at sea, Tien-Hou fell into a coma. Her mother tried to revive her and eventually succeeded. Tien-Hou protested that she had been awakened too soon. Later that day, three of her brothers returned home, saying that their ships had nearly been destroyed in storms at sea, but that a vision of Tien-Hou had appeared to them and led them to safety. The fourth brother never returned, for Tien-Hou had been awakened before she could save him.
Tien-Hou was still young when she died, and the people named her Princess of Supernatural Favor. She watches over all fishermen, and there are many temples in her honor along the coastline of China.


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Lorop of Micronesia
Lorop (Nomoi or Mortlock in other parts of Micronesia) is a sea goddess and creator deity of the Yap people of Micronesia. Lorop is the daughter of the creator deity Liomarar, who threw sand into the ocean to form the first islands of what became Micronesia and then gave birth to Lorop. Lorop bore three children, one of whom went on to become a hero figure. Each day, Lorop secretly dove into the ocean. Finally one of the children, curious about her activities, followed her and discovered her filling her basket with fish from the depths of the sea. This discovery meant she had to remain below the waves, but she still came to the surface each day to feed her family.

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Oto-Hime of Japan
The adventurer Urashima, rescued by a turtle when his ship sank, was brought to the dragon queen Otohime, who endowed her new lover with valuable gifts. Time passed quickly, more quickly than Urashima knew. Finally he grew homesick for his family and for earthly life. Otohime agreed to let him go, giving him a small box with the requirement that he never open it.
When Urashima reached home, he found the faces and names unfamiliar. Puzzled, he found an ancient resident who recognized the name of his family, and learned he had been gone for hundreds of years. Sadly, the young man sat down and, forgetting his promise, opened the little box. Out swept the years he had lived with Otohime. Surrounding him like smoke, they withered his body, and he fell into dust.
In recent years, a woman named Fujita Himiko announced herself as the re-born Otohime. From a shrine near Kyoto, she serves as a shaman, bearing the goddess’s name. The re-born goddess has announced that humanity suffers from the same delusions as Urashima, because societies fail to recognize the power of women.


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Nomoi of Micronesia
See above description about Lorop. There is a group of Islands in Micronesia called Nomoi, after the goddess.

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Junkgowa Sisters of Australia
The Junkgowa Sisters are marine goddesses of the Australian Aborigines. They represent the triple aspect of the Great Goddess: maiden, mother and crone. The Junkgowa Sisters created all the creatures of the oceans and rivers, as well as the first people. To explore the ocean waters, the sisters built a canoe and set out, singing as they paddled. Everywhere they dipped their oars, the creatures of the sea appeared. When the Junkgowa Sisters reached land, they began a walkabout. Every place they touched their staffs to the ground, a water hole appeared, releasing the waters of a sacred spring. These openings are seen as portals into the world of the spirits.

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Roman Mythology Stamps - Pygmalion and Galatea

Pygmalion, King of Cyprus, carved a woman out of ivory, called her Galatea. after seeing it he was "not interested in women", but his statue was so beautiful and realistic that he fell in love with it.

In time, Aphrodite's festival day came, and Pygmalion made offerings at the altar of the goddess. There, too scared to admit his desire, he quietly wished for a bride who would be "the living likeness of my ivory girl." When he returned home, he kissed his ivory statue, and found that its lips felt warm. He kissed it again, and found that the ivory had lost its hardness. Aphrodite had granted Pygmalion's wish. Pygmalion and Galatea married and had a son, Paphos, who built the city in the island called on his name.

"Pygmalion and Galatea" by the French painter François Boucher (1703 – 1770), The Hermitage museum, St. Petersburg, Russia. Issued by the Soviet Union on November 20, 1984:

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"Pygmalion" by the Belgian painter Paul Delvaux (1897-1994), Royal museum of fine arts, Bruxelles, Belgium. In this painting, the female character prefers a stone sculpture to a man, inverting the original myth in which the sculptor fell in love with the statue he had carved. In the painting the two members of the couple have their alter egos in the background. This SS issued by Rwanda on December 11, 1982:

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Mythologies of the Pacific Islands, issued by the Marshall Islands on August 15, 1997.

The demon of the Adrie:

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The beautiful woman of the Kwajalein:

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The large pool of Mejit:

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Sharks and Lowakalle reef:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

Post by CMJ »

This thread has had all the remaining photobucket images upgraded and has been restored to its former glory.

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CMJ wrote:This thread has had all the remaining photobucket images upgraded and has been restored to its former glory.
Thank you very much, CMJ!!! I took a long break from FB but will return to post more nice stamps in this thread and in other threads.

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Eli wrote:
CMJ wrote:This thread has had all the remaining photobucket images upgraded and has been restored to its former glory.
Thank you very much, CMJ!!! I took a long break from FB but will return to post more nice stamps in this thread and in other threads.
Please do - this thread is fantastic!

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antbrown wrote:Please do - this thread is fantastic!
Thanks, antbrown, for your warm words. I glad you enjoy this thread. Indeed, from all threads I started, this one is my favorite.


Hindu Mythology - The Ramayana Epic

A beautiful set of 11 stamps about the Ramayana Hindu epic was issued by India on September 22, 2017. Here they are:

Lord Rama won a context arranged by Janaka, King of Mithila, with the divine bow gifted by god Shiva. Since he won, he married Sita, daughter of Janaka:

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King Dasharatha sending his son, Lord Rama, to exile:

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Lord Rama, his wife Sita and his brother Lakshmana in their way to exile:

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Lord Rama with the wounded bird Jatayu, after the fight with Ravana, who kidnapped Sita:

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Shabri offering grapes to Lord Rama:

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Lord Rama with the monkey army:

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After Lord Rama was wounded in the battle, Hanuman flew to the Himalayas to bring the medicinal herb Sanjiwani, but he could not identify it so he carried the entire mountain and brought it to Rama:

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The monkey soldiers building a bridge to Lanka, in order to rescue Sita from Ravana the demon:

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Hanuman flying to Lanka to rescue Sita:

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After the war, Rama and Sita returned to Ayodhya and crowned King and Queen. During their reign the kingdom enjoyed peace and prosperity:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

Post by Eli »

The above India Ramayana stamps were issued in a sheet and a in a souvenir sheet:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Mercury, Roman god of of shopkeepers and merchants, travelers and transporters of goods, and thieves and tricksters, engraved and printed by Perkins, Bacon & Co., Ltd., and issued by Bolivia in 1925 as one of a set of ten stamps commemorating the centenary of the Republic, Scott No. 158, plus an image of a bronze statue of Mercury (1580) created by Flemish sculptor Giambologna (1529-1608). Note: Mercury is often depicted wearing a winged helmet, and holding the caduceus awarded to him by Apollo.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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In Greek mythology, Lichas was Heracles's servant who brought the fatal shirt, poisoned with the blood of the Lernaean Hydra, from Deianira to Heracles because of Deianira's jealousy of Iole; as a punishment, before he died, Heracles threw Lichas into the sea, where the Lichadian islands, between Euboea and the coast of Locris, were believed to have derived their name from him. Here is an image of a stamp designed after a sculpture created by Italian sculptor Antonio Canova (1757-1822) depicting Heracles throwing Lichas into the sea, engraved by Mazzini Canfarini (1912- ?), and issued by Italy on July 15, 1957, Scott No. 723, plus a photograph of the original work of art.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

Post by nethryk »

Here is an image of a stamp depicting what both Scott and SG describe as as a "mythical animal," which I believe may well be a stylized representation of Geležinis Vilkas ("Iron Wolf"), a mythical character from a medieval Lithuanian legend about the founding of Vilnius. This stamp was designed by Lithuanian artist Jonas Juozas Burba (1907-1952), printed by photogravure, and issued by Lithuania on July 19, 1940 as one of a set of six stamps in a "Liberty" issue, Scott No. 322. Also, I have included an image of a sculpture of Iron Wolf for comparison. Note: Today Iron Wolf is one of the symbols of Vilnius and is used by sports teams, Lithuanian military, scouting organizations, and others.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Buddhist Mythology Stamps
The First Sermon of the Buddha


Here is a set of three children's drawing stamps depicting Buddha's first sermon in Deer Park, Sarnath, India and other events of Buddha's life, issued by Thailand on January 13, 1996 to celebrate the Children's day:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Buddhist Mythology Stamps - The Life of Buddha

To celebrate the Vesak Buddhist festival (Buddha birthday), Sri Lanka issued in 1983 this set of mural paintings from Gotami Vihara temple in Colombo depicting different events from Buddha life:

Buddha's Mother Dream -
Queen Mahamaya was the wife of Suddhodana, King of Sakya. One full moon night, the queen had a dream. She was chosen to be the mother of a child that one day would become either a King or a spiritual leader. The Buddha descending fron heaven in a form of white elephant , entering her body to achieve conception:

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Gotami Vihara

Buddha Birth -
Queen Mahamaya returned her parent’s home for delivery.On the way to Mahamaya parent’s home, the Queen and her procession stopped at Lumbini. There, the Queen gave a birth while standing beneath a Sala tree holding a branch. She named the child Siddhartha:


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Gotami Vihara

In the Eve of Renunciation -
After Prince Siddhartha saw the “Four Sights” (“The Four Omens”) he decided to relinquish the princely life to become an ascetic, to learn and seek solution to human suffering. After bidding farewell to his sleeping wife Yasodhara and son Rahula he left the his palace accompanied by Channa and riding his horse Kanthaka. When he reached a forest near Anoma River, Siddhartha cut his hair, a symbolic confirmation to his renunciation and his new life as ascetic:


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Gotami Vihara

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Gotami Vihara

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Here is an image of a stamp depicting a Dionysian mosaic from Virunum (c. 276 AD), designed by Friedrich Mayr (1929- ), combined engraved by Wolfgang Seidel (1946- ) and photogravure, and issued by Austria on June 1, 1984 to commemorate the centenary of the Landesmuseum für Kärnten, Scott No. 1277.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Tlaloc, "He Who Makes Things Sprout," is the Aztec god of rain, lightning and thunder, and a fertility god responsible for both floods and droughts. Here is an image of a stamp depicting a detail from a monumental stone sculpture of Tlaloc completed in 1935 under the direction of Mexican sculptor Federico Canessi (1905-1977) nearby the Nezahualcóyotl Dam in Chiapas, designed by H. Rodriguez, printed by photogravure, and issued by Mexico on January 9, 1976 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of irrigation projects in Mexico, Scott No. 1144, plus an image of a photograph of the Tlaloc sculpture.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Roman Mythology Stamps – goddess Flora

In Roman mythology, Flora was a goddess of flowers and the season of spring, a symbol for nature and flowers.

"Flora", by Tiziano Vecellio (1485-1576), Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy. Issued by Italy on September 15, 1976 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of Titian:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Greek Mythology Stamps - Bacchus and Ariadne

Ariadne was a beautiful princess, the daughter of Minos, King of Crete, and his queen Pasiphaë, daughter of Helios.

Ariadne fell in love with the Athenian hero Theseus when he came to Crete. Theseus was one of a group of youths and maidens who were to be fed to the Minotaur kept in the Labyrinth. Ariadne helped Theseus kill the Minotaur and escaping the Labyrinth. Ariadne then fled with Theseus when he sailed back to Athens.

Ariadne was abandoned by Theseus on the island of Naxos. Dionysus (Bacchus), god of wine, found her and fell with love with her. He asked Zeus to make her immortal so that he could marry her. Dionysus and Ariadne were married on Naxos and had three sons.


"Bacchus and Ariadne" by Titian (1489-1576), issued by Bhutan on February 15, 1989 to mark the 500th anniversary of birth of Titian:

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"Ariadne, Venus and Bacchus" by Jacopo Tintoretto (1518-1594), issued by Italy on May 31, 1994 to mark the 400th anniversary death of Tintoretto:

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Detail from "Ariadne, Venus and Bacchus" by Jacopo Tintoretto (1518-1594) depicting Ariadne crowned by Venus, issued by Paraguay:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Greek Mythology Stamps - The Nymph Salmacis

In Greek mythology, the Naiads are a type of female spirit, or nymph, presiding over fountains, wells, springs, streams, brooks and other bodies of fresh water.

One of the famous Naiads is the Nymph Salmacis. She was an atypical naiad who rejected the ways of the virginal Greek goddess Artemis in favour of vanity and idleness. Her attempted rape of Hermaphroditus places her as the only nymph rapist in the Greek mythological canon.

Here are two stamps issued by Monaco depicting the statue of Salmacis by François-Joseph Bosio (1768 – 1845), exhibited in the Louvre museum in Paris, France

Issued in 1948, Designed by Pierre Gandon and engraved by Jules Piel:

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Issued on November 8, 1984 to publicise the 25th International Television Festival held in Monte Carlo. Designed and engraved by Claude Jumelet:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Greek and Roman Mythology Stamps - Cupid (Amor, Eros) and Psyche

Psyche is a princess so beautiful that the goddess Venus becomes jealous. In revenge, she instructs her son Cupid to make her fall in love with a hideous monster; but instead he falls in love with her himself.

"Eros and Psyche", ancient Greek sculpture, issued by Yugoslavia on November 28, 1988:

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Cupid becomes Psyche unseen husband, visiting her only at night since he ordered her not to see him. When Psyche's sisters see the splendor in which Psyche lives, they become envious, and undermine her happiness by prodding her to uncover her husband's true identity, since surely as foretold by the oracle she was lying with the vile winged serpent, who would devour her and her child.

One night Psyche brings out a dagger and a lamp she had hidden in the room, in order to see and kill the serpent. But when the light instead reveals the most beautiful creature she has ever seen, she is so startled that she wounds herself on one of the arrows in Cupid's cast-aside quiver. Struck with a feverish passion, she spills hot oil from the lamp and wakes him. He flees, and though she tries to pursue, he flies away and leaves her on the bank of a river.


"Cupid and Psyche" depicting Psyche with the lamp, painting by P. P. Rubens (1577-1640), issued by Guinea Bissau in 2003:

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"Amor and Psyche" depicting Psyche with the lamp, sculpture by Reinhold Begas (1831-1911), Altes Museum, Berlin, issued by West Germany for use in Berlin on July 16, 1981:

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Maxicard of the above stamp with commemorative postmark depicting Reinhold Begas:

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Cupid can eventually no longer bear to witness Psyche suffering or to be apart from her and pleads their cause to the gods. Psyche becomes an immortal and the lovers are married in heaven.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Greek Mythology Stamps
The Three Charites (Graces)

The three Charites (Roman: Graces), daughters of Zeus and Eurynome, are goddesses of charm, beauty, creativity and fertility. Their names are: Aglaea (Beuty), Euphrosyne (Mirth) and Thalia (Good Cheer). They were responsible for the god meals and created a good atmosphere in celebrations. Usually, they were constant companions of Aphrodite (Venus), goddess of beauty and love.

The three Graces were depicted by many artists in paintings and sculptures:

"The three Graces" and "Cupid and the three Graces (Detail)", painting by Raphael (1483–1520), issued by Bulgaria on December 28, 1984 to commemorate the 500th Anniversary of the Birth of Raphael:

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The complete painting "Cupid and the three Graces" by Raphael (left stamp), exhibited in Villa Farnesina, Rome:

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"The three Graces", sculpture by Antonio Canova (1757–1822), Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia. issued by Italy on October 13, 1972 to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Death of Canova:

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"The three Graces" by Battista Naldini (1535–1591), issued by Hungary on December 10, 1968:

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"The three Graces", (Detail) by Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640), issued by Liberia on November 14, 1985 as one of a set "Paintings by P. P. Rubens":

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The complete painting "The three Graces" by Rubens, exhibited in Museo del Prado, Madrid:

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"Education of the Princess" by Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640) issued by Antigua and Barbuda on March 22, 1993 to commemorate the 200th Anniversary of the Louvre. This painting shows a maturing Marie de' Medici at study. Her education is given a divine grace by the presence of three gods Apollo, Athena, and Hermes. Also present are the three graces, Euphrosyne, Aglaea, and Thalia giving her beauty:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Greek Mythology Stamps - Nike, goddess of Victory

In Greek mythology, Nike (Roman: Victoria) was a goddess who personified victory, also known as the Winged goddess of Victory. She was the daughter of the Titan Pallas and the goddess Styx, and the sister of Kratos (Strength), Bia (Force), and Zelus (Zeal).

Nike riding a chariot, issued by Greece on April 6, 1896 as two of a set of twelve stamps publicizing the first modern Olympic Games held in Athenes. The stamps were designed by Prof. Émile Gilliéron and engraved by Louis-Eugène Mouchon. Designs based on ancient Greek art and architecture connected with the games.

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To commemorate centenary of the modern Olympic Games, Greece issued on March 26, 1996 a set of twelve stamps depicting the twelve 1896 stamps, including Nike stamps:

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Issued as SS containing 4 stamps:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Hindu Mythology Stamps - god Brahma

god Brahma is one of the major gods of Hinduism considered the creator of the universe, god of mercy and one of the three main Hindu gods called Trimurti together with Vishnu the maintainer and Shiva the destroyer.

god Brahma has four faces to help people from any direction. He holds symbolic instruments: disc as weapon against evil, scepter as protection of laws, water pot for creation of life, spoon as sacrificial tool, book as getting wisdom and arc as weapon against demons.

Brahma riding a Swan, issued in 1914 for use in French India:

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god Brahma, issued by Thailand on June 2, 2009 as one of a set of four stamps depicting Hindu god sculptures;

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In Laos, god Brahma is called Phra Phrom and he is riding a Phoenix, issued by Laos on March 23, 1974:

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Hindu and Buddhist Mythology Stamps - The Apsara

Apsara is one of the celestial singers and dancers who inhabit the heaven of the god Indra, the lord of the heavens. Originally water nymphs, the Apsaras provide sensual pleasure for both gods and men.

Apsara stone reliefs from Angkor temples, issued by Cambodia on June 24, 2007 to commemorate 40th anniversary diplomatic relations between Cambodia and Vietnam:

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Apsara stone-relief from Angkor temple - old photo taken in the 1950's from my old photo collection

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Buddhist mythology Stamps - The Four Harmonious Friends

The four harmonious friends is a figure in Jātaka tales and other Buddhist mythology, and can often be found as subject in Bhutanese and Tibetan art. It is perhaps the most common theme in Bhutanese folk art, featuring on many temple murals, stupas, and as a decorative pattern on many daily utensils. It is the best-known national folktale of Bhutan and is popular in Tibet and Mongolia.

On December 20, 1984, Mongolia issued a set of nine stamps and SS tell the story of “the four harmonious friends":

Once upon a time, a dove, a hare, a monkey and an elephant were lived together for many years in a beautiful forest in India.

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"Since we all live in such friendly fashion, we should respect the oldest among us and the younger ones must listen to him so we can all serve him whatever he wishes," they said among themselves, and they asked each other who is the oldest.

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A big tree was growing in that place. The four animals looked at it and began to raise their memories about this tree.

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The elephant pointed to that tree and said, "When I was an elephant-calf, I used to rub myself against that tree. Then we were both the same size”

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The monkey said, "When I was little there were no branches in which to jump and play and the tree was the same size as me. The shade of the tree scarcely hid me."

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The hare said, "When I was little, the tree's roots were just beginning to grow, so I used to dig down to the roots so I could eat them."

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The dove said, "I was pecking at the fruit of a tree and it fell near this place. So another tree began to grow near the original one."

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The Four animals were happy since they were able to determine which of them is the oldest, and the order of the ages of the other animals. They decided to appoint the dove as a leader, honor and respect her.

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By their agreement to respect the eldest, the elephant, as youngest, carried the monkey on his back. The monkey carried the hare, and the hare carried the dove on his back. Thus the dove was able to reach the sweet fruits of the tree, picked them off and gave them to her friends.

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Thus, by mutual respect, peace and friendship, the four animals live together in the beautiful forest of India till these days.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Ireland : Myths and Legends 2012.

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55c The Children of Lir.
Tells the story of the four children of the King Lir who were changed into swans by a vengeful stepmother. They were condemned to live as swans until the bell of a new God tolled. A church bell broke the spell many, many years later and the children returned to human form aged quickly and died.


55c Deirdre of the Sorrows.
Illustrates the legendary love between Naoise and Deirdre and the jealous rage of the King Conor McNessa. The pair fled to Scotland, were tricked into returning to Ireland where Naoise was slain by Conor. Stricken with grief, Deirdre then killed herself.


82c The Salmon of Knowledge.
Illustrates the story of the hero Fionn Mac Cumhaill who accidentally tasted the Salmon of Knowledge and was blessed with great wisdom.


82c Cuchulainn.
Illustrates the story of Setanta, the childhood name of Cúchulainn. Setanta, invited to a feast at the blacksmith Culann’s house, used his hurley and sliotar to kill the Culann's vicious guard dog when it attacked him. Setanta then promised to guard Culann until a new guard dog could be found. This is how he took the name Cúchulainn – the hound of Culann.
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Interests: Ireland - Luxembourg - Christmas/Rugby/Racehorses on Stamps.

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Thanks, Elkra, for sharing this beautiful set! :)

Greek Mythological Figures in Aesop's Fables

Aesop (c. 620 – 564 BCE) was a Greek fabulist and storyteller credited with a number of fables now collectively known as Aesop’s Fables. Greek mythological figures appear In many of Aesop’s fables. On March 5, 1987, Greece issued as set of eight stamps about Aesop’s Fables. Three of them depicting fables in which the main figures are from Greek mythology

Zeus and the Snake
Zeus was getting married and all the animals brought gifts to him. The snake also came creeping along, holding a rose in his mouth. When Zeus saw him, he said, “I am willing to take gifts from all the other animals, even when they carry them in their feet, but from your mouth, I will take nothing.'
The fable shows that even the favours of wicked people are frightening.

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Boreas, the North Wind and the Sun
Boreas, the North Wind, and the Sun had a quarrel about which of them was the stronger. While they were disputing with much heat and bluster, a Traveler passed along the road wrapped in a cloak.
"Let us agree," said the Sun, "that he is the stronger who can strip that Traveler of his cloak." "Very well," growled the North Wind, and at once sent a cold, howling blast against the Traveler. With the first gust of wind the ends of the cloak whipped about the Traveler's body. But he immediately wrapped it closely around him, and the harder the Wind blew, the tighter he held it to him. The North Wind tore angrily at the cloak, but all his efforts were in vain.
Then the Sun began to shine. At first his beams were gentle, and in the pleasant warmth after the bitter cold of the North Wind, the Traveler unfastened his cloak and let it hang loosely from his shoulders. The Sun's rays grew warmer and warmer. The man took off his cap and mopped his brow. At last he became so heated that he pulled off his cloak, and, to escape the blazing sunshine, threw himself down in the welcome shade of a tree by the roadside.
The fable shows that gentleness and kind persuasion win where force and bluster fail.


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Hermes and the Axes
A man was chopping wood by a river when he dropped his axe and it was carried away by the current. The man then sat down on the riverbank and began to weep. When Hermes learned the reason for his sorrow, he brought up a golden axe and asked whether that was the man's axe. The man said that it was not his. A second time, Hermes brought up a silver axe, and again asked the man if this was the axe he had lost but the man said that it was not. The third time Hermes brought up the axe that the man had lost and when the man recognized his axe, Hermes rewarded the man's honesty by giving all of the axes to him as a gift. The man took the axes and went to tell his friends what had happened. One of the men was jealous and wanted to do the same thing. He began chopping some wood and then intentionally let his axe fall into the waters. As he was weeping, Hermes appeared and brought up a golden axe and asked the man if that was the axe he had lost, the greedy man got excited and said that it was the one. Not only did the man fail to receive any gifts from the god, he didn't even retrieve his own axe.
The fable shows that the gods are sympathetic to honest people and hostile to people who are liars.


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Source: Aeosp Fables

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Re: Mythologies of the World on Stamps

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Greek Mythology Stamps
Artemis (Diana) - goddess of the Hunt


Artemis was one of the most widely venerated of the ancient Greek deities. Her Roman equivalent is Diana. She was the Hellenic goddess of the hunt, wild animals, wilderness, childbirth, virginity and protector of young girls, bringing and relieving disease in women.

Artemis on two archaeological findings from Albania, issued by Albania on December 25, 1974:

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Diana (Artemis) with her hunting dog, by the Italian painter Paolo Veronese (1528-1588), exhibited in the Hermitage museum, St. Petersburg. Issued by the Soviet Union on September 26, 1978 to commemorate the 450th anniversary of Veronese birth:

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The Roman Artemis temple in Jerash, Jordan, issued by Jordan on June 22, 1965:

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"The Constellations" by Giovanni de Vecchi (1536 - 1614), depicting many Mythological creatures, issued by Niue on Januare 24, 1986 to publicise the International Halley Watch year:

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I think the lower left part of this stamp depicting "The Fall of Phaethon":

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Greek mythology Stamps - Tereus' Banquet

Tereus, King of Thrace and husband of Procne, raped his sister-in-law, Philomela, cutting out her tongue in order to avoid being denounced. But when Philomela weaves a tapestry, her sister Procne discovers the atrocious event. In vengeance, she kills Tereus´ son, serving it to him in a macabre banquet.

Rubens (1577-1640) chose to depict the exact moment when, after eating the dinner served to him, the Thracian king requests his son's presence. At that moment, the two women, driven mad in the face of their imminent vengeance, show him the head of the victim as one more of the plates at the banquet. This work is very likely the cruellest of the mythological scenes painted by Rubens for the small palace near Madrid called Torre de la Parada.

Tereus' Banquet, by P. P. Rubens, issued by ST. Tome and Principe on June 28, 1977 to mark 400th Anniversary of the Birth of Rubens:

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A detail from the painting was issued as a single stamp:

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Information: Museo del Prado

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Buddhist Mythology Stamps - The Life of Buddha

To celebrate the 2600th anniversary of the birth of Buddha, Sri Lanka issued on May 7, 1976 this set of 18th century mural paintings from Dambava temple in Matale depicting different events from Buddha birth:

The Dream of Queen Mahamaya:
Queen Mahamaya was the wife of Suddhodana, King of Sakya. One full moon night, the queen had a dream. She was chosen to be the mother of a child that one day would become either a King or a spiritual leader.

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King Suddhodana consulting wise men about the meaning of Queen Mahamaya's dream:

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Queen Mahamaya returned her parent’s home in Koliya for delivery of the Buddha:

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On the way to Mahamaya parent’s home, the Queen and her procession stopped at Lumbini. There, the Queen gave a birth while standing beneath a Sala tree holding a branch. She named the child Siddhartha:

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Greek Mythology Stamps - Demeter, goddess of the Agriculture

Demeter is the goddess of the grain, agriculture, harvest, growth, and nourishment, who presided over grains and the fertility of the earth. Though Demeter is often described simply as the goddess of the harvest, she presided also over the sacred law, and the cycle of life and death.

Here are several stamps depicting Demeter, goddess of the Agriculture

"Freedom from Hunger Campaign", issued by Greece on April 25, 1963:

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"Freedom from Hunger Campaign", issued by Cyprus on March 21, 1963. The Demeter figure design is based on Relief of Demeter in Pompeii:

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This stamp, depicting Demeter standing in front of a plowed field, was issued by Greece on September 20, 1951, as one of the set "Marshall Plan". The Demeter figure is based on a bas-relief from Eleusis, 440–430 BC:

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bas-relief from Eleusis, 440–430 BC: To the left Demeter, goddess of the earth and fertility, is shown giving corn to the young Triptolemos, who will pass on the knowledge of agriculture to humankind. On the right stands Persephone with her torch, who having returned from the underworld symbolises the turning of the seasons that enables agriculture to flourish.

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"The Union of Earth and Water", by Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640), depicting the Anatolian goddess Cybele, personification of Earth with Neptune, personification of water. The Greek equivalent of Cybele is Demeter. This stamp was issued by Paraguay on October 18, 1985:

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...and Paraguay is Paraguay....this stamp was issued in a big sheet:

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