Swallows

SOME EARLY PHILATELIC SWALLOWS

This collection of swallows on stamps and stationery is a selection from features that appeared in "Flight" in June and September 2009 plus some supplementary material. The display takes the form of some pages from the album of a member of the Society.

THE FIRST SWALLOW - LITHUANIA (1926)

This set of three airmail stamps was issued by Lithuania on 22nd May 1926, being the first appearance of the swallow on stamps.

Two varieties of this set are shown in the illustration. Position 20 on the sheet of the 40c value shows a constant variety of 'CIETUVA' instead of 'LIETUVA' and, of much greater significance, there is the inverted swallow on the 60c value.

This express cover displaying two of the 20c value stamps did not, it appears, achieve an express delivery because of the address. Posted 29th July 1927 at Kursenai, it arrived a month later on 31st August - unless it was a 'return to sender' date, it not having found its destination. (Tax mark and back stamp below.)

GREAT BRITAIN (1937)

This is a 1937 King George VIth greetings telegram - a 14th June Coronation Summer issue. The swallow has a juvenile appearance with short tail feathers and a reddish upper breast.

ITALY AND OVERPRINTS (1945+)

Four of a set of 13 Airmail stamps depict - Swallows in flight.

The stamps were the 2 lire dull ultramarine, 5 lire deep green, 25 lire blue (1946) and 25 lire yellow-brown (1947). As shown below, these Italian stamps were overprinted A.M.G. F.T.T (Allied Military Government - Free Territory of Trieste) and A.M.G.V.G. (Venezia, Giulia & Istria) in 1947 during the allied military occupation.

Austrian proof (1953)

Barn Swallow - (Hirundo rustica) Rauchschwalben

Austria has the swallow as its national bird, which appears on the 1s value of the seven stamp airmail set of birds and was issued 29th September 1953. Shown in an unfinished die proof colour trial dated 20th March 1950 prior to the addition of the value tablet and the bird's name in the centre of the bottom margin, this proof being in the same colour as the issued stamp.

GREAT BRITAIN (1957)

GB World Scout Jubilee Jamboree - 1957 4d ultramarine

The swallow theme here symbolises the migration of scouts from around the world to Britain for the jubilee

Below are variants overprinted 25 NP for Arab States
Bahrain
Muscat
Qatar

IFNI (1958)

Aid for Valencia - 6th March 1958

In 1957 the Spanish city suffered a severe flood by the Turia River, with 5 metres (16 ft) in some streets.

A set of three stamps and and a first-day cover show Barn Swallows in flight and both also carry the arms of Ifni and Valencia.

The arms of Valencia carry a bat with outstretched wings.

NB. Ifni on the Atlantic coast of Morocco was ceded by Spain to Morocco on 30th June 1969.

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