First-Commemorative-Stamps-of-Lithuania

First Commemorative Stamps of Lithuania

18 Aug 2018  Sat

First Commemorative Stamps of Lithuania were issued on 16th February 1920. A set of eleven stamps were issued to celebrate the Second Anniversary of National Independence.

During the 14th Century, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was the largest country in Europe, stretching from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea. The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth was created in 1569, and this unified state dominated Eastern Europe for two centuries, when it was dismantled and annexed by the Russian Empire.

Following the Russian Revolution, in 1918, Lithuania declared its independence. However, the new Lithuanian republic was very short-lived. The Republic of Lithuania was awarded to the USSR. During World War II, Lithuania was occupied by the army of the USSR (1940), the German army (1941), and then again by the army of the USSR (1944).

The postal service of the Post-World-War I republic required new postage stamps. The first commemorative issue was released in the year 1920 which included 11 stamps with 4 main themes. The designs of the stamps are symbolic or metaphorical representations.

The 10 skatiky, 15 skatiky and 20 skatiky stamps feature Lithuania receiving benediction. The stamp features a priest in the centre giving blessings to a man who is kneeling down with his hands spread. The next set of stamps is comprised of three stamps with the denominations 30 Skatiky, 50 skatiky and 60 skatiky. The stamp features Allegorical representation of the spirit of Lithuania rising. The stamp shows a figure of a woman rising from abyss holding a lamp on his hands.

The third set includes three stamps with the denominations 50 Skatiky, 80 Skatiky and 1 auksinas. These stamps depict the representation of Lithuania with broken chains. The stamp portrays a woman rising in the sunlight her hands holding broken chains. The last set includes two stamps featuring representation of the White Knight over Gediminas Tower. Vytis or White Knight is the national symbol of Lithuania who is shown mounted on horseback. it represents Lithuania driving away invaders.

Lithuania again became an independent republic, when the Soviet Union collapsed at the end of the 20th Century and it is now a prosperous member of the European Union.

Image Courtesy: https://colnect.com