Shipwreck of Saint Paul on the Stamp of Malta

18 Sep 2018  Tue

St. Paul’s Shipwreck has special significance to Malta and its people. Among the years of existence of the religion, Christianity has almost 2000 years of history in Malta. According to tradition, it was brought to the Islands by none other than the Apostle Paul himself in around A.D. 60.

It is stated in most editions of ‘The New Testament’ that the location of the event was on the island of ‘Melita’ (the islands Roman name), making the country one of only eighteen modern nations to be mentioned in the Bible.

According to the story, Paul was being taken to Rome to be tried as a political rebel, but the ship carrying him and others was caught in a violent storm only to be wrecked two weeks later on the Maltese coast. All aboard swam safely to land. The site of the wreck is traditionally known as St. Paul's Island.

The 10s stamp of Malta depicts this piece of history. Known as the “Saint Paul 10s black stamp”, the stamp itself was a revolution as it broke the tradition of depicting monarch’s head. This stamp was among the first pictorial definitive series of the country.

Engraved of Gustave Dore, the stamp depicts St. Paul standing in the middle of a raging ocean, a broken ship in the background and drowning people. All this is placed in a decorative rectangular border at the top of which Malta Postage divide by a Maltese cross is seen and the face value is seen at the bottom.

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