On 13th February, the Royal Mail released 12 stamps featuring drawings of Leonardo da Vinci from the Royal Collection, to honour the legendary artist on his 500th death anniversary. The collection was acquired by King Charles II in 1670 and contains 550 da Vinci drawings in total.
Two strips of six se-tenant non-denominated stamps will be issued in separate sheets of 60. A drawing of a sectioned skull is shown on the first stamp. It was made using pen and ink in 1489. The next stamp features a sprig of guelder rose drawn in red chalk on orange-red paper somewhere between 1506 and 12. The third one features a pen-and-ink drawing of three cats which was made in 1517-18. The fourth one shows star-of-Bethlehem and other plants in pen and ink over red chalk, made in 1506-12. The fifth one is a 1510-11 pen-and-ink with wash drawing depicting the anatomy of the shoulder and foot. The sixth one shows a 1505-08 pen-and-ink over black chalk drawing of the head of Leda. The drawings shown on the fifth and sixth stamps were used on a painting called Leda and the swan, which was probably destroyed in the 18th century.
The seventh stamp shows a 1517-18 black chalk drawing, of the head of a bearded man. The eighth one shows a 1510-11 pen and ink with wash drawing of a skeleton. A 1495 black chalk drawing showing the head of St. Philip is featured on the 9th stamp. It was used for creating the late 15th-century mural The Last Supper. A 1517-18 black chalk drawing of a woman in a landscape is shown in the 10th stamp. A 1485-88 silver-point drawing on blue prepared paper of the design for an equestrian monument of Francesco I Sforza of Milan, is shown on the 11th stamp A 1488 pen-and-ink drawing showing light falling on a face, is depicted on the last stamp.
The stamps were designed by Kate Stephens by using images from the Royal Collection Trust. The text “1st”, a silhouette of Queen Elizabeth II, and the text “Leonardo da Vinci” are also included in the stamp design. They were printed by lithography at International Security Printers printed them.
Prestige booklets, first-day covers and postcards are also available.
Italian mint had recently issued a special commemorative coin to honour Leonardo da Vinci on his 500th death anniversary.
Click here to learn more about Leonardo da Vinci.
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Image Courtesy: Royal Mail
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