First Stamps of Liechtenstein

22 May 2019  Wed

The first stamps of the country of Liechtenstein were issued on 1st February 1912 honouring the reigning Johann II, Prince of Liechtenstein.

The Principality of Liechtenstein is a doubly landlocked Alpine micro-state in Western Europe, bordered by Switzerland and Austria. The postal history of the principality pre-dates introduction of the first postage stamps in 1850. The principality was obliged to use Austrian stamps until 1912.

The first Astro-Hungarian stamps were issued on 1 June 1850 and were immediately valid for use in Liechtenstein. The first stamps specific to Liechtenstein were issued on 1 February 1912. The stamps honour the reigning monarch Johann II, Prince of Liechtenstein.

Johann II, also known as Johann II the Good was the Prince of Liechtenstein between 1858 and 1929. His reign of 70 years and 91 days is the second-longest of any major monarch in European history. The first Liechtenstein specific stamps bear his portraits.

The set three of stamps issued to commemorate his reign were issued with the denominations of 5 Austro-Hungarian Heller, 10 Austro-Hungarian Heller, 25 Austro-Hungarian Heller. The stamp features a right facing portrait of the king.

Although these honoured the reigning Johann II they were still subject to Austrian mandate and the full inscription on them was K. K. Osterr. The designs and values were done according to the Austrian standard. Following the collapse of Hapsburg Austria in 1918, Liechtenstein secured postal independence and began issuing its own stamps from July 1920.

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