Royal Mail issued a set of six stamps as 3 se-tenant pairs on 24th May to celebrate the 200th birth anniversary of Queen Victoria. The stamps highlight major events from the Queen’s life. 10 stamps, images and text are included in a prestige booklet called “Victoria: A Long and Glorious Reign”. A souvenir sheet containing four stamps is dedicated to Prince Albert featuring buildings related to the prince.
Two £1.60 stamps feature the earliest images of Victoria. Another one features an 11-year-old Victoria sketching while her pet terrier Fanny is beside her. This design is based on an 1830 painting by an artist and princess’ drawing master Richard Westall.
Another £1.60 stamp features George Hayter’s painting of Victoria’s wedding ceremony that was held on 10th February 1840. The text “Marriage of Victoria and Albert” appears on this stamp.
A £1.35 stamp is based on a formal 1859 portrait by German painter Franz Xaver Winterhalter, in which the Queen is wearing the Robes of State, circlet, and earrings and necklace made by Garrard’s, the jewellers in 1858. Her left hand is kept on some papers, next to the Imperial State Crown, and in the Westminster can be seen in the background.
Another £1.35 stamp is based on an 1876 portrait by Charles Burton Barber where the Queen is on horseback wearing a black mourning dress. Her Scottish servant, John Brown is also shown in the painting. After Prince Albert died on 14th December 1861, Queen Victoria wore black until her death on 22nd January 1901.
A non-denominated first stamp shows an 1878 painting by Theodore Blake Wirgman featuring the queen with Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli at Osborne House. The last stamp in the series shows an 1890 portrait of the Queen by Baron Heinrich von Angeli.
The timeline and year dates of every event are highlighted on all stamps. A design company from London named Webb & Webb Design designed these six stamps. They were printed by lithography by International Security Printers in sheets of 60 and sold in panes of 30.
First-day covers, 11 postcards with designs of the 10 stamps and the souvenir sheet; and a presentation pack with the six stamps and the souvenir sheet are also available for purchase.
Victoria was born on 24th May 1819, at Kensington Palace in London. She ascended to the throne on 20th June 1837, after her uncle King William IV died. The official coronation ceremony of Queen Victoria was held in 1938.
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Image Courtesy: The Royal Mail
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