Archive for June, 2011

wisdom and owl / 知恵のふくろう

June 21, 2011

1 June 1960, Switzerland
‘Symbols of Occupations’
design: H. Kumpel
engrave: H. Heusser

I was in Basel last weekend and found that blacksmith’s were very important to complete European townscapes, together with architects and builders.  Door handles, letter boxes, balconies and shop signs hang over the entrances, were hand made and express a love for their houses.

In this stamp, the owl is symbolising a succession of knowledge through generations – from fathers to their sons.  Now, daughters are joining them proudly and taking the T-shaped ruler and hammer in their hands!



Northern Owls / 北国のふくろう

June 12, 2011

4 September 1998, Finland
‘Bubo bubo’
‘Aegolius funereus’
‘Bubo bubo’
design: E Brunn

The previous two stamps are from a set, completed by these three.  They are all on one sheet, as shown below.  Bubo bubo, known as the Eurasian Eagle-owl, is a large owl, with a wingspan of up to 2 metres.  The smaller one beside it, Tengmalm’s Owl, is similar in appearance to the Tawny Owl, which is hooting near by our house these days, but has a golden ring in its eyes.


Great Grey Owl / カラフトフクロウ

June 7, 2011

4 September 1998, Finland
design: E Brunn

Maybe the owl I saw last summer in France was this Great Grey Owl, as I saw a kind of white face?  But this type of owl lives in Northern areas and is very large – it is also threatened in numbers.  In fact, what I saw was the more common Barn Owl – and its face is featured in this stamp.


Snowy Owl / シロフクロウ

June 6, 2011

4 September 1998, Finland
‘Nyictea Scandiaca’
design: E Brunn

Last summer in France, I saw an owl for the first time in my life.  I thought it was greyish White, but it was already in an almost dark atmosphere.  So, I checked the Latin name on this stamp, then read articles about it.  No, the Snowy Owls live further north than where I was…