EUROPE 2015 “OLD TOYS”

EUROPE 2015 “OLD TOYS”  

“Old Toys” is the theme chosen by PostEurop for this year’s joint philatelic issue of member States. Toys recall an important time during a child’s growth and development, and are characterized today by a rapid evolution often resulting in trends of a brief or very short duration. At the same time, some toys have become part of the cultural heritage of society and continue to draw the interest of the young. Examples include toy soldiers and dolls, which have been part of human history since ancient times. The Philatelic and Numismatic Office has produced for this occasion a series of two postage stamps with designs by artist Stefano Morri featuring toys, which, although “old”, also represent a universal symbol of a child playing. The 80 cent euro value shows three toy soldiers representing in scale three papal Gendarmes in formal uniforms worn by the Corps during the Napoleonic era up until 1965. In the background the walls of a room can be seen with other traditional handcrafted toys. The 95 cent euro value also shows more toy soldiers with two Pontifical Swiss Guards who are wearing what is probably the most famous uniform in the world. One of the guards is playing the drums, while the other is carrying the classic halberd, which is still in use today in official ceremonies and in some services of standing guard. The dice with the first initials of the Corps and a glass marble complete the foreground of the design. The profile of St. Peter’s Basilica can be seen in the background, a panoramic view from the terrace of a building in Rome.