Sunday, 15 May 2016

In A Postal Garden

2015: Links with China - Garden Flowers
Jersey boasts that it has more hours of sunshine than anywhere else in the British Isles so no wonder it is an island full of flowers.  The flower stamps were painted by Wang Huming (who also created the FDC) and drawn by Martin Mörk.  They had first met in the past when Martin Mörk was training engravers at China Post where Wang Huming is Deputy Chief Designer.  A stamp power duo for Jersey Post.  

Jersey Post quotes the Chinese saying 'Hai Kai Fu Gui' (when garden flowers bloom, prosperity comes) and mentions the symbolism of each flower in China on the back of the envelope.  I thought it would be interesting to contrast the meanings from my 'Illuminated Language of Flowers' (the Victorians were great lovers of symbolism in flowers although there is really no definitive list).  Let's start from the top stamp and the Magnolia which in ancient times only the Chinese Emperor was allowed to own and is thought to symbolise a beautiful woman.  For us it symbolises a love of nature.
Camellia: China - a token of devotion between lovers. West - depends on the colour but red is unpretending excellence which sounds rather less exciting that the white camellia - Perfected Loveliness
Azalia: China - thoughtfulness and pensiveness. West - temperance
Hydrangea: China - love, gratitude and heartfelt feelings. West -  A boaster. Heartlessness
Chrysanthemum: longevity, representing a life of ease as well as attracting good luck into the home. West - the red - I love; the white - truth and the yellow - slighted love
Peony: China - prosperity, happiness and peace. West - shame bashfulness.

Whatever their meanings they are all wonderful in gardens as are
1970s: Definitives - Garden Roses (Designer: Alan G Mitchell)
roses, which have a myriad of meanings.  I always enjoy just browsing their names in garden centres.  New Zealand chose, 1c Sterling Silver, 2c Lili Marlene and 3c Queen Elizabeth
  4c  Super Star, 5c Diamond, 6c Cresset and 7c Michelle Meilland
and 8c Josephine Bruce (the one I don't have to complete the set is the 9c Iceberg). Later in 1979 and 1980 New Zealand post overprinted three roses for the increase in postage price. It's a rather nice definitive set which seems to encapsulate the country consisting of these garden roses which grow well in New Zealand (a little piece of home for those early British settlers) together with Maori artifacts, sea shells and the 'beehive' parliamentary building.

An entry to Sunday Stamps II theme - Flowers - more blooms growing at See It On A Postcard    


4 comments:

Bob Scotney said...

Every one of these stamps are beautiful, New Zealand always has special flower stamp it seems,

FinnBadger said...

Gorgeous stamps, I think I like the Jersey set the most. I recently learned of the symbolism of flowers in China - I feel we (in the west) have tended to forget symbolism to a large degree.

Eva A. said...

I love them. Flowers look always beautiful on stamps.

Ana said...

that FDC looks magnificent!