Sunday, December 29, 2013

Not Only a Bell, but on 11-12-13-14

This cover with the lovely minisheet was sent to me by my friend Dr. Avinash Jagtap from Switzerland. I will tell you more about the stamp in the following paragraphs. But, first look at the post mark. Yes, guys it is not just dated 11-12-13 but 11-12-13-14.  Remarkable really! Thank you Sir, for this wonderful cover.

Now, Stamp Day 2013 was celebrated  from 13 to 15 December under the umbrella of aarphila13 in the “bell town” of Aarau – definitely an appropriate venue for presenting stamps with a festive acoustic flavour in the run up to Christmas.

No, Aarau does not have more bells than any other town in Switzerland. It owes its “bell town” nickname to the bell-making industry that once flourished there. The oldest recorded bell made in Canton Aargau’s capital dates back to 1367 and still rings out from Fribourg’s cathedral steeple to this day. It was made where the the firm of H. Rüetschi AG, one of Switzer-land’s last and oldest bell foundries, now stands. Rüetschi bells do not just hang in countless Swiss steeples but peal all over the world. One of the most famous sets of bells made in Aarau now hangs in London where it was a Swiss Centre landmark in the 1980s. Late in 2011, this reno-vated carillon was installed as a free-standing structure advertising Switzerland on the city’s famed Leicester Square. But bells from Aarau continue to delight the ears of innumerable tourists at Berne’s Zytglogge clock tower day in, day out.

Has anybody ever wondered what a church bell weighing several tonnes has in common with a feather-weight stamp? Nothing visual, that’s for sure. Yet bells and stamps can be seen as soul mates. Both artistically combine aesthetics with accuracy. And both seemingly disparate elements are an acknowledged part of Switzerland’s cultural heritage. Reason enough, therefore, for Swiss Post to choose this motif for Stamp Day in Aarau and give bells pride of place on the specially designed postcard and miniature sheet. So collectors and stamp fans can look for- ward to a resonant philatelic event. The designer of this lovely mini sheet is Martin Eberhard.

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