Germania, the personification of the German nation, is represented as robust woman with long, flowing, reddish-blonde hair. She wears armor and wields the Reichsschwert imperial sword and medieval style shield. The 11th Century Imperial Crown of the Holy Roman Empire is solidly planted on her head. Modern visualizations of Germania originated in the Romantic Era and the Revolutions of 1848, and bring patriotic imagery to an emotional high point. She is metaphorically similar to Hibernia for Ireland, Caledonia for Scotland, and Lusitania for Portugal.
General issue stamps from Germany from 1902 until 1922 featured the Germania design , representing the longest running series in German postal history. Emperor Wilhelm II decided on the overall design, featuring the mythical Germania as symbol of the nation. The Jugendstil (Art Nouveau) design was engraved by Paul Eduard Waldraff (1870-1917), who used the famous actress Anna Fuhring as a model wearing the octagonal imperial crown and holding a sword and an olive branch.
During WWI Germania stamps were released in occupied areas of Belgium, France, Russian Poland, and Romania. German post offices abroad in China, Morocco and Turkey also used the Germania stamps, but German colonies used the Hohenzollern Yacht series: Samoa, Marshall Islands, Mariana Islands. Caroline Islands, Kiatschou, Togo, Kamerun, German New Guinea, German Southwest Africa, and German East Africa.
Most other nations of Europe at the time featured images of the ruling monarch, but Germany's use of the Germania figure was a gesture to unify the young nation under a common mythological archetype. In this way the complicated German royalty was set at ease and the coexisting postal authorities in the provinces of Bavaria and Wurttemburg were not challenged.
Image Size: 4" x 5"
Paper Size: 10" x 13"
Paper Type: Rives Lightweight Buff, 115 grams
Edition Size: 50
Inks Used: Van Son Oil-based Inks: Pantone 520 purple; Pantone 364 green
Date cut: 2020-01-16 Purple; 2020-02-16 Green
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