On 9 May 2014, MaltaPost issued a set of two stamps depicting traditional Maltese musical instruments. One of the stamps also is participating in this year’s EUROPA stamp competition themed -“National Music Instruments”.
The EUROPA stamp issues encourage cooperation between European postal operators, by creating awareness of Europe’s common roots, culture and history and common goals through such philatelic issues. For this year’s issue, the Malta stamps highlight musical instruments that were popular in the 19th century. They portray details from an oil painting by the renowned Italian artist Girolamo Gianni who was active in Malta in the latter part of the 19th century. The stamps depict bagpipe and drum musicians performing at Valletta’s Porta Reale.
The €0.59 stamp will be Malta’s entry for the Best EUROPA Stamp Contest. The contest is an annual online event where creative entries from across Europe compete for the best design. One can vote for the best EUROPA stamp by visiting www.posteurop.org.
The “National Music Instruments” set was designed by MaltaPost and was issued in a sheetlet bearing 11 stamps. Each stamp measures 47.15 mm x 20.5mm, has a perforation of 13.6 x 13.7 (comb.) bearing the Maltese Crosses watermark. Printex Ltd has printed the stamps in offset and the issue consists of 39,600 of each stamp.