It will be a great third issue for Iceland on September 14th, with a whole lot of new goodies on the way!
Six new stamps and a souvenir sheet will be issued :
- 500 years of Reformation
- 100th Anniversary of the Icelandic Chamber of Commerce
- sets II in the series “Iceland’s seabed Ecosystem II” and “Wild Icelandic Vegetation II”
- Day of the Stamp. 250 Years of Foreign Scientific Expedition and Travelers to Iceland
The delivery of the 2017 Sepac folder was originally planned for this issue. It has, however, been postponed to October due to unforeseen delays in the delivery to our offices.
The Reformation – 500th Anniversary
In 2017, 500 years have passed since Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, bringing on the beginning of the reformation movement which was to have vast consequences in many parts of Europe. In Iceland, the Reformation took place in the middle of the 16th century – the point of reference generally being the execution of Jón Arason, the catholic bishop of Hólar, and his two sons (sic), in 1550. The Reformation had radical effects on Icelandic society – among others, Church property fell into the hands of the King of Denmark and the commercial influence of the Danish crown in Iceland greatly increased, culminating in the Monopoly which was enacted in 1602. Legislation and enforcement of laws also became much stricter when the notorious Stóridómur (Grand Judgement) was passed in 1564.
In Iceland, Church and state are not separated and to this day, the National Church of Iceland (Þjóðkirkjan in Icelandic), the official Christian church in Iceland, professes the Lutheran faith.
The motif featured on the stamp is the title page of the New Testament, the first book printed in Icelandic, translated in 1540 by Oddur Gottskálksson.
Iceland Chamber of Commerce – 100th Anniversary
The Iceland Council of Commerce was founded on September 17, 1917. In September 2005 the name was changed to Iceland Chamber of Commerce. The aim of the organization is to strengthen Icelandic commerce and create healthy and advantageous trading practices among those engaged in commerce. The Chamber and its associates hold that a healthy and powerful economic life will create the prerequisites for progress and improve the standard of living in Iceland.
A total of 236 companies and associations are affiliated with the Chamber of Commerce.
Iceland’s Seabed Ecosystem II
The Giant file clam (Acesta excavata) is a large and moderately convex bivalve living in the south and southwest of Iceland at a depth of 200-1400 m. The largest shells measure 17 cm in height and 10 cm in width. It is the largest bivalve found in Icelandic waters. The animal itself is pink or orange in colour while the shell is whitish. The giant file clam is often found close to corals and coral reefs. It subsists on plankton which is filtered from the mass of sea water. The file clam is considered excellent food but it is not harvested or used for culinary purposes.
Zigzag coral (Madrepora oculata), a stony coral that forms a hard calcium shell, is one of three coral species that can form coral reefs in Icelandic waters. Its growth rate is about 3-20 mm annually, so it takes an enormous amount of time to form a coral reef! In Iceland the zigzag coral grows at the edge of the continental shelf off the south and west of Iceland in a depth of 200-1000 meters. These coral reefs are protected.
Wild Icelandic Vegetation II – Lichen
Common orange lichen (Xanthoria parietina) is a common lichen in places where maritime climate is prevalent in Iceland. Widespread in the South and West of Iceland, it grows on rocks, concrete walls or even tree trunks! Sometimes it even covers whole rock faces on bird cliffs! It is quite big, often 6-10 cm in diameter and best distinguished from other lichens by distinctively leafy edges which are easy to pry loose from the underlay (although it is not recommended, Icelandic vegetation being extremely vulnerable)
Bullseye lichen (Placopsis gelida) is common all over the country. It lives in close proximity with green algae. Bullseye lichen was one of the first three lichens to be found in Surtsey after the island formed in 1963. It is common where humid marine climate prevails but rarely found in the country’s northern interior where the climate is more continental. It can also be found at high altitudes where foggy weather is more common than in the lowlands. The bullseye lichen grows on stones, both basalt and tuff, and often on pebbles on the ground.
Last but not least for our September issue, this remarkable souvenir sheet we talked about in our last post for the Day of the Stamp!
NB – in this issue, all stamps but the souvenir sheet are self-adhesive.
All these issues are available as of now from our webstore. You can see them here
You can also pre-order them at the address firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at : 00354-580-1050 from 9am-4pm Icelandic time