I used to collect stamps for a few years as a child, and that may be the reason I still love stamps – colorful with beautiful pictures and interesting information. I think it’s really nice how postal services around the world still take the effort to design new , as people send fewer and fewer letters. Since I also love languages, I really like finding stamps that are about languages.
A stamp was dedicated to the Hebrew language was issued in 2011 by Israel Post (click to enlarge):
The plant’s leaves spell out עברית or Hebrew (“Ivrit”), and its roots extend to four layers of the ground, each representing a historic form of Hebrew: Biblical, Mishnaic, Medieval and Modern, the deepest layer being the oldest. Words from the corresponding Hebrew form are written on each branch of the root, all still in use, as Modern Hebrew draws from all of them. For more information, check out this article on the Hebrew Academy website.
In April 2014 Israel Post issued another language stamp, but this time for a completely different language – Israeli Sign Language. ISL has its own syntax and it’s a language of its own. These stamps teach us how to sign thank you, kiss, friendship, love, and goodbye (bottom row, left to right). The labels show us how to spell in ISL (click to enlarge):
These new stamps inspired some research, and I found two older language stamps. The first was issued in 1959 and bears the picture of Eliezer Ben-Yehuda (1858-1922), who was the force behind the resurrection of Hebrew (click to enlarge):
The second is from 2006 and bears the portrait of Ludwik L. Zamenhof (1859-1917), the creator of Esperanto. Zamenhof’s image is created from Esperanto words (click to enlarge):
Do you know other language-related stamps? Please comment!