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2005-03-07 12:00

Spring stamps bursting with food, flowers and beautiful birdsong

On March 10 Sweden Post is releasing stamps that fire the imagination in the run-up to spring. Stamp designs featuring sumptuous ingredients arouse our joy of food. Spring flowers and the fluted call of the golden oriole fuel our longing for leisurely walks in nature. Further, Sweden Post is honoring the Swedish former United Nations Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld, who would have celebrated his 100th birthday this year.

As spring approaches our faces turn toward the warming rays of the sun. Spring's first flowers begin to wiggle free of the cheerless earth and suddenly yellowish-green Yellow Star of Bethlehem and lavender Pasqueflower cautiously pierce the tired winter soil. Imbued with the spirit of spring Sweden Post has created the four stamp Signs of Spring issue. 

The spring sun has been known to give us an energy kick. For many of us, getting together with loved for a meal is a wonderful way to expend this surplus energy. The ingredients renowned Swedish chef Tina Nordström selected for The Joy of Food with Tina! - EUROPA 2005 stamp issue - including red beets, goat cheese, elderberry, Jerusalem artichokes and lemons - doubtless will inspire a host of thrilling dishes.  

Sweden Post also is commemorating the life of revered Dag Hammarskjöld, born 100 years ago in Jönköping, Sweden. Hammarskjöld served as Secretary-General of the United Nations, creating among other things the organization's peacekeeping forces. Sweden Post is issuing two stamp designs: a portrait of Dag Hammarskjöld and the waving United Nations flag. 

A beautiful melody can revive memories, augment a sensation or even give us strength in times of need. Infrequently heard in Sweden, witnesses describe the call of the golden oriole as alluring and flute-like. The yellow-and-black bird arrives in Sweden in May and remains only for the summer months. Nowadays the golden oriole is most commonly sighted in the southern region of Skåne and the island of Öland, where it roosts in the tallest treetops. Sweden Post is capturing this pre-summer melody in its Golden Oriole stamp issue.  

Digital photos can be downloaded here: 

For more information, please contact:
Thérèse Bergling, PR and Communications, phone: +46 8-781 64 60, email: 

About Sweden PostSweden Post connects people and organizations around the world by delivering mail promptly, reliably and cost-effectively. We drive value creation by combining conventional postal services and convenient electronic solutions, and integrating these services into customer businesses. With over 3,000 retail service outlets, we provide daily service to 4.3 million homes and 800,000 businesses in Sweden. Every day we handle 20 million pieces of mail. With sales of over SEK 25 billion and roughly 35,000 employees, the group is one of the largest in Sweden. The parent company, Posten AB (publ), is wholly owned by the Swedish state. For more information, please visit our website at  

Technical details 

Date of issue: March 10  

Signs of spring
Four stamp designs depicting delightful spring flowers. 

Lily of the valley, Convallaria majalis, blooms between May and June. The small, bell-shaped flowers spread their fragrance through groves and wooded hillsides. The Yellow Star of Bethlehem, Gagea lutea, blooms between April and May, displaying rather unassuming yellowish-green blossoms. People once used the dried and ground bulbs in make-do bread. 

Pasqueflower, Pulsatilla vulgaris, blooms between April and May. Below the lavender flower, around the stem, is a leaf covered in silky whit hairs. Pasqueflower, a perennial, has been used by folk medicine practitioners to ease paralysis and melancholy.  

Wood Anemone, Anemone nemorosa, blooms between April and May, carpeting wooded areas in the springtime.  

Illustrated by: Kerstin Olsson-Grönvik
Manufacturing process: Four-color offset
Format: Four designs in a booklet of ten self-adhesive stamps
Denomination: First-Class Domestic  

 The Joy of Food with Tina! - EUROPA 2005
Food that inspires. Food that brings people together. Swedish gastronomy is making huge strides and Swedish chefs are bringing their culinary expertise to international settings. Gastronomy is the theme for the 2005 Europa stamps. The Joy of Food with Tina! - EUROPA 2005 issue features three airy still life portraits depicting various savory ingredients. 

The first stamp design portrays elderberry chutney and two ingredients: star anise and lemon. The second stamp serves up Katja apples, rosemary and Jerusalem artichokes, which taken together create a sumptuous side dish for meat or fish. The third stamp depicts red beets, goat cheese and chives.  

Preproduction by: Jenny Halling Sjöstedt
Format: Booklet of six stamps (three designs)
Manufacturing process: Four-color offset
Denomination: First-Class Domestic   

Dag Hammarskjöld
He was known as an efficient and engaged leader who vigorously asserted the integrity of the United Nations and the interests of smaller nations. Dag Hammarskjöld was born in Jönköping, Sweden in 1905. In 1953 Hammarskjöld rose to the office of Secretary-General of the United Nations. 

One of Dag Hammarskjöld's greatest achievements was the creation of a United Nations peacekeeping force, which he organized in response to the 1956 Suez crisis. Since then this military force has been used in a string of similar situations. Dag Hammarskjöld's last major crisis situation was in Congo. In 1961 he flew to the scene for negotiations. The plane crashed en route to Ndola. Hammarskjöld posthumously received the Nobel Peace Prize the same year.  

In 2005 Sweden Post is issuing two stamps to commemorate Dag Hammarskjöld's birth 100 years ago. The first stamp features a portrait of Dag Hammarskjöld. The second design depicts a United Nations flag waving in the wind. 

Photography by: Yousuf Karsh/Pressens Bild
Flag illustrated by: Anders Holmquist and Frank Martin
Engraved by: Piotr Naszarkowski
Designed by: Gustav Malmfors
Manufacturing process: Two-color intaglioFormat: Roll (two designs)
Denomination: First-Class Domestic 

Golden Oriole
Sweden Post has captured the elusive Golden Oriole (Oriolus oriolus) on this pres-summer stamp. The male is strikingly patterned in buttercup-yellow and jet black, whereas females are greener and no easier to detect. The male is a luminous yellow and black, whereas the female has a greenish back and yellowish and white breast. The Golden Oriole arrives in Sweden in May and stays only for the summer months. Nowadays the golden oriole is most commonly sighted in the southern region of Skåne and the island of Öland. In the rest of Europe the Golden Oriole is far more common than it is in Sweden.  

Watercolor by: Magnus von Wright (1830)
Typography by: Gustav Malmfors
Engraved by: Lars Sjööblom
Manufacturing process: Combination two-color intaglio and four-color offset
Format: RollDenomination: 11 kronor

Last Updated: 2005-03-07 12:00