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Different Tongues

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There have been many postage stamps imprinted with more than one language but the first from Great Britain was issued in 1968. This was the Menai Bridge stamp, part of a set featuring British bridges.
The Menai Bridge connects mainland Wales to the island of Anglesey and is entitled in English and Welsh. You might notice the Welsh word for bridge is the same as in French.


The stamp above, known as the Welsh Stucco (Stwco Cymreig) stamp, was designed by artist Sheila Robinson (b.1925 – d.1988) and was part of a 4-value set that comprised styles of cottages from Scotland, Northern Ireland, England and Wales.

Also in Welsh and English, the stamp top left in the set of modern university buildings below depicts Aberystwyth University College.

In 1976 Great Britain issued a set featuring cultural traditions of the kingdom. Two of the stamps have Welsh and English inscriptions and depict the annual Welsh Eisteddfod – a festival of literature, music and performance. The other stamps in the set depict the English Morris Dance and Scotland’s Highland Games. The Highland Games stamp is also the first issued by Great Britain that is inscribed in the Scottish Gaelic language.

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