Each summer a small island in the Irish Sea becomes the focus of motorcycling enthusiasts from around the world.

The Isle of Man is a self-governing British Crown Dependency between Great Britain and Ireland. The island is about 32 miles long and, at its widest, 14 miles wide. It has been inhabited for more than eight thousand years. English is the main language spoken but the island has its own Celtic origin language (Manx). The Isle of Man’s Tynwald (parliament), is believed to be the oldest continuous parliamentary body in the world.

The island used British stamps until 1958 when Great Britain’s regional issues began. The Isle of Man Post Office was founded in 1973 to secure postal independence and, since then, the island has issued its own stamps.

 

The first issue was a fifteen pence commemorative which depicted the Vikings landing on the island in 938.

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Though not normally having a great interest in the game of golf I find myself absolutely glued to the television for a certain three-day event which occurs every two years.

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The 2018 football World Cup held in Russia was a great success and it was wonderful to see countries with relatively tiny populations doing so well in the competition.The host nation also competed well, achieving their best results since finishing fourth in 1966.

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Now the 21st football World Cup Championship is well under way let’s take a look at some stamps from the past celebrating the event. The winner of the first competition, held in 1930, was Uruguay. In 2005, 75 years after that victory, Uruguay produced the above stamp set. Three of the stamps feature scenes connected with the Final which Uruguay won, defeating Argentina 4-2. The other stamp looks forward to the 2006 World Cup which was held in Germany.

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Now and then we focus on the incredible variety of subjects that can be found on postage stamps, some being very unusual. And today I came across some such stamps. Those in question feature a sport whose participants must not only have a considerable amount of stamina but also excellent navigational skills. The sport, orienteering, began in Sweden in the late 19th Century and involved the crossing of unknown land with the aid of a map and a compass.

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As a young boy collecting stamps I was often more attracted to those with colour and shape rather than rarity. Diamond-shaped stamps from Hungary, Monaco and the Burundi particularly caught my eye.

The stamp on the left is from Hungary 1953, overprinted to celebrate a famous 6 goals to 3 victory by the national team over England at Wembley Stadium.

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I many warm countries the colourful shirts on the stamps below are common attire for men. Many other men living in cooler climes may have one or two of these spectacularly-decorated items of clothing sitting in their wardrobes, waiting for the summer months or their annual holidays. Typically known as Hawaiian shirts, U.S.A. issued the stamps in 2012 with the Hawaii greeting word “Aloha”.

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Below are some examples of the hundreds of stamps recently added to PostBeeld’s vast stock.

A few attractive booklets from the Channel Islands including this from Guernsey:

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The above stamp was issued by Hungary in 2010 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Hungarian Grand Prix for Formula 1 racing cars. As with so many stamps, there is a historical significance attached to that particular issue.

In 1986, after a failed attempt to host a race in the former Soviet Union, then Formula 1 franchise owner Bernie Ecclestone signed a contract in London for the first five years of the Hungarian Grand Prix. A track was quickly built and the first race was held on August 10th, 1986.

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A mint, never-hinged stamp pair issued by South-West Africa in 1936.

Below, five 1937 Edward VIII Coronation stamp pairs, South Africa.

2004 Football European Championship winners Greece commemorated by this set of four stamps.

World Wildlife Fund stamps issued by Malawi in 1978.

Butterflies, Mozambique, 2002 and 2000.

From Manama 1971, stamp sheet featuring a self-portrait of the artist Modigliani and one of his seated nude paintings.

1963, Poland, featuring reptiles.And Polish airmail definitives from 1957.

Baseball stamps issued by Curacao 2013. This is just a small selection from the hundreds of stamps added to the postbeeld.com website daily.

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