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Romanian Philatelic Exhibition EFIRO 2019, 5th Edition

To celebrate one of the major events in the philatelic field, Romfilatelia introduces into circulation on Thursday, September 19th, this year, the postage stamps issue entitled “Romanian Philatelic Exhibition EFIRO 2019”, 5th edition.

The first edition of the EFIRO 1932 (Romanian Philatelic Exhibition) was held under the high patronage of King Carol II, in 1932 at the Palace of the Romanian Academy Foundation in Bucharest (today, Dalles Hall). The exhibition took place between November 23rd-30th, being the largest philatelic exhibition to date.

The tradition of this exhibition was only resumed in 1998, when the second EFIRO edition was held at the Parliament Palace, followed by the Third Edition, the National Philatelic Exhibition with international attendance EFIRO 2004, which took place in Bucharest, within the 23rd Congress of the Universal Postal Union.

The 4th edition, the World Philatelic Exhibition EFIRO 2008, was held in Romexpo Bucharest under the high patronage of the Romanian Presidency, as well as the International Philatelic Federation (FIP) and the International Association of Philatelic Journalists (AIJP). The event was dedicated to the 150th anniversary of the issuing of the first Romanian postage stamps, the “Bull’s Head”.

The three postage stamps, introduced into circulation on the occasion of the Romanian Philatelic Exhibition EFIRO 2019, reproduce images illustrating specific elements of the Romanian philately.

The stamp with a face value of Lei 1.70, marks 560 years since the documentary attestation of Bucharest. The stamp reproduces the image of the perforated souvenir sheet of an anniversary philatelic issue from 1959, celebrating 500 years since the establishment of Bucharest, representing the prince Vlad Tepes together with the charter from 1459 (in which the settlement of Bucharest is mentioned for the very first time).

One of the great rarities of the Romanian philately is illustrated in beautiful graphic manner, on the stamp with the face value of Lei 3.10, on which it shows, the reproduction of an envelope circulated in 1858 with multiple franking of 27 Parale Bull’s Head + 27 Parale Bull’s Head postage stamps, which accompanied a shipment of money (group) with 200 gold coins (the equivalent of Lei 6300). The envelope was sent from the Bacau Post Office on October 27th and arrived in Iasi on October 30th. 54 Parale represented the tariff for a letter of up to 2.5 drams (approximately 8 grams) in the 2nd distance step (over 8 posts, counted as 16 hours). This envelope is a great rarity and a top piece of the classic Romanian philately, being one of the nine envelopes with multiple franking from the 1st edition of Bull’s Head known today. One is in a postal museum, four others were in the collection of King Carol II, which disappeared after 1950 and the rest are in private collections. Also, only sixteen copies of 27 Parale with the BAKEU postmark that are inventoried, seven of which are in the letter. This envelope was part of the famous Rothschild collection. The image of the stamp is completed with an enlarged detail of the multiple franking, respectively of the two stamps of 27 Parale.

On the stamp with the face value of Lei 12, on which it is represented the globe surrounded by letters and the main means of transport used in the postal system, being dedicated to the anniversary of 145 years since the founding of the Universal Postal Union (UPU), October 9th, 1874, in Bern, Switzerland. The Universal Postal Union is an intergovernmental organization and specialized agency within the United Nations, the second oldest international organization in the world, has 192 member countries, which form the unique postal territory for the mutual exchange of postal items. Romania is a founding member of the Union, being the signatory of the constitution act with 21 other countries.

The “Philatelic Exhibition EFIRO 2019”, 5th edition issue is completed by the imperforated souvenir sheet with the face value of Lei 28.50, that reproduces in the foreground, a fragment from the first imperforated souvenir sheet of the EFIRO 1932 Exhibition. The souvenir sheet presents King Carol II in a festive outfit, being cancelled with the special postmark of the exhibition and a red “goarna” postmark.

On the souvenir sheet there are also represented reproductions of stamps from the philatelic anniversary issue dedicated to the event “75 years since the issuing of the first Romanian postage stamp”, launched at the opening of the EFIRO 1932 Exhibition, as well as the vignettes and “the insignia of the exhibition. Carol II was ranked at that time the third in the world in terms of collection value and was considered one of the top 10 great philatelists of his time. EFIRO 1932 brought to Bucharest large collections and collectors from abroad: Louis Goldberg (Belgium), Henry Rosenthal (France), Heinrich Birnbach (Germany), Dr. Emilio Diena (Italy), Theodor Champion (France), Louis Yvert (France), Nils Strandell (Sweden), René Poncelet (Belgium), Edwin Müller (Austria) and A. Hertsch (Switzerland). We could say that almost all the “sacred monsters” of European philately have participated in one way or another in this great philatelic gift which was called EFIRO 1932.

The First Day Cover of this postage stamps issue reproduces one of two official envelopes, with the header of the exhibition EFIRO 1932, franked with the stamps of the show “75 years since the issuing of the first Romanian postage stamp” and the EFIRO 1932 souvenir sheet, the logo of the exhibition and, faded in the background of the envelope, the plaque of the 1932 EFIRO exhibition.