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13 March 2020

Easter 2020

Slovenia: Easter 2020, 13 March 2020. Images from Posta Slovenije.

Velika noč / Easter / Ostern

Stamp Designs: Easter Egg, Easter Symbols, Painted Easter Egg
Illustrator and Designer: David Ličen, Zadruga.traparij, Robert Žvokelj
Face Values: A, B, C
Size: 23,76 x 30,80 mm • 23.76 x 30.80 mm • 23,76 x 30,80 mm
Printing Process and Layout: 4-colour offset in self-adhesive, sheets of 50 stamps
Perforation: Serpentine die cut
Paper: 100 g/m2 self-adhesive
Printed by: Agencija za komercijalnu djelatnost d.o.o., Zagreb, Croatia
Date of Issue: 13 March 2020

The Egg – a Symbol of Easter and of Spring

All three stamps with the letter denominations A, B and C show decorated eggs, which in Slovenia are known as pirhi, pisanice, pisanke, remenke or remenice. In every region of Slovenia these eggs are a permanent fixture among the foodstuffs that people bring to church for the Easter blessing. Painted eggs were found in numerous pre-Christian cultures, for example the ancient Chinese and Egyptian cultures.

The ancient Romans used to place painted goose eggs in the graves of the dead, and archaeologists have discovered egg shells in prehistoric graves. Eggs appear in stories about the creation of the Earth, while at the same time the egg is the most perfect symbol of fertility and is a typical symbol of spring throughout the Indo-European world.

The symbolic meaning of the egg continued with Christianity, where it is a symbol of the Resurrection of Christ. Popular interpretations of the symbolic meaning of individual Easter foods and dishes include the explanation that red painted eggs represent drops of Christ’s blood. If there are five eggs among the offerings, these represent the Five Sacred Wounds of Christ. Alternatively, eggs can represent all the wounds received by Christ during his Passion.

In some places, unpainted or otherwise decorated eggs are interpreted as symbolising the tomb from which Christ will rise from the dead. One of the first writers to mention eggs as a characteristic element of offering at the Easter blessing was Johann Weichard Valvasor over 330 years ago, in his work The Glory of the Duchy of Carniola (1689), where he lists the foods to be blessed as smoked pork, salt beef, boiled eggs and an Easter cake made with white flour.

Janez Bogataj

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