The Maramures County is a unique destination, located in the heartland of Europe, which carefully preserved the peasant's everlasting culture, traditions and lifestyle. Few are those traditions that changed over centuries. Crafts and traditions are still transmitted from generation to generation, while hand-woven clothing continues to be proudly worn, the church still being the soul of the village community.
More than in other regions of the country, in Maramures County the art of woodcraft has being flourishing. For this place, the wood has always symbolized heat, shelter and tools. It was, and still is, the ideal tool for the manifestation of the local people's artistic genius.
One of the first artistic manifestations of the people living in this region, for which they used the wood, was sculpture. Although unknown to many people, the civilization of wood in Maramures is made of some essential elements: the church, the house made of wood and its annexes, the traditional technical installations, the gate and the roadside cross.
One of the most important symbols born within the sphere of the Primordial Tradition, that was preserved in Maramures County, is the Dacian knot, in all its forms, made of different materials and representations in space, plan or embossed, depicted on rugs, wood or ceramics.
Continuing the philatelic project Discover Romania, Romfilatelia introduces into circulation the issue of postage stamps dedicated to Maramures County that, just as a hidden treasure, awaits every moment to be discovered.
Stephen's Tower, depicted on the postage stamp with the face value of lei 2.00, represents the bell tower which had been initially built for Saint Stephen's church in Baia Mare.
Berbesti roadside cross, depicted on the postage stamp with the face value of lei 3.30, dates back to the 18th century and is the oldest border cross in Maramures County. It was built at the expense of the Rednic noble family in Berbesti in the first part of the 18th century, its component elements and sculptural approach registering this unique monument in the Gothic style.
On the postage stamp with the face value of lei 8.10 is depicted the Wooden Church in the Sugatag Village, in Ocna Sugatag. The settlement was built in 1642, being dedicated to the "Pious Paraschiva". It was built of oak wood, on the same place of an older church, being however painted much later, most probably in 1753, year marked in the nave.
The postage stamp with the face value of lei 14.50 is dedicated to the Merry Cemetery in Sapanta, a true open-air museum and particular archive that keeps carved on wood the villagers' life stories.
The legend says that the merry attitude towards death is a Dacians' habit who believed in eternal life, death being for them only the passage to another world.