Since time immemorial, hunting constituted a means of survival for humans. In Romania hunting remains one of the most popular hobbies that provide people, especially in rural areas, with plenty of food and profit.
StampNews.com is glad to introduce to our readers` attention a special stamp issue that continues the ample project of promoting the hunting heritage and its artistic interpretation.
The need for food, and defence from any animal attacks were the first instinctual forms of conservation. Hunting is not exclusively a human action; there are of course other living beings that hunt. This activity appeared before man cultivated plants or raised animals, examples being some populations (islands of Polynesia, Australia, Africa and Northern Asia) for which at present it is of paramount importance.
Passion for hunting is based on a traditional inheritance that is handed down from father to son, observing the rituals and proper language.
Hunting has become a royal passion ever since the times of the first kingdoms and empires, and then a privilege of the aristocracy. It has also become a symbolic figure associated with the sovereign who was considered near divine, shrouded by a mythical aura and religious superiority over his subjects.
Romania's recent history records King Carol I's Royal Peles domain, which, by building the Foisor Castle, originally intended for royal hunting parties, paid tribute to this millenary activity.
Throughout his life, for King Carol I of Romania hunting acted as a civilized way of respecting a long tradition and a perpetuation of ars bellorum (the art of war), the king being himself educated in the best military schools in Europe.
Royal hunts took place in the presence of foreign guests, members of the royal houses of Europe, and the hunting invitation was considered a sign of high appreciation by the king. Besides these, family members of representative Romanian aristocracy also took part.
On the whole, the Peles and Foisor Castles are keepers of symbol swhich pay tribute to this passion through the decoration of furniture pieces, stained glass windows, bas-reliefs depicting animals or hunters, the trophies of animals hunted by the royal family members, the hunting emblems or the collection of old hunting weapons.
The postage stamps of the issue illustrate the castle's stained glass, created at the end of the 19th century, in the Zettler workshops (Munich), which reproduce animals or hunting scenes such as the climax of hunting stags, hares, wild boars and bears.