Special Occasions – Love 2011 postage stamps by Australia Post

The celebration of St Valentine's Day on 14 February is a time when lovers send flowers and Valentine cards to express affection.

The Valentine's Day tradition of giving red roses is believed to date from the 18th century, when the French monarch King Louis XVI gave red roses to his Queen, Marie Antoinette, as a symbol of his love. During the 19th century, ribbon, paper lace and cut-outs of flowers, doves and cupids were used in the designs of handmade and manufactured cards.

There are two very distinct designs in this issue: the lasting beauty of red roses and a more contemporary design using hearts and vine leaves in a pattern of love.

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