StampNews.com is glad to present to our readers’ attention a set of six stamps by Isle of Man Post marking three hundred years of the United Grand Lodge of England and English Freemasonry. Freemasonry is a ‘system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols’.
This formed the inspiration for the stamps which feature the badges of office of the senior offices within the lodge, abstract architectural elements from the lodges of England and the Isle of Man and discreet symbols celebrating the tercentenary, as well as the 50th year of office of His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent, Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE).
20p – This stamp features the Jewel of the Steward in the foreground with a mathematical drawing in the background representing the brightest star in the firmament of heaven. The GPS reference on the border of the stamp is for the Freemasons' Hall in Douglas, Isle of Man.
1st – This stamp features the Jewel of the Inner Guard in the foreground with starred lines in the background representing beams of light emanating from a centre. The GPS reference on the border of the stamp is that of Grand Temple, Freemasons' Hall, Great Queen Street, London.
50p – This stamp features the Jewel of the Junior and Senior Deacon in the foreground with a light surrounded by lights which is inspired by ceiling in the great hall at Grand Lodge. The GPS reference is for the Freemason's Hall in Bristol.
£1.30 – This stamp features the Jewel of the Junior Warden in the foreground with an abstract art deco inspired pattern to match the simplicity of the actions of a virtuous life. The GPS reference is for the Masonic memorial garden at the National Memorial Arboretum.
£1.74 – This stamp features the Jewel of the Senior Warden in the foreground with a window pattern inspired by the windows of the Freemasons’ Hall in the Isle of Man. The GPS reference is for the Blue Plaque in Paternoster Square/St Paul’s Churchyard that marks the former site of the Goose and Gridiron.
£3.40 – This stamp features the Jewel of the Worshipful Master in the foreground with a pattern of overlaid right angles representing the Worshipful Master’s symbol. There are three GPS references on this stamp are for the landing pads for the Air Ambulance at Caenarfon, Wales, RAF Benson Thames Valley and London which represent the charitable giving of the Freemasons.
Each stamp features a subtle ribbon with the characters HRHDOKGM50 in the border of the stamp and the official logo of the UGLE tercentenary which is only visible under ultra-violet light.
The Queen’s head and the lettering of the word Isle of Man are printed using gold foil, while the central symbol on each stamp is printed in colour to give the effect of gold.