Lanarkshire Philatelic Society




Frank Soutar FRPSL



The small Principality of Liechtenstein on the Upper Rhine was the subject of the display given by Mr Frank Soutar FRPSL at the Lanarkshire Philatelic Society on Friday, 6th February.

A brief history informed members that on 23rd January, 1719, the Emperor Charles VI, (Of the Holy Roman Empire) by Imperial Diploma, united the two domains of Schellenberg and Vaduz  and created the Principality. He also gave its ruler a seat in the Imperial College of Princes. It is today an absolute Monarchy. 

On 5th May, 1920 Liechtenstein issued its own stamps, having previously used Austrian stamps. In 1806, the country became independent and, in 2006, stamps were issued to commemorate 200 years of Sovereignty.

Vaduz Castle is the home of the Princely family and many stamps, depicting the Royal Family through the years to the present day, were displayed. By law, the first born Prince is heir apparent, taking precedence over any first born sister. Recent stamps of Prince Hans-Adam II and his wife, Princess Marie, and of Crown Prince Alois and his wife, Princess Sophie were shown.

Beautiful stamps portrayed the wonderful Art Collection which is soon to be displayed in Vienna.

The round finished with a display of stamps showing the different municipalities of Liechtenstein;  Vaduz, Gamprin/Bendern, Mauren/Schaanwald, Eschen/Nendeln, Ruggell, Triersenberg/Steg/Malbun, Schaan, Balzers/Mals & Triesen.

The second round was a display of many different stamps issued through the years – on many different subjects. A set of stamps depicting Minnesänger (troubadour) who wrote and performed Minnesäng (love poetry and songs). There were many Christmas stamps – chapels, the Nativity, carols, decorations - also beautiful Illuminated Manuscripts.

An very interesting set of Air Mail stamps – showing all things that fly....birds; the Graf Zeppelin; the sketch of a flying machine by Leonardo da Vinci; the first Hot Air Balloon, invented in 1873 by Joseph Montgolfier; the first man powered flying machine by Jakot Degen; Wilbur Wright who, with his brother, was first to fly a powered flying machine.

Postmarks from 1891 were shown, giving an insight into the postal history of the country. A series of imprinted foreign rate postcards from the first issued on 3rd November, 1921 were also displayed.


In giving the Vote of Thanks, Alan Wishart remarked on the most interesting way in which the material had been displayed giving members a wonderful view of this little country.