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The Vatican 2002

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The Vatican has once again called on the talents of Czeslaw Slania to produce a triptych to mark the Third Century of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy. The stamps were issued on March 12, 2002.  This is the first issue valued in Euros which is engraved by Slania. Printing for the set is by Sweden Post stamps.  

In an unusual arrangement, the name of Sweden Post Stamps occupies the lower right margin of each stamp, which is usually the domain of the engraver's name.  This pushes the engraver's name, "CZ. SLANIA" to the lower left margin of each stamp, which is usually reserved for the name of the designer.  Between the two names is the year "2002".  

  • The Vatican 2002. Sheetlet of 3 x 5 se-tenant stamps, and below the single stamps from each strip of three. Scott # 1214. 

  • The Vatican 2002. Maximum card cancelled on the first day of issue. Scan by Mario Petretti (Italy). 


Scott # 1214a

Scott # 1214b

Scott # 1214c

Details of the history and significance of the Academy are given in the official bulletin from Città del Vaticano: 

The Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy is the institution at which are formed ecclesiastics destined to represent the Holy See in the particular Churches and Governments of the various countries.  It was founded in Rome in 1701 by Abbott Pietro Garagni, on the advice of B. Sebastiano Valfré. From the outset it enjoyed the support and approval of Pope Clement XI.  It is impossible in a few lines to sum up the history of this institution, the oldest diplomatic academy in the world which, constantly encouraged and followed by the Pontiffs, through its students has played so important and significant a role in the activities of the Holy See. 

This issue of stamps is intended to make a small but important contribution to keeping the historical memory of the Ecclesiastical Academy alive in the minds and hearts of those attached to it.  In Prof. Slania's splendid hand-engraved image and subsequent printing in copperplate the three values show Pope Clement XI, who founded the Academy, today's Pontiff, His Holiness John Paul II, and in the centre, the facade of the Institution in Piazza della Minerva, Rome.

In the celebrations for its third centenary that will last until 25th April 2002, the Academy intends to recall all those who trained in it, studying the specific disciplines for their ecclesial and diplomatic missions.  The students of this unusual institution who are sent to the many papal representations or to offices of the Roman Curia, are all present in spirit to honour and serve the Church and her Pastor with generous dedication and filial love.

Among the multitude of students who have honoured the Academy with their mission, we recall only those who attained the highest office, the Chair of Peter:  Clement XIII, Leo XII, Leo XIII, Benedict SV, and Paul VI". 


Many thanks to Mr. Chong Meng (Singapore) for providing the original stamps from the Vatican City.

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