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Postby aukepalmhof » Mon Apr 02, 2012 9:14 pm

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The Summer Stamps issued by the Netherlands Post Office on 19 April 1977 depict archaeological finds from the Roman Period. Of the four values issue, two are of interest to the ship-stamp collector.

The 45+20c value shows an altar to the goddess Nehalennia which, by chance was dragged to light by fishermen in their trawl net a few years ago. In the background of the stamp you can see a sea chart of the Colijnsplaat where the altar pieces have been found.

In 1970 a fisherman fishing in the Oosterschelde, near Colijnsplaat, found some stone fragments in his nets. They appeared to be pieces of votive altars for the local Roman goddess Nehalennia. Extensive research followed, during which about 200 (parts of) altars were dredged up. It is assumed there has been a temple on this site as well, which was swallowed by the water in the course of time.
Nehalennia is a fertility goddess and the patroness of hearth and home and of seafarers. This altar shows the goddess standing with her left foot on the bow of a ship. She is holding a basket of fruit. There is a dog at her right side. The inscription reads: 'To the goddess Nehalennia Vegisonius Martinus, citizen from the land of the Sequani and seaman, has redeemed his vow, willingly and with reason.' The Sequani lived in the area around the French town of Besançon. This Gallic seaman apparently traded with these regions.
On the 55+22c value is depict the hull of barge. Three fishing boats of hollowed oak logs and three military barge transport ships with a length from 20 – 34 meter were found from the late Roman period in the Netherlands, which were excavated at Zwammerdam from 1971-1974. The crafts were brought to the Ketelhaven museum for conservation. The ships are still there.
Zwammerdam at that time did have a Roman fort that controlled the confluence of the small river De Meije and the River Oude Rijn (Old Rhine). On the northeast of the fort was a quay along the Rhine, where the ships were found.
Netherlands 1977 45+20c sg1270, scott?, 55+20c sg1271.
Source: Watercraft Philately 1977/9 Wikipedia and various web-sites.
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