Tuesday, January 13, 2015


Postcard of Matthias Church in the Hungarian capital of Budapest, part of the longly-named "Budapest, including the Banks of the Danube, the Buda Castle Quarter and Andrássy Avenue" World Heritage site. The origins of the church go back to the eleventh century. During the Ottoman period, it became the city's main mosque. After regaining its status as a church, it became the coronation site of many Hungarian kings.

Thanks to my Dad for sending this card, along with this one and this one, from his trip "behind the Iron Curtain" and setting me off on my postcard adventures many years ago.

Stamps are from a 1986 set of six on Hungarian castles. Shown is Baroque Forgách Castle, in Szécsény in northern Hungary.

Friday, January 9, 2015


Postcard from Tallinn, the capital of Estonia showing St Nicholas Church in the foreground and the Dome Church behind, in the World Heritage-listed old town centre. The Dome Church is the Lutheran cathedral for Tallinn and was originally established in the thirteenth century, making it the oldest church in Estonia. St Nicholas Church was also originally built in the thirteenth century, and was partially destroyed in Soviet Bombing of Tallinn during World War II. It was later restored and now houses a branch of the Art Museum of Estonia.

Stamp on the left was issued in 1999 to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the foundation of the Council of Europe. Stamp on the right is from a 1995 set of two featuring local geese. Pictured here is the barnacle goose, Branta leucopsis, a midsize goose from the Arctic and North Atlantic. Interestingly, the word "barnacle" derives from the bird and was only later applied to the crustacean barnacles.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015


Postcard of Reykjavík's famous Hallgrímskirkja (Church of Hallgrímur). It is the largest church in Iceland and the sixth-tallest building in the country. The church was commissioned in 1937 and took 38 years to build, with construction beginning in 1945 and ending in 1986. Its design is meant to resemble the basalt lava flows of Iceland's landscape. Takk fyrir to my Mum who was on holiday in Iceland.

Stamp from a 2014 set of two featuring Icelandic landscapes. Pictured here is the Kvíárjökull glacier in eastern Iceland.