By Denise McCarty
On May 23, Canada Post unveiled an Eid stamp at two events held with members of Muslim communities in Montreal, Quebec, and Richmond Hill, Ontario.
The nondenominated, permanent “P” domestic-rate (85¢) stamp was issued May 24 to recognize “Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, two of the most important festivals celebrated by Muslims in Canada and worldwide,” according to Canada Post.
Eid al-Fitr marks the end of the month-long Ramadan fast. This year Eid al-Fitr begins on the evening of June 25 and ends June 26.
Eid al-Adha, also known as the “Festival of Sacrifice,” begins Sept. 1 this year. The festival commemorates Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son as an act of obedience to God and also marks the end of the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca.
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Canada Post added, “Both celebrations can include special ritual prayers, lavish meals, visits with friends and family, gift-giving, and acts of charity.”
Doreen Colonello and Erin Enns of the firm Entro Communications designed the Eid stamp.
Canada Post described the design and its Islamic elements: “The Arabic script on the stamp reads ‘Eid Mubarak,’ which translates to ‘Have a happy Eid’ or ‘Have a blessed Eid.’ It appears under a pointed arch, which symbolizes the division between sacred and worldly space in Muslim culture.
“The stamp’s deep blues and warm gold and yellows, as well as its geometric pattern, are seen in Islamic architecture. The new moon atop the stamp signifies the start of Eid.”
Also, designer Colonello commented that the turquoise color was “often found in the mosaic tiles covering the walls of mosques.”
As with all of this year’s stamps from Canada, the Eid stamp includes references to Canada’s 150th anniversary.
A tiny “Canada 150 “ inscription is visible just outside the yellow rectangle on the stamp, on the lower right. Canada Post reports that another reference is included in the taggant.
The stamp measures 28 millimeters by 35mm. Colour Innovations in Toronto printed it by offset in booklets of 10 (Canada Post product number 414041111).
The printing quantity is 200,000 booklets. However, in its Details magazine for collectors, Canada Post said that the Eid stamp is considered a “special commemorative,” which means that additional quantities could be printed.
Other special commemoratives include Christmas stamps, which Canada has issued annually since 1964, and the Diwali and Hanukkah stamps to be issued later this year.
The stamp for Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, will be a joint issue with India, as announced in Linn’s, March 27, page 13.
Canada Post said, “Together the Eid, Diwali and Hanukkah stamps build on the tradition of Christmas stamps and depict our pride in Canada being a land of diverse faiths, customs and celebrations.”
Canada Post’s official first-day cover for the Eid stamp is canceled in Toronto, Ontario (414041131).
The Eid stamp and FDC are available at the Canada Post online shop. and by mail order from Canada Post Customer Service, Box 90022, 2701 Riverside Drive, Ottawa, ON K1V 1J8 Canada; or by telephone from the United States or Canada at 800-565-4362, and from other countries at 902-863-6550.
Canada’s stamps and stamp products also are available from many new-issue stamp dealers, and from Canada Post’s agent in the United States: Interpost, Box 420, Hewlett, NY 11557.