Austrian stamp honors first Silent Night performance, 200 years ago
By Denise McCarty
Austria issued a stamp Nov. 23 celebrating Christmas and commemorating the 200th anniversary of Silent Night. The design depicts the Silent Night Memorial Chapel in Oberndorf on a starry, snow-covered evening.
The small chapel stands on the spot where on Christmas Eve in 1818 Silent Night was first performed. Two Austrians wrote the carol: lyrics by Joseph Mohr (1792-1848) and music by Franz Xaver Gruber (1787-1863).
The song remains one of the most popular Christmas carols around the world.
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According to the Austrian National Tourist Office, “Today, Silent Night is known in over 300 languages and dialects, and its reputation as an international peace message has been cemented by its inclusion within UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list … ”
Anna Rastl designed this 0.90 stamp. Joh. Enschede of the Netherlands printed it by offset in sheets of 50.
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