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HOME: China Stamps 1992: 1992-1
1992-1, Scott 2378-79 1992 Year of the Monkey
Auspicious Peach
(2-1), Auspicious Peach, 20 fen, 26*31mm
Large Picture
Magpie in the Plum Tree
(2-2), Magpie in the Plum Tree, 50 fen, 26*31mm
Large Picture
Technical details
Scott No: 2378-79
Serial number: 1992-1
Values in set: 2
Date of issue: January 25, 1992
Designers: Cao Hongnian; Xu Yanbo
Engravers: Hu Zhenyuan
Size: 26*31mm
Perforation: 11.5
Sheet composition: 32
Printing process: gravure-engraving combined
Themes: Culture, New year,
Background
The Chinese traditional society used the Chinese traditional calendar because it fitted well to the agricultural production strongly characterized by reasons. This kind of traditional calendar which relates to the fullness or incompleteness of the moon is also called "the lunar calendar". The Chinese traditional calendar uses the ten Heavenly Stems as serial numbers and also in combination with the twelve Earthly Branches to designate years, months, days, and hours. Sixty kinds of combinations can be achieved by making pairs with Jia, Yi, Bing, Ding, and so on from the ten Heavenly Stems and Zi, Chou, Yin, Mou, and so on from the twelve Earthly Branches in cycles. The twelve Earthly Branches are used as well to combine with twelve kinds of animals. Thus each year has one of the names of the twelve symbolic animals with a 12-year cycle, which is called "Sheng Xiao" of this year. Consequently Renshen Year is the Year of Monkey. The person who was born this year is called the one who was born in the year of monkey.

These two stamps is the first set of the lunar year stamps in the second circle, designed by the means of Chinese folk paper-cut. The first stamp depicts a peach with the figure of a monkey, which can be always used to celebrate someone's birthday. The second stamp shows a Chinese seal character of monkey in the background of red paper-cut featuring a magpie is announcing good news to everyone.
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