July 25, 2013

0765 ITALY (Sicily) - Mount Etna (UNESCO WHS)

As one of the world’s most active and iconic volcanoes, and also as an outstanding example of ongoing geological processes and volcanic landforms, Mount Etna was one of the 19 sites added to the World Heritage List this year, on the 37th session of the UNESCO's World Heritage Committee, held between 16 and 27 June in Cambodia.

Located on the east coast of Sicily, close to Messina and Catania, this stratovolcano, the tallest active volcano on the European continent (3,329m), lies above the convergent plate margin between the African Plate and the Eurasian Plate. Its almost continuous eruptive activity continues to influence volcanology, geophysics and other Earth science disciplines. The volcano also supports important terrestrial ecosystems including endemic flora and fauna and its activity makes it a natural laboratory for the study of ecological and biological processes. The fertile volcanic soils support extensive agriculture, with vineyards and orchards spread across the lower slopes of the mountain and the broad Plain of Catania to the south.

Eruptions of Etna follow a variety of patterns, but rarely threaten the inhabited areas around the volcano. Since the year AD 1600, at least 60 flank eruptions and countless summit eruptions have occurred, nearly half since the start of the 20th century. The most destructive eruption since 122 BC was in 1669 and produced lava flows that destroyed at least 10 villages on its southern flank before reaching the city walls of the town of Catania. 

About the stamps
On the first postcard
The first two stamps are part of the definitive set Posta Italiana, about which I wrote here. The third is part of the series Italian folklore, issued by the Italian Post each year. All the stamps of the series were designed by M.C. Perrini, and have the same face value, 0.60 EUR. This one, issued on January 16, 2013, is dedicated to Fano Carnival, the oldest one in Italy, and shows a number of figures in costume, and the “prendigetto”, a characteristic container used to catch the sweets thrown from the floats.
2008.03.15 Sulmona's Feast Day "La Madonna che scappa in piazza"
2010.02.12 Acireale Carnival
2011.02.20 Historical Carnival of Ivrea
2011.08.26 Mastrogiurato di Lanciano
2012.03.31 The Fracchie of San Marco in Lamis
2012.12.07 Fire Rituals - "Ndocciata of Agnone"
2012.01.16 Carnival of Fano - it's on this postcard

On the second postcard
The first stamp is part of the definitive set Posta Italiana, about which I wrote here. The second is part of the series Made in Italy DOCG Wine, issued on March 24, 2012, and designed by G. Ieluzzo:
• Aglianico di Vulture Superiore (Basilicata)
• Cannellino di Frascati (Lazio)
• Barolo (Piedmont)
• Greco di Tufo (Campania)
• Brunello di Montalcino (Tuscany)
• Montepulciano d'Abruzzo Teramane Hills (Abruzzo)
• Colli Orientali di Friuli Picolit (Friuli Venezia Giulia)
• Montefalco Sagrantino (Umbria) - it's on this postcard
• Prosecco Conegliano Valdobbiadene Superiore (Veneto)
• Vernaccia di Serrapetrona (Marche)
• Cerasuolo di Vittoria (Sicily)
• Vermentino di Gallura (Sardinia)
• Moscato di Scanzo (Lombardy)
• Romagna Albana (Emilia-Romagna)
• Primitivo di Manduria Dolce Naturale (Apulia)

Mount Etna - Wikipedia
Mount Etna - UNESCO official website

Sender 1, 2: Daniele Pennisi (direct swap)
1: sent from Zafferana Etnea (Sicily / Italy), on 23.01.2013
photo: Giovani Guardo
2: sent from Zafferana Etnea (Sicily / Italy), on 17.07.2012

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