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Austria Stamps

Issues of 1923-1928

Austria stamps for the period from 1923 through 1928 would include a much larger number of pictorial definitive stamps, new definitive air mail stamps, and commemorative or pictorial charity stamps.  In the aftermath of Austria's hyperinflation years, a new Austrian currency, the Austrian Schilling (100 Groschen = 1 Schilling), would also be implemented.

The nine pictorial Austria stamps shown above (Mi. #433-41, Sc. #B57-65) were issued on May 22, 1923.  They were engraved and perforated 12 1/2.

These stamps were sold at five times face value, with the proceeds benefiting needy artists.

Their designs are as follows:

  • 100 K. - Martin's Tower, Upper City, Bregenz
  • 120 K. - Mirabelle Gardens, Salzburg
  • 160 K. - Church, Eisenstadt
  • 180 K. - Assembly House, Klagenfurt
  • 200 K. - Golden Roof, Innsbruck
  • 240 K. - Main Square and Old Town, Linz
  • 400 K. - Town and Castle Hill, Graz
  • 600 K. - Benedictine Abbey, Melk
  • 1000 K. - Sphinx, Upper Belvedere Gardens, Vienna

The five pictorial charity stamps shown above (Mi. #442-46, Sc. #B66-70) were issued on September 6, 1924.

The inscribed surtax on these Austria stamps went to support child welfare and anti-tuberculosis efforts.

Their symbolic designs, denoting charitable work, are as follows:

  • 100 K. - Comforting the feeble
  • 300 K. - Supporting agriculture and handicrafts
  • 500 K. - Orphans needing a mother's love
  • 600 K. - Activities for the aged
  • 1000 K. - Donating food

A new Austrian currency was introduced in 1924.  The Schilling (100 Groschen = 1 Schilling) was established by the Schilling Act of December 20, 1924, and it became the official currency of the Republic of Austria on March 1, 1925.  For exchange purposes, the new Schilling (silver coin) was equivalent to 10,000 Austro-Hungarian Kronen of the hyperinflation era.

The twenty-one definitive Republic of Austria stamps shown above (Mi. #447-67, Sc. #303-324), all denominated in Groschen and Schillings, began appearing in June 1925, continuing through June 1927.

These new definitive stamps utilize four different designs with them being, in order of appearance, a denomination numeral, telegraph lines over a landscape, a white shouldered eagle, and the Church of the Mennonite Friars in Vienna.

The twenty definitive air mail Republic of Austria stamps shown above (Mi. #468-87, Sc. #C12-31), all denominated in Groschen and Schillings, began appearing in August 1925, continuing through June 1930.

These new definitive air mail stamps utilize two different designs with them being a plane and pilot's head and a plane passing over a crane in flight.

The six pictorial charity stamps shown above were issued on March 8, 1926, with the surtax benefiting child welfare.  The stamps are engraved and perforated 12 1/2.

These stamps are known by Austrian philatelists as the Nibelungen Issue.  The Nibelungen (Dwarves) is a story from pagan Norse / German mythology. 

Richard Wagner (1813-1883) composed four operas, first performed in 1876, telling the story of the Ring of the Nibelung, also called the Ring Cycle.  The musical scores from the four operas have endured the test-of-time, and over the years, they have provided the familiar musical themes for many movies and television productions. 

These four operas are:  Das Rheingold, Die Walkürie, Siegfried, and Götterdämmerung (twilight of the gods).

These six Austria stamps depict scenes from the Ring Cycle, as follows:

  • 3 G. - Siegfried slaying the dragon.
  • 8 G. - Gunther's voyage to Iceland.
  • 15 G. - Brunhild accusing Kriemhild.
  • 20 G. - Nymphs telling Hagen the future.
  • 24 G. - Rudiger von Bechelaren welcomes the Nibelungen.
  • 40 G. - Dietrich von Bern vanquishes Hagen.

These stamps come in two different design sizes .....

  • I - 27 1/2 x 28 1/2 mm - (Mi. #488I-93I, Sc. #B71-76)
  • II - 28 1/2 x 27 1/2 mm - (Mi. #488II-93II, Sc. #B72a-76a)

The four commemorative charity stamps shown above (Mi. #494-97, Sc. #B77-80) were issued on November 5, 1928 to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the Austrian Republic

These Austria stamps sold for double face value, with the surtax aiding orphans of World War I and the children of crippled World War I veterans.

The common design features a portrait of Michael Hainisch (1858-1940), the second president of the Republic of Austria (1920-1928).

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from Issues of 1923-1928