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Germany 2011 "150 years of discovery prehistoric bird Archaeopteryx"
Issue Date  11.08.2011
ID Michel: 2887 Scott: Stanley Gibbons:  Yvert:   UPU:  N/A  Category: pF
Author Julia Warbanow, Berlin 
Stamps in set 1
Value Euro 0.55 Archaeopteryx (can be used for regular mail exchange inside Germany)
Size (width x height) 35mm x 35mm
Products FDC  x1    MS x1  SS x1
Layout MS of 10 stamps (2x5)
Paper stroke, white,  fluoresce,  special post papper DP 2
Perforation 13x13
Print Technique Multicolor offset print
Printed by Bagel Security-Print GmbH & Co.KG, Moenchengladbach
Issuing Authority Deutsche Post
Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011

For several years now, stamp collectors have kept various stamps with prehistoric animals depicted on them in their collection and enjoy researching them. Most collectors utilize a PC or notebook to research and find new stamps or to gather more information about a stamp they have just added to their collection. With all of the information available today across the web it is wise to have a fast PC to quickly find what you need. While PC's have become more affordable they are still considered a high cost item. Many stamp collectors and PC users in general may visit a PC wholesale convention to find a new computer or parts to upgrade one they currently own. These conventions have many different computers and parts available at PC wholesale prices. Doing research at a quick pace can be easily done with a new computer from a PC wholesale convention leaving stamp collectors more time to learn about the prehistoric animals that are featured on their stamps.

The prehistoric bird Archaeopteryx  is one of the most famous fossil in the World. It was described in 1861 based on one feather cast.  Later one when some completed speciments found it was very importnat evidence of Theory of Evolution.  As intermediate specie from Dinosaurs to Birds  Archaeopteryx  has some bird and reptilie specific parts in his skeleton. Ancestor  of Archaeopteryx  was a small predator dinosaur.  All fossils of Archaeopteryx  are founded so far are comming from Solnhofener  Plattenkalken at Fraenkischen Jura region of Bavaria state, in Germany. They are about 150 M. years old. The best fossil exemplar ist stored in Museum fuer Naturkunde in Berlin.

The design of both stamp and coin chosen was actually the winner of a competition (Coin  competition is here).  Other stamp candidate are:

Archaeopteryx stamp competition

The second prize has the 1861 feather, but none of them used the 1861 skeleton.

The Berlin specimen, although not discovered until 1876, was the winning choice 

Archaeopteryx  discovery and it's representation on German stamps

On August 11, 2011 Deutsche Post issued a single stamp to commemorate 150 years of discovery of Archaeopteryx (printed in Mini-Sheet of 10 stamps).  The best fossil exemplar, mostly known and appear on many pictures and illustartions of Paleontology related books,  called "Berlin speciment" - depicted on the stamp, and stored at "Berliner Museum fuer Naturkunde".

Archaeopteryx fossil stamp of DDR GDR 1973Archaeopteryx on stamp of GDR ftrom 1973

 These fossil was already depicted on a stamp of GDR in 1973 as part of stamp set of 6 values, shows various fossils from the museum collection.

The initial discovery, a single feather, was unearthed in 1860 or 1861 and described in 1861 by Christian Erich Hermann von Meyer. It is currently located at the Humboldt Museum fuer Naturkunde in Berlin.

This is generally assigned to Archaeopteryx and was the initial holotype, but whether it actually is a feather of this species or another, as yet undiscovered, proto-bird is unknown. There are some indications it is indeed not from the same animal as most of the skeletons. 

Werner von Siemens on stamp of Germany 1992Werner von Siemens of´n German stamp from 1990

 The Berlin Specimen  was discovered in 1874 or 1875 on the Blumenberg near Eichstaett, Germany, by farmer Jakob Niemeyer. He sold this precious fossil for the money to buy a cow in 1876, to inn-keeper Johann Doerr, who again sold it to Ernst Otto Haeberlein, the son of K. Haeberlein. Placed on sale between 1877 and 1881, with potential buyers including O.C. Marsh of Yale University's Peabody Museum, it was eventually bought by the Humboldt Museum fuer Naturkunde, where it is now displayed, for 20,000 Goldmark.

The transaction was financed by Ernst Werner von Siemens (depicted on several German stamps), founder of the famous company that bears his name. Described in 1884 by Wilhelm Dames, it is the most complete specimen, and the first with a complete head. It was in 1897 named by Dames as a new species, Archaeopteryx siemensii; a recent evaluation supports the Archaeopteryx siemensii species identification.  

Nowadays, some paleontologist says Archeopterix is not the fisrt Bird, but the last flying lizard.


FDC Mint Mini-Sheet  of 10 stamps CTO stamps Souvenir Sheet
FDC with Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011 Mini Sheet of Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011

CTO of Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011

Souvenir Sheet of Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011
Mini-Sheet CTO-Berlin of 10 stamps Mini-Sheet CTO-Bonn of 10 stamps Mini-Sheet CTO-Wieden of 10 stamps
CTO Mini Sheet with Berlin post mark t of Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011 CTO Mini Sheet with Bonn post mark t of Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011

CTO Mini Sheet with Wieden post mark t of Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011

Used on cover with several stamps and special post mark Used on cover Special cancelations on cover
postal used cover with Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011 circulated cover with Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011 special cover with Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011
FDC private issue Maximum-Cards private issue Silver Coin
special private FDC with Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011 Maximum Cards with Archaeopteryx stamp of Germany 2011

silver coin of Archaeopteryx of Germany 2011

numismatic page with silver coin of Archaeopteryx



Some Books about Archaeopteryx

book cover Archaeopteryx the icon of evolution book cover Archaeopteryx der Urvogel von Solnhofen
Dr. Peter Wellnhofer is the world's authority on the 150-million-year-old Archaeopteryx and he has been so for over thirty years. He has published major studies on many specimens of Archaeopteryx, has curated exhibitions about the Urvogel, written popular accounts, lectured extensively, and participated in media-related interviews. Archaeopteryx is what I like to describe as a "paleontological Mona Lisa". Its priceless fossils  up to now ten skeletal specimens and a single feather imprint discovered during the last 145 years  have had a tremendous significance in our understanding of evolution, and their impact has gone way beyond science and into social grounds. Dr. Wellnhofer's book narrates the history of the discoveries of the individual specimens, and the stories behind them  those of the collectors, dealers, museum curators and scholars whose lives became entangled with these discoveries. It includes chapters of the world-famous Solnhofen lithographic limestone, covering aspects of its geology and special fossil preservation, and interpretations of the ancient environment inhabited by Archaeopteryx. The core of the book includes detailed descriptions and illustrations of each specimen. These and other chapters discuss the different interpretations regarding the size, growth and life history, plumage, physiology, and life style. Because Archaeopteryx has played a key role in discussions about the origin of birds and of their flight, the book also adresses the rise of birds  highlighting the evidence that supports the evolutionary connection between birds and the carnivorous theropod dinosaurs  and the controversial issue of the beginning of avian flight. The text is written for a general audience and is thoroughly supplemented by photographs, drawings, diagrams, and maps, and detailed notes and references. There has never been a book like this one and no one else could write it today. There has never been a book like this one and no one else could write it today. Dr. Wellnhofer's evenhandedness assures a fair coverage of the multitude of ideas that have been proposed about the life of Archaeopteryx and readers will undoubtedly find this book to be a powerful, authoritative treatment of one of the most significant fossils in the history of paleontology. The book will unquestionably provide a very useful source to professionals but its non-technical approach will also make it accessible to teachers, students, and the general public. I can't think of a timelier book on avian paleontology and a more qualified person to write a comprehensive analysis of such an important and legendary fossil bird. Dr. Luis M. Chiappe Director The Dinosaur Institute, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, USA



If you access buy the book on your favorite Amazon site  through one of links below, Amazon will give some small % of every purchase  to the site. It doesn't cost you any more, but it really helps out here. The price is the same, the difference is that a small percentage supports this site.  This book on Amazon  USA UK DE IT FR ES



Preview of the books:   ARCHAEOPTERYX The Icon of Evolution      ARCHAEOPTERYX: Der Urvogel von Solnhofen

Some more online-info about Archaeopteryx  are:  Wikipedia  TalkOrigins Tierdoku (German)  WitmerLab WitmerLab

References: Wikipedia   Souvenir Sheet


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