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Romania, in ~~Eastern Europe||3~~, began its postage stamp history in 1858 in an area then known as Moldavia, soon after Moldavia gained independence from the Ottoman Empire. These first stamps are known in collector’s circles as cap de bour stamps, which refers to the stylized symbol of a star, an auroch (an extinct cow) head, and a horn. These first postage stamps, with their simple designs, were inscribed in Cyrillic and in Romanian.
In 1862, new stamps for use in the new union formed by Moldavia and Wallachia were issued; these again sport a simple design, and show the auroch’s head for Romania and the avian symbol of Wallachia side by side. Further stamps printed in 1864 were never used postally but are seen for sale.
In 1865, the name România began to be used, and new stamps were inscribed POSTA ROMANA. At this point, Moldavian, Wallachian, and the new Romanian stamps were all still denominated in piastres and parale (1 piastre = 40 parale), but in 1868 a new currency was adopted: 1 leu (plural lei) = 100 bani (singular ban). New stamps were issued beginning in 1868 to reflect the new currency. In the earliest years of Romania, the phrase POSTA ROMANA was eventually edged out in favor of ROMANIA as the inscription on stamps.
In World War I, parts of Romania were occupied by three different countries: Austria, Germany, and Bulgaria. In 1917 and 1918, Austria issued its ubiquitous KuK FELDPOST stamps overprinted with several different values in lei and bani; the Bulgarians used their own stamps with overprints (in Cyrillic) for use in the Dobruja area of Romania in 1916; and the Germans overprinted German stamps for postal use and Romanian stamps for postal tax and postal tax due stamps in 1917 and 1918.
In 1918, Romania incorporated more areas into its fold, notably the large Transylvania region. After the war, Romanian stamps with the inscription ROMANIA were again issued, usually with the word POSTA somewhere in smaller lettering.
After World War II, in 1947, Romania became the People’s Republic of Romania, and the inscriptions on stamps were updated to REPUBLICA POPULAR? ROMÎN? or, much more commonly, RPROMÎN?. This morphed back into POSTA ROMANA (sometimes PO?TA ROMÂN?) around the country’s 1965 name change to Republica Socialist? România. ROMÂNIA would be used from time to time on stamps.
Since the 1989 revolution, the country, now called simply România, has switched back and forth between the inscriptions PO?TA ROMÂN? and ROMÂNIA on its stamps, and has kept up an active schedule of issues. There are many collectible items as well from the Romanian postal authorities to keep collectors quite busy. Our current selection of Romanian stamps for sale can be found in this section. Listings are updated each day.
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