In 2013 on December 5th the solemn ceremony of the official cancellation of the postage stamp dedicated to the 225th anniversary of George Gordon Byron took place with the participation of H.E. Jonathan Aves, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Great Britain to the Republic of Armenia, Hovik Musaelyan, Head of the Union of Philatelists, and Juan Pablo Gechidjian, Managing Director of Haypost Trust Management.
The English famous writer George Gordon Byron was born in a noble family in London on January 22nd in 1788. In 1816 after travelling across Venice, he lived there for a while and got acquainted with the Armenian culture and Armenian abbots belonging to the Mekhitarists’ Order. With the help of the abbots he studied Armenian language and translated a number of religious and secular manuscripts from English into Armenian and vice versa as well as he participated in the compilation of the English- Armenian dictionary.
The stamp depicts George Byron’s portrait on the background of a part of painting “George Byron visiting Mekhitarists on the Island of San Lazzaro” painted by Ivan Ayvazovskiy. On the left part of the stamp there are Armenian letters wrote by Byron and his handwritten Armenian signature, which is kept in Mekhitarists’ Order and consists in 2 words: “Lord Byron”.
During the design of the stamp the significant support was provided by the British Council in Armenia as well as the library named after George Byron and International Byron Society of Scotland, which provided the co[pies of Byron's original handwritten manuscripts.
Due to the efforts of British Council Armenia we are provided with the message of George Byron’s great-grandson Robin Byron, which states as follows:
"It is indeed very exciting news to hear that Armenia will be issuing a postage stamp dedicated to Lord Byron. I first became aware of the high regard in which Armenians hold Lord Byron when we were leaned that the school in Gyumri, rebuilt after the 1988 earthquake through British help, was to be renamed the Lord Byron School. Until recently, however, I had never visited Armenia, but that omission was made good by the wonderful visit I enjoyed to Yerevan last year where I learned at firsthand about the history and literature of Armenia and the warmth of my reception was no doubt enhanced by the regard that Armenians have for my ancestor Lord Byron.
I would like to congratulate all those involved in this project and I send my very best wishes to all of you in Armenia. I look forward to seeing the postage stamp."
Date of issue: December 5, 2013
Nominal: 350 AMD
Design: Vahagn Mkrtchyan
Prunt run: 40 000 pcs
Printing house: Cartor, France