THE WONDERLAND OF VIETNAMESE STAMPS '99
(1799 - 1999)
Nguyen Van Sieu (Ton Bang & Phuong Dinh as alias) was born in 1799 and died in 1872, in Kim Lu village, Thanh Tri district, Hanoi. When a child, he was innately intelligent. He was famous for being learned at the age of 20. When he was 26, he won 2nd doctoral candidate (under old system) in Hanoi. However, he didn't work as a mandarin, but stayed in his native village to learn himself and teach children. He made close friends with Cao Ba Quat, a popular writer at that time. They were venerated for their talent & human dignity. Their names were extolled "Gods Sieu - Quat".
In 1838, he won Junior doctor at the age of 39, worked for Academic Institute as an official and then took some positions such as: critic, petty official, etc. In 1849, he was sent to China as Assistant Ambassador. After returning home, he was appointed the member of Researching Institute and then Feudal provincial mandarin (in charge of criminal cases) in Ha Tinh, Hung Yen provinces. In 1854, he submitted petitions but the court didn't pay attention to them. He made a resigning application to return home-land, teaching & writing books.
Nguyen Van Sieu was an erudite scholar with a great deal of works on such subjects as: literature, history, geography, philosophy, etc.
In terms of study, he was a serious scholar having many valued discoveries. His style of writing was high-fluting, serious but joyful, sharp but precise, strict but feeling.
Nguyen Van Sieu was a famous teacher, who has trained many generations of learners. He and Tin Trai (in Nhi Khe village) established Charity Association and built Jade Hill Temple, Tower of the Pen Brush, Portico of the Ink-Slab at the Lake of the Restored Sword; Ba Dinh.
He was worthy of the nation's famous man in culture in the 19th century.
In order to mark his 200th birth anniversary, Department General of Posts & Telecommunications (DGPT) issues the stampset "Birth Bicentenary of Nguyen Van Sieu (1799-1999)" with one value of 400d.
The stampset shows Nguyen Van Sieu's portrait (from the statue in his ancestor-worshipping house in Kim Lu, Kim Giang, Hanoi) and architectural works: Portico of the Ink-Slab, Tower of the Pen Brush, Ba Dinh. On the Tower of the Pen Brush are three Chinese characters "Ta - Thanh - Thien" which means literally that to write on the blue sky or write in broad daylight.
Designer : Ms. Nguyen Thi Sam (COTEVINA)
Stamp size : 32 x 43 (mm)
Perforation : 13
Sheet composition : 20 stamps
Printing process : offset
Colour : multi-coloured
Paper : standard paper (both gummed and ungummed)
Vietnamese stamps '99 Homepage