The Romance of the Three Kingdoms is a piece of extremely well known Chinese classic literature. With a plot and atmosphere that are unpredictable and out of the ordinary, the novel takes its readers on a thrilling roller coaster ride. The heroic characters portrayed in this book are valiant, clever, upright, and devoted. It is no overstatement to call it a book of great wisdom.
On June 23, 2005, Chunghwa Post will follow up with a third set of four stamps as well as a souvenir sheet based on this novel. These will tell the stories of “Mayhem in the Fengyi Pavilion,” “Deterring the Enemy in Changban,” “Releasing Tsao Tsao” and “A Trick in the Bag.”
The designs of the stamps follow:
(1)Mayhem in the Fengyi Pavilion: Seeing that Prime Minister Tung Cho and his foster son Lu Bu both had a weakness for beauty, Wang Yun, the Minister of Education and Cultural Affairs, devised a scheme of many parts to sow discord between them. Wang first promised his beautiful household singing girl Tiao Chan to Lu and then gave her to Tung instead, hoping the angry and jealous Lu would thus murder the savage Tung. The chapter “Mayhem in the Fengyi Pavilion” describes a famous scene in this story. The stamp shows Lu Bu and Tiao Chan cuddling and whispering by the railing of the pavilion, totally unaware of Tung standing by the artificial landscape next to the lotus pond and glaring at them furiously.
(2)Deterring the Enemy in Changban: After rescuing the little lord and catching up with Chang Fei, Chao was too spent to continue fighting. Chang Fei—beard bristling, eyes bulging, and hand grasping his serpent spear—stood on the bridge and scared off the enemy with a thunderous roar. “Thunderous was his roar, and in terror Tsao’s million troops fled.” This is another saga from the Three Kingdoms.
(3)Releasing Tsao Tsao: After the defeat in the Battle of Chihbi, the fleeing Tsao Tsao was cornered by Guan Yu in the Huajung Valley. Remembering his kindness to Guan in the past, he entreated Guan to show him mercy in return. Thus Guan let him go. This story fully demonstrates how Guan Yu, apart from being awe-inspiring and valiant, was also a grateful and devoted man.
(4)A Trick in the Bag: Wise and resourceful, Chu-Ko Liang foresaw that the haughty Wei Yen would turn traitor after he died. Therefore, on his deathbed, he told Ma Tai what to do in private and then gave Yang Yi a bag that contained instructions. As anticipated, Wei rebelled after his death, and Ma and Yang killed Wei in accordance with the scheme laid out inside the bag. Chu-Ko Liang truly revealed divine powers of prediction.
(1) First Day Cover in small size to be sold at NT$2.00 apiece
First Day Cover in large size to be sold at NT$3.00 apiece
(2) Folder especially prepared for the stamps to be sold at NT$5.00 apiece
(3) Folder with crystal mount for better protection of the stamps to be sold at NT$5.00 apiece
Folder with crystal mount for better protection of the souvenir sheet to be sold at NT$8.00 apiece
(4) Loose-leaf stamp album page with plastic cover to be sold at NT$16.00 apiece
(5) Pre-cancelled First Day Cover affixed with a low-valued stamp to be sold at NT$5.50 apiece
(6) Pre-cancelled First Day Cover affixed with a complete set of stamps to be sold at NT$34.00 apiece
(7) Pre-cancelled First Day Cover affixed with a souvenir sheet to be sold at NT$35.00 apiece.
(8) Postage stamps pictorial to be sold at NT$270.00 apiece.
To purchase these items, the public can go directly to the post offices, or order on line at https://stamp.post.gov.tw