2018 50¢ Dragons – Green Fire-Breathing Dragon
Value: 50¢ 1-ounce First-Class Letter Rate (Forever)
Issue Date: August 9, 2018
First Day City: Columbus, Ohio
Type of Stamp: Commemorative
Printed by: Banknote Corporation of America
Printing Method: Offset, Hot Foil Stamping
Format: Pane of 16
Quantity Printed: 30,000,000
In many cultures, there are ancient tales of brave soldiers slaying fearsome dragons to save a terrified village. One of the most widespread of these tales is Saint George and the Dragon.
The legend is likely based on a man born in Palestine in the 200s AD who became a Roman soldier. Many countries have their own versions of the tale, but they generally tell of a village terrorized by a dragon living in a nearby lake. They offered children to the dragon in order to spare the village. On the day the king’s daughter was chosen for sacrifice, Saint George was passing through. He found the princess by the lake and battled the dragon, capturing it with the maiden’s girdle. He then brought the dragon back to the village and offered to kill it if they converted to Christianity, which they did.
While many of the details of George’s life are shrouded in mystery, it is believed that the “dragon” he may have battle in real life was King Dadianus. Dadianus was called the “dragon of the abyss.” Most tales of Saint George’s life state he was persecuted and executed for his religious beliefs. He is honored as a martyr for the cause of religious freedom.
Saint George’s battle with the dragon grew in popularity during the Middle Ages. He has since become of the patron saint of England, Aragon, Catalonia, Georgia, Palestine, Protugal, Germany, and Greece.