Stamp Description: An almost insignificant and forgotten postage stamp issue of Liechtenstein with stamps of the values 20, 30 and 50 Rappen. Forgotten probably because the number of issued stamps was very high (20Rp: 159,882; 30Rp: 159,821; 50Rp: 159,802) and they were available at the post office counters for the entire period of validity, in this case until the end of December 1939. All stamps depict the tribute to Prince Anton Florian in front of the castle of Vaduz, which he included in the majorate of the Principality of Liechtenstein from 1718 after long inheritance disputes. The stamp motif was designed by Eugen Zotow ((1881-1953) – Charkiv (RUS/UKR), Vaduz (FL)) and printed by the Austrian State Printing Office in intaglio in sheets of 4×5 stamps. There are perforation variations, specimens, plate errors and proofs of the stamps listed in the Michel catalogue. On the day of homage, a gift booklet was presented to guests of honour, each with an unstamped and stamped set and an etching, either unsigned or with the signature of the new prince (see issue occasion).
Issue occasion: The series was issued on the occasion of Prince Franz Josef I’s homage. In medieval feudalism, a tribute was a ritualized pledge of loyalty. The feudal lord was obliged to pledge allegiance and loyalty to his liege lord in an official act. In return, the liege lord also assured the vassal of loyalty and, in addition, of protection and the safeguarding of his rights. Tribute was paid primarily when a new fief was granted or when, usually through inheritance, either a new lord or vassal was appointed as successor to his rights.
In this case, Prince Franz I died on July 25, 1938, at Feldsberg Castle in Czechoslovakia at the age of 86. Prince Franz Josef had already been entrusted with the deputization of the Prince and, with the death of Prince Franz I, assumed the function of Prince and Head of State as Prince Franz Josef II. Thus, the tribute was due.
The modern tribute in Liechtenstein and in the Netherlands is the recognition by Parliament of the newly inaugurated head of state. As demanded by the Constitution, the new Prince, upon assuming the regency, vows to govern the country according to the laws and to preserve the country’s integrity. He also promises to be a just prince to the country. Subsequently, the parliament, for its part, pays tribute, vowing to recognize the new sovereign.