1961 St Leo Defying Attila Set of 3 Vatican Postage Stamps Mint Never Hinged

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This set of three Vatican City postage stamps was issued to commemorate the 1500th Anniversary of the Death of St. Leo the Great. The image on the stamps is taken from a work by sculptor Alessandro Algardi (1595-1654).

Prosper, a Christian chronicler, writing about 455, describes the encounter between Leo I and Attila as follows: "Now Attila, having once more collected his forces which had been scattered in Gaul, took his way through Pannonia into Italy. . . To the emperor and the senate and Roman people none of all the proposed plans to oppose the enemy seemed so practicable as to send legates to the most savage king and beg for peace. Our most blessed Pope Leo -trusting in the help of God, who never fails the righteous in their trials - undertook the task, accompanied by Avienus, a man of consular rank, and the prefect Trygetius. And the outcome was what his faith had foreseen; for when the king had received the embassy, he was so impressed by the presence of the high priest that he ordered his army to give up warfare and, after he had promised peace, he departed beyond the Danube."
(Source From the accounts translated in J. H. Robinson, Readings in European History. Boston: Ginn, 1905.)

Issue date: April 6, 1961.
Size of each stamp: 30 x 40 mm.
Print run: 583,500.

Condition: mint never hinged.

Stock photo.

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