Postage stamps and postal history of North Korea

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Kim Bong-han stamp issued in 1964

Postage stamps are issued by the North Korean postal department and tend to portray patriotic and nationalist themes and are used as a form of propaganda.[1] Since the 1970s North Korea has outproduced South Korea in terms of stamp issuance.[2]

Stamps are issued by the Korea Stamp Corporation. The country has been a member of the Fédération Internationale de Philatélie since 15 June 1965. There is a museum, the Korean Stamp Museum, dedicated to philately in the country.[3]


Korea Stamp shop in Pyongyang

The first stamps of North Korea were issued on 12 March 1946:[4] Rose of Sharon and Samson Rock.[3] Stamps prior to 1974 dealt primarily with subjects relating specifically to North Korea, its foundation, Kim Il-sung and other patriotic themes. After 1974, in a bid to bring more hard currency into the country, North Korea began issuing stamps with wide-ranging themes (such as Joan of Arc, airships, sports and wildlife) and using English descriptions.[5]

Wording on the stamps is mostly in Korean. The term "DPR Korea" is written in English.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ King 2011, p. 205.
  2. ^ King 2011, p. 193.
  3. ^ a b Choe Kwang Ho (2016). "Stamps Showcase 70 Years of the DPRK" (PDF). Pictorial KOREA. No. 3. pp. 32–33. 
  4. ^ Korea. Sandafayre Stamp Atlas. Retrieved 28 August 2011.
  5. ^ "Stamps of North Korea". "Michael Rogers Inc". Retrieved 2 February 2013. 

Works cited[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Korea Stamp Corporation. Chosŏn upʻyo mongnok = Korean Stamp Catalogue, 1946-2006. Pyongyang: Korea Stamp Corporation, 2007 397p.
  • Maeda, Taizo. D.P.R.K. (North Korea) 1946-1957 plate identifier: a handbook. Tokyo: T. Maeda, 2000 117p.
  • Sanders, Pierre. "Mysterieuse Coree du Nord". Timbres_magazine. (Jan 2009), p. 46-49.

External links[edit]