Greek Mythology Stamps - Ionian Islands Coat of Arms
Many coat of arms designs of the Greek Islands are based on Greek mythology characters or events. This set, issued by Greece on July 20, 1964 to commemorate Centenary of the Ionian Islands, shows the coat of arms of the seven principal islands:
Paxos Island Coat of Arms – Poseidon trident: In Greek mythology, Poseidon created the island by striking Corfu with his trident, so that he and his wife Amphitrite could have some peace and quiet.
Kythira Island Coat of Arms – The Birth of Aphrodite: Kythera is known as the birthplace of Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty. According to legend, she was born from the seed of Uranus, the God of Heaven, when his genitals fell into the sea after they were cut off by his son Cronus. Aphrodite rose from the foam of the sea in the area of Palaiopolis.
Ithaca Island Coat of Arms – Odysseus: Modern Ithaca is generally identified with Homer's Ithaca, the home of Odysseus, whose delayed return to the island is the plot of the classical Greek tale the Odyssey.
Zakynthos Island Coat of Arms – Zakynthos: The Greek poet Homer mentioned Zakynthos in the Iliad and the Odyssey, stating that its first inhabitants were the son of King Dardanos of Arcadia, called Zakynthos, and his men.
Cephalonia Island Coat of Arms – Cephalus: In Greek mythology, Cephalus is an Aeolian prince, the son of Deion, ruler of Phocis, and Diomede, and grandson of Aeolus. He was one of the lovers of the dawn goddess Eos. Cephalus helped Amphitryon of Mycenae in a war against the Taphians and Teleboans. He was awarded with the island of Samos, which thereafter came to be known as Cephallenia.
Corfu Island Coat of Arms – War Ship: Ancient Korkyra took part in the Battle of Sybota which was a catalyst for the Peloponnesian War, and, according to Thucydides, the largest naval battle between Greek city states until that time. Thucydides also reports that Korkyra was one of the three great naval powers of fifth century BC Greece, along with Athens and Corinth.
Seventh stamp shows Lefkada (Leukas) Coat of Arms depicting St. George: