2023 "La Route Napoleon"
Scott: 6475 (6475a-c), 6475d-f,
||PATTE Sylvie - BESSET Tanguy
|Stamps in set
€1,16 - Alps
€1,16 - Haute-Provence
€1,16 - Côte d'Azur
|Size (width x height)
||41mm x 30mm, 41mm x 41mm
||Souvenir-Sheets with 3 stamps
||13,25 x 13,25
On July 17, 2023, La Poste issued the Souvenir-Sheet of 3 stamps with the title "the Route Napoléon"
which crosses 4 departments and 2 regions.
The Route Napoléon is the route taken by Napoléon in 1815 on his return from Elba.
The route begins at Golfe-Juan, where Napoleon disembarked 1 March 1815,
beginning the Hundred Days that ended at Waterloo.
The road was inaugurated in 1932 and meanders from the French Riviera
north-northwest along the foothills of the Alps.
It is marked along the way by statues of the French Imperial Eagle.
The three stamps highlight the particular biotope of the three geographical areas:
- Côte d'Azur, on the bottom: admire the pointu,
this emblematic boat visible on the Mediterranean coast.
The Egyptian vulture (Neophron percnopterus) is the world's most
endangered vulture species.
Taste the black, brown olives protected by a controlled designation of origin.
- Haute-Provence, in the middle: contemplate the spectacular
cliffs of Sisteron.
The European bee-eater (Merops apiaster), with its blue-green coat
and yellow head.
Smell the fragrant and protected lavender.
- Alps, on the top: climb the foothills of the Ecrins massif,
where the Alpine ibex (Capra ibex) is found and where the yellow
gentian (Gentiana lutea), a medicinal and digestive plant, grows.
Ammonite on the selvage of the Souvenir Sheet "Route Napoleon" from France 2023.
Ammonite from the Digne Museum on postmark of France 2014
An Ammonite, the symbol of the geological nature reserve of Haute-Provence, is
depicted in the middle of the Souvenir-Sheet.
The Géologique de Haute-Provence National Nature Reserve
is a national nature reserve in Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur.
Established in 1984, it covers 269.316 hectares over 18 sites in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence and Var.
It is the largest geological reserve in Europe.
Located between the Verdon and Durance rivers, it is a labelised area for its landscape diversity,
witness of the geological past of the Earth.
The Haute-Provence National Nature Reserve pwdis famous for its many marine fossils marine fossils.
Many ammonites were discovered at Digne-Les-Bains (the name can be seen on the map,
by the top of the ammonite), in the "Dalle à ammonites" natural site.
The "Dalle à ammonites" is located approximately 1.5 km south of Digne-les-Bains
from Barles road.
The slab, inclined at 60°, is made of grey limestone.
It bears around 1 500 ammonites, 90% of which belong to the
species Coroniceras multicostatum
from the Sinemurian (Early Jurassic).
Those ammonites can attain a diameter of 70 cm.
Theses Ammonite fossils can be seen in the Digne museum today.
The slab became famous among geologists in the middle of the XIX century,
when French naturalist
prospected the area, while studying the
near the site.
The ichthyosaurs fossils were also discovered in the
Géologique de Haute-Provence National Nature Reserve,
including the genus of primitive
from La Robine.
The genus Suevoleviathan
probably reached a total length of up to 4 meters.
was unique among ichthyosaurs in that it retained relatively
the late Toarcian, 185 millions of years ago.
This marine reptile was quickly buried, which limited its decomposition.
Its conservation is due to paleogeographic conditions favouring the tilting of blocks, caused by the
rifting following the opening of the Piemont-Liguria Ocean.
Ammonite and primitive ichthyosaur Suevoleviathan
from the Géologique de Haute-Provence National Nature Reserve on postmark of France.
Additional Mini-Sheets of the Route Napoléon stamps set of France 2023
Many thanks to
Dr. Peter Voice
from Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences, Western Michigan University,
for the draft page review and his very valuable comments.