Date of Issue: 16 June 2009
Country: San Marino
Denominations: € 0,36 - 0,85 - 1,40
The set is made up of three values and pays homage to the following writers: Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) on the bicentenary of his birth, Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930) on the 150th anniversary of his birth and Raymond Chandler (1888-1959) on the 50th anniversary of his death. Imaginative and symbolic power and an attraction to mystery characterize Poe, a great writer whose troubled life was cut short by an untimely death. His stories cover various genres, from horror (The Black Cat), to thrillers (The Fall of the House of Usher), from science-fiction (Hans Pfall) to detective stories, with the triptych Murders in the Rue Morgue, The Mystery of Marie Roget and The Purloined Letter. In these three latter novels, the eccentric and solitary investigator, Auguste Dupin uncovers horrific enigmas with intuition and lucid rationality.
The € 0,36 value depicts a black cat, recalling the horror story of the same name and the character of Auguste Dupin. Master of the hard-boiled detective novel which originated from U.S.A.'s turning point in the '30s, which saw ever more action combined with deduction, in The Big Sleep, Chandler brought to life the private detective, Philip Marlowe, a fully developed character who, in 1946, found his perfect personification as a solitary, tough and ironic hero, in the guise of Humphrey Bogart, alone against the corridors of power in a corrupt high society. There are seven novels, where mystery is practically more important than its solution, and the realistic language merges with a rich, evocative style, deriving from the European classical tradition. The € 1,40 value is dedicated to the private detective, Philip Marlowe, characterised by his inseparable hat resting on the phone. Conan Doyle's fame is identifiable with the character of Sherlock Holmes, the investigator with a thorough, scientific and infallible logic. A successful character, protagonist of 62 novels and stories, who soon became too burdensome for Doyle, who killed him off in 1894; however, following protests by his readers and editor, he was forced to bring him back to life, continuing his adventures until 1927. The € 0,85 stamp recalls the famous character of Sherlock Holmes with the image of a bloodhound following footprints.