Literary giant Robertson Davies featured on new stamp

Aug 28, 2013, 11:06 ET from Canada Post

Master storyteller's novels fascinated readers worldwide

OTTAWA, Aug. 28, 2013 /CNW/ - Today, which would have been his 100th birthday, Canada Post will issue a stamp honouring Robertson Davies, one of Canada's most powerful literary voices. The stamp is available at post offices across Canada - and online - beginning today.

With acclaimed works such as Fifth Business and The Cunning Man - the last novel he wrote before his death in 1995 - Davies earned a reputation as a master storyteller. He fascinated readers with stories that were infused with wonder, wit and myth. Multi-layered characters and unpredictable plot twists became his hallmarks, attracting loyal fans across Canada and beyond its borders.

"Robertson Davies was an ambassador of Canadian literary talent to readers abroad—and he was an ambassador of great literature to the world. We are honoured to recognize the life and legacy of such an outstanding essayist and brilliant novelist with this stamp," said the Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Transport.

"Robertson Davies' books remain popular even decades after they were published. It's a true testament to his power to inspire readers through great stories that transcend the era in which they were written. It's why we pay tribute to him today," said Canada Post President and CEO, Deepak Chopra

Davies' career spanned six decades and multiple genres. In 1940, he became the literary editor of Saturday Night magazine. Two years later, he became editor of the Peterborough Examiner, and later, also publisher. He contributed to the launch of Canada's Stratford Festival in 1953, and served on its board of governors. In 1963, Davies was the founding master of the University of Toronto's Massey College, where students clamoured to hear him tell ghost stories each Christmas.

His interest in drama stemmed from childhood, and kindled his pursuit of playwriting as an adult. But he achieved his greatest success with the 11 novels published over his life. His best known, Fifth Business, was on the Toronto Star bestseller list for 42 weeks. It was the first book in what would later become The Deptford Trilogy. The Manticore, Rebel Angels and What's Bred in the Bone are among Davies' other notable novels.

Davies earned numerous awards and honours throughout his career, including the Governor General's Literary Award (for The Manticore) and the Stephen Leacock Award for Humour (for Leaven of Malice). He was the first Canadian honorary member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.

About the stamp
The stamp measures 28 mm x 28 mm with simulated perforations. The domestic stamp is denominated at the 63-cent rate and is printed by Lowe-Martin on Tullis Russell paper using six-colour lithography. The stamp is pressure sensitive and the Official First Day Cover will be cancelled in Toronto, Ontario. The stamp is available in booklets of 10. To purchase philatelic products, please visit

SOURCE Canada Post