Guernsey Stamps: Year of the Rat 2020


29 December 2019
Year of the Rat is the seventh set in Guernsey Post’s Chinese New Year series and celebrates a New Year that begins on 25 January 2020 and ends on 11 February 2021.

For this year’s set, artist Chrissy Lau – who has worked on Guernsey’s entire Chinese New Year series – has depicted the rat on the intricately designed stamps, featuring accents of gold reflecting the belief, in Chinese culture, of the rat’s association with wealth, abundance and prosperity, as well as with fertility and reproduction. The Chinese symbol for rat appears in red and sits on the top left of each stamp.


Read our interview with designer Chrissy Lau

On the Fortunate Hands stamp (48p), the peony pattern represents wealth and advancement in life. The rat is holding an old Chinese coin, commonly displayed at Chinese New Year to attract wealth. 


The Zest for Life rat (65p stamp) embraces his luck. Kumquats, tangerines and oranges are displayed and gifted during Chinese New Year celebrations to present wealth and good fortune. 


An acrobatic rat is depicted on Fortune Favours the Bold (66p stamp), as he confidently balances his riches. The old Chinese gold coins are a symbol of wealth and fortune.


The leaping rat is carrying a popular New Year decoration on With a Bang stamp (80p value). The Chinese symbol on the rat’s body is Fu, meaning good fortune. Two rats surround a moneybag brimming with Chinese coins on Count Your Blessings –  a common depiction in Chinese Feng Shui ornaments, which are intended to attract wealth (90p stamp). The chrysanthemum pattern is a symbol of longevity. 


According to Chinese philosophy, the Yin & Yang rats represent the balance of dark and light, or negative and positive energy (98p stamp). The endless knot pattern is a symbol of longevity, happiness and prosperity. 


Stamp details

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Issue date: 8 January 2020

Design: Chrissy Lau

Printer: Lowe-Martin

Values: 48p, 65p, 66p, 80p, 90p, 98p

Print process: Offset Lithography

Stamp size: 30.5mm x 40mm 

Souvenir sheet: 100mm x 140mm 

Perforation: 13.3


To purchase the stamps, visit Guernsey Stamps.