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  • Issue date: 05/06/2008
  • Printing Process: Huecograbado
  • Paper: Estucado, engomado, fosforescente
  • Size of stamp: 40,9 x 28,8 mm. (horizontales)
  • Size of block sheet: 144 x 86 mm. (horizontal)
  • Postal value of the stamps: 0,43 €
  • Print run: 500.000 hojas bloque
  • Dented: 13 3/4

Skittles is an old target sport practised all over Spain. It was already played in Egypt and was very popular throughout Europe in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance becoming less popular in the mid XX century. However, in the regions of Cantabria and Castilla y León this game has always been very popular. There are many varieties of bowling but this issue, made up of three stamps and three vignettes, depict the three best known.


The Bolo Palma, comes from Cantabria and Asturias and spread to both Castiles in the XVIII century. The pitch consists of the bowling alley, 30 to 34 meters long along which balls are thrown and at the end of which the pins stand. It is divided into three parts: the caja (pitch) where the pins stand; the throwing pitch and the steal pitch. The balls are round and can be flattened at the poles weighing between 1,8 and 2,2 Kg. the pins are tronco-conical shaped with a spherical head and in this version of the game, nine pins are used and a smaller one called emboque. The game is played in two stages: ''Tirar'' (The Throw) and ''Birlar'' (The Steal). ''Tirar'', refers to the throwing of the bowl down the ally aiming at knocking down all the pins. ''Birlar'' (The Steal) involves throwing the same balls that have already been thrown, from where they have fallen towards the pitch, in order to knock down the pins. The Bolo Leonés is the most representative of Castilla y León. The bowling alley is 25 to 30 meters long and is divided into two parts: the castro, that is the pitch were the pins stand and the playing field. The pins are tronco-conical shaped and all in all nine big ones are used and a smaller one called miche. This variety uses a semispherical ball with flattened edges made of very tough wood weighing from 0,80 to 1 Kg. The game is very similar to the one mentioned above with two stages: The Throw and The Steal. The Bolo Asturiano is played in Asturias with a bowling alley 25 meters long and is divided into three parts: the throwing field, the middle field and the pitch where the pins are set up. These are conical shaped and there are ten altogether, nine big ones and a smaller one called biche. The balls are spherical shaped with a hole in the middle for inserting a finger and weigh from 0,60 to 0,80 Kg. This variety, unlike the others described here, is played in only one stage.

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