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"Medenine Ghorfas a 4 Etages" Definitive of 1954

Medenine Ghorfas a 4 Etages Definitive of 1954
"Medenine Ghorfas a 4 Etages" Definitive issued on May 29, 1954

Tunisia's 50 franc and 75 franc definitives of May 29, 1954 depict “Ghorfas a 4 etages, Medenine.” The Scott catalogue translates the caption as saying a "Four-story building, Medenine." According to Wikipedia, these ghorfas are "vaulted room[s] used ... for storing grain. They are often stacked as multistory structures, sometimes reaching four stories high. Traditionally, the rooms were grouped together as a ksar, a fortification used by Berber villages in the Maghreb to store large amounts of grain." In Berber, the fortified village is called a ksar.

Sand Dunes and the Old Market Gate of Aaiun
Postcard produced by Lévy et Neurdein Réunis

This postcard depicting the ghofas was produced by Lévy et Neurdein Réunis, a French printing house and photograph publishing company in Paris that was created about 1920 when the printer Émile Crête acquired the printing firms Lévy Fils et Cie and Neurdein Frères. The new company continued to issue lithographic postcards. The photographer's initials, "ND," appear on the front of the card without an additional credit line or trademark. The company was absorbed by the Compagnie des Arts Photomécaniques (CAP) in 1932.

Reverse of Postcard
The back of the postcard has a handwritten note saying only, "Metameur rugs."

"Metameur rugs" mentioned in the note on the reverse of this postcard may refer to traditional Tunisian woven rugs from the village of Metameur, in Medenine Governorate. Most likely the rugs would be Mergoum, traditional embroidered flat woven wool carpets with geometric patterns and bright, beautiful colors, Kilims, made with a mix of wool and other fabrics featuring Berber motifs such as fish, candlesticks, hands, and the symbol of the Amazigh warrior or guetiffas, cream-colored carpets with a very thick-pile.

Traditional carpets on 2007 handicraft and national dress stamps
Traditional textiles used for carpets were featured on two of
Tunisia's four 2007 "Handicraft and National Dress" commemoratives.


"Ghorfa." Wikipedia. 3 Dec. 2018. Wikimedia Foundation. Web.
     22 Nov. 2019.

"Lévy et Neurdein Réunis." Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection. nd. Harvard University. Web.
     22 Nov. 2019.

"Tunisia." Standard Postage Stamp Catalogue. Amos Publishing, 2015.

"Tunisia’s Magic Carpets – Carpet Buying Tips for Travelers in Tunisia." Engaging Cultures Travel. 2017. Web.
     22 Nov. 2019.

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