USPS logo LINK — USPS employee news Printable

Dragon tales

The list: 5 facts about the mythic creatures

Year of the Dragon stamp
A Chinese dragon performs in San Francisco, where USPS dedicated its Year of the Dragon stamp in 2012.

The Postal Service released its Dragons stamps last month. To help mark the occasion, here are five did-you-knows about the mythological creatures.

1. Dragons are colorful beasts. The animals are often described as lizard-like creatures with four legs, sharp claws, scales, wings and spiky tails, but not all dragons look alike. The new stamps feature black, green, orange and purple dragons.

2. Dragons have international appeal. Throughout history, people around the globe — including those in Asia, Europe and the Americas — have enjoyed tales of dragons.

3. The Brits thought orange trees had dragon-repelling power. A popular medieval British legend tells the story of St. George, a knight who slayed a dragon to rescue a king’s daughter. In some versions of the story, he relied on assistance from an orange tree to complete his mission.

4. Not all dragons are make-believe. Komodo dragons are the largest lizards on earth, and can grow to be as long as a small car. These animals, which are native to Indonesia, have a deadly venomous bite and can eat 80 percent of their body weight in one meal.

5. USPS has issued other dragons stamps. The Postal Service released Year of the Dragon stamps in 2000 and 2012. The Year of the Dragon occurs every 12 years and is one of the zodiac animal signs associated with the Chinese lunar calendar.

Got ideas for future editions of “The list”? Email them to

Post-story highlights