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Philately, the study and collection of postage-stamps and other marks of prepayment issued by post-offices. The fancy for collecting postagestamps began a short time after the issue of the first British penny and two-penny stamps in 1840 (see POST and POSTAL SERvIcE). Dr Gray, an official of the British Museum, began collecting them soon after their appearance, arid an advertisement in an issue of The Times of 1841 asks for gifts of cancelled stamps for a young lady. In 1842...

'Japanese Philately': the cultural side of stamps

One of the great pleasures I get from working at Linn's Stamp News is reading the many hundreds of stamp publications that come to Linn's offices every week, and I get to see scores of them. I won't say we see everything that's published in English, but I would hope that we see most of the important titles. Of all the stamp publications I see regularly, if I had to pick just one (other than Linn's) to accompany me on...

The International Society for Japanese Philately

The International Society for Japanese Philately was founded in Canada in 1945. Membership is worldwide and open to any philatelist of ethical reputation. The Society is non-political and non-commercial with only one objective: to promote an intelligent interest in the philately and postal history of Japan and former Japanese colonies (Korea, Sakhalin [Karafuto], Taiwan), territories (Kwantung, the South Manchurian Railway Zone, and the mandated Caroline, Mariana and Marshall Islands) and occupied areas (China and Southeast Asia), including Manchoukuo, the Ryukyu...

A History of Russian Philately Part 3

With the support of the armed forces, Vladimir Ilyich Lenin seized power in Petrograd. Elections a couple of weeks later showed them to be in a minority position, and the country rapidly fell into civil war for the next several years, with various alternate groups fighting against the Bolsheviks. The civil war was essentially over by late 1920, to be replaced by a period of hyper-inflation, settling down again in 1923. What was formerly Imperial Russia now became known...

A History of Russian Philately Part 2

Russia officially adopts its first stamp - an imperforate 10 kopek stamp, good for the postage of a letter weighing up to 1 "lot". A "lot" is a measure of weight, approximately equal to just under half an ounce (0.45oz) or 12.8grams. An announcement on 10 December 1857 referred to not only this stamp but also 20k and 30k stamps as well, and they actually went on sale shortly after that date, quickly becoming available at all post offices...

A History of Russian Philately Part 1

Wow. Twelve hundred years ago. Way back then, the earliest known Russian writings referred to messages being sent from person to person, between one town and another. We don't really know how these were sent, but the one thing that we do know for sure is that the "mail" in some form or another dates back a very long way! And just to put this into perspective, the very first ever known postal document predates this by quite a...

An Introduction to Hungarian Philately

Magyar tribes migrated from Asia and settled in the Carpathian Basin in 896AD. The Kingdom of Hungary, founded by King St. Stephen in 1000AD, had a turbulent history defending itself against foreign incursions, the most significant of which was the Mongol invasion of 1241AD. Nevertheless, it became a Central European power under the 300-year rule of the native Įrpįd Dynasty and subsequent dynasties. In 1526 as a result of the Ottoman conquest, the kingdom disintegrated into three parts: Western Hungary...

Postage stamps and postal history of India

The usage of the stamps began on 1 July 1852 in Scinde district, with the use of an embossed pattern on paper or wax. The shape was circular, with "SCINDE DISTRICT DAWK" around the rim, leading to the common name "Scinde Dawk". The paper was either white or blue, and the wax version on red wax, but all had the same value of 1/2 anna. They were used until October 1854, and then officially suppressed. These are quite scarce today,...