A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar

A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered by the blog author, Jim Jackson, with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. In addition, "Bud" offers commentary and a look at his completely filled Big Blue. Interested? So into the Blues...

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Great Britain - Bud's Big Blue

Some "Adhesive labels"
Bud's Big Blue
Bud's Observations
Since the British invented postage stamps, a British definition of “postage stamp” seems appropriate, a proper one, of course. I consulted the Oxford English Dictionary.
Postage stamp. [f. postage[1] + stamp sb.] An official stamp, either a stamp embossed on an envelope or impressed on a card or wrapper, or else (now usually) a small adhesive label having a specified value (in Great Britain from ½ d. upward), and bearing the design of a certain pattern and colour appropriated to its value, sold by or in behalf of the Post Office, to be affixed to any letter or packet sent by post, as a means of prepayment of postage, and as evidence of such payment.
By British standards, then, the three “adhesive labels” shown above qualify. So do all stamps in the scans, except for the cinderellas on supplement pages.
Highlights in these scans:
1.       Date and place visible cancels.  I always check feeder albums for interesting British cancels. Sadly, most early cancels obliterate the image. So, over the years, I’ve tried to weed out the work of heavy-handed postal officials.
2.       A previous owner penned the helpful discussion regarding two penny blues (Supplement page 1). The top stamp on that page is the dark blue #2 variety whilst the one occupying the space provided in BB is light blue. Both have red Maltese Cross cancels.
3.       The Mulready (supplement page 3) has a penny post backstamp, shown by means of a photocopy beneath the actual Mulready. - 
4.       In the middle of the row of penny reds (top, supplement Page 7) are two showing their back sides, one solid blue and the other with a white bleed through (aka, ghost stamp).
5.       I’m lucky to have found mint stamps for the top half of page 2.
6.       Page 8 shows a Royal Household stamp, the only one I’ve ever come across (eBay has them, though), and a royal cypher label from the early 1800s. Might such cypher (escutcheon) labels, which were glued onto royal documents and communications, be the inspiration for the first adhesive stamps?
7.       On the same page, J3 and J11 are both scarce and sometimes wrongly labeled by dealers.
8.       The highest CV in the collection is awarded to one of the three stamps in the header. Guess which.
9.       Sorting British Morocco stamps presents a challenge.
Census: 276 in BB spaces, 10 tip-ins, 156 on supplement pages.

Jim's Observations
What I learned while writing the Great Britain 1840-1800 blog.....
1) Expensive
2) One needs to be picky about condition, as there are many more bad than good stamps extant in collections for the Victorian era.
3) The Penny Reds are really interesting.
4) Big Blue's usual meek requirements for most countries turned into a Raging Lion here. Twenty-seven new members are added to the "Most Expensive" list. !
5) The Stanley Gibbons 2012 Commonwealth & British Empire Stamps 1840-1970 catalogue was a big help.
6) Free the common 16 dot Penny Lilac and put it in Big Blue! 

Blog Posts and BB Checklists

Great Britain 1840-1900

Great Britain 1900-1950

Great Britain - BOB, Offices

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Comments appreciated!

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