The Joy of a Good Pair (or strip, or block)

2/10/2015     General

As collections (and collectors) mature they tend to diversify, not content with one of each basic stamp we soon find ourselves seeking out shades, proofs, cancellations… and multiples.

It often comes as a surprise when a collector fails to find pairs and blocks of his favourite stamps, as most stamps, especially earlier issues are many more times rarer as a pair or a block of four than say 2 or 4 individual examples.

Nova Scotia lots 5762 & 5768 illustrate this point perfectly. Although these stamps are not common I believe a collector could find at least 100 individual examples of each before locating a single pair. The good news is that once you have located your pair the market price doesn’t really reflect that extreme scarcity – so your hunt has been rewarded!

I noticed a number of extremely scarce multiples in our next sale, the front cover of our catalogue shows a pair of the St Helena 1861 6d blues – even the greatest collections of this lonely isle held very few used multiples of this stamp, yet our estimate certainly doesn’t reflect that level of scarcity!

Alongside this pair I notice a strip of Zululand stamps each with a “Specimen” overprint. It is extremely unusual to encounter multiples of early “Specimen” stamps as they were normally broken up and distributed to main Post Offices and departments for reference purposes.

Please consider the comparative scarcity of ‘multiples’ and don’t miss an opportunity to enhance your album with these scarce yet often comparatively inexpensive pieces.

I’ve compiled a little list of items in our current sale, which I hope you like:

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