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F. W. Webb’s The Philatelic and Postal History of Hong Kong

Webb’s (Figure 1) The Philatelic and Postal History of Hong Kong and the Treaty Ports of China and Japan (PPHK) has been on my purchase short-list for some time now. A few days back I saw a reprint of book on eBay but it looked, well, different. I bid and managed to bag it. Having…

The Stockholm Catalogue

More than a 100 years back, the best philatelic bibliography ever, Bibliotheca Lindesiana Vol VII: A Bibliography of the Writings General Special and Periodical forming the Literature of Philately or more popularly, ‘The Crawford Catalogue’, was published. Since then many libraries and private collectors (such as Dr. Stanley Bierman and Albert Kronenberg) have published bibliographies…

​My links with Germany and how a philatelist discovered his ‘zweite Heimat’ by Philip E. Robinson

I tried to learn German over many months last year, mainly from a philatelic perspective, but have not succeeded much. A few days back I wrote to Philip Robinson curious as to how he brought himself up to the level where he is translating long philatelic texts from German to English. Philip’s reply attached a…

Frank Arthur Bellamy and his Philatelic Library

Frank Arthur Bellamy was one of the greatest philatelic literature collectors of all time. After the library of the Earl of Crawford was bequeathed to the British Museum (now in the British Library), Bellamy’s library was considered the largest in the world until its sale in 1938. Bellamy was born in Oxford on 17 October…

Relative Scarcity of the Various Volumes of Robson Lowe’s The Encyclopaedia of British Empire Postage Stamps

Since the earliest days of stamp collecting in the 1860s to date, there have been so many great philatelists that it is almost impossible to choose the GOAT – greatest of all time. However it is certain that Robson Lowe (1905 – 1997) would find his name in any potential voter’s top three list. Auctioneer,…

Searching for some ‘Early English Philatelic Literature’

There is this very popular saying in Hindi: जब भगवन देता है चपड़ फाड् कर देता है। This literally translates as, “When God gives, he tears down the roof and gives.” The implied meaning is that when good things have to happen, they often happen together in quick succession (Of course it applies equally to…

Gandhi Rs 10 Service: Strip of Four

The 1948 issues of Mahatma Gandhi can be said to be the most popular and collectible stamps of modern India. Further, these stamps overprinted “Service” for exclusive use by the office of the then Governor General of India, C. Rajagopalachari, are known for their elusiveness being one of India’s rarest stamps. Finally it is one…