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Stamp Collection Glossary Of Basic Terms

Jul 8, 2008
Learning the basic terms and what they mean when collecting stamps will enable collectors when they are purchasing or selling their stamps to either other dealers or collectors. A glossary of these commonly used terms has been compiled to enable you to better understand when dealing with others in the stamp collecting environment.

A piece of paper that has a gummed or pressure sensitive back is called Adhesive. As Is a term used by auctions to describe a stamp that is being offered for sale without any guarantees. A public sale where a variety of stamps are sold to the highest bidder is an Auction. A postmark applied to the reverse of a cover to show it has gone through transit of the mail is called a Backstamp. Bogus is a fake stamp label created only for the sale to collectors.

A small convenient book of stamps often sold through a post office vending machine is a Booklet. An organized meeting of stamp dealers and collectors where stamps are sold and traded is called a Bourse. A picture of design illustrating an event of occasion for commemorative purposes on an envelope is a Cachet. Cancellation is a marking that is applied to a stamp to prevent it from being reused. A compiled listing of stamps that includes price valuations and illustrations is a catalog.

Certified Mail is mail the sender is given a receipt certifying items that have been mailed. Cover is an envelope, postcard, or any other wrapper used to mail correspondence. A cover that have been salvaged from a wreck or crash then delivered to the individual it was addressed to and containing an official explanation of the delay is called a Crash Cover.

A country that no longer issues stamps is known as a Dead Country. Denomination is the face value of a stamp. Embossed Envelope is an envelope that bears an embossed stamp. A stamped envelope or postcard that is entirely sold originally by the Post Office is known as an Entire. To make an expert examination of a stamp then to render an opinion on its genuineness is known as Expertize.

The value of a stamp noted on its face is called Face Value. An envelope that has been postmarked with a stamp on its first day of use is called First Day Cover. First Flight Cover is a cover carried on the first flight of a new air route for carrying mail. A collector who collects stamps of all varieties from different countries is called a General Collector. A form of cancellation is called a Handstamp. Hinges are tiny gummed glass like strips that are used to attach stamps to albums. Killer Cancellation is when a cancellation that is heavy and covers most stamps effectively without obliterating the design.

Margin is a area that surrounds stamps on a sheet. A cancellation done by hand with either a pen or pencil is known as a Manuscript Cancellation. Maximum Card is a picture postcard that show a design of a stamp or other subjects that bears either the stamp picture of a stamp that is related to the design that bears the postmark related to the subject. Mounts are vinyl or plastic holders that are clear on the front and have gum on the back. Multicolor means to have more than two colors.

A class of postal services that is reserved for sending packages is called Parcel Post. Patriotic Cover is a cover where patriotic pictures or slogans appear, which were common during the Civil War. The technical name for stamp collecting is known as Philately. Philatelic Agency is a bureau that is maintained by the government for selling current issues of stamps in quantity to dealers or collectors.

An inscription on a stamp that indicate they can be used for postage or revenue purposes is called Postage and Revenue. Postal History is the study of postal markings, routes, and rates of the mail or anything to do with the history of the mail. Envelopes or postcards that bears imprinted stamps is known as Postal Stationery. Postmark is an official postal marking that gives the date and origin of the mail. Postally Used is used to indicate that a stamp has actually been used as postage. Trial impressions from a printing plate is known as a Proof. Registered Mail is when the sender is given a numbered receipt by the post office, where an assigned value is attached.

A special paper used to make it more difficult to produce fake stamps is called Security Paper. Series is all the denominations of stamps that belongs to a certain issue. A Specialist is a collector who collects stamps in a certain field or area. Stampless Covers are envelopes or sheets that have been folded into envelopes with a written message on the inside that was posted prior to the usage of postal stamps.

Metal tweezers used for handling stamps are called Tongs. Topical Collecting is the practice of collecting stamps that are related to one subject or theme. The most common type of postmark given the name of the post office were the item was mailed from and the date is called a Town Cancellation. Ultraviolet Lamp is a lamp that produces strong ultraviolet rays that experts use to check stamps for tampering and their condition.

An international organization that was formed in 1874 is known as the Universal Postal Union or UPU, and their purpose is to regulate international postal matters and facilitate the cooperation between its members. A variations from the standard from of a stamp is called Variety. Want List is a list of some or all of the stamps a collector is missing from their collection and needs.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert consultant about rare coins, stamp collections, and rare collectibles. Follow these links to find the best marketplace for: collections, glossary, and collectibles.
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