Stamp errors and their values

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What is it about stamp errors that gets us so excited? For most of us it’s their value, their scarcity, the story behind the stamp mishap and their visual appeal. See our selection of stamp errors, and their values, in our latest guide.

Missing colours can make for dramatic errors, with half of the stamp design missing completely. Some of the best examples are from the 1960s, such as this Great Britain 1965 3d missing Post Office Tower error.

 

Realised £3,500 at Just Collecting


This 2s stamp from Bulgaria celebrated the 1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo, the host country for this year’s event.

However, the Olympic rings and denomination are inverted, giving the impression that the long jumper is falling, no doubt the postal authorities also got that sinking feeling when they were told of the error. This example was described as ‘an important stamp for the Olympics specialist and for the Inverted Centres of the world collector’.

Sold for £223 by Cherrystone Auctions in 2011


The eleventh sale of The ‘Lionheart’ Collection of Great Britain and British Empire at Spink featured an impressive range of material, including an example of the Cook Islands 1932 1d black and lake with the centre inverted, one of the most famous Commonwealth inverts. The stamp was described as being ‘very lightly mounted mint; fine example of this very scarce stamp.’ 

Sold for £3,000


This 1915 stamp from Mexico celebrating the Post Office in Mexico City went a little awry with the depiction of the building the wrong way up. Perhaps, after this mistake, there was pressure to really shake things up at the post office.

The invert has a value of around £350


It’s not an Inverted Jenny but this Bolivian airmail oddity is a little more affordable. The 1924 10c vermilion and black stamp has the centre inverted, and is one of only fifty issued.

Sold at Cherrystone for £1,385


Read more about invert stamp errors in the April 2020 issue of Stamp Collector.

The USA’s Dag Hammarskjöld invert of 1962 was a rare error when it was first discovered… but not for long, as the nation's pragmatic Postmaster soon put a stop to the fun… Read more