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» Economics » Postal service » Topics begins with P » Postmark

Page modified: Thursday, July 14, 2011 04:05:29

A postmark or a stamp is short a colored anticipated payment of the equipment of the same name on a stamp, which is cancelled thereby.


Before the introduction of the stamp

There were the first postmarks already for a long time before the introduction of the first stamps of the world 1840.

The earliest well-known stamp originates from the year 1449 from Venice in Italy. With this postmark it concerns a simple ring temple, whose inscription "Mediolarum Cursores" reads. This means into approximately "May countries courier". In the center of the first postmark of the world is the coat of arms May countries of the count Francesco Sforza.

From that 16. Century nearly no envelopes with postmark remained received. The development of the stamp nature is only very with difficulty actionable therefore. Only starting from center 17. Century are received a larger number of postmarks. To this time also the first stamps with dates, partly even with indication of hour, come to the use. So far there was only postmark with map references. This innovation made better control for the running time possible of a letter. The first well-known stamp with additional date originates from the year 1661.

Very early developed in addition "pays the so-called" - stamp. The first postmark of this kind originates from the year 1681 and in London was used. It carried the inscription "Paid One penny". Also of k.k. Post office master Johann George Khumer from Friesach gives it a modern postmark from the year 1787.

After the introduction of the stamp

After the introduction of the first stamp also the intended purpose of the postmarks changed. The postmark served no longer only than proof the transport of the letter. It was reduced on the stamp and cancelled these. This kind of cancellation prevented distinguished a however times use. The old postmarks could be re-used thereby. This system had however also disadvantages for the post office officials. In many countries stamps with the respective Portrait of the ruler at that time were published. In Great Britain the ruler officiating at present is illustrated still until today on each stamp. But a national indication is missing. The post office official knew naturally this picture by his postmark did not verunstalten. The cancellation had to take place carefully. In Spain 1850 its own postmark were created, which fits the stamp of the queen Isabella of Spain. This had the form of a four-leaf clover sheet and was exactly co-ordinated with the size of the head on the stamp.

New kinds of stamp

In the course of the time numerous new kinds of stamp developed. For example special modes of conveyance of the mail were proven by stamps: e.g. by air mail or railway. In addition developed Rekommantionstempel, which indicate that a letter was written dispatched. Further also a surcharge which can be taken was indicated due to a missing or to low Frankatur by means of own stamps. The most famous new stamp form is however the special stamp. This is used only a limited time due to a special event. The first German special stamp was used 1863 in Leipzig. The military used and uses likewise own postmarks. These so-called army postal service temples are with Philatelisten like.

The advertising ability of postmark ever more recognized and so developed already in the middle of the 20's 20. Century numerous advertising stamps.

Postmarks become independent collecting objects

By the rapid propagation of the Philatelie also the interest in the postmarks grew on the Briefmarken.Es developed own stamp catalogs for this special area of the Philatelie. Above all postmarks from the start time of the stamp, in addition, before it, receive large attention. Like are also so-called homeland collections. Ersttagsstempelsammlungen and special stamp collections are likewise very frequently represented.

Form and color

One finds postmarks nowadays almost exclusively in black color. The form is usually circular, whereby encircling and dual circuit temples are most frequently represented. Above in the circle the map reference is, in the center the date and down the postal zip code. At present the introduction of the stamps however over 200 stamp forms in most diverse stamp colors were used, which open a far operating field for the Philatelisten. Particularly are so-called mute stamps like. These are postmarks without local and date.


Falsifications of postmarks exclusively exist for the damage of the collecting tanks: One differentiates between in principle two kinds:

  • Wrong stamp: These are falsified stamps on genuine stamps. With some expenditures it occurs that marked stamps are more valuable around a multiple than unstamped. This is a welcome invitation for counterfeiters.
  • Falsified stamps: Genuine, however antedated postmarks are reduced on the genuine stamps. This kind of the falsification is usually many more difficult to recognize than wrong stamps.

One finds also complete falsifications very rare. This means that both the postmark and the stamp are falsified. Since often very with difficulty recognizable falsifications on the market are to be found, an examination of very valuable stamps is essential by a stamp expert.

See also: Philatelie, Ersttagsbrief, special stamp, Ersttagsstempel

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