The secret history of rare stamps

Blue Mauritius, by Helen Morgan, Atlantic Books, €26.45.

26th August, 2006

Blue Mauritius, by Helen Morgan, Atlantic Books, €26.45.

“A stamp collector, the possessor of a collection of 12,544 stamps, wishes to marry a lady who is an ardent collector and the possessor of the Penny Blue stamp of Mauritius,” read an advertisement in an 1891 edition of The Monitor newspaper.

Rather like the farmer who advertised in a lonely hearts column for a lady with a Massey Ferguson - ‘‘Please send picture of tractor’’ -...

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