British Commonwealth

Asian Stamps

Find stamps by:

 

The background to stamps from Asia that fall under the general heading of ‘British Commonwealth’ is, to say the least, complex. Perhaps the most straightforward area, and best known but not for all the right reasons, is Hong Kong.

Hong Kong was ceded to Great Britain on 26 January 1841, with the Hong Kong Post Office established in October that year. The first stamps, with the portrait of Queen Victoria, were issued on 8 December 1862. As with most of the stamps from the island issued during that reign, those that are unused are not easy to find, reflected in the pricing: used are easier to acquire. The 50th anniversary and centenary as a Crown Colony were marked by overprints in 1891 and a set of six designs in 1941. The anniversary marked in 1991 was the 150th anniversary of the Hong Kong Post Office.

Notable during the reign of Queen Elizabeth II has been the definitive series, with the multiple printings and different portraits used, including the ever-popular study by Pietro Annigoni first used in 1982. Also popular have been the various Chinese New Year sets, introduced in 1967 (the Year of the Ram).

On 1 July 1997 Hong Kong became a Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.

 

Popular Stamps from Asia:

LABUAN 1891 SG38a Mint 6c on 40c amber ERROR SURCHARGE INVERTED

Stock Code: P190006334

1891-92 6c on 40c amber, type 10 surcharge (INVERTED), fresh large part o.g. An excessively rare stamp, and almost certainly as fine as exists. Probably only one sheet of 10 printed, of which some were used and others are no longer in fine condition, at least two being without gum. Ex 'Midas' (CRL 17/12/91, lot 270), with PF cert No. 164427 (not present).

$12,916.80*

Shipping to the UK: Free

Enquiries/payments

Out of Stock

Add to Wishlist

LABUAN 1891 SG38a Mint 6c on 40c amber ERROR SURCHARGE INVERTED - $12,916.80*

NORTH BORNEO 1922 SG267b/ba Mint

Stock Code: P201006090

1922 MBE 16c brown-lake, OVERPRINT IN RED, horizontal pair, the right stamp showing variety "Stop after EXHIBITION", large part o.g. Toned gum as usually found, and the left stamp sadly with missing SW corner, nevertheless the UNIQUE multiple of this famous rarity, and arguably the most important item of the entire MBE issue. Only one 10x2 setting is believed to have been issued, with the stop variety present on one position only (R2/7 or 2/9), and therefore the only example that ever existed. (cat £29,000). [BPA cert (1966) shows the corner of the left stamp still in place. What a tragedy !].

$13,455.00*

Shipping to the UK: Free

Enquiries/payments

Out of Stock

Add to Wishlist

NORTH BORNEO 1922 SG267b/ba Mint - $13,455.00*

HK BRIT PO IN CHINA 1917 SG1c Used 1c watermark MCA variety WATERMARK SIDEWAYS used in Tientsin

Stock Code: P10112013X

1917-21 1c brown, wmk MCA, horizontal pair, VARIETY WMK SIDEWAYS, neatly cancelled by part '(TIEN)TSIN' cds, dated '(M)Y 21 19'. Folded perfs, and the right stamp with insignficant surface scratch mentioned for accuracy, still very fine and fresh, and showing broken 'A' in 'CHINA' on left stamp. An outstanding multiple of the highest rarity.

$5,920.20*

Shipping to the UK: Free

Enquiries/payments

Out of Stock

Add to Wishlist

HK BRIT PO IN CHINA 1917 SG1c Used 1c watermark MCA variety WATERMARK SIDEWAYS used in Tientsin - $5,920.20*

CEYLON 1861 SG27 Mint 2s dull blue, wmk star, clean-cut perfs, lpog

Stock Code: P223006002

1861-64 2s dull blue, wmk star, clean-cut perf 14½-15½, large part o.g. Shows marginal wmk line at foot. A remarkably fine and most attractive example of this very rare stamp, with just three sheets delivered 17 Nov 1860, and three more (probably with perfs in the intermediate state) on 1 Feb 1861, representing a total issue of 1440 stamps. Only twelve unused examples known to Kimmel, with most undoubtedly without gum (like the one other we have handled in the past 20 years). (cat £4750).

$4,036.50*

Shipping to the UK: Free

Enquiries/payments

Out of Stock

Add to Wishlist

CEYLON 1861 SG27 Mint 2s dull blue, wmk star, clean-cut perfs, lpog - $4,036.50*

MALAYA JAP OCC 1942 SGJD14 Postage Due Malacca Military Seal Type 10

Stock Code: P212005443

Postage Due. 1942 (23 Apr) Malacca 10c yellow-orange, type 10 seal, lower marginal block of 4, very fine c.t.o. with central strike of Malacca type D26 cds, dated '7 29 2602'. One short perf at left, of little importance for this attractive and rare block, the first we have handled in used condition since 2005. RPSL cert (1970) as former SGJD20. (cat £2500)

$2,421.90*

Shipping to the UK: Free

Enquiries/payments

Out of Stock

Add to Wishlist

MALAYA JAP OCC 1942 SGJD14 Postage Due Malacca Military Seal Type 10 - $2,421.90*

A Brief History of the Featured Stamps

Labuan 1891:

Brunei, a tiny nation on the island of Borneo and surrounded by Malaysia, issued its first stamps, in a Star and Crescent design, on 22 July 1895, a set whose status was for some years in doubt. It transpired they could be used within Brunei, or on mail to Labuan and Sarawak. A set in 1906 comprised overprints on the stamps of Labuan, until the following year when stamps inscribed Brunei and showing Brunei River were released. Since 1952 the stamps have featured the portrait of the current Sultan, have been modest in number and totally relevant to Brunei, shunning the more popular themes since 1981.

North Borneo 1922:

In separate categories come the stamps of North Borneo (first issued in 1883), to become Sabah from 1 July 1964, and Sarawak with stamps so inscribed being issued from 1869.

British Hong Kong 1917:

Hong Kong was ceded to Great Britain on 26 January 1841, with the Hong Kong Post Office established in October that year. The first stamps, with the portrait of Queen Victoria, were issued on 8 December 1862. As with most of the stamps from the island issued during that reign, those that are unused are not easy to find, reflected in the pricing: used are easier to acquire. The 50th anniversary and centenary as a Crown Colony were marked by overprints in 1891 and a set of six designs in 1941. The anniversary marked in 1991 was the 150th anniversary of the Hong Kong Post Office. On 1 July 1997 Hong Kong became a Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.

Malaysia 1942:

Far more complex is the matter of the stamps of Malaysia. Indeed the best way to unravel the puzzle is to consult the Stanley Gibbons catalogue. Essentially one is looking at stamps inscribed Straits Settlements, Federated Malay States, Malaya or Malaysia, or with the name of one of the States (Johore, Kedah, Kelantan, Malacca, Negri Sembilan, Pahang, Penang, Perak, Selangor and Tregganu – either with the name inscribed, or overprinted on stamps of the Straits Settlements). However, the first stamps, issued on 1 September 1867, were overprints on the stamps of India. Stamps inscribed Straits Settlements, with the portrait of Queen Victoria, appeared in December that year. Stamps for the Malayan Federation, inscribed Malaya, appeared in 1957, changed to Malaysia in 1963.

Latest Acquisitions Below

View All Stock