British Commonwealth

Trials & Essays

An essay is an artist's drawing (or similar) that does not result in the issue of a stamp, at least without modification in some respect. It may refer to a design in the same format as a stamp, or an enlarged artist's impression of what an issued stamp might look like. Sometimes an essay may be very close to an issued design, or it may be totally unrelated. The term 'trial' means any experiment designed to show how an issued stamp might look, usually (but not necessarily) with reference to colour - or it may be an experiment in separation method, ink or paper surfacing. Both produce many valuable and rare opportunities for collectors.

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