Philatelic Glossary

A picture that connects stamps in a sheetlet (one or more) where an adequate accompanying motif is shown and which serves to improve the overall visual and graphic appearance of the sheetlet.

Date of release of the commemorative postal stamp for sale.

It is used to determine the appropriate type and arrangement of perforation. To determine the size of perforation, an internationally accepted measure has been established which determines how many holes (teeth) should be per two centimetres length. The measuring technique is very simple, the stamp is placed onto the perforation gauge and the result is read by simple equalization of stamp teeth with the perforation gauge markings.

Perforation signifies small punctures, of specific size and order, on postal stamps, along their margins, in printing sheets. In this way, postal stamps are easily separated from each other and are not damaged if properly handled. The most common field of testing, at least when it comes to perforation of stamps, are variations that occur when using different tools.

Exhibition sheets are made of fine half-cardboard and are used for equipping philatelic exhibits. Size: 210 x 297 mm.

Booklet represents one or several interconnected stamps. Covers with commemorative texts, drawings and other illustrations are used for binding.

FDC (First Day Cover) is an envelope that appears on the same day as the corresponding commemorative postal stamp or series of stamps. With its motif and the appropriate text, it fully complements the commemorative stamp.

Catalogue represents a list of all postal stamps of one country or a group of countries by first indicating the year when the stamp was issued, possibly the date (day and month), the name of the edition, the author of artistic solution, the manner of manufacturing (printing), the type of paper used, and perforation.

Maximum card is an illustrated postal card, the size of 9 x 14 cm or 10.5 x 15 cm. The postal stamp is pasted onto the face of the maximum card and sealed by the first day seal. According to the definition of the International Philatelic Association (FIPA), the illustration on the card must take up at least 75% of the surface of one side of the card. Also, the illustration must be related to the motif on the stamp, but should by no means be identical to it.

The cancellation seal must be clearly visible. When it comes to "carte maximum" seal, it is positioned on the back of the maximum card. If the maximum card is in whole a postal issue (postcard, stamp and seal), these are known as “postal maximum cards”, however if the maximum card was issued by some other organisation, it is called “philatelic maximum card” or “private maximum card”, in cases when an individual is the issuer.

Official monetary value of the stamp in national currency.

Postal stamp represents a means of payment for a certain type of postal service for conveyance of postal items from the sender to the recipient.

A postage seal of the place and date with a drawing, a symbol or an appropriate text which also complements the commemorative issue of a postage stamp.

This seal is only used in a certain post office, on a certain day, and it may have different shapes. If this seal is used for stamping postage stamps on the day of their release into circulation, then it also represents "the first day cover cachet".

Promotion of new editions of postal stamps and their physical presentation to the public, with accompanying manifestation, explaining the reason for their publication.

Postal stamps, regular and commemorative, may be published individually or in series. Stamps published in series include more stamps, which can be of the same or different nominal values.

Number of stamps in the printing sheets, which depends on the decision of the postal administration, required format of the stamp, as well as on the theme, motif, and purpose of the edition.

Types of sheets:

  • 25 stamps (5x5);
  • 20 stamps – 4 different motifs, 5 stamps per each motif, with corresponding vignettes in the middle of the sheet, without indicated nominal value. Stamps and vignettes, separately and together, present a specific motif which complements the motif of stamps;
  • 16 stamps – 4 different motifs, 4 stamps per each;
  • 10 stamps (2x5)
  • 8 stamps + 1 (vignette), where in the middle of the sheetlet is a vignette with the corresponding accompanying motif.

Postal administration may also issue a commemorative block, as a special edition which may be in a series, with commemorative stamps, but may also be issued as a single stamp.

Total number of printed postal stamps, regular or commemorative, in one edition.

Angles are made of special transparent self-adhesive plastic and are used for attaching stamps and maximum cards, FDC envelopes, etc.

It is used for facilitating the noticing of small motifs and textual marks or for easier reading or detecting interesting details on the stamp. The magnifier is used for examining the stamp quality, integrity of the paper, number and condition of the teeth. The most suitable magnifier is the one that has a magnification of four to five times.

These make up the basic part of philatelic accessories. They are round and blunt on the top, and completely flat on the outside and on the inside, so that the stamp cannot be damaged. There are various sizes and forms of philatelic tweezers, but, by rule, all of them are made of stainless steel. The philatelic rule is: "The stamp should not be touched with fingers but with tweezers".

Markets where salesmen, collectors, philatelic associations and publishers, as well as postal administrations, display, sell, and exchange philatelic products, materials and literature.

Specially designed notebook with hard covers and pages, in which reproductions of postal stamps are printed, and over which original postal stamps are attached to the corresponding pictures.

Map of pages fastened with a tape made of special type of plastic or cellophane in which stamp collectors insert their stamps.

У филателистички прибор спадају пинцете, лупе, албуми, класери, зубомери и друго.

Photo paper is most commonly dark in colour, suitable for equipping the exhibits, and is used for exhibiting graphic displays, maps, and graphs.

Two-sided foil made of special plasticised colourless material. On the back side it is coated by a layer of glue for easier handling and attaching to the cardboard or some other background, so that postal stamps can be inserted. It ensures safe keeping, good protection and clear visibility of postal stamps, blocks, maximum cards, FDC envelopes, etc.