cddstamps on stamps

my thoughts on stamps, stamp collecting, philately in general and maybe a few other topics !

Friday, September 22, 2023

Collectors Buying With Confidence – what does Unused really mean?

 Collectors Buying With Confidence –  what does Unused really mean?  

This is my tenth topic in this series - quite surprising really how the pieces add up but then there is so much to write about.  The question today is, What does Unused really mean? 

Now interestingly enough this actually is a follow up from the previous article because in it I made reference to Mint stamps being damaged in the rain and perhaps being saved as mint no gum.

And also, this topic comes to me because this past week I received some stamps I bought on a well known marketplace.  Sadly the stamps were not what I was expecting and then thinking more about it I put it down in some part to me being trusting, me not taking the time to  ask a question, although there was nothing to prompt me to ask a question because I had bought from this seller before and was ok with their stamps, and thirdly, because the seller was, it turns out, not completely honest in their listing description, perhaps I should say  not completely accurate in their description of the stamps.  I say that because in hindsight after emails I found out the seller really did know the true and correct condition of the stamps.  

 Anyway, let me explain.



Lovely stamps, although only showing one here, and described as Unused.  So I bought.   

When the stamps arrived I looked at them as you do and found they had no gum.  Unused?  I don’t think so.


They are no postmark no gum.    If you see sellers describe stamps as Unused do not assume they are Mint stamps,  hinged or never hinged.   Since I had bought from this seller before and was satisfied it never occurred to me  this would not be OK.  OK  yes, my bad I guess.

 So what  is this stamp, and its friend that I  bought.

 The stamps were either

a)   on an envelope and not postally cancelled,  how often do we all see that,  soaked off and then listed for sale.  No problem, provided listing description says no postal cancel no gum

 Or b)  they were originally  mint stamps with gum as from the Post Office but had the gum cleaned off for whatever reason. 

They are NOT Unused.  Unused is a Mint stamp with gum and no cancel.

Have a philatelic weekend, be careful out there  😊


Michael …. Please visit my online store    where I think you will see quality and appropriately described stamps.  


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