1840 Mulready 2d letter sheet could sell for $151,000 at Spink

An 1840 Mulready 2d letter sheet is valued at £80,000-90,000 ($134,280-151,065) ahead of Spink's British rarities sale in London on May 15.

It features two penny blacks from plate 1A (positions PB and PC) alongside a strip of four 2d blues (plate 1, positions PC-PF).

The lot was sent to Malta and features a red Charing Cross Maltese cross stamp that dates to May 9, 1840 alongside an additional red Maltese cross with a cancellation in black pen. 

Spink Mulready Malta
The Mulready is among the earliest examples of British stamps being used internationally

The interior of the Mulready is inscribed: "I enclose a few of the new Post Stamps which are to be stuck on letters. They may be a Novelty in Malta".

As the first British stamps were issued on May 1 1840, this can be considered one of the earliest known examples of international use.

A block of four 2d blue stamps from plate 1 are offered in mint condition with a valuation of £60,000-80,000 ($100,710-134,280).

It features good margins and a significant portion of the original gum, marred only by a very slight stain on the stamp in the top left corner.

A range of other early British stamps are offered in the sale, including a well known 1912-1924 George V 1d tete beche pair, which is valued at £40,000-50,000 ($67,140-83,925).

If you're interested in stamps you've come to the right place - we have a strong selection of classic British rarities, including our own exceptional Mulready, one of only two examples of its type.

Read more about the history of this extraordinary item here.

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