1934-51 Pictorial Issue pair tops British Guiana stamps at $20,000

An imperforate horizontally pair of 4c stamps from the 1934-1951 Pictorial Issue has seen the top bids in Spink's auction of the Foxley Collection of British Guiana and British Honduras.

British Guiana 4c pair imperforate horizontally
Just 9-13 of the imperforate horizontally pairs were saved for philately

Held on March 13 in London, the auction boasted some of the finest philatelic items from the former British colonies. Leading bids, the 4c slate-violet pair sold for £12,000 ($19,980).

The lack of a horizontal perforation appeared on just 30 pairs, printed on a single sheet of 60. It is thought the majority were cut into singles or used as pairs while the remaining 9-13 pairs were bought by a collector and saved for philately.

The example at auction is in stunning condition, with just a little toned gum but otherwise in unmounted mint state.  

A complete die proof of the 4c from the 1860-1876 Ship Issues brought the second highest bids, accompanied by value tables for the 1c, 2c, 8c, 12c, 24c and 72c stamps of the same issue. With the 72c never issued, this unique piece sold for £11,000 ($18,315).

Interest in British Guiana stamps has piqued recently, after Sotheby's announced it will sell the legendary 1c Magenta in June, with the auction set to break all records. Meanwhile, David Feldman is charged with selling the remainder of John du Pont's world-renowned British Guiana collection.

British Honduras first issue covers
First issue covers from British Honduras are incredily rare, with just a handful known

Top seller among British Honduras items was a cover from the colony's first issue, one of just a handful known.

Sent to the US on December 6, 1869, the stamp bears a 6d rose stamp tied by an A06 obliterator cancel, along with the despatch circular date stamp and an unframed "paid" handstamp in red, which is partly over struck by a New Orleans datestamp.

It sold for £9,500 ($15,818).

Paul Fraser Collectibles has some of the finest stamps from Great Britain and the Commonwealth, including one of the rarest stamps of Canada.

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