A set of early designs for China’s Large Dragon issue was the star lot of the Olsson collection sale at Interasia Auctions on April 1.
The designs were officially approved in 1877
It realised $266,342, a figure at the higher end of its $231,816-283,331 estimate.
The issue was China’s first official nationwide postage stamp and was released to significant fanfare in 1878.
These are the same illustrations drawn up by printing company De La Rue and approved by the inspector general of the Imperial Maritime Customs agency, Sir Robert Hart.
Also included is Hart’s yin-yang design for the watermark, which was included in later issues.
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