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Stamp Collecting
Written by Catherine Davis   

Stamp collectionStamp collecting, or philately, can be a financial investment, an absorbing hobby or both, and you can learn a lot in the process.

Stamps are tiny pictures of not only postal but social history. There are commemorative issues depicting famous people, places and events, and themed editions with subjects as diverse as endangered species, space travel and steam engines. Then there are the stamps themselves, with myriad differences in printing, perforation and post marks. All possess cultural, political and geographical interest.

Given the infinite variety of stamps, it's a good idea to begin by focussing on the country or topic that most appeals to you, using a stamp catalogue to identify and sort specimens.

Stamp magazines supply information on philately in general and collecting in particular, and contain details of stamp dealers, auctions and fairs. You can also trade material through philatetic societies and stamp clubs or buy and sell over the internet.

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