PHILATELIC CURIOSITIES
"INVERTED CAVALRY" 15 000 DM
A stamp of "PARVI STOTINKOVI" series 6 000 DM
A stamp of the "BIG LION" series 7 500 DM
"THE PINK STAMP" 7 500 DM
"MISPRINTED SPACE BLOCK" 2 300 DM
Prices are based on "Michel" catalogue valuation. 
WLBG can purchase for you the "Misprinted Space Block".


The "INVERTED CAVALRY"

The most popular Bulgarian "misprinted" stamp is known under the name of the "Inverted cavalry", its post-marked sample being evaluated at DM 15 000 by the German catalogue "Michel".
The name of this curiosity is based on the fact that the black background of the stamp had been turned at 180 degrees to its orange frame. Plainly put, this means that the figures in the image (Tzar Ferdinand and his sons on horseback) are turned upside down. This stamp of nominal value of 50 stotinki belongs to the "Sights and Portraits" series, set into currency in 1911. It was printed in the Bonds and Securities  Polygraphic Institute in Rome, Italy, on sheets holding 100 stamps each.
Supposedly, two or three defective sheets  had escaped control and reached thereafter a number of post offices. Nowadays only specimens marked by the Plovdiv post office No 1 (30 pieces) and specimens (2 pieces) marked by the post office in Giumurdjina, now in Greece, are known. No more than a dozen of Bulgarians have the "Inverted cavalry" in their collections, the rest of the stamps can be found abroad.


"PARVI STOTINKOVI"
AND The  "BIG LION"

Some curiosities among the stamps of two earlier series are also extremely rare. For instance, the background of a number of specimens of the 5 stotinki postage stamp (in black and yellow) of the "Parvi stotinkovi" series issued in 1881, is turned upside down, this also refers to some of the 3 stotinki stamps (in orange and yellow) of the "Big Lion" series, circulated a year later.

The image depicted on the stamps of both series is a heraldic lion in a regular oval on the frame of which the nominal value of the stamp is printed. These stamps were produced by the State Printing House in St. Petersburg, Russia, the "negligence" of its printers at that time is now evaluated at DM 6000 and DM 7500, respectively.


"THE PINK STAMP"

The 5 stotinki nominal value stamp of the already mentioned "Big Lion" series has also its curiosity, known as "The Pink Stamp", named  after its wrong colour that should have been dark- and light-green. The most popular hypothesis regarding the reason for this irregularity is that a sheet of 5 stotinki stamps was printed together with a sheet of 10 stotinki stamps which are pink and red. The current price of this curiosity, with or without a post-office mark, is DM 7500.


 

THE MISPRINTED SPACE BLOCK

Among the curiosities of more recent times, the one that is worth the ink is probably the "30 Years Soviet Space Research" block, issued in 1987 in a serrated edge variant and a numbered smooth edge variant. Not only had this block a wrong year (1964 instead of 1961) printed on the representation of the space ship Vostok-1; it was also on sale in some philatelic shops for a day or two. Exactly at this point, however, the error was found out and the whole emission was withdrawn and sent away for destruction. In a short time, the same block, duly corrected, was reprinted.
Nevertheless, a limited number of stamp collectors had obviously been informed of the "error" beforehand, and on the day of its validation 550 numbered smooth edge blocks and 1018 serrated edge blocks were bought from the quota available in the shops.
The "Michel" catalogue valuates these two versions at DM 2300 and DM 1000, respectively.