Erivan Switzerland, zeppelin mail at Corinphila sale Dec. 3-7

Nov 14, 2019, 1 PM
The Dec. 3-7 Corinphila sale includes part 1 of the Erivan collection of classic Switzerland. Among the gems to cross the auction block is this 1854 cover sent from Geneva to Paris and franked with blocks of four and three of the 1850 Geneva 5-centime bla

By Charles Snee

Corinphila, the Swiss auction house, will auction stamps and postal history from the Erivan and other notable collections Dec. 3-7 at the firm’s Zurich gallery.

The five-day sale will feature a six-volume catalog offering the following material: worldwide stamps and postal history, including a collection of Europe transit mail to 1800, Austria and Austrian Levant, a collection of Papal states, Heligoland, and Great Britain and colonies (Dec. 3-6); part 2 of South and Central America from the Brian Moorhouse estate (Dec. 3); part 2 of pre-union South Africa from the Besancon collection (Dec. 5); part 1 of the Erivan collection of zeppelin mail (Dec. 6); Switzerland and Liechtenstein, including part 5 of the Jack Luder collection of Swiss cantonal and federal stamps (Dec. 6-7); and part 1 of the Erivan collection of classic Switzerland (Dec. 7).

With such a broad array of items available, bidders are sure to find something of interest to add to their collections.

Erivan Haub (1932-2018) was a billionaire and retail businessman whose prodigious collecting interests spanned the globe. The first parts of his collections of worldwide zeppelin mail and classic Switzerland feature outstanding items of postal history in exceptional condition.

Among the highlights in the 45 lots of the Erivan Switzerland collection is a spectacular 1854 cover sent from Geneva to Paris.

The cover is franked with a block of four and a block of three of the 1850 Geneva 5-centime black and red Cross and Post Horn stamp (Switzerland Scott 2L6).

Corinphila states that the cover, a key piece of Switzerland’s early philatelic history, is described “in all relevant publications on the postal history of Geneva or cantonal stamps.”

The cover is offered in this sale with a starting bid of 150,000 Swiss francs, which is almost $151,000 as of mid-November.

Part 1 of the Erivan collection of zeppelin mail includes covers sent to or from numerous destinations in Europe, the British Commonwealth, Germany and more. Numerous countries — including Afghanistan, Chile, Iraq, Peru and Uruguay — are represented with a single cover each.

Among the highlights of the Moorhouse auction are multiples of Guatemala’s first issue of 1871, including an imperforate block of four of the 5-centavo Coat of Arms (Scott 2) with a tete-beche pair at bottom (2c). The block is offered at a starting price of 1,500fr ($1,500).

Brian Moorhouse (1949-2017) was a pre-eminent dealer and expert in the stamps and postal history of Latin America.

Included in the Great Britain offerings are handsome examples of the 1840 1-penny Queen Victoria, often called the Penny Black.

A used pair of the Penny Black from plate 9 (with letters SJ and SK in the respective bottom corners), which Corinphila describes as having “good to large margins all around” and black Maltese Cross cancels, has a starting price of 500fr ($500).

Details of these auctions are provided on the Corinphila website, including online listings for the material in all six auction catalogs, as well as PDF catalogs that can be individually downloaded.

Online bidding options are available. Collectors can also contact Corinphila Auctions AG, Wiesenstrasse 8, 8032 Zurich, Switzerland, for additional information.

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