World Stamps

Austria corrects castle mistake with new stamp

Feb 16, 2023, 1 PM

By Denise McCarty

Austria Post misidentified a castle on a coil stamp issued in 2022 and quickly printed a new version of the stamp to correct the mistake. However, some of the stamps with the wrong inscription were shipped to customers.

In the July 2022 issue of its magazine for collectors, Album, Austria Post announced and illustrated four new coil stamps to be issued July 1, 2022. Pictured on the €0.85 stamp was a castle perched on a mountain above a village. “Burg Güssing” (burg is German for castle) was inscribed in the lower left.

However, the stamp depicts another castle on a volcanic summit, Riegersburg Castle.

Austria Post announced the revised stamp design with the correct “Riegersburg” inscription in the September 2022 issue of Album.

Translated from German, the notice said: “Unfortunately, there was a small mistake in the production of the dispenser stamps. The Riegersburg is shown on the dispenser stamp with the domestic rate €0.85 and not the Güssing Castle as stated. The dispenser stamp will therefore be reprinted and sent to dispenser stamp subscribers free of charge with the next dispenser stamp delivery.”

The notice did not include the issue date for the revised version of the stamp, but Austria Post told Linn’s Stamp News that the mistake was found “in the course of an internal control and were therefore able to recover the dispenser stamps as early as 6 July.”

Austria Post added: “Only a small number of the misprinted stamps were sold, unfortunately we cannot give an exact number about that. The circulation of the corrected stamp is 170,000 pieces.”

Examples of both the Gussing Castle and Riegersburg coil stamps have been offered in online sales.

The two castles share some similarities: Both date from the 12th century, both are built on dormant volcanoes, and both have appeared on previous Austrian stamps.

Gussing Castle, located in Burgenland in eastern Austria, is shown on 10-groschen definitive stamps issued in different colors between 1929-32 (Scott 326, 327 and 340) and on a 1935 5g airmail (C32).

Located about 30 miles away in the neighboring state of Styria, Riegersburg Castle is featured on a 1978 Europa stamp (Scott 1079).

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