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The first stamp of Denmark was issued on the first of April of 1951. The stamp was typographed, imperforated and printed on paper with yellow brown burelage in slight relief on the background (this is an important fact since reprints do not have the underprint in recess). Full margins at 1mm, they are watermarked with a small crown.
The engraver of the Danish first stamp was M.W. Ferslew, whose signature can be seen over the M in FRIMÆRKE, as a small F. RBS stands for Rigsbankskilling, the currency at the time, which in later issues appears with the abbreviation ‘S’, which could be used both for Skilling as for Schilling, the currency in the German speaking Schleswig Holstein.
It is most likely Denmark did not choose to feature the royal portrait due to the recent changes in the country’s political scenario. Denmark turned to a constitutional monarchy in 1949, when the growing bourgeoisie pressed for more political power. The Crown Regalia was chosen instead, as a symbol of the still very present monarchy to represent the State, since the ruling monarch now shared his authority.
Although stamps circulated in Denmark from 1851, it was still possible to send letters without them, although more expensive (6 RBS). Stamp usage was only made obligatory in 1871. Furthermore, the country name did not appear on stamps until 1875, since the first stamps were used for internal postage only.
It is also worth noting Scott Catalogue lists the 2 RBS blue as number 1, which was issued later in the same month for local use in Copenhagen, thus a choice by denominator and not chronological order.
Catalogue Value: Unused ***, Used *
* 0.1 - 49 USD
** 50 - 99 USD
*** 100 - 499 USD
**** 500 - 999 USD
***** 1'000 - 9'999 USD
****** + 10'0000 USD
The First Issues Blog is a place to discuss about the stamp number 1 of each country, territory, district, etc. Each additional item to my new collection shall receive a small description about the item, its history and curiosities.
Note that I may add more than 1 'number one' stamp to a place. This happens as I judge that in the case of independence or any other political issue that changed the postal history or when I deemed interesting to do so. This will be noted on the posts when it happens.