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Zurich Asia to offer rare stamps, philatelic treasures & superb works of art
1895 registered cover Tientsin to Hamilton.

HONG KONG.- Zurich Asia, the leading stamp auction house in Asia, will hold its next Hong Kong sale on 31 August & 1 September 2014 at Harbour Plaza Hotel. Presenting over 3,100 offerings, this exciting auction event will bring together both rare philatelic treasures and exquisite Chinese works of art highly coveted by discerning stamp collectors and art connoisseurs alike. Public preview will take place from 29-30 August.

The star lot is a very rare 1895 registered cover from Tientsin to Hamilton, New York, redirected to Brooklyn with USA and Dowager franking (Estimate: HK$1-1.2 million/ US$128,000-154,000, Lot 509, illustrated above). In excellent condition, this exceptional cover is believed to be the earliest Dowager cover sent through the US Postal Agency in Shanghai. This centerpiece is expected to arouse tremendous interest from discerning collectors.

The cover's front is franked with a USA 5 cents brown stamp and 10 cents green stamp tied by single ring 'U.S.POSTAL ANENCY/SHANGHAI/5.1.95' duplex '1' cancellation. On reverse, it bears Dowager first printing 1 candarin vermilion stamp and 2 candarins green stamp, together with a 6 candarins chocolate stamp, tied by 'TIENTISN' seal chop in blue. This fabulous offering comes with a Peter Holcombe certificate (1996) and is notably from the same correspondence as the cover in Grand Prix collection of renowned collector Huang Ming-Jeng.

Another crown jewel is a vertical pair of 1894 Dowager first printing 24 candarins rose carmine stamps with interpane margin at right and horizontal imperforate between variety (Estimate: HK$750,000-850,000/ US$96,000-109,000, Lot 241). Each stamp is tied by full strike of 'TIENTSIN' seal chop in blue. Only 11 unused and 3 used copies of this variety have been recorded. The superb pair on offer is without doubt the finest remaining pair.

The sale will also present two very fresh complete sheets of 1980 Year of the Monkey (“Golden Monkey”) stamps both in unmounted mint (Estimate: HK$1-1.1 million/ US$128,000-141,000, Lot 1958 & 1959).

A block of ten 1894 Dowager first print 3 candarins orange-yellow stamps of brilliant colour, fine mint and full original gum is a further highlight (Estimate: HK$450,000-550,000/ US$58,000-71,000, Lot 223). Of particular note, the interpane margins at top and foot and imperforate horizontally between variety on the second and third row of the stamps resulted in two vertical pairs of imperforate between variety. Six vertical pairs of such variety have been recorded by Zurich Asia and this offering is the only multiple and thus the only sheet printed with this error. It was previously in the collection of Anna-Lisa & Sven-Eric Beckeman and Huang Ming Fang.

Also from the same provenance is a block of 1894 Dowager first printing 9 candarins dull green stamps (Estimate: HK$450,000-550,000/ US$58,000-71,000, Lot 225). This great offering is imperforate vertically from the right of the sheet, and is notably the largest recorded multiple of this variety.

Other highlights include:

Lot 389 A 1897 small figures 4 cents surcharge on 3 cents Red Revenue stamp, mint with large part original gum. J.R.Hughes' pencil signature is found on reverse (Estimate: HK$300,000-350,000/ US$38,000-45,000).

Lot 390 An extremely rare complete pane of 1897 large figures 1 cent surcharge on 3 cents stamps with plate number '1858' (Estimate:HK$300,000-350,000/ US$38,000-45,000). Its colour is very fresh.

Zurich Asia will also offer a selection of exceptional works of art in the sale. Highlights include a gilt gold and cloisonné enamel snuff bottle with coral at the top, Qing Dynasty (Estimate: HK$60,000-80,000/ US$8,000-10,000, Lot 3000) and Zhongkui by Fan Zheng (1938-) (Estimate: HK$150,000-200,000/ US$19,000-26,000, Lot 3022)

All the sale items will be on view in Harbour Plaza North Point (665 King's Road, North Point, Hong Kong) between 29 and 30 August 2014 from 10am-6pm.

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