The First Issue of Greece was issued in 1861, and was both designed and printed in Paris, France. Numerous proof multiples, a large number of covers, “flyspeck” plate varieties, different numeral town cancels, and much more make this an attractive “First Issue” for specialising.

The acknowleged”gem” of the issue is a cover sent from Patras (the port near Athens) to Genoa (Italy) via French mail steamer, franked by eight stamps – seven different values each in a different colour as issued, plus an additional 20 lepta value.

With cancels of Athens and Genoa on the reverse, attesting to 1862 usage, it is one of the most famous and beautiful of all Greek first issue (Paris Printing) items, with each stamp showing a numeral “9” in dotted diamond cancel.

Whille there is some old controversy whether the bottom right stamp (a 40 lepta value) might have been substituted for some other value (it more likely was removed for examination and replaced in a slightly different position), the cover was first exposed to the world of philately in 1927 by the company Luder-Edelman, which became Corinphila. It has been carefully kept out of the public eye until the present century, and is sure to become one of the paramount exhibition items of this ever-popular collecting field !