1994 Mount Cook Definitive

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1994 Mount Cook Definitive
Cat. Mint Unhinged Fine Used
$20 Mount Cook Definitive 378a $36.00
(i) Reprint overprinted 'Specimen' from the 2009 Timpex Stamp Exhibition miniature sheet 378a1 $11.05
First Day Cover - 18 February 1994 378b $34.00
… $20 (378a)
This is New Zealand's largest and highest valued stamp. It is also one of the most controversial as many stamp collectors believe that rather than responding to demand for a high value postage stamp for documents and parcels, the stamp was a ploy to fleece collectors.

Recess printed in a dull blue with gold leaf embossing, this design incorporates several New Zealand icons - Mt Cook, the native Ponga fern and the Kowhai tree flower. A Maori rafter pattern in gold leaf borders at the top while the New Zealand flag is also woven into the engraving.

The same stamp design printed by offset lithography, pre-cancelled and overprinted 'SPECIMEN' was included in the 2009 Timpex Stamp Exhibition miniature sheet.

The stamp was printed on water-marked paper with a special fluorescent surface printed security pattern as shown in the above photograph which is visible under long wave (around 420 nanometre) ultraviolet light.

The Postage Stamps of New Zealand Volume VIII
Edited by B. G. Vincent FRPSNZ
Published 1998 by The Royal Philatelic Society of New Zealand Incorporated (ISSN 0-9597883-1-X)
Pages 132 - 133, 138 - 139
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