The Red Mauritius , one of the most famous and rarest postage stamps in the world, was auctioned in Ludwigsburg, Germany, for 8.1 million euros.According to the auction house, the new owner is a German-speaking collector from Europe.
The copy with the title “1847 Mauritius 1d Ball Cover” was offered by a private owner yesterday for a starting price of four million euros. According to the Ludwigsburg auction house, the historically valuable envelope with the stamp only changes hands every few decades. A total of three interested parties had raised their hopes when bidding by telephone.
The Queen also has one
The postage was the first to pay for the postage for sending invitations to a costume ball. Three of the envelopes are said to have survived. “Queen Elizabeth II has one of the ‘Ball Covers” in her philately collection, ”said auctioneer Christoph Gärtner. Another copy is in the Philatelic Collection of the British Library in London. “Both can never be sold.” The third cover still in existence is now privately owned.
Mauritius “Post Office” stamps
The Mauritius “Post Office” stamps were issued by the British Colony Mauritius in September 1847, in two denominations: an orange-red one penny (1d) and a deep blue two pence (2d).
Their name comes from the wording on the stamps reading “Post Office”, which was soon changed in the next issue to “Post Paid”. They are among the rarest postage stamps in the world.