During its evolution, philately has acquired and demonstrated the specific properties and aspects that define and legitimize it and allow its further continuation in the social, cultural and market environment.
Generally speaking, these are:
- striving for beauty and perfection and often for the “unattainable”
- creating and preserving values and stories whose significance lies in the future
- timelessness, ability to inspire
- bringing joy and a unique experience
It can also be said that philately is emotional and transcendent, thus filling our lives with meaning and sense. You could hardly want more!
Concretely speaking, we can see:
- 160 years of collecting and market tradition
- creation of unique and beautiful works
- trustworthiness – final census of objects of interest
- concentration of large values in a tiny work made by human hands
- preservation or growth of the price of most rare stamps
- mobility, globality, liquidity, market resilience in the event of an economic downturn
- VIP contexts and ownership lines of famous and notable personalities in the entire philatelic tradition
- strong expert support – an information base in the form of tens of thousands of specialist literature titles
- scientific methods and claims, historical and economic tools applied in philatelic studies and in the collecting and market environment
All of this is more or less broadly known – we do not hesitate to say in the world consensus – on the part of the philatelic as well as non-philatelic public as a motivating and inspiring source of rediscovery and the future of philately itself.
With a thorough understanding and consideration of the significance of the above categories, we find out that philately appears here as an extraordinary work of the human spirit, striving and creativity, time spent and activity. In history, there are not many comparable phenomena, cultural achievements with a similar universal message and comprehensibility. If we wanted to grasp the implied image of philately in one term, to summarize our overall impression, the word “respectability” would probably cross our mind. Yes, philately is especially respectable!
If we continue to accentuate this, to measure everything from the world of philately by the ability to meet the demands for its fundamental respectability, then the part of philately bearing its highest quality will come out.
Collecting and expert quality, but also in the market, cultural or social context. In this step, we will be helped by the selected philatelic features already mentioned as well as by new features or criteria. We have taken the liberty of titling this newly defined part “Prestige Philately”. It is formed by specific collecting material and its creators and bearers – the elite from the ranks of collectors, experts and investors who set the highest goals for themselves, formulate and fulfil the universal values of philately, protect it and pass it on.
The properties defining the “Prestige Philately” collecting material can be seen from the general scheme (with clear pricing potential), which can be used to sort and describe the entire philatelic “universe” – according to the criteria of QUALITY, RARITY, PROVENANCE, DEMAND and EXPECTATION.
The criterion for the stamps and letters that Prestige Philately deals with is the highest level of the aforementioned categories. Currently, the growing importance of PROVENANCE (origin in the sense of a complete story, the context of the origin and importance of the owners) and EXPECTATION (expectation of future popularity, demand, market perspective, possibility of new knowledge, etc.) becomes apparent in the collecting and market environment.
All criteria that define philatelic material as “prestigious” and define it against other material and examples and applications thereof will be dealt with in other chapters on this subject.
It is precisely the thematization of Prestige Philately, its presentation and the promotion of its special position in the world of general philately and the awareness of it also in the surrounding world that should be the task and purpose of PPCP. Designation, study and development of Prestige Philately are essential for the further direction of philately as a whole. We thus see Prestige Philately as a trend of the future.