Monkey Stamps From India

Every year, when Chinese New Year is round the corner Mr John Lowis (right) gets excited. That is when the avid stamp collector checks his collection to see how many stamps he has of the animal that figures in the Chinese zodiac calendar for the year.

This year he figured out he has around 2,000 stamps of monkeys issued by countries from different parts of the world. And among them are six stamps issued by India.

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The graphic designer, 65, who lives with his wife and daughter in a small apartment in Selegie, has over 900,000 stamps in his collection. All of them are of animals in the Chinese Zodiac. The only other stamps to feature in his collection are those of Queen Victoria, of which he has a few hundred.

Mr Lowis, who started collecting stamps 30 years ago, keeps some of his stamps in a rented storage area. One set of his monkey stamps are at an exhibition in China and he says he has been offered $15,000 for them.

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However, he has no intention of selling his entire collection, which he estimates to be worth around $500,000.

His tip to aspiring stamp collectors: Aim to base your collection on a theme like dresses or in his case, Zodiac animals.

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