The Collecting Basics section on the C3a learning platform provides an insight into some of the "lingo" which is used in stamp collecting. To access the course, go to https://stamps.org/learn/c3a-online-learning and click Enter C3a. The course will be under the my courses section of the menu on the left of the page. Please note that this course is available for members only.
The first part of the section are two courses, an introduction to stamp identification and keeping your collection safe. This is great for collectors who want to learn about different philatelic materials and elements of a stamp such as:
- Tongs - Tweezer-like tools with a smooth gripping service used to handle stamps.
- Hinges - Small pieces of gummed paper that are used to affix stamps to an album page. Hinges allow for stamps to be removed from an album page without damaging the stamp.
- Albums - A book for storing stamps. Most albums consist of pages preprinted with stamp images, although a stockbook with pockets to hold stamps may also be considered an album.
- Gum - Adhesive that is used to attach a stamp to an envelope.
- Adhesive - The gum or coating on the back of a stamp which allows you to attach it to an envelope.
If you want to dive deeper into the other tools used by philatelist, there is a 6-module called Tools of the Hobby.
The next section is a 5-module course about philatelic history, where new collectors can explore more about how the modern postal system was created and learn more about some of the most famous stamps. There is also a video series about stamp and cover anatomy, which gives examples of more philatelic terms such as:
- Cancellation - A mark used by the post office to show that a stamp has been used.
- Postmark - A mark indicating when and from where a letter was sent. It may or may not also serve as a cancel.
The final part of the section is a series consisting of nine videos about different ways to collect stamps, where beginners can learn about various types of stamps and various areas to collect such as:
- Topicals - Another word for thematic. A collection of stamps based on subject rather than country.
- Type - Some individuals collect stamps based on the type of stamp, such as airmail stamps or coil stamps.
- Revenue stamps - Labels that do not pay postage but pay other fees or taxes.
Some additional information about philatelic vocabulary terms can be found here. Make sure to check out this C3a course, especially if you are new to the hobby! Click here to purchase the Stamp Collecting Fundamentals course (totaling 5 and 1/2 hours of content), which includes tips and techniques especially for new collectors.