Royal Misses The Boat ? Disses Magic Circle with New Stamps

 

 

Presentation Pack of Magic Circle Stamps (Devant on Right)

Stanley Gibbons is a magic fan but more importantly, for the purposes of this article, he is a philatelist.  That is a good thing, not a dirty thing.  He is a stamp collector’s collector.  His Gibbons Stamp Monthly is one of the neat magazines on the web and usually filled with things that have little to do with the world of magic.

 

In his March issue, though, Mr. Gibbons quotes Magic Circle member Brian McCullagh’s displeasure at the Royal Mail’s dissing ? our word ? of The Magic Circle.  As we all know, the venerable London-based organization celebrates its centennial this summer and it is easy to think just because all magicians think this is a big deal, all will feel the same enthusiasm.

 

So while Mr. McCullagh does credit the Royal Mail for remembering the special occasion, he is keen to point out that they “missed the boat” in their method of celebration.

 

Mr. McCullagh writes:  

 

“The stamps have ?The Magic Circle? on them, but nothing else. I do know that I don?t like the stamps. I saw their images (nothing else) and I was tremendously disappointed. I felt Royal Mail had ?missed the boat?. A golden opportunity was presented not only to produce stamps that would reflect well on them, but they could also do much to educate the public as to the full meaning of Magic (Conjuring). One person to whom I showed the stamps said, ?They present Magic as a children?s plaything!?”

 

Indeed. 

 

While the presentation pack for the five commemorative stamps shows images of past and present master magicians, the stamps themselves lack any images familiar to magicians or significant to the public.  A great opportunity has been missed, suggests Mr. McCullagh. 

 

He observes that the general public is unfamiliar with the first president and the country’s greatest magician, David Devant.  The publicity provided by the stamp issue would have educated the public and paid homage to a great man. 

 

The stamps are tricks in themselves, however. …

 

 

Presentation Pack of Magic Circle Stamps (Devant on Right)

Stanley Gibbons is a magic fan but more importantly, for the purposes of this article, he is a philatelist.  That is a good thing, not a dirty thing.  He is a stamp collector’s collector.  His Gibbons Stamp Monthly is one of the neat magazines on the web and usually filled with things that have little to do with the world of magic.

 

In his March issue, though, Mr. Gibbons quotes Magic Circle member Brian McCullagh’s displeasure at the Royal Mail’s dissing ? our word ? of The Magic Circle.  As we all know, the venerable London-based organization celebrates its centennial this summer and it is easy to think just because all magicians think this is a big deal, all will feel the same enthusiasm.

 

So while Mr. McCullagh does credit the Royal Mail for remembering the special occasion, he is keen to point out that they “missed the boat” in their method of celebration.

 

Mr. McCullagh writes:  

 

“The stamps have ?The Magic Circle? on them, but nothing else. I do know that I don?t like the stamps. I saw their images (nothing else) and I was tremendously disappointed. I felt Royal Mail had ?missed the boat?. A golden opportunity was presented not only to produce stamps that would reflect well on them, but they could also do much to educate the public as to the full meaning of Magic (Conjuring). One person to whom I showed the stamps said, ?They present Magic as a children?s plaything!?”

 

Indeed. 

 

While the presentation pack for the five commemorative stamps shows images of past and present master magicians, the stamps themselves lack any images familiar to magicians or significant to the public.  A great opportunity has been missed, suggests Mr. McCullagh. 

 

He observes that the general public is unfamiliar with the first president and the country’s greatest magician, David Devant.  The publicity provided by the stamp issue would have educated the public and paid homage to a great man. 

 

The stamps are tricks in themselves, however.  If you scratch the stamp and then press your finger on the area scratched, each one shows some different scene. 

 

This type of honor is not unheard of.  In fact, as Mr. McCullagh recalls many nations have featured magicians (alive and dead) on their stamps.  The public demand for the stamps exceeded that expected from magicians alone. 

 

Mr. McCullagh does a great job of reviewing some of the great magic stamps from around the world.  Including those featuring Robert-Houdin, Houdini, Ludwig D?bler and David Copperfield.  He does not mention but we do, the wonderful stamp set featuring past-president of the IBM and all-around great guy and outstanding performer, Bev Bergeron as Rebo the Clown. 

 

Mr. McCullagh’s point is well-taken.  While he explicitly says he is not speaking on behalf of The Magic Circle, he does speak on behalf of many magicians who not only respect that institution but will also celebrate its 100 year anniversary.

 

Read the full article in Mr. Gibbon’s great monthly newsletter by clicking here.

View The Magic Circle’s Press Release on the stamps here.

View the Royal Mail’s information page here.

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