Rare half of a stamp sold at auction for $347,500

This extremely rare 1872 postage stamp – correction: half of a postage stamp! – was auctioned off in Bietigheim-Bissingen, Germany for $347,500. Explanation:

“Stamps were in short supply in Syke between 1872 and 1874 so it was decided that they should be cut in half as a makeshift solution,” she said. “But because this was only done for a short period, very few letters actually bear these halved stamps.”


The Syke bisect is both official and extremely rare. Only 3 of them are known to exist today, and this particular one is famous in its own right because it was on the cover of the definitive book on the Syke bisects written by the felicitously named Rolf Rohlfs in 1982. Two bidders, one from north Germany, one from the south, went head to head for this special half stamp. The north German collector won.

I used to collect stamps when I was a kid. I think I lost money in it. Same with my baseball collection.