Part of speech: noun
Origin: French & Greek, mid-19th century
The hobby of stamp collecting
The study of stamps and other related postal material
Examples of Philately in a sentence
"The estate sale included the product of a lifelong interest in philately — dozens of albums filled with rare and interesting stamps."
"The new museum exhibit on philately included correspondence from World War II, with stamps and postmarks from several European countries."
Popularity Over Time
Philately includes not just collecting stamps, but also different types of postcards and postmarks. You could also be a historian interested in the evolution of the postal system. Learn a few bits of postal trivia and start introducing yourself at parties as a philatelist.
Did you Know?
"Philately" was coined in 1864 by French stamp collector Georges Herpin (the original French word is “philatélie”). “Phil” comes from the Greek word for “I love” and “ately” comes from the Greek for “without tax.” He thought this was the best translation for stamps, implying the postage was paid by the sender.