Michel Circus Catalog 2020 – The Circus Is in Town [Review]


Again an incredible release from Schwaneberger Verlag GmbH – the first ever to my knowledge stamp catalog covering worldwide circus on stamps releases! The authoritative team that brings you the authoritative Michel Catalog for 110 years now leans in an attentive ear in the conversations in philatelic milieus and recognizes that thematic collections are the new black – so alongside regional catalogs, more and more thematic ones are being released.

AboutMichel Catalog – Circus – WorldwideOrder directly from here. | 1st issue, available since 11.09.2020 | 156 pages | paperback | 12k price notices| 1600 color illustrations| stamps until the second quarter of 2020 cataloged | German language | Check out also the awesome Michel Online Catalog here.


What can you stack up a topical collection of circus on stamps with?

If you collect circus on stamps, the following checklist should be of interest for you, giving you hints of what – or who – was pictured on stamps you can add to your thematical collection: clowns, contorsionists, circus tents, human pyramids, fire eaters, flying trapezes, magicians, illusionists, dancers, trained animals, slacklining, acrobats, red noses, juggling, mimes, puppets, caravans, posters, fakirs, strongmen – and all of these are generously illustrated in the Michel Circus Catalog 2020.


10 Facts about Circus on Stamps

  • The earliest example of circus on stamps from the catalog hails from Italian Tripolitania and was issued in 1931. It comes in a set about city festivals and shows a snake charmer.
  • So far, as much as 164 countries and former territories issued circus-related stamps.
  • The country issuing the most circus stamps is by far Monaco. Up to 2020, 75 different circus-related issues of stamps were released, more than half occasioned by the International Circus Festival held yearly in Monaco, and which was honored by at least one stamp a year since its first edition in 1974.
  • The most prominent real person featured on circus-related stamps is Charlie Chaplin. He is most often pictured as his character, the Tramp.
  • The most frequently human character is the clown, in their multiple variations: whitefaces, tramps, rodeo clowns, mimes, pierrots, buffoons, harlequins, augustes, or jesters. The outstanding majority of clowns on stamps are male.
  • The elephant is the animal most frequently associated with the world of the circus, no less than 24 countries having issued elephant- and circus-themed stamps. In order of popularity, lions and horses range next.
  • Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso, or in short Pablo Picasso is the artist who can make happy both art on stamps collectors and circus on stamps collectors. His numerous portreyals of clowns, including his son Paul as Pierrot, can bulk up your circus on stamps collection. 1981 is the year when most Picasso-/circus-themed stamps were issued, for the artist’s 100 anniversary of birth.
  • Illusionist David Copperfield and entertainment troupe Cirque du Soleil are the only multimillionnaire acts featured on stamps.
  • Three countries issued so far stamps that combine the theme of circus with visual illusions (trompe-l’oeil): Belgium, Great Britain, and the United States of America.
  • Swiss Circus Knie was recently honored on stamps by Switerland to mark the centennial of its foundation (1919-2019). During its century-long history, the circus won numerous prizes and hosted internationally renowned acts. It was also a matter of tabloid interest in the early 2000’s, when Princess Stéphanie of Monaco literally ran away with the circus, toghether with her 3 children, being romantically involved with Franco Knie, from the circus’s founding family. “Princess Stéphanie joins her elephant man“, says one title of the epoch. Princess Stéphanie was again connected to the circus when she married another performer of the circus, Adans Lopez Peres.

You can order the Michel Circus Catalog from here.


While you are here, …

I am very pleased to inform you that for a limited time you can subscribe to the online Michel catalog with a 20% discount. More details here.


Other Michel Catalog reviews previously on Philately.Lately: Michel Comics on Stamps 2020 | Read also: Europa (CEPT) 2020: Circus on Stamps

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