Second Side-Face Issue

The stamps were issued in 1882. Like the 1874 issue they showed a side portrait of Queen Victoria. A major change was that the stamps were available for revenue as well as postal purposes.

The stamps

The initial printings consisted of the 1d, 2d, 3d, 4d, 6d, 8d and 1/- values, although it is unclear when some of the higher values were issued as copies with postmarks in the first couple of years are unknown.

1d 2d 3d

4d 6d 8d 1/-

The dies were engraved by W.R Bock and A.E. Cousins. The plates were produced and the stamps surface printed at the Government Printing Office. Like the 1874 issue, the sheets had 240 stamps in panes of 60. Several plates of the 1d, 2d and 6d were made and the dies of these values were recut by A.E. Cousins.

Later values

As the rate for foreign letters had been reduced from 6d to 2½d per ½oz, 2½d and 5d values were issued in December 1890 and February 1891 respectively. A ½d value was then issued on 1 April 1895 as a replacement for the ½d newspaper stamp that had been in use since January 1873. These stamps show a much older Queen Victoria.

½d 2½d 5d


The stamps are watermarked NZ and star. The initial 1882 paper has a horizontal mesh and the distance between the NZ and star is 6mm.

In 1888, the paper was changed to one with a vertical mesh in which the distance between the NZ and star is 7mm. All values exist on the 7mm paper. In 1890, there was a provisional issue of the 1d, 2d, 2½d, 3d, 6d and 1/- values on the (rather poor quality) paper used for the Life Insurance stamps. In this paper the distance between the NZ and star is 4mm. After 1898, the 7mm paper was coarser with a clearer mesh.

The 6mm, 4mm and early 7mm stamps were perforated comb 12 x 11½. After 1891-92, most 7mm stamps were perforated by rotary line machines, first perf 10, from 1896 perf 10 x 11 and from 1897 perf 11 although some use of the 12 x 11½ head continued until 1898.

In 1900, the ½d and 2d values were issued on a thick paper with a sideways watermark with a double lined NZ and star and perf 11.


The above information is taken from The Postage Stamps of New Zealand Vol 1, published by the Royal Philatelic Society of New Zealand in 1938. All scans were made by the author.