Another Fault Found? An Able Tennis Queen in DPRK

North Korea

While viewing North Korean stamps in my stock, half absent-mindedly, I came upon a souvenir sheet that stimulated my curiosity. It is their #1317 (SG’s MSN-1351/Mi-1343) honoring Ms. Pak Yong Sun, the 33rd World Table Tennis Champion. 

It shows one 80 jong stamp design in which gold lettering on the top edge announces “ABLE TENNIS QUEEN.” It’s strange to find a stamp designed to celebrate someone who is only an “able” player. Of course, this is merely my contortion as anyone can see that the description is properly “TABLE TENNIS QUEEN” with the first “t” omitted.

DPRK Souvenir Sheet and Single Stamp “Able” and “Table Tennis Queen”

This is easily confirmed when looking at the design of the 10 jong stamp issued with the souvenir sheet. On its full top border is the complete description, ‘33rd WORLD TABLE TENNIS QUEEN” stitched in gold on a mauve ribbon.

When designing the souvenir sheet, the designer tried to incorporate part of the ribbon, I believe. If any omission happened in this process, where did it occur and who was responsible, in the artist’s studio or the printer’s workshop?

Perhaps I am being too picky, magnifying a negligible fault, but it is there, isn’t it? You can readily confirm it for yourself.

(Originally from KP May 2003, Vol. 49, No. 2. Please note graphics are from original b/w article PDF.)


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