The 1969 Stephen Leacock stamp Issue of Canada

The Commemorative Issues of 1969 - Part Two

Today's post completes my examination of the 1969 commemorative issues of Canada, and looks at the last 9 stamps issued in that year. Canadian Bank Note Company (CBN) printed all but two of these using either lithography or engraving and lithography, while the British American Bank Note Company printed the other two, using engraving and photogravure. 

For these last 9 stamps, high fluorescent or hibrite paper is now the norm, for all except two issues: the Issac Brock Issue and the Stephen Leacock issue, which was the last one to appear on November 12, 1969. Unitrade does list a dull paper variety on the other BABN issue, the Charlottetown Bicentennial, though no other dull paper varieties, are, as yet known on the other issues. Gum and perforation displays the usual variations that were noted in the last post and there are a good number of constant varieties on the lithographed stamps. None of these were listed 20 years ago, having all reached prominence since then. So, there may well be others to discover, that are of a semi-constant nature. This was also the second and last year that the Christmas issues were available in the large softcover booklets of 20 stamps. The probable reason for this was that the booklets tended to fall apart. We won't see Christmas booklets again until 1985!

The rest of this post will progress in the usual manner, with the stamp designs and issue information, and then a detailed discussion of the attributes of the stamps, and some of the variations found. 

The Stamps, Designs, Issue Dates, Quantities, Printers and Designers

The 1969 6c White Throated Sparrow Stamp of Canada from 1969

6c multicoloured

White Throated Sparrow

Printed by CBN using lithography

Issued: July 23, 1969

Quantity issued: 36,350,000

Designed by: Martin Glen Loates

 

The 1969 10c Ipswich Sparrow Stamp of Canada

10c multicoloured

Ipswich Sparrow

Printed by CBN using lithography

Issued: July 23, 1969

Quantity issued: 12,950,000

Designed by: Martin Glen Loates

The 1969 25c Hermit Thrush stamp of Canada

25c multicoloured

Hermit Thrush

Printed by CBN using lithography

Issued: July 23, 1969

Quantity issued: 6,700,000

Designed by: Martin Glen Loates

The 1969 Charlottetown Bicentennial Issue of Canada

6c orange brown, ultramarine and black

Charlottetown Bicentennial

Printed by BABN using photogravure and engraving

Issued: August 15, 1969

Quantity issued: 16,400,000

Designed by: Lloyd Fitzgerald

The 1969 Canada Games Issue of Canada

6c ultramarine, bright green and red

Canada Games

Printed by CBN using lithography and engraving

Issued: August 15, 1969

Quantity issued: 24,250,000

Designed by: Carleton McDiarmid

Engraved by: Yves Baril and Donald Mitchell

The 1969 Isaac Brock Issue of Canada

6c yellow brown, brown and pale salmon

Birth bicentenary of Sir Isaac Brock

Printed by CBN using lithography and engraving

Issued: September 12, 1969

Quantity issued: 35,100,000

Designed by: Imre von Mosdossy

Engraved by: Yves Baril

The 1969 5c Christmas stamp of Canada

6c multicoloured

Children praying

Printed by CBN using lithography

Issued: October 8, 1969

Quantity issued: 170,500,000 untagged and 7,750,000 tagged

Designed by: Rapid Grip and Batten Limited

The 1969 6c Christmas stamp of Canada

6c multicoloured

Children praying

Printed by CBN using lithography

Issued: October 8, 1969

Quantity issued: 99,950,000 untagged and 3,000,000 tagged

Designed by: Rapid Grip and Batten Limited

The 1969 Stephen Leacock Issue of Canada

6c multicoloured

Birth centenary of Stephen Leacock

Printed by BABN using photogravure and engraving

Issued: November 12, 1969

Quantity issued: 35,500,000

Designed by: George Sarras Fanais

Engraved by: George Arthur Gundersen

Paper Characteristics Other Than Fluorescence

As was the case with the stamps in the previous post, there is also considerable variation in the paper utilized to print these stamps:

  1. A smooth, vertical wove paper that is a light cream colour, and which shows no obvious mesh pattern, even when held up to a strong back light. The paper feels smooth to the touch, but under magnification, it is clear that it is uncoated. This paper is found on the Charlottetown Bicentennial stamp and the Stephen Leacock stamp. 
  2. A smooth, thicker horizontal wove paper, that is cream coloured. There is no obvious mesh pattern visible on the front or back. Against strong back light, a faint vertical and horizontal mesh pattern is visible. On the printed surface the paper is smooth and under magnification you can just see a very light surface coating and no loose fibres on the paper surface. This paper type is found on some printings of the Isaac Brock stamp. 
  3. A paper that is identical to #2 above, except that it is noticeably thinner. This is found on some of the Isaac Brock stamps. 
  4. A paper that is similar to #3 above, except that it is vertical wove, rather than horizontal wove. This paper is also found on some printings of the Isaac Brock Stamp. 
  5. A smooth, thicker vertical wove paper that is a white colour, and has no apparent mesh pattern until held up to a strong back light, when a faint horizontal mesh pattern is visible. Under magnification the printing surface is smooth, and has a light surface coating. This paper is found on the Canada Games issue
  6. An identical paper to #5 above, except that it is a horizontal, rather than vertical wove paper. This type is also found on the Canada Games Issue. 
  7. A smooth, vertical wove paper that is whiter, being a very light cream when viewed against a stark white background. There is a light horizontal mesh pattern when viewed against strong back lighting. Under magnification, the paper surface is smooth, and there is an obvious surface coating in order to prevent loose paper fibres on the surface. This paper is found on the Christmas issues. 
  8. A smooth, white, vertical wove paper that has no clear mesh pattern, even when viewed against strong back lighting. Under magnification, the printing surface is seen to be very smooth, but there is no surface coating. This paper is found on the 6c White Throated Sparrow stamp of the birds issue. 
  9. A paper that is the same in all respects to #8 above, except that the weave direction is horizontal, rather than vertical. This paper is found on the 10c Ipswich Sparrow and the 25c Hermit Thrush of the birds issue. 
  10. A similar paper to #1 above, which has a whiter appearance, being a lighter cream colour. This is found on some printings of the Charlottetown Bicentennial stamp, and is the so called hibrite paper. 

Paper Fluorescence

As stated in the introduction, the normal paper for all but two issues is stated to be hibrite. In reality it is more of a high fluorescent paper, which can vary from medium fluorescent to a true hibrite. 

The Birds Issue

On this issue, the paper is usually a high fluorescent bluish white, with a few hibrite fibres visible in the paper. Occasionally it can be found slightly duller, being more of a medium fluorescent, and also a true hibrite, there the fibres are not visible because of the overall fluorescence. As far as I can tell, at least two types, hibrite and high fluorescent exist for all three values. 

The pictures below show examples of these varieties:

hibrite and high fluorescent paper on the 1969 6c White Throated Sparrow stamp of Canada

On the 6c, the hibrite paper is shown on the left, while the high fluorescent paper is shown on the right. 

High fluorescent paper on the 1969 10c Ipswich Sparrow stamp of Canada

These 10c Ipswich Sparrow stamps are both on high fluorescent paper. 

The hibrite and high fluorescent paper on the 1969 25c Hermit Thrush stamp of Canada

Here we have the high fluorescent paper on the left, and the true hibrite paper on the right. 

Charlottetown Bicentennial Stamp

Unitrade lists this stamp as being on either hibrite paper, which is the common paper, or dull fluorescent paper. I agree that the hibrite paper is truly hibrite, although I do note that there is a slightly duller, high fluorescent sub variety that exists. In both cases, the paper can be seen to include very few hibrite fibres as well. 

The dull fluorescent paper actually contains a sparse concentration of low fluorescent fibres, although their presence is not enough to alter the overall perceived level of fluorescence from dull. In addition, I have found two variations of this paper. One is a grey violet colour under UV light, while the other is a yellowish grey colour. 

The pictures below show all four varieties of paper:

Hibrite and high fluorescent papers on the 1969 Charlottetown Bicentennial stamp of Canada

The plate block shown is on the hibrite paper, while the stamp on top of it is the high fluorescent paper. The difference between the two is slight, though more apparent in reality than what is shown in the picture. 

Two varieties of dull fluorescent paper on the 1969 Charlottetown Bicentennial Stamp of Canada

The grey violet paper is the large block on the bottom, while the stamp on top is the yellowish grey paper. 

Canada Games Issue

This issue is mostly found on high fluorescent paper containing very few hibrite fibres. However occasionally a duller version is found, which is really a medium fluorescent bluish white, which does not usually contain the hibrite fibres. The high fluorescent is, by far, the most common. Both types are shown below:

High fluorescent and medium fluorescent papers on the 1969 Canada Games stamp of Canada

The high fluorescent paper is shown on the block, while the stamp on top of the block is on medium fluorescent paper. 

Sir Isaac Brock Stamp

This stamp is listed as being on dull fluorescent paper. However, it is found on a variety of dull fluorescent papers, some of which contain fluorescent fibres, and others which do not. In addition, a flecked, non-fluorescent variation of this paper is also found. The colour of the dull fluorescent paper varies from ivory to grey to violet grey, while the non-fluorescent variety is violet under UV light. 

The following pictures illustrate these varieties:

dull fluorescent and non fluorescent papers on the 1969 Isaac Brock stamp of Canada

The block on the bottom is the dull fluorescent ivory paper, while the stamp on top is the non-fluorescent violet paper containing a few medium fluorescent fibres. 

Two varieties of dull fluorescent paper on the 1969 Isaac Brock Stamp of Canada

The block on the left is the dull fluorescent ivory paper, while the one on the right is the dull fluorescent grey paper. 

Two varieties of dull fluorescent paper on the 1969 Isaac Brock Stamp of Canada

On the left is the same dull fluorescent ivory block, while the block on the right is the dull fluorescent violet grey paper containing very few medium fluorescent and high fluorescent fibres.

Christmas Stamps

These issues again are listed as being on hibrite paper. But in reality the paper is really high fluorescent, with the occasional hibrite fibre. I have found some examples on paper that is truly a mottled hibrite, and a medium fluorescent paper. The high fluorescent paper is clearly the common paper, with the other two varieties being quite a bit scarcer. The pictures below show these varieties very clearly:

The high fluorescent and hibrite paper on the 1969 5c Christmas stamp of Canada

The block is on the high fluorescent paper, while the pair on top of the block is the hibrite paper. 

The medium fluorescent and high fluorescent paper on the 1969 5c Christmas Stamp of Canada

The block is the high fluorescent paper, while the stamp on top of the block in the center is the medium fluorescent paper. 

The hibrite paper and medium fluorescent paper on the 1969 5c Christmas stamp of Canada

This picture shows the difference between the medium fluorescent and hibrite paper more clearly. The mottled hibrite paper is on the right, while the medium fluorescent paper is on the left. 

The variations on the 6c stamp are much the same as the 5c, so there is no need to repeat them here. 

Stephen Leacock Stamp

This stamp is listed as being on dull fluorescent paper, which is generally true, but on close examination, most of the papers contain at least some fluorescent fibres. The basic colour of the paper varies from ivory, to greyish white, to grey. Some varieties of the paper contain a sufficient amount of fluorescent fibres, that the paper is really more of a low fluorescent overall. In all, I have found at least 4 varieties of paper, as shown in the following pictures:

Dull fluorescent papers on the 1969 Stephen Leacock stamp of Canada

The yellow ink on this stamp is extremely transformative becoming a dark, almost brown colour, which makes the whole stamp appear much duller than it actually is. The block underneath the stamps on top is a dull fluorescent greyish colour, and the paper contains a sparse concentration of low fluorescent fibres and a very few medium fluorescent fibres. The top left stamp is a dull fluorescent ivory colour with a very sparse concentration of low fluorescent fibres, and you generally need a loupe to see them. The top right stamp is a low fluorescent greyish white colour under the light. Upon close examination it is actually dull fluorescent greyish white, but contains a low density concentration of low fluorescent fibres. So, it is really a low fluorescent paper, rather than a dull fluorescent paper. 

The low fluorescent papers of the 1969 Stephen Leacock stamp of Canada

These blocks have a dull fluorescent appearance overall, but they all contain higher concentrations of low fluorescent or other fibres. The block on the left looks more greyish, while the one on the right is greyish white. For the greyish blocks I have found one that contains a low density concentration of low fluorescent fibres, very few medium fluorescent and very few hibrite fibres. The second block contains a sparse concentration of low fluorescent fibres, a very sparse concentration of medium fluorescent fibres and very few hibrite fibress. The greyish white block contains a low density concentration of low fluorescent fibres and very sparse medium fluorescent fibres. 

Gum Varieties

The stamps issued in this year were all printed with dextrine gum, which exhibits different properties depending on the issue. Generally the gum used on the BABN issues printed by photogravure and engraving is the same, while those printed by CBN are different, and exist in 2 varieties - one for the stamps printed by lithography and one for the stamps printed by lithography and engraving. 

The gum types found on these issues can be described as follows:

  1. A smooth colourless gum with a satin sheen, that contains vertical striations that resemble brushstrokes. The gum takes on the colour of the underlying paper, so that on hibrite stamps it appears white, while on dull paper stamps, it appears creamy. This gum is found on the Charlottetown Bicentennial and the Stephen Leacock Issue.  
  2. A smooth, light cream gum with a semi-gloss sheen. This gum is found on the Canada Games stamp.
  3. A streaky, yellowish cream gum with a semi-gloss sheen. The steaks run from top to bottom of the stamp and are spaced about 1 mm apart horizontally. This gum is also found on the Canada Games stamp as well as the Isaac Brock stamp. 
  4. A smooth yellowish cream gum with a semi-gloss sheen. This is almost the same as #3 above, but is smooth. This gum type is found on the Isaac Brock stamp. 
  5. A streaky yellowish cream gum with a high gloss sheen and what appear to be fine very small blemishes arranged in a vertical pattern. This gum is found on the birds issue and the Christmas issues. 
  6. A smooth and slightly crackly yellowish cream gum which has a semi-gloss sheen. This type is also found on birds issue and the Christmas Issues. 

The difference between the light cream gum and the yellowish cream gum of types 2 and 3 is shown in the scan below:

Light cream and yellowish cream gum on the 1969 Canada Games stamp of Canada

The light cream gum is shown on the left block, while the yellowish cream gum is shown on the block at right. 

The difference between the fourth and fifth gum types is shown in the following picture, which I took under my desk lamp, of a corner block, plus a single of the 1969 Christmas stamp:

Streaky and smooth gums on the 6c Christmas stamp of Canada from 1969

The stamp on the right is the smooth semi-gloss gum. Note the complete lack of surface blemishes that are present on the gum of the block at left. Note how much shinier the high gloss gum is also. 

Perforation Varieties

The new 12.5 x 12 perf. was used on the Charlottetown Bicentennial stamp and the Stephen Leacock stamp, while all the CBN stamps were line perforated with the four variations: 11.85, 11.95, 11.85 x 11.95 and 11.95 x 11.85. As far as I can tell all of the CBN issues will exist with all four measurements. 

In examining the plate blocks, it is apparent that the selvage on the CBN stamps is perforated through, while the BABN stamps have selvage that is imperforate, save for one single extension hole beyond the vertical perforations at each margin of the sheets. 

Plate Blocks

All of the issues from 1969 were printed from only one plate, and the lithographed stamps do not have a plate number at all, since they are not engraved. So, in this year much of the significance that was previously attached to plate blocks has now been lost. However, they are still very attractive and desirable from a collector's perspective. 

Full lower right plate block of the 1969 Charlottetown Bicentennial stamp of Canada

The scan above shows an example of a fully philatelic plate block of the Charlottetown Bicentennial stamp, with full selvage on both sides. The philatelic stock panes printed by BABN had a straight edge on two sides, and full selvage on two sides, so that one plate block will have full selvage, while the other will have a straight edge at the top, like this:

Upper right plate block of the 1969 Charlottetown Bicentennial Issue

Field stock panes were trimmed on 3 sides and only have selvage on the bottom, so that two of the blocks in a pane will have straight edges on two sides, as shown below:

Upper left field stock block of the 1969 Stephen Leacock stamp of Canada

This is an upper left field stock block of the Stephen Leacock issue. Note the straight edges on both outer sides. 

Complete Booklets

$1 1969 Christmas Booklet from Canada

Continuing a trend that started in 1968, the 5c Christmas stamps were issued in softcover booklets of 20 stamps, arranged in 2 panes of 10 stamps each. The booklets were designed to open either from the right, or left sides and were issued both for the untagged and tagged stamps. These were the last Christmas booklets to be issued until 1985, when they were re-introduced. 

Plate Varieties

Unitrade lists four constant plate varieties, all of which are found on the CBN lithographed issues. The first two of these are found on the 6c and 10c birds stamps. On the 6c, there is the "flycatcher" variety, which is a small brown dash near the top bird's open beak. This variety is found on position 41, which is the lower left plate block. On the 10c, a small brown dash is found on the mound of soil, just below the blades of grass. This is known as the "extra leaf", and this is also found on position 41, which is, once again, the lower left plate block. Unfortunately I do not have an example of either variety at the moment. However, I will add images of them when they become available. 

The next two varieties are found on the Christmas issue. On the 5c there is a small black arc on the chin of the second girl. This is appropriately called the "black arc on chin", and occurs on position 5 of all sheets. It can also be found on all booklet panes. In both cases, it can be found on both the tagged and untagged printings. On the 6c, a small, thin diagonal line resembling an accent can be found over the "o" of "Noel". This only occurs on Position 39 of the sheet of 100, so it cannot be found in a plate block, nor can the black arc variety on the 5c. 

I do have one example of the black arc by chin variety, which is shown by the high resolution scan below:

The black arc by chin variety on the 5c 1969 Christmas stamp of Canada

As you can see from the scan, it is quite a prominent marking. 

I also have one example of the "accent over O of Noel" on the 6c, which is shown in the high resolution scan below:

The accent over O variety on the 1969 6c Christmas stamp

Again, it is quite an unmistakable and prominent flaw once you know what to look for. 

In addition to the listed flaws, there are a number of small "donut" flaws and repellex flaws that can be found on the lithographed stamps. The donut flaws are caused by specks of foreign matter that get onto the printing surface and result in selective repulsion of the ink of one colour, resulting in coloured rings in the design. The repellex flaws show up as coloured dots and are actually the result of the absence of one of the top colours in the colour palette. They commonly occur on both Christmas stamps, and can be found in any part of the design. The scans below illustrate some of these:

Donut flaw on 1969 Christmas stamp of Canada

Here we have a donut flaw on the 5c Christmas stamp, which appears as white rings between the A of Canada and the 5. 

donut flaw on the 6c 1969 Christmas stamp

This donut flaw on the 6c Christmas stamp appears as a yellowish blob next to the "A" of "Canada". 

Donut flaw on the 6c Christmas stamp of Canada from 1969

This donut flaw on the 6c Christmas stamp occurs on the upper part of the design, and appears as a red ring in the violet and black background. 

Donut flaw on the 6c Christmas stamp of Canada from 1969

This donut flaw on the 6c Christmas stamp shows up as a yellow ring under the IS of Christmas. 

repellex error on the 6c Christmas stamp of Canada from 1969

This is an example of a small repellex flaw, which appears as a pink dot in the background. Pink is one of the underlying colours. So, what this really represents is a small dot in which the blue colour that when mixed with the pink would give violet, is missing. 

Repellex flaw on the 6c Christmas stamp of Canada from 1969

Here is another example, this time located higher up on the stamp toward the upper left corner. 

Tagging

As was the case in 1968, the Christmas issue is the only issue which exists tagged, and as was the case then, only a small proportion of the total printing was tagged. The configuration of the tagging was exactly the same as on the 1968 issue: 

  1. The 5c stamps were tagged with 4 mm wide centre bands that were spaced 20 mm apart in the horizontal direction. 
  2. The 6c stamps were tagged with 8.5 mm wide side bands that extend over 2 stamps and were spaced 15.5 mm apart. 

As has been the case in the prior issues with Winnipeg tagging, the intensity of the taggant applied varies considerably from light, which is barely visible to the naked eye in normal light, to moderate, which is very clearly visible to the naked eye in normal light, but is not overly dark. The scan below shows both types on two different corner blocks of the 6c:

Light and moderate tagging intensities on the 6c Christmas stamp of Canada from 1969

The block on the left is the moderate intensity, while the one on the right is the light intensity. The difference between the two can best be seen by comparing the colour of the tagging on the selvage tabs. 

The tagging on the 5c stamps can sometimes be difficult to see. However, a very reliable way to detect the tagging without an ultraviolet light is to examine the printing surface of the stamps at an angle to a strong light source, as shown in the picture below:

Tagging on the 5c Christmas stamp of Canada from 1969

On the right stamp you can clearly see that the tagging bar shows up as a band of dullness on the paper, which absorbs any glare from the reflection of light on the surface of the stamp. 

Black Offset Variety and Black Omitted Error

In this year we see the first of the listed offset varieties, with the offset on the 5c stamp. An offset consists of most of the design printed on the back of the stamp, usually under the gum, but sometimes on the gum surface. I've never seen this variety, so I cannot comment on whether it is under the gum or not. 

There is also the first major error in a long time, which occurs on the 6c value, the error being the complete omission of the black colour. According to Unitrade, only 400 examples are known, 204 of which are in the Library and Archives Canada, according to Unitrade. This is a fairly pricey error, being listed at $2,250-$2,500 for a single, depending on whether it is mint or used. A cover lists at $4,000 and a regular blank block lists for $12,500. 

Shade Varieties

Despite the fact that Unitrade does not list any shade varieties on these issues, there are some obvious variations, mostly on the lithographed stamps. Some of these are shown in the scans below:

1969 White Throated Sparrow stamp of Canada shades

The above blocks show a variation in the brown of the bird's feathers. The block on the left contains much deeper brown than the block on the right. 

Shade variations on the 1969 Ipswich Sparrow stamp of Canada

The above block shows another example, this time on the 10c Ipswich Sparrow. In this case it is again the colour of the feathers, which are much lighter and more brownish on the centre stamp, compared to the near black agate colour on the block. 

The Christmas stamps show the most variation. The most obvious shade differences are in the solid blue colour on the 5c and the red colour on the 6c, which vary in intensity. But also, there are differences in the design, where the background appears more blackish and less purple, and others where there is a distinct purple tone to the background. The scan below shows two examples of the 5c, one printed in the deep bright blue ink, and another in a lighter shade of blue:

Shade variations on the 5c 1969 Christmas stamp of Canada

As you can see, this is quite an outstanding difference. 

Shade variation on the 1969 6c Christmas stamp of Canada

Here is the 6c value, which shows a more subtle shade difference on the red. If you compare the top stamp to the stamps in the block, you can see that the stamps in the block are a deeper red, while the top stamp has a slightly orangy tone. 

Colour Shifts

Unitrade does not list varieties resulting from colour shifts, I gather because of the perception that such varieties are common. However, I would disagree. While very minor shifts may not be rare, significant mis-registrations of more than 1/2 mm are scarce and I believe are an essential component of the story of what happened in the production of a stamp. 

I have found a fairly significant shift on the 6c White Throated Sparrow stamp, as shown below:

The 1969 White Throated Sparrow stamp of 1969 showing coloured shifts

The shift involved the branches of the tree on which the birds are perched. The branches are printed using the overlay of several colours. When properly aligned, the branches appear as on the left stamp. On the right stamp you can see a significant rightward shift of the brown colour, making the branches appear doubled. 

First Day Covers

Rose Craft First Day Cover of the 1969 Stephen Leacock Issue

These issues can be collected in the usual range of first day covers, with a large range of cachets. As usual Artcraft and Rose Craft are the most common of these. There must be at least a dozen different cachet makers still in operation in this year, so there are a large number of covers that can be collected. As for previous years, these covers can be franked with singles, pairs, regular blocks and plate blocks. 

The scan above shows an Art Craft first day cover for the Steven Leacock issue. 

Postal History and Cancellations

All of the stamps discussed in this post are standard first class letter rate stamps, except for two: the 10c Ipswich Sparrow and the 25c Hermit Thrush. Both these stamps make for some better opportunities to collect postal history:

  1. The 10c was primarily for the airmail rate to the US, so a single usage on cover is not that uncommon, but three could be used on a double weight airmail cover to Europe, or two could be used in conjunction with a 5c stamp on an airmail cover outside Europe. 
  2. The 25c was intended to pay for foreign airmail covers to destinations outside Europe. These would be scarce in any event, but you can also find a pair used to pay the registration fee on a registered cover, or for overweight local covers. 

This concludes my examination of the 1969 commemoratives, and brings the 1960's to a close. Next week I will start a series of 3 posts to explore the commemoratives of 1970. 

 

 

 

 

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Comments

John C. - 14, 2018

This was interesting. The number printed of the Christmas 5 cent is quite high. Probably 5 stamps for every person in Canada. I’ve noticed that the postal rate in Canada, the UK, and New Zealand seems to be discounted for Christmas. I wonder if people were taking advantage of the discount and using those handy books all year.

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