1985 Royal Definitives

New Zealand is a Sovereign Independent State, with a Parliamentary Government and a constitutional monarchy. As such, New Zealand is entirely separate from the United Kingdom but the Crown is vested in the same person, Queen Elizabeth II, who is 'Queen of New Zealand'. Her Majesty became the first 'Queen of New Zealand' by the Royal Titles Proclamation 1953. Under the Royal Titles Act 1974 she became 'Queen of New Zealand' in her own right. The Monarch is represented in New Zealand by a Governor-General who is appointed for a fixed term on the advice of the Government.

Issue information

Arising from increased postage rates, two new definitive stamps were issued in July 1985. Each stamp featured Her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth II with the design being adopted from a portrait taken by Peter Grugeon of Camera Press, England. The 25c gummed stamp featured the portrait of the Queen against a red background and the 35c stamp featured the portrait of the Queen against a blue background. The tiara worn in the portrait was inherited from Queen Mary and was Russian in origin and featured circles of diamonds with interchangeable pearl drops in the centre. The necklace was the Jubilee necklace worn made for Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee, 1887.

The Queen was also depicted wearing the sash of the Order of the Garter and the Royal Family Order of King George VI and also the Queen's Service Order, instituted in 1975. The Order, and associated Queen's Service Medal, are distinctive to New Zealand but an integral part of the Royal Honours System. 

Product Listing for 1985 Royal Definitives

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Image Title Description Price
Single Stamp Single 25c gummed stamp. $0.25
Single Stamp Single 35c gummed stamp $0.35
First day cover First day cover with stamps affixed. Cancelled on the first day of issue. $0.71
Gummed Booklet Booklet containing 10 x 25c gummed stamps. $2.50
Gummed Booklet Booklet containing 10x 35c gummed stamps. $3.50

Technical information

Date of issue: 1 July 1985
Number of stamps: Two gummed stamps
Denominations: 25c and 35c
Stamp designed by: Graphics by Leigh-Mardon Pty Ltd, Melbourne, Australia ; Photographs by Camera Press, England
Printer and process: Leigh-Mardon Pty Ltd, Australia by lithography
Stamp size and format: 25mm x 30mm (vertical)
Paper type: Unwatermarked phosphor coated paper
Number of stamps per sheet:  100 stamps
Perforation gauge: 14.25 x 14
Period of sale: These stamps remained on sale for an indefinite period as part of the definitive range. First day covers remained on sale until 10 July 1985.