Parlor size

A standard term for a matchbox approximately 7 – 13 cm long, 6 – 9 cm wide and 1 – 5 cm deep typically containing 100 to 500 matches. Popular in USA. Note American English spelling of parlor.

Phillumenist

A person who engages in the hobby of phillumeny.

Any modern comprehensive English dictionary will include a definition of phillumenist though few list phillumeny.  Even authorities such as Encarta include a definition of phillumenist. The etymology is from the Greek philo- (love) and Latin lumen (light). The word was coined by Mrs Marjorie S Evans in 1930s.

Some phillumenists attempt in vain to reject this appellation on the grounds they are not “light lovers”. In this they fail to grasp the construction of this English word.

Consider the etymology of a similar English word philately from the French philatélie which is constructed from Greek philo- (love)  and Latin ateleia (exemption of toll). No one uses the term philatelist for a tax evader.  The exemption of toll recognises that the introduction of postage stamps made the sender responsible for the cost of carriage freeing the receiver from a charge (exemption of toll) that had been the practice before postage stamps. A collector of stamps “likes” (philo) carriage paid receipts (ateleia). So why don’t stamp collectors just call themselves  stamp collectors? Some do, but philatelists collect other items associated with stamps such as first day covers, booklets, etc.

Now consider “matchbox label collectors” who call themselves “matchbox label collectors”.  Few if any confine themselves to collecting matchbox labels alone because they will include in their collections other items such as skillets, packet labels (these are match labels, not matchbox labels), complete matchboxes, matchbook covers. It is disingenuous for these “matchbox label collectors” to declare that phillumenist doesn’t describe their activity just because they don’t fully appreciate the derivation and accepted meaning of the word.

As well as many English dictionaries recognising the word phillumenist, we must acknowledge that phillumenist has entered many other languages in forms English speakers will readily recognise such as: philuméniste, fillumenista, Filumenist, филуменист. Phillumenist is a truly international term. Phillumenists should be proud to call themselves Phillumenists.  No other one word better describes their hobby.

Phillumeny

A hobby that includes the collecting of: matchbox labels, skillets, matchboxes, and their packaging; matchbook covers, matchbooks, and their packaging; and match holders, matchbox holders and matchbook holders. Margery Evans is credited with coining the term “Phillumeny” in 1943 – she was a prominent pre-war collector and President of the British Union of Match Box Collectors.

The collecting of firemaking appliances is not considered to be part of phillumeny despite some phillumenists also collecting them. For the etymology of phillumeny see phillumenist.

Press proof

A press proof is a printer’s proof printed using the same plates, same inks, but possibly a similar rather than the same type of press as the proposed print run. A contract proof is a printer’s proof printed using the same plates, same inks and same machine as the proposed print run.

Printer’s proof

A printer’s proof in phillumeny is usually a press proof (q.v.) or contract proof. A printer’s proof can not be produced at the beginning of a print run but only some time before a print run.  The printer’s proof will always have the function of being the clients approval of the content of the print. The printer’s proof may also be used as a standard for the print run to match. Each printer’s proot will be signed or stamped or otherwised marked by the client to indicate their approval.  There are usually two printer’s proofs, one for the printer and one for the client. There may be additional copies for archiving and head office functions but it would be most unlikely to produce more than perhaps six printer’s proofs for any print run with a tendency to have fewer. So every printer’s proof is a rare item, but it does not necessarily make them collectable. If a printer’s proof is unmarked for approval it is not a printer’s proof.

N.B. Many modern uncut sheets of labels are often described as printer’s proofs when they are in fact just print samples taken from the print run Today many modern so called printer’s proofs the initial prints that are produced at the start of a print run whilst the printer makes adjustments to achieve acceptable prints. They can be produced with one, more or all colours, too much or too little ink and can be on different paper. Items cut from printer’s pulls are sometimes offered to collectors as genuine items. Any mint examples cut from printer’s pulls might be collected as a curiosity but they should be considered as waste from the printing process having no value.  However, used examples from printer’s pulls can be an indicator of prevailing economic constraints or quality standards and their brevity in production can make them sought after. See also colour proof.

Printer’s pulls

Printer’s pulls are the initial prints that are produced at the start of a print run whilst the printer makes adjustments to achieve acceptable prints. They can be produced with one, more or all colours, too much or too little ink and can be on different paper. Items cut from printer’s pulls are sometimes offered to collectors as genuine items. Any mint examples cut from printer’s pulls might be collected as a curiosity but they should be considered as waste from the printing process having no value. However, used examples from printer’s pulls can be an indicator of prevailing economic constraints or quality standards and their brevity in production can make them sought after. See also colour proof.

Printer’s sheet

A sheet of labels as produced by the printer before it is converted (cut) into separate blocks (q.v.) or matchlabels.

It is recommended that a printer’s sheet remain uncut unless you can arrange to have it accurately cut into separate matchlabels using a guillotine. Badly cut labels, especially with scissors can be made worthless.

It is possible that whole printer’s sheets can be more valuable than the sum of the individual labels in the sheet.

Pullmatch

Pullmatches

A type of friction match provided with a special container such that when the match is pulled from the container, the match head is dragged over a surface coated with match striker composition and ignites.

 

Pyrogène

The French term for a porcelain match or matchbox holder with a striking surface. Pyrogène were to be commonly found on tables in hotels, bars, restaurants and cafés on the continent during La Belle Époque circa 1870-1941

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