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Finding a good match: The journey of a matchbox collector in Bangladesh

Published on Jul 15, 2014 9:40 PM
 
What Mr Ahsanul Huq Shakil claims is the world's smallest matchbox, which you have to see with a magnifying glass. The match, perfectly functional, was made in India and there exist only two of them in the world, he says, and he has one of them. -- PHOTO: THE DAILY STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

DHAKA (The Daily Star/Asia News Network) - Living in a well-decorated apartment along a busy stretch near the Shia Masjid mosque in Mohammadpur, a district of Bangladesh's capital Dhaka, Mr Ahsanul Huq Shakil painstakingly tracks down matchboxes from around the world. But not just any matches. He collects only those with a story to tell.

His collection is one of the most original and impressive in the world. After all, he boasts the world's smallest matchbox, which you have to see with a magnifying glass.

The match, perfectly functional, was made in India and there exist only two of them in the world. "And I have one of them," brags the ardent phillumenist, a collector of both matchboxes and matchbook labels.

Take for example, his can shaped matches-used in ships-waterproof and without any label-whose sticks burn for a good five minutes. Then there are matchboxes from Croatia and England in the shape of chest of drawers and embroidered ones from France.

 
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