"to collect or gather again," c. 1600; see re- "back, again" + collect (v.). Earlier simply "to collect" (1510s). It has its origin in Latin recollectus (see recollect), but now is marked by pronunciation and spelling to distinguish it from recollect in senses that are only partly distinguished. Related: Re-collected; re-collecting.
"stamp-collecting, the fancy for collecting and classifying postage-stamps and revenue stamps," 1865, from French philatélie, coined by French stamp collector Georges Herpin (in "Le Collectionneur de Timbres-poste," Nov. 15, 1864), from Greek phil- "loving" (see philo-) + atelēs "free from tax or charge," which was the ancient Greek word Herpin found that most nearly matched the concept of what a postage stamp does (from a- "without," see a- (3), + telos "tax;" see toll (n.)).
It is a reminder of the original function of postage stamps: the cost of letter-carrying formerly was paid by the recipient; a stamp indicated that carriage had been pre-paid by the sender, thus indicating to the recipient's postmaster that the letter so stamped was "carriage-free."
It is a pity that for one of the most popular scientific pursuits one of the least popularly intelligible names should have been found. [Fowler]
Stampomania (1865) also was tried. Stamp-collecting is from 1862. Related: Philatelic; philatelism; philatelist.
1774, "action of collecting in a mass," from Latin agglomerationem (nominative agglomeratio), noun of action from past-participle stem of agglomerare "to wind or add onto a ball," from ad "to" (see ad-) + glomerare "wind up in a ball," from glomus (genitive glomeris) "ball, ball of yarn, ball-shaped mass," which is of uncertain origin (see glebe). In reference to a mass so formed, it is recorded from 1833.