A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar

A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered by the blog author, Jim Jackson, with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. In addition, "Bud" offers commentary and a look at his completely filled Big Blue. Interested? So into the Blues...

Sunday, November 13, 2022

Angola 1870-77 "Crown" stamps: Genuine, Borderline, or Forgery?

1870 Scott 4 25r red "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 12 1/2; Probable Forgery; Possible Variation

Into the Deep Blue

I've done a deep dive into the Angola 1870-77 "Crown" issue, which has yielded three blog posts to date. Still, after all that work (identifying clear and obvious Genuines, and the Fournier and Spiro forgeries), there are seven stamps in my collection that are yet to be characterized. 

Is the stamp genuine? Is the stamp "borderline" because it does not meet clearly ALL the criteria for a genuine, or "unknown" because a key clue is obscured (cancel marks)? Is the stamp a forgery?

We shall see, I think, how difficult it is to always make a firm determination.

I did send five of these stamp scans off to Ron, of Classic Stamp Forgeries website fame, to get his opinion. His interpretation will be acknowledged and included.

Previous posts....

Let's begin!

1870 Scott 2a orange "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 12 1/2

Ok, what can we say about this stamp? (If genuine, CV $20). The print is not crude or over-inked. The center lobe of the RUQ scallop is open (line not complete). Of interest, the far left horizontal lobe of the RUQ scallop is absent (as it is on the next example below). The "O" has a complete shadow line, so this is not a Fournier forgery.  The pearls may be large and round enough for a genuine. But the cross is obscured by a cancel - important information we do not have. Ron labeled this stamp as "unknown". Unfortunately, I agree. There is not enough evidence to call this a "genuine" - and what is with the missing lobe?

1870 Scott 2c orange yellow "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 13 1/2; (CV if genuine: $25)

The plate for this stamp was horribly worn, or this is a bad forgery. The "Angola" print script is bizarre and deformed. The right side pearls are squashed  (plate wear vs forgery?). The cross appears reasonably OK, with a maltese shape, but only partially attached to the globe. 

Even if this was a genuine, it would be unacceptable because of plate wear. 

1870 Scott 3 20r bister "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 12 1/2; (CV if genuine $3)

The "A" & "N" are rather thick. Not a Fournier forgery (Has an intact shadow line in the "O"). Complete seven lobed RUQ scallop with no partial lines. Pearls are round. Maltese cross looks OK, except not entirely attached to globe. A clean appearing stamp without over-inking or crudeness.

I think this stamp has a good chance of being genuine.

1870 Scott 3a 20r bister "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 13 1/2

Of interest, because this stamp is Perf 13 1/2, if genuine, the CV is $475. !! The "O" has an intact shadow line inside, so not a Fournier forgery. The center RUQ scallop lobe is open (only partial line). The pearls are sometimes separated, and appear a little small. The cross is a maltese shape and looks OK, but only partially attached to the globe. The print is fairly clean, and not over-inked. Although this stamp could be genuine, there are enough warning signs, that I am calling this stamp "borderline". Ron said "unknown" for this stamp. 

1870 Scott 4 25r red "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 12 1/2; Probable Forgery; Possible Variation

Ron thought, because of the "N" & "A" touching the upper frame line, that this stamp was a probable forgery, or possibly a genuine variant. 

It does have appropriate large pearls, and the Maltese cross looks good. It is  a bit over-inked, and the RUQ scallop touches the upper horizontal  line. But I have to agree with Ron that this stamp is a probable forgery.

1870 Scott 6 50r green "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 12 1/2

The "O" has a intact shadow line, so not a Fournier forgery. The RUQ scallop has all lobes intact, but touches the upper horizontal line. Ron thinks the pearls are separated and too small. Also the cross does not look "right". I agree the pearls do seem smaller toward the globe. Overall, this stamp is "borderline", and may be a forgery.

 1870 Scott 7 100r lilac "Portuguese Crown"
Perf 13 1/2

With the very tall "1" in "100 Reis", this has to be a forgery.  The "N" touches the upper frame line. The six lobed RUQ scallop touches the borders in two spots. The stamp appears crude and over-inked. The pearls are small and separated, and the cross is not maltese shaped, The globe is solid pale (white). An obvious forgery.

Out of the Blue

Well, hope you enjoyed the evaluation! You can see how tough it is sometimes. If you are screening your own Angola 1870-77 "Crown" stamps in your collection, I would recommend reading again all of the posts I have published to refresh the memory. Good luck!

Comments appreciated!

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