Return To Catalogue - Great Britain
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(Genuine stamps, obtained with permission from the site of Bill Claghorn; forgeries idenfication site )
(1/2 p) orange (1 p) blue (2 p) red
Value of the stamps
vc = very common c = common * = not so common ** = uncommon
*** = very uncommon R = rare RR = very rare RRR = extremely rare
|(1/2 p) orange||RR||RRR|
|(1 p) blue||R||RRR|
|(2 p) red||R||RRR|
Many forgeries exist of these stamps. The genuine orange stamps don't have a watermark, the blue stamp has a '2' (this stamp was originally intended to serve as a 2 p stamp) and the red stamp has a watermark '1' (this stamp was intended to serve as a 1 p stamp first). According to Album Weeds, the letters of the inscription should not touch each other anywhere. The first 'I' of 'IONIKON' should be at an equal height as the queen's upper lip. In the background behind the Queen's head very small white points can be seen.
The following forgeries can be easily identified by their cancels (these cancels were never used on the ionian islands):
The above forgeries are the first forgery of Album Weeds; the letters 'KP' join each other at the bottom and the first 'I' of 'IONIKON' is level with the queens mouth instead of the upper lip. The ornaments outside the ellipse are different from the genuine stamps. These forgeries are lithographed and have no watermark, the background behind the Queen's head is solid. These Spiro forgeries were also offered by Fournier in his 1914 pricelist as second choice forgeries for 1.50 Swiss francs (all three).
The above stamp is the second forgery described in Album Weeds: there is no watermark, it is lithographed and a line is joining the letter 'NIKON' and 'KPATO' at the upper side. There is a double line in the base of the diadem. In the face of the queen and the backside of the head more differences can be found, for example the shadows of the face and the neck are too heavy with spots in it. There seems to be an improved version of this forgery. Note the bogus cancels of these forgeries (if they are cancelled).
I've been told that the above blue stamp is a Oneglia forgery, I think the other stamps is one as well. The contour of the head is surrounded by a coloured line. Note the strange shape of the last 'S', which has a strange upper part compared to the genuine stamps. The other letters are also slightly different.
The next forgery is quite badly executed:
The next forgeries bear a 'B62' cancel (which is a Hong Kong cancel!):
Note further that the Queen has a very sharp nose and that there is a relatively big hole in the belt.
And another forgery with a 'C64' (Vera Cruz, Mexico) cancel:
Long Island is a small Turkish Island (also called Chustan) in the Gulf of Smyrna. English troups occupied the island in Mai 1916. Turkish fiscal stamps of 10 pa, 20 pa and 1 Pi overprinted with 'G.R.I Postage' and value exist. Also primitive stamps made with a typewriter with inscription 'G.R.I. Long Island Postage Revenue' exist, about 80 to 1200 pieces have been made. All these stamps are believed to be speculative issues.
Examples of Turkish fiscal stamps overprinted:
Examples of the 'typewriter' stamps:
I have also seen 'SIX PENCE' and '1 SHILLING' in the above design.