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TUSCANY 1851 issue

Toscane - Toskana

Return To Catalogue - Tuscany 1857 issue and miscellaneous - Italy

Note: on my website many of the pictures can not be seen! They are of course present in the cd's;
contact me if you want to purchase them:
Currency: 60 Quattrini = 20 Soldi = 12 Crazie = 100 Centesimi = 1 Lire

With thanks to Lorenzo, (check his excellent website on Italian States!) who kindly set some of his images at my disposal.

An duchy in Italy until 1860 when it was united with Sardinia. The capital is Florence (Firenze).
Currency: 1 Lira = 60 Quattrini = 20 Soldi = 12 Crazie = 100 Centesimi

1851 Lion with weapon and crown, imperforated (on bluish paper or on white paper)

Warning: I'm not quite sure that all the stamps of this series shown here are genuine!

1 Quattr black 1 Soldo yellow 2 s brown, image obtained thanks to Lorenzo 1 Crazia red Image obtained thanks to Lorenzo 2 Crazie blue 4 Crazie green Image obtained thanks to Lorenzo Image obtained thanks to Lorenzo 60 c brown, image obtained thanks to Lorenzo

  1 quattr black
  1 Soldo yellow
  2 Soldi brown
  1 Crazia red
  2 Crazie blue
  4 Crazie green
  6 Crazie blue
  9 Crazie purple
  60 Crazie brown

For the specialist: there are two different issues of theses stamps with different watermarks; in 1851 the watermark was a crown (not the whole crown can be seen on 1 stamp) and in 1853 the watermark changed to wavy lines:

(Watermark crown and wavy lines)

The 60 c is extremely rare, both used and unused. The 2 s was not used very much and was suppresed in 1852 (it is also a very rare stamp). Most common are the 1 c, 2 c, 4 c and 6 c. The distance between the stamps is less than 1 mm, it is therefore difficult to find stamps with all four margins intact. The 2 s and 60 c were officially reprinted in 1866 on original watermarked paper; the 60 c has the '60 CRAZIE' too large and colour of both reprints is too brown (according to Album Weeds).

Value of the stamps

vc = very common
c  = common
*  = not so common
** = uncommon
*** = very uncommon
R   = rare
RR  = very rare
RRR = extremely rare
With watermark 'Crown'
1 qRRRR 
2 sRRRRRRon blue paper only
1 cRR*** 
2 cR*** 
4 cRR*** 
6 cRR*** 
9 cRRRR 
60 cRRRRRRon blue paper only

With watermark 'Wavy Lines'

1 qRRRR 
1 cRR*** 
2 cR*** 
4 cRRR*** 
6 cRR*** 

Special cancels:


'PD' in red letters

6 Crazie blue

9 Crazie purple Image obtained thanks to Lorenzo

(Reduced size)

(Cancel of the town of Seravezza)

(Firenze cancel, reduced size)

"P" cancel, could be bogus


Album Weeds gives already 13 (!) forgeries for this issue. The genuine stamps have watermarks (though some forgeries have also a watermark) and were printed on rough handmade paper. Some of these forgeries are very deceptive. The genuine stamps have a small cross on top of the crown. However, this is often hardly visible and will become a spike. The cross should be under the left hand side of the vertical stroke of the 'T' of 'POSTALE'. If the cross is clearly visible, then the stamp is 'suspect'.

First forgery:

(Very primitive forgery, reduced size)

(Front and backside of a 60 crazie forgery)

The above forgery has no spike on top of the crown. The face of the lion looks more like a bear. The foot of the lion is very poorly done. The inscriptions are also very poor (for example the 'S' of 'POSTALE'). The ornaments in the corners consist of just four small leaves. The bottom line has no breaks in it, but is continuous. In spite of its primitive appearance, I have seen this stamp been offered as genuine on a E-bay auction in 2003 and it was sold for $US710 (!). This forgery is also described in Album Weeds (first forgery). I have seen the 60 c value with a cancel consisting of parallel lines forming an ellipse.

Second forgery:

Another forgery with the cross on the crown exactly below the center of the 'T' of 'POSTALE'. The face looks more like a monkey than a lion. I think this is the second forgery described in Album Weeds. The foot on the shield is very poorly done. Also note that the lettering is different from the genuine stamps (for example the 'S' of 'POSTALE').

I have seen the same forgery (value 6 crazie) with cancel 'PD':

Third forgery:


I presume the above forgeries are the fifth forgery described in Album Weeds. The cross is located exactly under the 'T' in this stamp. The crosses in the corners are also not as in the genuine stamps. The easiest test is the fourth toe on the front leg of the lion, it is backward pointing in this forgery (in the genuine stamps it is not).

Fourth forgery:

The above forgery has many differences with the genuine stamps, the letters in 'POSTALE' are different ('O' fatter, 'S' thinner etc.), the shield has a smaller centre design, the '4' is more to the right than the genuine etc.

Fifth forgery:

Reduced size
(Another forgery, note the small '2')

Sixth forgery:

Note that the margins are too large in this forgery

Seventh forgery

This 9 c stamp has the wrong value inscription '9 CRAZIA' instead of '9 CRAZIE'! Also the '9' has a very weird shape.

Eight forgery:

Image obtained thanks to Lorenzo

The above stamp is actually a 1 Cr stamp (one of the cheaper stamps in this series), the '1' and 'A' of '1. CRAZIA' have been skillfully removed and replaced with '60' and 'E' to make a 60 Cr stamp! (image obtained thanks to Lorenzo)


Some forgeries of the 60 c stamp:

Forgery with watermark

Other forgeries:

Dangerous forgery

Two rows of forgeries, apparently made by the same forger:

I presume the above stamps are also forgeries, the bottom line of the frame is continuous, in most genuine stamps I've seen there are two white spaces in this line.

Forgery with watermark, frontside Forgery with watermark, backside
(Reduced sizes)

(Forgery with watermark)

Could the above forgeries be the Fournier forgeries with (!) watermark?

Recently (1980's) the forger Peter Winter made forgeries of these stamps:

Probably a Peter Winter forgery
(Peter Winter forgery of the 1 s, 9 c and 60 c stamp, note that the cancel on the 9 c and 60 c exhibits the same 'breaks' and defects; the cancel is probably also printed)

Peter Winter has made forgeries of all values (even in non-existing colours).

I know that the forger Sperati made very dangerous forgeries of these stamps. I have seen the 1 s and 2 s value on http://www.seymourfamily.com/rfrajola/Sperati/.

The next forgery looks quite reasonable from a distance, however, close inspection reveals that it is actually a photograph!

(9 c photographic forgery, right: zoom-in, note the dotted patterns of the photograph)

I have very serious doubts about the next stamps:

(60 c with 'PD' cancel, probably a forgery)

The cross on the crown is to the right of the 'T'.

Tuscany 1857 issue and miscellaneous

Copyright by Evert Klaseboer

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