Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

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Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

I posted some images on another thread asking for information on a few better Russian items, and it was suggested that I post some more images. This would be the proper place for these images, I think.

As I work through a very nice Russian collection I acquired, I thought it may be of interest to post some of the pages. The previous owner has made some interesting notes, which may or may not be "right on", but as a collection there are many comprehensive sections. I felt that the reference of text and images may be of use to other Stampboards members, so I'll add some pages, sets or singles as they come up.

Not everything will be rare or of any significant value (note: the two terms are very much mutually exclusive), but it still may be interesting to see some of these issues. I would certainly appreciate any suggestions or comments regarding the previous owners notations, my comments and/or the stamps in general. I don't have a lot of specific literature to work with, so I will be learning as I go along with some of these.

I'll start with a page of Early Imperial Russian issues:

Image

Image

Image

Image

I may repost the images from the other thread, as well as the comments, to allow it all to be in one place.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

From the original thread:

A few selected items:

Here are a few of the images from the collection, with the SCOTT numbers...............

from 1924-25 Definitive set - 1r - perf 12 - SC#290a used

Image

from 1931 Airship Construction Fund - 50k colour error - SC#C23a Mint

Image

from 1933 Philatelic Exhibition, Leningrad Overprint - SC#488 Mint

Image

1935 Moscow to San Francisco via North Pole Flight - Airmail surcharged - SC#C68 used

Image

nigelc wrote:The 1r definitive stamp, SG 391 from 1925, is priced in SG at £170 mint and £130 used.

I see the Scott price was $150 used in the 2006 Classic and $750 used in the 2009 Standard!

The 50k airship error of colour is SG 582ba from 1931, priced at £300 mint and £400 used.

The 35k + 70k Leningrad exhibition stamp is SG 607, price at £170 mint and £75 used.

The 1r on 10k North Pole stamp is SG 706, priced at £350 mint and £450 used.

These SG prices are from the current Part 10 catalogue published in June 2008 and the mint prices are for mounted mint.

Nice group! :D
Thank you Nigel for the SG numbers!
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

vasia wrote:A very nice group of stamps, librarianc

Here are the catalogue numbers and prices from Michel Osteuropa 2009/2010:

Michel 258IB 250 Euros (used)

Michel 400BX 550 Euros (for MNH)

Michel 428 300 Euros (for MNH)

Michel 527 800 Euros (used)
Thank you Vasia for the Michel information!
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Imperial Russia 1889 issues:

Image

Image

Image

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Image

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

1904 War Orphans' Fund

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

1917 Provisional Issues - Imperforate

Image

10 K:

Image

25 K block/4:

Image

1 R:

Image
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

1917 Imperf Provisional Issues - 1R question.....

Image

The stamp above - impression is clear and dark - groundwork clean

Image

This stamp the colour is lighter and the groundwork is all muddled - is there a listing for groundwork doubled?

Could someone with a Gibbons catalogue identify the 167 and 167a listing for me?

Thanks.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by nigelc »

Hi John,

The "G" numbers quoted aren't current SG numbers.

The two 1 rouble stamps appear to be SG 121B orange-vermilion and deep brown on pale brown paper (as opposed to SG 121Ba vermilion and black-brown on brown paper).

There are a number of errors listed - centre inverted/double/omitted, frame double and background inverted/omitted - but not background double.

I don't see the background as doubled. If you look at the bottom of the first stamp along with the top of the second then the backgrounds look the same to me. Lower down the background on the second stamp looks more confused but I'd guess that was just the results of worn and poorly maintained plates. These imperf stamps were issued during a strike at the printing works and the ongoing revolution.

I'd be keen to see the views of any Russian specialists.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Thanks, Nigel. SCOTT specialized 2011 now lists a #131d - background doubled, but I couldn't find a similar listing in my Michel.

We'll see if other opinions arise. :?:

So the G numbers on these pages are not current SG numbers? That was an assumption I made, but perhaps they represent a different catalogue all together.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by europhil »

nigelc wrote:The "G" numbers quoted aren't current SG numbers.
SG must have done an extreme makeover.

In my 1967 edition -
167 - 1 r. orange-vermilion and deep brown/pale brn.
167a - Verm. & blk.-brn./brown
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by nigelc »

Jay,

My first edition of Part 10 Russia (1981) has the new numbering scheme and its list of number changes from the third editions of SG Europe 2 & 3 (1977/78) is very limited so the number changes were in the 1978 catalogue at the latest.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by europhil »

I just checked the only other SG Europe I have - 1974.
It has the makeover - sort of. Instead of 167 and 167a it
has 121 and 121a. There is no 121B and 121Ba.

This 3 volume set was on my For Sale shelf. I think I'll have
to keep it now.

I really like the 1967 edition because as a whole it has the
best illustrations of types, varieties and overprints of any
catalog I've found - even the one country specialized ones.
Plus it lists all of the colonies. And all in a single volume.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Thank you for the info.

I've been "disposing" of the older SG catalogues as they come my way (with the exception of a few of the One-Country catalogues - don't have Russia though), but I guess I'll have to add the old one volume SG to the library from now on.

It also seems I will need to dig out my books on forgeries......there are a couple sets that need work. I'll post them when time permits.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by mikeg »

John- The 1 ruble varies greatly in both the color of the center and print quality of the background.

They printed a massive quantity of them, so plates became worn, and inking varies so much- I have had copies with the background so faint, you would assume it was missing when compared other copies.

Any others you think might be forgeries, post them!
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by Global Administrator »

nigelc wrote:
I see the Scott price was $150 used in the 2006 Classic and $750 used in the 2009 Standard!
Everyone seems to know how large a lot of China price increases are, yet few realise how robust much of the Russian market has been.

Some nice items above John!
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Here is one set I'm unsure of - 1921 Volga Famine Fund Charity Stamps - imperfs - SC#B14-17, Mi #165x-8x

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Not a high value set as mint, but I guess it was the green that had me looking more closely at the print quality......

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by davpot »

Hello John:
I would suggest you download the new Liapin catalog often available on Ebay for about 10.00! It has a fair amount of English! Also, the Flood Semi-Postals above are fakes (not sure about the BLUE value. If you look at the man with the walking stick on the left side, you will see that the stick and the sticks shadow DONT MEET. That means its fake. Lot of these around. I would suggest the catalog above and get in touch with ROSSICA.ORG for membership if you are intrested in Russian material. Treacherous waters here....so be careful. You have some VERY nice material in the pics above and hopefully you can show us some more soon. My sense is that value wise, Russia is advancing, but not nearly as fast as a few years ago.
Hope this helps!
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

Regarding the 1R imperf, one should always try to differentiate between the 1917 issue (Scott 131, SG 121B) and the 1919 issue (Scott 87h, SG 192). The differences between the 2 issues that stand out are:

1. The 1917 issue has a vertical varnish network on the front of the stamps, while the 1919 issue has a horizontal network (in most, but not all, cases they can be seen with the stamp held at an angle under natural light).

2. In the 1917 issue the size of the design is 26.8 x 31.2 mm, while in the 1919 issue it is 26 x 31.2 mm.

The 1919 issue is not frequently encountered. For both issues the Lobachevski catalogue (reprinted in Rossica Journal #100-101) mentions "double background" errors, as does Lyapin.

I would tend to agree with the opinion of nigelc on your second stamp, although the scan resolution might not be helping us here...
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

You can read some additional details about the history of these imperf issues in the following small, but very interesting article by J. Lee Shneidman in the Journal of the Rossica Society:

http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00020235/00052/100j

Note his comments about the relative scarcity of a perfect (i.e with no errors) copy of Scott 87h.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

Below is a genuine copy of the green 2250 R Volga Famine issue:

Image

The genuine can be differentiated from the forgeries shown on the basis of the following characteristics:

1. The shadow of the old man's stick at bottom left joins the base of the stick in the genuine, while in the forgery there is a clear gap (as mentioned by davpot).

2. The lower serifs of the Д and the А in the word ГОЛОДАЮЩИМ just merge together in the genuine, while in the forgery there is a clear gap.

3. The length of the genuine stamp is 55.5 mm as compared to the 55 mm of the forgery.

4. The paper used for the forgery is pale cream (as opposed to whitish) and thicker.

This issue was printed in small quantities (154.256 for the brown, 189.704 for the green, 437.248 for the red and 66.600 for the blue), so the proliferation of forgeries was a logical consequence.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

vasia wrote:Regarding the 1R imperf, one should always try to differentiate between the 1917 issue (Scott 131, SG 121B) and the 1919 issue (Scott 87h, SG 192). The differences between the 2 issues that stand out are:

1. The 1917 issue has a vertical varnish network on the front of the stamps, while the 1919 issue has a horizontal network (in most, but not all, cases they can be seen with the stamp held at an angle under natural light).

2. In the 1917 issue the size of the design is 26.8 x 31.2 mm, while in the 1919 issue it is 26 x 31.2 mm.

The 1919 issue is not frequently encountered. For both issues the Lobachevski catalogue (reprinted in Rossica Journal #100-101) mentions "double background" errors, as does Lyapin.

I would tend to agree with the opinion of nigelc on your second stamp, although the scan resolution might not be helping us here...

Vasia:

Thank you for that very helpful information.

Both of the 1R issues are identified as Vertical varnish on the page and I believe I checked that when I first had possession of the collection....I will check it again.

As for the resolution on the scan, it was done at 600 dpi. I will post a 1200 dpi image of both when I get back to the office.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by mikeg »

The last - the blue one is ok. The forgery will have a missing dot on the pants of the soldier.(Russian fashions can be odd) :lol:

The large ones are, as stated by vasia and david, very common forgeries made by Simmson & Kull in the 1930's.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

......Also, thank you for posting the genuine issue above. That explains it perfectly.

As I began to run out of steam with the Russian collection last night (spent much of the day working on it) I dug out some of my Fake, Forgery literature. I found one of my books has some Russian material in it, including the Volga issue and the next relief issue as well. I will be checking it closely and then post the images to see if I have identified them as genuine or forgeries.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by mikeg »

John- I assume you have the little book by Alden Johnson/Marks Stamps.

The Russia section is excellent- only mistake I have found is his description of the Latvia-Bermont-Avaloff issue.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by Global Administrator »

Well I for one am learning from this thread!
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by tooler »

You are not the only one. Now I will have to dig out this bag of Russian stamps I have ignored.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

mikeg wrote:John- I assume you have the little book by Alden Johnson/Marks Stamps.

The Russia section is excellent- only mistake I have found is his description of the Latvia-Bermont-Avaloff issue.

One of a few that I have.....but spot on. It was the only one I went through that had the Russian issues in it.

The bulk of my EFO/Fake/Forgery literature is Br North America (as you can imagine).

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Here is a 1200 dpi scan of the 1R

Image

Curious if it helps identify the background.......the bottom pattern certainly seems to indicate wear.

Here is a snip of the lower right corner at 1200 dpi:

Image

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Next I have the 1922 Rostov-On-Don Famine Fund (SC#B30-33)

Image

The 2T green is the only suspect in my assessment of genuine or forgery:
Image

The right arm of the LEFT T seems to be broken, but just barely:
Image


The Red 2T has the 4 shade lines as genuine (forgery has ink blob)
Image

The 4T has both T's not touching the circle around the value (forgery touches)
Image

The 6T has no line jutting out from the sachel (forgery has a line coming out)
Image

Well folks, how did I do?? What do you think about the Green 2T......does it complete the set as all genuine?

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by mikeg »

Yours is good :D

Here is the forgery- again a Simmson & Kull product.

Image
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

The Rostov-on-Don local tax issue is a difficult case given the multiple forgeries that exist for each value.

For the 2T green (2000R) Dr Ceresa describes 4 different forgeries in his work "The postage stamps of Russia, 1917-1923". The stamp shown by librarianc appears to be genuine, based on the following characteristics:

1. The break at the top of the "A" in the word ГОЛОДАЮЩИМ.
2. The presence of stops after each letter of R.S.F.S.R and after the letter "T" of the value.

The forgery shown by mikeg (F3 as per Ceresa) reproduces the broken "A" of the genuine design, but fails to reproduce several of the stops in RSFSR, as well as the stop after the "T" at lower left. Morevover, the forgery is printed on pale cream paper, quite darker than the original.

Two other forgeries of 2T do not have the break at the top of the "A", so they should be an easy pick.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Also note on Mike's image......the left side - the letter P (x2) do not have legs, whereas mine has full length legs under each one.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

A good point, John - an additional distinctive mark of forgery F3 (it is also present in my copy of that forgery).

I am a little worried about your copy of the 6T green, for which Ceresa also describes 4 different forgeries, and I will explain why.

Below is (first) my genuine copy of that value:

Image

Then the forgery I have in my collection (F2 as per Ceresa):

Image

The distinctive characteristics of this forgery:
1. Absence of stops after the first "P" and the second "C" of РСФСР.
2. The left side of the "A" in the word ГОЛОДАЮЩИМ is slightly curved outwards.
3. Cream paper.

Now on to the problem. Ceresa describes as follows the third type of forgery (F3): "The design is sharper and lacks none of the stops and in overall size it almost replicates the genuine. There are a number of small breaks in the outer frame line. Printed on light buff paper".

Given the somewhat general nature of this description, I would not be too worried if it were not for the illustration provided, which appears to exhibit breaks in the outer frame line very similar to those in your stamp:

Image

It might be nothing after all, but I thought I should show you.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by mikeg »

Vasia- You are fortunate to have the Ceresa books.

I only have the Ukraine trident volumes, and some of his forgery guides.

For the cost of a full set of Ceresa handbooks, one could put together a pretty nice Russia collection :oops:
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Vasia:

Nice work and thank you. I believe you have this correct regarding the 6T. I'd certainly rather know now!

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

The 1922-23 regular issues overprinted

Image

and listed in the catalogues I have with footnote that forgeries exist. This 5r on 20k imperf block of 4 is one of the better issues from this set.

Here is the upper right stamp:

Image

All 4 overprints show breaks in the lines of the star.....am I looking at another suspect here?

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

From the same time period : The first Airmail stamp (SC#C1 - Mi#200x)

Image

I found this one tough to work through, even with the notes and drawings from Frank Aretz.

Genuine is yellow-green and forgery is blue green. Genuine paper is creamish - forgery is bleached snow-white.

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The tops of the letters behind the leg appear to match the parallel lines above, but the lower line may be a smudge and there doesn't seem to be the white flaw in the "O" near the ankle. Any thoughts?

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

librarianc wrote:Vasia:

Nice work and thank you. I believe you have this correct regarding the 6T. I'd certainly rather know now!

John A
John

I was very hesitant in discussing this stamp, because we are dealing with such small details in its overall design. Given, however, Dr Ceresa's extensive expertise in the Russian field, I felt I should point out the similarities of his illustration to your stamp.
mikeg wrote:Vasia- You are fortunate to have the Ceresa books....
For the cost of a full set of Ceresa handbooks, one could put together a pretty nice Russia collection :oops:
Mike, I purchased them over the years. Wish I could otherwise! :D
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

Regarding the first Soviet airmail stamp (Scott C1), although I do not have the Frank Aretz notes, I think the most distinctive characteristics of the forgeries are located in the plane design.

Here is the drawing in Lyapin's catalogue:

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The first forgery in this drawing is characterized by the off-centered tail of the plane and by exaggerated curves to the wingtips.
The second forgery is characterized by a curved joint at the intersection of the body and the wing of the plane at left, rather than a more or less straight joint in the genuine stamp.

Below is my used copy of the stamp, which I think is genuine.

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I think you have a genuine copy. I would be very interested to learn more about the details mentioned by Aretz: the "parallel lines" behind the legs and the "white flaw" in the "O".
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Regarding the Frank Aretz notes on Russia C1- Airmail stamp (from "Know Your Stamps" Marks Stamp Company Limited)

Noted article from Philatelisme of March 15, 1934.....

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with some of the following notations:

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An acid wash was also mentioned with the following reference made about identifying the genuine:

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

davpot wrote:Hello John:
I would suggest you download the new Liapin catalog often available on Ebay for about 10.00! It has a fair amount of English!
Am I getting a full catalogue with this .pdf download? I see a proper printed catalogue sold for $65.00 recently on eBay.........am I missing something here?

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

1924 Lenin Mourning Issue - 3 printings imperf plus a perf issue

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After a third measuring, I found the printings should be exchanged from the notations on the page -
2nd printing is approx. 20.5x25.9

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and the 3rd printing is approx. 21.2x26.2

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and a perf 13.5 printing

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Here is one that I believe may be a forgery:

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The lines on the right side of the head and ear seem too thick.

This may simply be a kiss print or even more simply a black print shift, or it could be a slight double:

Image

My information shows a very distinct difference in the thickness of the lines on the right of Lenin's head between genuine and forgery, but on these issues the differences are there, but less clear.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

The RSFSR "star surcharges" issue of 1922-23 that you mentioned earlier is, as far as I am concerned, a difficult issue when it comes to detecting forgeries.

The first thing that should be clear is that the surcharges were either typographic or lithographic on perf and imperf stamps. There exist, therefore, quite a number of varieties, even if we leave aside inverted, double, etc overprints.

Here is a brief overview of the issue as given by Lyapin catalogue-2009:

Image

Image

Please note his point at the beginning of the second page that a lithographic 5R/20k imperf surcharge is probably a forgery (altough it is mentioned as genuine, albeit unissued, by other catalogues: Zagorskiy, Soloviev).

So if we go by Lyapin's opinion, your stamp should be a typographic surcharge. As a first indication you can check the back of the stamps. (I will be checking Ceresa a bit more closely on this issue and come back with comments).
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Next issue is the 1924 Imperf Airmail overprint set - as well as an unissued set??

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Here are the overprinted issues:

Image

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This "unissued" set is one I can't seem to find any reference to in my literature. I've been away for a bit, but will start to scan the usual places for more info.

Image

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by nigelc »

The original set was prepared in 1923 before the introduction of the new "gold" (zolotom) currency and wasn't issued without the surcharges.
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

Thank you, Nigel!!

I have also found there is a "wide 5" variety, but haven't seen anything to assist with identifying it . We'll see if the Liapin catalogue helps with that.

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by librarianc »

nigelc wrote:The original set was prepared in 1923 before the introduction of the new "gold" (zolotom) currency and wasn't issued without the surcharges.
Ok, now I know I need some sleep. They are listed in both SCOTT and Michel, I just plain missed them!! :oops:

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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by nigelc »

Hi John,

There are pictures of the wide 5 and the normal 5 in SG. This affects both 5s in the "5 РУБ." of the bottom panel of the green stamp. The wide 5 is much rounder in shape than the ones shown here and is further away from the frame lines (especially on the left side).
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by Safi »

Excellent thread and nice collection shared here, thanks a ton, glad to have this thread here, especially on early Russia stamps, great reference to visit this thread no doubt... must take my Russia collection out and sort it out... I just kept buying over the years and letting them lie scattered in various shoeboxes... time to give them attention I guess...
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Re: Imperial Russia - USSR - Modern Russia issues

Post by vasia »

The "wide 5 variety of the airmail stamp is a scarce stamp, particularly in the unoverprinted / unissued set. Lyapin in his catalogue considers this variety a "proof or a speculative issue of the Soviet Philatelic Association".

Here are the characteristics of the regular and "wide 5" stamps side by side:

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To understand the relative scarcity of this variety, here are the prices from Scott and Lyapin:

Unoverprinted "wide 5" - only known mint:
Scott 2009 (C4a): $5.000
Lyapin 2009 (AH18): 60.000 €!

Overprinted 10k on "wide 5":
Scott 2009 (C7a): $850 mint, $1000 used
Lyapin 2009 (H1[AH18]): 800 € mint, 600 € used

And an example of this last stamp from the upcoming Raritan Auction:

Image
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