(A.) Forgery to Defraud the State (?).
A considerable amount of confusion has arisen respecting this rather dangerous watercolour imitation.
Masson wrote (Part I., p. 35) that he included it with the “Missing Dies”, on the authority of Major Evans. Evans subsequently wrote (“Ph. J. India. Vol. VI., p. 286) that Masson’s statement must have arisen through some misunderstanding, inasmuch as he had never seen the forgery; and Masson’s note is the more puzzling since he believed he had seen copies genuinely used with the “square black seal of Jammu”an obliteration which ceased in 1879, while the “Missing Dies” did not come into being until 1890.
We have tentatively classified this forgery as one that was postally used to defraud the Revenues, in deference to Masson’s profound knowledge of the early obliterations; but we are bound to admit that, in our opinion, those which we have seen, and notably those purporting to be the first Jammu obliteration in magenta, are unquestionably forged, and that we consider this imitation to have been merely made for collectors. Masson classified the forgery as that of a ½-Anna from the Jammu Plate, having the fatal inaccuracy of possessing a complete frame-line around the impression, instead of on two sides only; while Evans held that the complete frame proved the forgery to be intended for one of the types of the Kashmir ½-Anna. The forgery is, however, only known with Jammu obliterations (whether genuine or false) and this, no doubt, influenced Masson in the view he took.
The forgery is from a single die, and is of some rarity. It may always be identified by the “sun” at the top of the outer oval having the ends of the rays truncated instead of pointed; and by the downstroke of the character immediately to the right of the sun, being straight instead of bent in the middle.
Die Forgery. Watercolours on native paper.
½-AnnaBlack : Red : Blue.
The “Brighton” Forgeries (Jammu).
The photo-process forgeries of this group are so accurate in their details that we again give no illustration of the types. They are usually very easily detected by their papers alone, and still more so, when these are also considered in combination with colour. The forged thin laid bâtonné is not very unlike the original paper, but the lines are far too distinct. Some of this group have the appearance of having been produced at an earlier period than their companion imitations of Circular, Kashmir, and New Rectangular stamps. Each of the forgeries described below exists, it is to be understood, in three types of ½-Anna and one of the 1-Anna denomination.
Photo-process “Line-block” Forgeries showing the four correct types.
I. Printed in Watercolours.
(a) Pelure wove paper (toned)Indigo : Ultramarine : Pale red : Black.
(b) Pelure wove paper (white)Bright yellow.
(c) Pelure laid paper (toned)Brick red : Blue : Black.
(d) Ordinary white laid paperBrick red : Ultramarine : Greenish black : Black.
(e) Thin white laid bâtonné paperBrick red.
(f) White wove paperDull deep greenish blue : Black.
(g) Thick ribbed wove paperBrownish black.
(h) Thin toned laidBrick red : Black.
(i) Thin white woveDull lake.
II. Printed in Oilcolour.
(a) Pelure laid paperEmerald green.
(b) Thin toned laidBlack : Indigo-black.
(c) Thick white laidBlue.
(d) Thin toned woveScarlet : Pale red : Deep green : Black.
(e) Very thick surfaced white woveYellow.
Some of the above may be found with a forged obliteration of widely-spaced broad bars in black; and, also in black, with a crude representation of the “Barred-L” obliteration.
There is, in our opinion, no known postally used forgery for inclusion in this group. The point is merely raised here since Masson held a contrary opinion in reference to a rather dangerous imitation of the 1-Anna in his collection, which we now classify in the group which follows.
Private Forgeries for Collectors (Kashmir).
No deceptive forgery is known of the rare ½-Anna black (single die) of 1886 [sic.; should be 1866] but mention may be made of two imitations which obtained some success in past days and which were commonly illustrated in catalogues as genuine.
The first of these (Plate 52, fig. 3) shews, in place of the inscription occupying the second line in the inner oval, merely a white space with ragged edges, and the details of the outer inscriptions are hopelessly inaccurate. This forgery was originally copied from an illustration published by Moens in Le Timbre-Poste of November, 1866, and was subsequently improved by the correction of the fault in the inner oval.
½-Anna. Die Forgery.
On stout white wove paper.
Black (Watercolour), Green (Oilcolour).
The second of these old imitations is so crude that no description need be given, other than that of our illustration (Plate 52, fig. 4).
½-Anna. Die Forgery.
(a) On thin toned wove.
Deep green : carmine-red (oilcolours).
(b) On very thick toned woveBlack (Oilcolour)
The first forgery of the Kashmir Plate (Plate 52, fig. 5) is one of the 1-Anna.
The earliest reference to this much-debated impression seems to have been made in 1887 by Evans, who, after describing the points in which it differed from any of the five original...
...types, added, “...Moens only catalogues this in black...I possess specimens in blue, brown and carmine-red, and have found it in orange in the collection of the President of the Philatelic Society.”
Thirteen years later (1900) Masson commented on this by stating that he believed the imitation to have been, not only an early forgery, but actually a companion of the notorious “Die I.” Circulars: and that it had been equally successful in imposing on even advanced collectors (who had paid as much as £20 for a copy) for over thirty years.
Evans subsequently recorded (“Ph. J. India,” 1903. Vol. VII., p. 20) that it had been originally chronicled, as a distinct type, by Dr. Legrand in 1875. If Masson’s views were correct, the forgery may have been actually produced in, or even before, 1870.
The chief tests for this forgery, which is printed from a single die, are (i.) that the long horizontal characer for “one” in the inner oval is more distinctly sloped upwards than it is in any of the five types of originals, and (ii.) that the figures of the Persian date beneath it are much too small.
The forgery is always in watercolour. Copies in red are only occasionally met with, and we have seen none of the others except an example in blue in the Beckton collection.
1870(?). Die Forgery. Watercolour on native paper.
1-AnnaBlack : Ultramarine : Carmine-red : Dull orange-brown
The next forgery (Plate 52, fig. 6)...
...is the one already alluded to as having been noted in Masson’s collection as postally used. Masson possessed a single specimen, and we know of two others only. This old forgery is taken from Type 3 of the 1-Anna and the design, so far as the blurred nature of the watercolour-printing allows us to follow it, is dangerously exact. Masson’s example is in orange-red on European wove paper, and we have a second specimen on European laid in the same colour. The obliterations of both of these purport to be the small circular...
...seal in black and are, in our opinion, unquestionably forged. We recently found our third specimen in an old collection, on this occassion printed in watercolour black and shewing a good imitation of the small seal in red, the paper, again, being European laid. The papers will always condemn the forgery, which would, if it was ever printed on native paper, be a very dangerous one.
Die Forgery. Watercolour on European wove or laid paper.
1-Anna (Type 3)Black : Orange-red : Ultramarine [added, ed.]
Our last forgery of the Kashmir Province Old Rectangulars illustrated (Plate 52, fig. 7) to shew something of a curiosity. The imitation is that of the ¼-Anna and the entire design is printed in reverse.
Oilcolour on thick European paper.
¼-Annablack [in reverse.]
The “Missing Die” Forgeries (Kashmir).
Forgeries were made, by the Postal Officials of the 2-Annas, 4-Annas, and 8-Annas.
All the forgeries are from single dies, that of the 2-Annas being often found printed in horizontal strips of five to represent the five types of the original plate. The chief tests are:
The 2-Annas. The shade frames are double-lined, instead of single: The “sun” is too small and the dots in the spandrels too large and too few. The great majority of specimens shew, apparently, a late state of the Die by having a white linear flaw cutting diagonally through the top-left spandrel. Impressions from the first state are known in red, and on native paper.
The 4-Annas and 8-Annas. All the frame lines are double instead of single, and the spandrel dots are omitted. In the 8-Annas the “sun” is much too small.
All the forgerires are found with forged cancellations, and also with genuine 3-circle postmarks of 1890-94, which at once condemn them. The following table includes a large number of impressions which were not listed by Bacon in 1899.
Printed in Oilcolours.
(a) On Native Paper.
2-As.Vermilion : Pale brown.
4-As.Black : Red : Blue : Orange : Orange-brown.
8-As.Black : Vermilion : Orange.
(b) On Thin Toned Wove.
2-As.Red : Dull ultramarine.
4-As.Black : Red : Blue : Deep Blue : Green : Purple-brown.
8-As.Black : Red.
(c) On Thin White Wove.
2-As.Black : Vermilion : Dull blue : Orange : Brown.
4-As.Black : Vermilion : Grey-blue : Yellow : Green : Purple-brown.
8-As.Black : Red : Bright red.
(d) On White Laid.
4-As.Orange-red : Olive-yellow : Chocolate-brown : Purple.
(e) On Thin White Laid.
The “Brighton” Foreries (Kashmir).
In our third instalment of this series we again refrain from giving illustrations owing to the accuracy in detail of the imitations. We should, perhaps, add that quite appreciable, though minute, differences in detail do exist throughout the group; but the task of describing them for each separate type would be a barren one and, as such description might lead to corrections in the forged plates (if these are still in existence) it is better omitted.
The forged plate of the 2-Annas was copied from a strip of Reprints, and shews the small rivets in the upper margin which do not occur in originals.
In this Kashmir group “fancy” colours seem to have been abandoned, but the forgeries are very easily detected by their papers alone. The “native” paper is too thin and too...
...grey, while no Kashmir originals were ever printed on wove paper. This group appears to have been produced in oilcolour only, a fact which further condemns them at a glance.
Photo-process forgeries shewing the correct types.
Printed in oilcolours.
(a) On Imitation “Native” Paper.
¼-Anna (5 Types)Black.
½-Anna (20 Types)Black.
1-Anna (5 Types)Black : Crimson-red : Brown-purple.
2-Annas (5 Types)Orange-yellow : Deep chestnut.
4-Annas (1 Type)Bluish-green.
8-Annas (1 Type)Red.
(b) On Stout White Wove.
½-Anna (20 Types)Orange-yellow.
(c) On Thin Coarse Wove.
½-Anna (20 Types)Orange-yellow.