I recently purchased a large selection of Australian Diadems from a W.A. collector of postmarks and this odd item was included in the packet lot. The unusual features are this. The colour is not one I have readily come across before, however I have two others examples in my collection. Derivatives of a Blue colour.Details of this stamp are:
No recognisable watermark to be found on any part of the stamps.
Paper thickness 0.08mm Not a common thickness found. Mostly 0.10mm or thicker.
Colour: Greenish Blue using the Wonder colour Gauge. Or if using SG a very light shade of Turquoise-blue.
The engraving of the stamp is very fine, thus giving the impression that this may be a plate proof.
The blue was used by Dela Rue when making plate proof copies. Here is part of my question.
Second is the engraving around the round Engine in the center. The left hand side it is partially complete, but on the right hand side it is very broken. Here is the second part of my question. As there is no record of this much damage to plates used in the printing of this issue, how could a stamp be missing the design without having a void in its place.
Other noteworthy errors on this stamp are to be found at the top "POSTAGE" comes into contact with the border on nearly all parts of the lettering. Unusual, but not rare.
Also the "S" in Six Pence has very large break and it appears the scroll work runs into the "S". Odd?
It is also widely known that when Printers made proofs certain parts of the design's were omitted so to stop forgery and to showcase there workmanship, such is the case of the many Dela Rue colour proofs on the market, some of which I have in my possession.
I welcome any ideas and thoughts on this odd item.