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General Philatelic/Identify This? : Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

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Andrejs
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09 Nov 2014
10:46:21am
Good morning!

I'm picking through some of my extra Irish stamps and found that I'm having a problem distinguishing between the various issues of the same design. It's probably me (as it often is); so I'm hoping someone can set me straight.

The definitives in question are the Sword of Light, Map of Ireland, Coat of Arms and Celtic Cross issues of, mainly, 1922-23 (Scott # 65-76) and 1940-42 (Scott # 106-117). Is there a relatively easy way to distinguish between the sets of issues? I noted that the latter had a note in Scott to say the design size was 18x22mm. What was the size of the designs in the 1922-23 issues? Would that be the easiest way to check?

Thanks in advance for your help.

Andrew
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sheepshanks
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09 Nov 2014
10:56:52am
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

According to the SG catalogue the earlier issues had a watermark that was an e with an s through the middle. The later ones had an e of varying sizes.
perfs were 15x14 on both issues and there are a wide range of shades and variations in the paper used.

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philatelia
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09 Nov 2014
11:01:54am
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

The first two issues have different watermarks. The reissue of the 3p and 5p is slightly smaller and redrawn. here is a scan of the two types side by side;

Image Not Found

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Andrejs
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09 Nov 2014
11:17:43am
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

Ahhh. So the 1922 issue used watermark 44 (the SE monogram) and the 1940 issue used watermark 252 (the multiple "e")? Scott didn't mention that important bit of info... Time to dig out the watermark fluid and tray. Here's what I am looking at right now.

Image Not Found

So, the 5p looks like it was from the 1922 series. I'm hoping that's an indicator of the other 3 stamps, which look to be of similar paper quality and colouring...

Thanks for coming to my aid so quickly!

Andrew

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philatelia
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09 Nov 2014
11:56:56am
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

Just to clarify - there are three types of the 3p and 5p. The first two are the same design but different watermarks. The third is the smaller redrawn version.

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BobbyBarnhart
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09 Nov 2014
12:37:48pm
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

If your eyesight is as bad as mine, and you cannot tell the difference in size between the 1940 3p and 5p and the 1966-68 reissues, a much easier determination is by perforations. Both the 1922 and 1940 issues are perf 15x14 whereas the reissues are perf 15. Care should also be taken with the 5p reissue as there are 2 major varieties, one being much scarcer than the other.

@ Andrejs - Scott does indeed identify wmk 44 on the 1922 issues and wmk 262 on the 1940 issues. The reissues are also wmk 262.

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Andrejs
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09 Nov 2014
03:31:52pm
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

Thanks again to everyone.

@ Bobby: Unless I'm totally daft and clueless, they omitted it in the 2015 version of the catalogue (courtesy of the local public library). If I've got similar colours on re-issues, I always check perfs and then watermarks as my next fall back. That wouldn't be the first time I've missed something, though.D'Oh

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BobbyBarnhart
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09 Nov 2014
04:39:49pm
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

I am using the 2015 edition. And no, you are not totally "daft and clueless," you just haven't been using Scott's for as long as I have (bought my first copy in 1960). When watermarks do not change, rather than enter it before each listing, Scott presumes you will realize that the last listed watermark is valid for succeeding issues. Hence, when it shows wmk 262 for Scott #105 (the 1940 1c coil), Scott does not reprint wmk 262 in front of the 1940 issues, the editors just presume you can figure it out. Later, when Scott lists the 1941 overprints on the KGV British stamps, it presumes you know that they are not wmk 262. However, since that is an interruption of the wmk 262 listings, the nest time wmk 262 appears it is noted.

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michael78651
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09 Nov 2014
07:41:43pm
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

Andrejs, don't feel bad about missing it. You fell victim to another of the many inconsistencies in how Scott lists stamps. Look at the header for the set starting with Scott #65. Then look at the header for Scott #105, and the header for the set starting with Scott #106. No reason why Scott can't use the same format as with the 1922 set on the others. Doesn't take up much, if any more space.

This is one of the things I have discussed with Scott in the past, but they don't have enough people working on the catalogs to really go through and modify the listings to conform with one set of editing rules.

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cdj1122
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09 Nov 2014
10:25:11pm
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

I am sure that Scott saves two or three cents worth of ink per volume by omitting repeating "Wmk ###" with each issue. That can add up to more than a dime when you consider the six or seven volumes in a set. And don't forget, less ink means lowering the shipping weight by 0.002mg per sale.
On the other hand considering to possibility of an error every so many thousand entries, skipping the watermark info means less mistakes.

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Andrejs
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10 Nov 2014
06:16:00pm
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

Thanks for your support, gentlemen, but I am clueless. I missed the earlier 262 reference completely (and this after I thought I had scanned every issue from the early defins to the 1940's issues - thrice!!!!!). Urgh!

The watermark being identified earlier in the listings (I know that quirk of Scott's) is usually not an issue, when the varieties or re-issues are using different denominations or colours, but this time it was a pain. I write policy and instructions for part of my living in the non-philatelic world. Clarity, including stating the obvious, is the best method of telling everyone what you want them to know. It would just seem like common sense to follow Michael's train of thought that any varieties, subsequent re-issues or continuations of sets be clearly identified with every distinguishing feature from its predecessors to make the catalogue more user friendly. The catalogue editors seem very selective in applying this rule. For some issues, there is a huge amount of information on varieties, die lots, watermark descriptions, etc. On others, well, just re-read the above. That's a partial justification for me not paying attention... The other part is the cluelessness. I think I need to get an eye exam done.

Thank you again to everyone who took the time to post a response.

Andrew

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malcolm197
11 Nov 2014
09:16:43am
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

Additionally the 6d large size second watermark was reissued ( still large size) on chalk-surfaced paper in 1967

Malcolm

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Strider
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20 Feb 2017
02:36:44am
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

I've started a little Ireland collection, focusing on the provisional government, the Free State and the republic up to decimalisation. Does anyone have any guidance to offer for identifying the overprints of 1922? All those different printers, and types of paper. I'm very conscious of the possibility of forgery of overprints.

I'm using SG catalogue, which is helpful. A dealer told me yesterday that the MacDonnell Whyte catalogue is better, so I'm looking out for it.



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pedroguy
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20 Feb 2017
09:23:48am
re: Ireland definitives - how to tell the differnce on issue dates and cat. numbers

Image Not FoundHere's another excellent book you might find helpful David Feldmans Handbook of Irish Philately joint publication of David Feldman & The Dolman Press Ltd. Dublin

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