The second types are aimed at collectors, forgeries of expensive collectibles. These we really have no fun in dealing with. Although these forgeries also started being made quite early, modern technology has enabled forgers to come really close to the originals. There were even forgeries made from forgeries of the third type! Falsification of parts of original stamps may also be common, such as perforations, watermarks, forgeries of overprints and colour changes.
Apart from the well known forgeries like the one of the French 5F Merson, by the famous forger Forbin, a French dealer (ps.: most likely him), the Brazilian Bulls Eye could be cited, since I already talked about it. (Gethin, N/A) The first forgeries of this stamp date from 1864 (by Spiro). The difference may be spotted by lines on the background. (Klaseboer, N/A) Other classic forgeries are that of the Basel Dove and Double Geneva, just to name a few.
Now let’s finally discuss the third type. Forgeries with a political agenda were used in different points in time, first appearing by the end of WWI. (CIA, 1993) During wars, these were used as means of propaganda, copying enemy’s stamps, distorting texts or changing images. Famous ones are the 1935 British Jubilee stamp (changing “half penny” to a misspelled “Jewish war”, among others), and the 12 Pfennig Hitler with the scrip “Futsches Reich” (meaning putsch/coup empire, in a free translation) as an American forgery for Germany (see pictures bellow). (Der Spiegel, 1957) These were circulated in the enemy’s
territory aiming at causing confusion. Here are numerous very interesting examples I could be citing here, including some cold war counterfeits.
One important note here is that when researching through philatelic falsifications you will encounter several well-known forgers. One worth mentioning: François Fournier. His famous forgeries and materials were later bought by the Geneva Philatelic Union (l'Union Philatélique de Genève), which gathered and published information on it. Some of it now belongs to a museum in Bern. (Pfäuti in l'Union Philatélique de Genève, N/A)
Well, this is a very big topic, extremely interesting and I made an attempt of making only a short summary to call attention to it. Forgeries can be actually quite interesting collectibles. I should try to remain neutral, but I can’t help to express my favoritism for the counterfeits of type 2, especially due to its historical significance and its usual provocative character. It is also possible that my interest is given also by the nature of the goal of the forgers in hand – differently from the first and second types, most propaganda forgeries do not aim at making a profit.
Good news is that to spot some forgeries you do not have to be an expert, but rather pay attention to detail – and it helps that many forgers are not perfectionists! There are those, of course, that require some expertise. I find very positive to read discussions about it in forums and hope this issue is further explored in academic literature.
Central Intelligence Agency, CIA (22 of September of 1993). Postal Forgeries in Two World Wars. [Online] In https://www.cia.gov/library/center-for-the-study-of-intelligence/kent-csi/vol4no3/html/v04i3a06p_0001.htm , accessed in February 26, 2013.
Crudelle, John for the New York Post (28 of October of 2010). Cheap tricks - Fake postage stamps are real worry. [Online] In http://www.nypost.com/ , accessed in February 25, 2013.
Der Spiegel (06 of February of 1957; 6/1957).
FÄLSCHUNGEN - Die Widerstands-Philatelie. [Online] In http://www.spiegel.de/, accessed in February 26, 2013.
Gethin, R.G. (N/A). Fakes and Forgeries of 20th Century French Postal Stamps. France & Colonies Philatelic Society of Great Britain.
Klaseboer, Evert [?] (N/A). BRAZIL 1843-1865. [Online] In http://catalogue.klaseboer.com/ , accessed in February 26, 2013.
Ozdoba, Christoph (June 12, 2005). Klassische Philatelie – Einleitung - „Le Fac-Simile“ – François Fournier.[Online] In http://www.klassische-philatelie.ch/intro/intro_fournier.html , accessed in February 27, 2013.
Pfäuti, Marie-Claude (N/A). Brève histoire de l'Union Philatélique de Genève. [Online] In http://www.upg.ch/, accessed in February 27, 2013.
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