BNAPS ORE - Reference Articles

Guide to the Admiral Stamps of Canada

Randall W. Van Someren

Introduction | Formats | Printings | Dies | Paper | Straight Edges | Coils |
Fakes | Forgeries | Terminology | Varieties | Cancellations | Rates | Bibliography

Identifying the Different Dies on the Admirals

The Admirals were in use for some 17 years. During this period, the dies for nearly all denominations were retouched and/or re-engraved. The dies of three denominations were replaced with completely new dies. This page shows how to differentiate between the original die (Die I) and the new die (Die II) of the:

1. Die Differences on the 1¢ Yellow

Right numeral box of Die I and Die II on the 1 cent yellow,
        showing the serifs at the bottom of the 1 on Die II

The serifs on the bottoms of the numerals of Die I are small and barely visible. On some stamps, the numerals seem to widen a bit at the bottom, but that is all. However, on Die II, the serifs are clear cut and very visible. Notice also the horizontal lines abutting the left side of the numeral box. On Die I, there are 14 horizontal lines between the bottom line and the top line of the numeral box; on Die II, there are only 13 lines.

Bottom centre of Die I and Die II on the 1 cent yellow,
        showing the smaller space between the N in ONE and the oval
        above it as well as the slightly larger lettering on Die II

The N of ONE is separated from the white oval band surrounding the portrait by at least one full horizontal line of shading on Die I. On Die II, the N of ONE is separated from this oval band by a very thin line. Notice too, that the letters of ONE CENT are larger on Die II than on Die I.

2. Die Differences on the 3¢ Carmine

Difference between Die I and Die II on the bottom left side
        of the 3 cent carmine

Difference between Die I and Die II on the bottom right side
        of the 3 cent carmine

Difference between Die I and Die II at the bottom of the King's
        portrait on the 3 cent carmine

There are three horizontal lines on the King's chest at the very bottom of the portrait. On Die I, the right end of the bottom line does not touch the heavy diagonal line coming down toward it from the upper right. On Die II, the right end of the bottom line touches this heavy diagonal line. The place to look for this difference is right above the R of THREE.

3. Die Differences on the 1T¢ War Tax

Difference between Die I and Die II on the 2 cent plus 1 cent War Tax

The two most notable differences are:


4. Concluding Remarks

The differences described above should enable you to distinguish between the dies of these stamps. Some of these dies have other differences that I have not described. For more information see The Admiral Issue of Canada by George C. Marler (1982):

The table below lists the Admiral stamps issued with two dies. The table lists all formats in which each stamp was issued, although some formats saw printings from only one of the two dies.

Admiral stamps with two dies
Stamp Wet Dry
Panes of 100, perf 12
1¢ yellow, Die I YES YES
1¢ yellow, Die II YES
3¢ carmine, Die I YES
3¢ carmine, Die II YES
2¢ on 3¢ carmine, provisional overprint
2¢ on 3¢, Die I, one line overprint YES
2¢ on 3¢, Die II, one line overprint YES
2¢ on 3¢, Die I, two line overprint YES
War Tax stamps, panes of 100, perf 12
2¢ + 1¢ carmine, War Tax, Die I YES
2¢ + 1¢ carmine, War Tax, Die II YES
2¢ + 1¢ brown, War Tax, Die I YES
2¢ + 1¢ brown, War Tax, Die II YES
Panes of 100, imperforate
1¢ yellow, Die I YES
3¢ carmine, Die I YES
Sidewise coils, perf 8 vertically
1¢ yellow, Die I YES YES
1¢ yellow, Die II YES
3¢ carmine, Die I YES
3¢ carmine, Die II YES
War Tax sidewise coils, perf 8 vertically
2¢ + 1¢ carmine, War Tax, Die I YES
2¢ + 1¢ brown, War Tax, Die I YES
2¢ + 1¢ brown, War Tax, Die II YES
Coil stamps issued in sheet format, perf 12 x 8
3¢ carmine, Die II YES
2¢ + 1¢ carmine, War Tax, Die I YES
Coil stamps issued in sheet format, imperf x perf 8
1¢ yellow, Die I YES
1¢ yellow, Die II YES
3¢ carmine, Die I YES
Booklet pane of 6 stamps
1¢ yellow, Die I YES
Booklet pane of 4 stamps
1¢ yellow, Die I YES
3¢ carmine, Die I YES

Introduction | Formats | Printings | Dies | Paper | Straight Edges | Coils |
Fakes | Forgeries | Terminology | Varieties | Cancellations | Rates | Bibliography


Copyright © 2007-2013 Randall W. Van Someren
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This page was last modified on 2021-01-02