France – 1849-1871, the astonishing assembly of 88 items comprising;
Ceres First Issue: 10c including eleven trial exposures on glass with static cancellations, also a tête-bêche pair in a proof signed by Sperati on front with his handstamp on back and numbered « 245 » (this proof, rarely presented in this sale, was the commoner item prepared for collectors by the artist and not a working proof); 15c with two negative glass clichés, one dated « 2/47 » « surexp » (overexposed to light) and designated as unused as the other, marked « b », shows a static cancellation (a rare feature in the Sperati work), six further glass support clichés in vermilion, brown (shades, one with static cancellation) and black, with four having what appears to be consecutive dates 15/3, 16/3, 20/3 & 21/3; 1fr including four glass clichés in vermilion (marked « 1er » & « 27 »), orange, black and purple-black, two being negative, a celluloid cliché in vermilion with notations with tiny retouches in upper and lower tablets; a wonderful proof of the 1fr vermilion -designated « Vervelle » by Sperati- on wove paper dated « 2/3/49 » (paradoxically 100 years after its issue), indicating in French at left that the ink used in the trial colour of Sperati’s fingerprint below was applied on the first day, and at right, on the other fingerprint, denoting a ‘second day’ (we presume that the chemicals reacted differently after one or two days under certain conditions of experimentation, and it may deduced that the colour of the stamp design was chosen after the fingerprints’ trial); as well as a proof in black on white wove paper with the reproduction hs and signed in pencil below made for collectors, a wonderful assembly.
Second Empire Issue: 1c glass support cliché in carmine and 25c negative glass support cliché in grey; 1fr with beautiful tête-bêche pair glass support cliché in a brown shade designated « 4 – E.N. » and with retouches around the heads, and additional tête-bêche on cliché in dark vermilion on Pathé celluloid retouched around the heads on back and on front in the upper and lower tablets, also a rejected essay on paper in a wrong shade and a finished used reproduction signed.
Laureated Empire: 5fr ten glass clichés including one in negative, an impressive example with the design in pronounced relief (the only example we have seen in this collection), four in black with one showing the surround painted in light transparent-grey to concentrate the light on the area of the stamp design, two in grey on white with one indicating the light exposure of 1 min 55 secs, and two in purple-carmine and brown (some showing the notation of the master negative « (b) » and the Pathé film used indicating « + contraste » and imperceptible filter), one trial exposure, two clichés on celluloid in vermilion shades, one dated February 1952, one essay on wove paper in the target colour writing in pencil that he used an Agfa celluloid to create the contrast, as well as three final reproductions including two unused & one used.
Bordeaux Issues: 2c blocks of four including two negative clichés on glass, one dated 12/48 and produced using an Agfa film, three support clichés on glass (two in block of four and one in vertical pair), three celluloid clichés in blocks of four with one featuring a very appealing composition with the upper pair in vermilion and the lower pair in black, two essays of the block of four on white wove paper in brown and black, as well as a final reproduction in block of four with « 3219 » lozenge; 20c celluloid cliché in blue-grey, dated 10/50.
Postages due: 10c featuring a negative glass cliché and two glass support clichés in red and black, a celluloid cliché in black; 40c with one negative glass cliché with static cancel; 60c in a negative glass cliché and four glass support clichés in yellow, turquoise, black and grey, one with « 12/3 ».
Cancellations: nine glass clichés for various pmks, including five in negative, twenty one fragments with pmks showing notations and two small pieces with ink trials, notes and observations.
A remarkable collection of French classic philately, which surpasses all previously known numbers of clichés; in particular the 1 franc vermilion display is of the utmost importance.
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