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Brixton Chrome

Lot 215 Canada #556var 10c Carmine and Silver Snowflakes, 1971 Christmas Issue, Two Examples Showing Different Colour Shifts

Lot 215 Canada #556var 10c Carmine and Silver Snowflakes, 1971 Christmas Issue, Two Examples Showing Different Colour Shifts

A fine NH and VFNH single of the 10c carmine and silver Snowflakes from the 1971 Christmas Issue, each showing a different colour shift. The first shows a significant downward-left shift of the snowflake, while the inscription is unaffected. At the same time, the silver network lines are poking through the red square at the bottom, indicating that the carmine has been shifted slightly upward. The second example shows a similar shift of the carmine, but with all other parts of the design in alignment. This suggests that the silver background and inscriptions are printed separately from the engraved snowflake. Perf. 11.95 x 12 and 11.9 x 12.

Unitrade doesn't list these varieties, so we estimate them at $10. The stamps offered here grade 70 and 75.
The 1971 Christmas issue is significant in four respects. Firstly, it is the last issue of Canada to be line perforated, prior to the introduction of comb perforating with the Pierre Laporte issue. As with all the previous line perforated stamps, different machines were used gauging between 11.85 and 12 on both sides, with compounds being possible of all measurements. However, 12 and 11.85 seem to be less common than 11.9 and 11.95, which dominate. It is also the only commemorative issue to utlilize both PVA gum and dextrine gum. It is the only commemorative issue to use both unsurfced paper on the low values and chalk surfaced white paper on the high values. Although Unitrade now lists the scarce horizontal ribbed paper on the 10c and 15c, collectors should be aware that it exists on the 6c and 7c also, but that it is very, very scarce, with only a handful of examples turning up among hundreds of mint stamps. The ribbing on the 6c and 7c is only visible on the gummed side, whereas on the 10c and 15c it is best seen on the front. Finally, this issue is the only one to utilize both engraving and lithography as printing processes to produce a single issue.

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