NUMBERS IN MALTESE CROSSES

     The Maltesse cross cancellations, with the numbers in the centre, were introduced in the midle of March, 1843. These were in use at the London Head office, with one cancellation device per table. With the exception of number 3, all the obliterators originally showed a cross at the top and the known examples where this is not present are assigned to accidental damage or wear.

     We do not consider the listing presented here to be complette, but have made it avalible to show the various types and sub-types which we know to exist. Again some of these types may be repaired or re-cut impressions of an earlier type and they may be re-assigned as more information becomes avalible.

     The selection of pictures has been made to illustrate the major points of the cancellation, rather than the stamp and may be replaced as better examples become avalible. Most variations are known to exist on stamps printed in red but examples are also known on Penny Blacks and Two Pence Blues, Mulreadys and embossed envelopes.

Screw-Head Screw head Often mistaken for the number 1 in cross

The main difference is the general shape of the outer cross and the central diamond, which is not present on the true London cancellations

Click here to see this stamp used on cover

Screw-Head 4 in cross Often mistaken for the number 1 or 4 in cross

The main difference is the general shape of the outer cross and the central diamond, which is not present on the true London cancellations

1a 1 in cross
Known used on cover in conjunction with number 3
Known used on a block of 4 in conjunction with number 12
Number 1 in cross

Flat top serif to top of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 23rd March 1843

Earliest known use 22nd March 1843

Latest known use 11th May 1844

Early impressions of this type show a thinner upright and well defined top serif and base to the numeral

1b 1 in cross Number 1 in cross

Very thin small angled serif to top of numeral.
Thin base to foot of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

1c This item was in the I T Pickering collection - Page 119. . Click here to see this page Number 1 in cross

Very thin small serif to top of numeral.
No base to foot of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

2a 2 in cross
Known on 1d Blacks
Number 2 in cross

Blob at top of numeral.
Sloping base to numeral
Intact cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 23rd March 1843

Earliest known use 21st March 1843

Latest known use 7th May 1844

2b 2 in cross Number 2 in cross

Blob at top of numeral.
Sloping base to numeral
Broken cross (+) at top of impression.

2c 2 in cross Number 2 in cross

Blob at top of numeral.
Dipped central portion to base to numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression

Click here to see more examples

2d 2 in cross Number 2 in cross

Blob at top of numeral.
Uniform base to numeral with sloped end.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

3a 3 in cross Number 3 in cross

Blob at bottom of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

A clear cross at the top of the impression
Impressions of this number are usually without the cross

3b 3 in cross
Known used on cover in conjunction with number 1
Known used on cover in conjunction with number 9
Number 3 in cross

Blob at bottom of numeral.
No cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

Earliest known use 16th March 1843

4a Number 4 in cross

Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 23rd March 1843

Earliest known use 21st March 1843

Thinner numeral and the cross higher than normal
This may be a re-cut

4b 4 in cross Number 4 in cross

Cross (+) at top of impression.

Cross bar to numeral tapered. (getting wider to the right).

5a 5 in cross
Known on 1d Embossed Postal stationary
Number 5 in cross

Blob at bottom of numeral.
Short top arm to numeral
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 23rd March 1843

5b 5 in cross Number 5 in cross

Blob at bottom of numeral.
Short top arm to numeral
No cross (+) at top of impression.

It has been suggested that this is in fact a 3 in cross but I am not totally convinced of this as there is also an example on a two-pence blue

Click Here to see both images together for comparrision

6a 6 in cross - type A Number 6 in cross

Blob at top of numeral.
Straight back to numeral
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 23rd March 1843

6b 6 in cross - type B Number 6 in cross

Blob at top of numeral.
Curved back to numeral
Cross (+) at top of impression.

6c 6 in cross - type C Number 6 in cross

Blob at top of numeral.
Curved back to numeral
No cross (+) at top of impression.

This item was recorded in the PJGB vol 77 No. 1 of March 1967
It is on a cover dated the 2nd February 1844 and was thought to indicate that a new obliterator was brought into use shortly before the introduction of the numeral type.

7a 7 in cross - type A
Known on 1d Blacks
Known on 1d Mulready
Number 7 in cross

Serif at top of numeral.
Uniform thickness top arm to numeral
Verticial arm thickens towards the base.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

Latest known use 7th May 1844

7b 7 in cross - type B Number 7 in cross

Serif at top of numeral.
Uniform thickness to top arm to numeral
Verticial arm thickens towards the base. (Thicker than type 7a).
Cross (+) at top of impression.

7c 7 in cross - type B
Known on 2d Blues
Number 7 in cross

Serif at top of numeral.
Uniform thickness to top arm to numeral
Verticial arm thickens towards the base. (Thinner than type 7a).
Cross (+) at top of impression.

7d 7 in cross - type C Number 7 in cross

Serif at top of numeral.
Scrolled top arm to numeral
Verticial arm thickens towards the base.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

7e 7 in cross - type D Number 7 in cross

No serif at top of numeral.
Uniform thickness to top arm to numeral
Verticial arm thickens towards the base. (Thinner than type 7b).
Cross (+) at top of impression.

7f 7 in cross - type D Number 7 in cross

No serif at top of numeral.
Uniform thickness to top and verticial arm of numeral
Verticial arm curves towards the base.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

8a 8 in cross Number 8 in cross

Smaller loop at top of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

Latest known use 14th May 1844

8b 8 in cross Number 8 in cross

Smaller loop at top of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.
Thinner outline to numeral
Bottom part on numeral rather squat

8c 8 in cross Number 8 in cross

Smaller loop at top of numeral.
Probably a cross (+) at the top of the impression.
Mis-shaped numeral
Mis-placed to the right
Inner cross also appears distorted

9a 9 in cross
Known on 1d Mulready
Known used on cover in conjunction with number 3
Number 9 in cross

Straight back to numeral.
Large loop to top of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

9b 9 in cross
Number 9 in cross

Straight back to numeral.
Large loop to top of numeral.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Generally the numeral is of the same appearance as in type 9a but appears twisted and mis-placed

10a 10 in cross
Known on 1d Blacks
Known on 2d Blues
Known on 1d Mulready
Number 10 in cross

Flat serif to top of numeral 1.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

10b 11 in cross Number 10 in cross

No serif to top of numeral 1.
The 0 in the numeral is split with the right side misplaced downwards.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

11a 11 in cross Number 11 in cross

Flat serif to top of numerals.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

11b 11 in cross Number 11 in cross

Flat serif to top of numerals.
Cross (+) at top of impression.

Note The left numeral appears to be larger than the right.

12a 12 in cross
Known on 2d Blues
Number 12 in cross

Blob at top of numeral 2.
Scrolled base to numeral 2.
Cross (+) at top of impression

Delivered (Re Post Office Records) on the 1st April 1843

12b 12 in cross
Known on 2d Blues
Known used on a block of 4 in conjunction with number 1
Number 12 in cross

Blob at top of numeral 2.
Sloping base to numeral 2.
Cross (+) at top of impression

We believe this to be an inking variation of type 12a

12c 12 in cross Number 12 in cross

Blob at top of numeral 2.
Uniform base to numeral 2 with sloped end.
Cross (+) at top of impression

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