1922 3rd Definitive Issue

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In October 1922, the third issue was produced, the ASSR. The stamps were produced  in the printing shop of the  Gosnak Department of the People’s Finance Commission in Yerevan. The issue consisted of 10 stamps with individual motifs on different papers.
Since the manufacturing process for the issue was about one year, the issue became obsolete due to inflation
Quantities issued
50 r. – 427500   2000 r. – 427500
300 r. – 427500   3000 r. – 427500
400 r. – 427500   4000 r. – 427500
500 r. – 882000   5000 r. – 427500
1000 r. – 810000   10,000 r. – 427500
The stamps were printed on two types of paper using lithograph technology.
The 50, 400, 500, 1000, 2000, 3000 and 10,000 r. stamps were printed on white
paper. The 4000 and 5000 r. on lower quality yellow paper. The 300r was on both papers.
This issue was extensively forged with several sources involved, some of which produced some very good forgeries.
We compare the general features to look for.

The Unissued series
These are scarce and seldom come up on auction. I am not aware of forgeries of this set.
These stamps are marginally smaller than the issued series in similar designs , by about 1 mm in each direction.
They present somewhat of a mystery as parts of the designs are clearer and more detailed than on the issued series stamps while others lack detail when compared with the issued series.
The paper used was buff with a distinct mesh.
They are auctioned as “proofs” but may well be very scarce forgeries

The 5r instead of 50r is very unusual in a series that goes to 10,000r and is just another part of the mystery.



Comparison of Genuine stamps and Forgeries
It is generally accepted that although I am showing 1 set of forgeries there are in effect at least 3 types.
I will attempt to add more types to the comparison when time permits.

Type I Forgeries
50 R. double interrupted frame line of links much thicker
300 R. inner white circle around center much wider
400 R. circles around “r ‘s” thinner , left differs from right
500 R. detailed shading behind stone
1000 R. thinner frame lines to column feet
2000 R. ray tips from star are solid
3000 R. solid shading in sky
4000 R. outer frame line much thicker
5000 R. upper white line much thicker
10000 R. detail of left cloud differs
These were issued on thick coarse paper with visible fibers.
Corner guide lines can be found on many and re-entries are common.

Type II Forgeries
50 R. double interrupted frame line much thicker but variable
300 R. numerals slightly thinner, lettering slightly thicker
400 R. outline of star irregular
500 R. shading of left hammer differs
1000 R. shading of sky has distinct breaks, dot over last letter
2000 R. lowest shading of sky had breaks at left
3000 R. lowest shading in sky has distinct breaks
4000 R. rays from star are denser
5000 R. irregular shading of lines on blacksmith ‘ s arm
10000 R. no break in lower sky shading
These appear to be copied from the Type I forgeries and have the basic faults described in Type I as well as the list above.
These are the most plentiful and can be found in full sheets.

Type III Forgeries
50 R. shading at end of the hammer more uniform
300 R. fringe in inner circle more regular
400 R. gap truncated where sickle crosses hammer
500 R. shapely handle on hammer, shaded not solid
1000 R. open mouth to column head at right
2000 R. thin central ray from star to shield
3000 R. clear stitching on pocket
4000 R. very fine lettering
5000 R. dot of colour above hammer to the left
10000 R. breaks in top lines of sky shading
This series is much less common than the others and is found on white and buff paper.

BTW there is a note by some experts that an official reprint of the original was made in the 1930’s on very white paper.

Genuine left, forgery right.


1. Middle frame is thinner
2. Star shape tends to have elongated bottom half.
3. Rays are shorter
4. Top of 5 is straight.
5. Less shading on hammer
On the genuine, the lines on the mountain above the sickle all mesh together, on the forgery there is a white space.


Another forgery variety – probably a Type III. The lines on the hammer are clearer
Colors are different, paper is toned and perfs are much cleaner


Appears to be a genuine stamp with a forged overprint.
The serif on the 1 is very acute and the last 0 is large.


1. Frame is thinner with less spikes.
2. Background is generally full, no white lines
3. Ground lines more defined and clearer.


Another forgery variety – possibly Type III
Colors are different, paper is toned and perfs are much cleaner


Forged overprint on forgery


1. Middle line is not centered
2. Comma is slightly lower and larger
3. Middle line is not as broken.
4. Line is not broken.


Probably a Type III


1. Handle of hammer is thicker
2. Shaded area is fuller.
3. Rays are more broken.

     
Forged overprint on forgery and Type III forgery


1. Waves are smoother
2. Dot above last letter
3. Pedestal lines are thinner.
4. Abbey is not shaded.
5. Bottom line is generally broken here.
6. Letters are thinner


Another forgery variety – probably a Type III
Colors are different, paper is toned and perfs are much cleaner
Line on bottom left may be a guide line


1. Line are thicker and not broken
2. Rays are not broken
3. Ornaments are smaller.


Another forgery variety
Colors are different, paper is toned and perfs are much cleaner

  
1. Break on dashes
2. Lines in pants and ground are more defined.
3. Letters are thinner.
4. Lines are not as broken
Probably a Type 2
  
Probably a Type 3 and Type 2 forgeries


Block of reputable auction forgeries. Most large blocks are forgeries.


1. Rays much less broken.
2, Background generally fuller.
3. Facial hair details clearer.


Dense rays probably a Type 2


1 Facial details lacking.
2. Shading lines are coarser and irregular.
3. Sickle on anvil has a center line added.
Probably a Type 2 forgery.

Forgery with doubling .
Right probably a Type III forgery


1. Bottom line extends to tip of horn
2. Ground lines are more defined.
3. Handle does not extend to the plow
Probably a Type 2 forgery


Probably a faded Type III forgery with breaks in the top sky lines


Type 3 Forgery with fake overprint


A Typical Set of Forgeries from an auction – click on the file for a full image


The Soloviev catalog shows these overprints as genuine