5mil issues

1890 5mil dark violet


Cliché Type I, Gum Type A.

Sheets of 100 (10 x10) inscribed IMPRESOS  1,000,000 from 10,000 sheets issued 12 June 1890

The colour of this issue was is generally described as “deep violet” or “dark violet”. Bartels et al (1904) describe a “black violet” shade. Palmer (1912) and Galvez (1942) describe the colour as "black violet" with a shade variety of "violet".

The 5m impresos issue was not initially intended for postal use, although postally used examples can be found.

#MP111 5mil dark violet

Galvez (1942) records that all the 5m issue was printed on thin semi-transparent paper. Although various paper thicknesses are known the occurence of thin semi-transparent paper has yet to be confirmed (although may exist).

Sheet header for 5mil indicating usage as “IMPRESOS”

Shade varieties


Only known example of single 5mil die proof, in orange brown on card

5mil dark violet plate proof - imperf 


5mil dark violet plate proof - imperf with faint bogus cancellation dated "26 Dec 1890".

This bogus cancel, with the same date occurs on other proofs

5mil dark violet plate proof - imperf with Circular Manila Correos cancellation dated "-8 Feb".


Edifil:   #78 deep violet ‘violeta oscuro’ (12 Jun 1890)

Scott:  #P17 dark violet (1890)

 SG:     #P174 deep purple (12 June 1890)

1892 5mil pale green


Cliché Type I, Gum Type A.

Sheets of 100 (10 x10) inscribed IMPRESOS  5,000 from 50 sheets pale green issued 1 January 1892

The colour is generally described to be a “pale green” or “green”.

This issue of 5m impresos stamps was released in a relatively small number of only 5,000. Consequently, this issue commands the highest price out of all the babyhead stamps in past and current catalogues.

Care should be taken not to confuse pale shades of the 1896 5mil deep blue green impresos issue for the 1892 pale green issue. The easiest way to be certain is through the gum type, which is type A for the 1892 issue and type C for the 1896 issue.


#MP112 5mil pale green

Edifil:   #90 light green ‘verde claro’ (1 Jan 1892)

Scott:  #P18 green (1892)

SG:      #P191 pale green (1 Jan 1892)

1894 5mil olive grey


Cliché Type I, Gum Type B.

Sheets of 100 (10 x10) inscribed IMPRESOS  500,000 from 5000 sheets issued 1 January 1894

In general, the colour of this issue is described as “olive grey”. 

Mencarini (1896) described the colour simply as “grey”. Bartels et al (1904) provide a description of shades varying between “olive-grey” and “grey-olive” with also “deep olive-grey”.

Cotter (1897) describes the colour as “violet” but this appears to be a typographical error.

#MP113 5mil olive grey

Stanley Gibbons record the issue to be on thick paper. Similarly, Galvez (1942) notes that the stamps are on opaque paper.

Palmer (1912) indicated that all the 1894 impresos issues, including the 5m olive grey issue comprised a different sheet configuration to the earlier 5m issues with the sheet format comprising two panes of 50 stamps separated by a gutter. However, this sheet format has not yet been confirmed. In contrast, 5m olive grey blocks of 10 columns with no gutter are known to exist, suggesting that this issue occurred in sheets of 10x10.


Large block of 50 with 10 columns indicating a likely sheet format of 10 x 10.

Examples of 5mil olive grey shade varieties,


Edifil:  #107 olive grey ‘gris oliva’ (1894)

Scott: #P19 olive gray (1894)

SG:     #P200 olive-grey, thick paper (1 Jan 1894)

1896 5mil blue green


Cliché Type I, Gum Type C.

Sheets of 100 (10 x10) inscribed IMPRESOS  200,000 from 2,000 sheets issued 1 January 1896

The colour of this issue is generally described as “blue green” although the early Spanish catalogues recorded the colour as simply “green” and Scott describes the colour as “deep blue green”

Bartels et al (1904) suggested that the colours comprised “pale blue green” and “blue green” shades, whereas Palmer (1912) reports the colour simply to be “pale blue green and shades”. 

#MP114 5mil blue green

Palmer (1912) noted that the sheet format of this issue as uncertain. Peterson et al (in print) report that sheets with a format of 100 (10 x 10) are known to exist.

Harradine incorrectly records that this issue occurs as cliché II; however, this issue is comprised of cliché type I stamps. 

Shade varieties

5mil blue green plate proof - imperf 

Edifil:  #119 blue green ‘verde azulado’ (1896-1897)

Scott: #P20 deep blue green (1896)

SG:     #P208 blue-green (1 Jan 1896)

Postal Usage

 Circular Manila Correos date stamp on 5m pale green


 Circular Manila Correos date stamp [October 1897] on 5m blue green

 Registration circular "Correos de Filipinas" cancel (Peterson Type 4) on 5m blue green



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