10c issues

1890 10c blue green


Cliché Type I, Gum Type A.

Sheets of 100 (10 x10) inscribed CORREOS  80,000 from 800 sheets issued 1 January 1890

The colour of this issue is generally described as "blue green”.

#MP31 10c ble green

Bartels et al (1904) describe a “light blue green” colour shade.

Stanley Gibbons and Galvez (1942) indicate that this issue was printed on thin paper. These descriptions are generally relative to the later 1894 issues which tend to be on thicker paper. In this respect the 1890 10c blue green is generally on thinner paper than the 1894 issues. Galvez actually uses the description 'thin semi-transparent paper' however, this does not appear to be the case in the sense used in this catalogue.


Edifil:   #84 blue-green ‘verde azulado’ (early descriptions of ‘verde azul’) (1890)

Scott:  #163 blue-green (1890)

SG:      #167 blue-green (thin paper) (1 Jan 1890) 

1891 10c pale claret

1892 10c pale claret


Cliché Type I

Sheets of 100 (10 x10) inscribed COMUNICACIONES

1891: Thin semi-transparent paper, clear/white gum: 30,000 from 300 sheets issued 20 April 1891

1892: Normal paper, gum Type A:  880,000 from 8,800 sheets issued 1 January 1892

There are various colour descriptions of the 1891 issue and typically include: lilac rose, pale lake, pale claret or light carmine.


#MP32 10c pale claret (1891) #MP33 10c pale claret (1892),

The description of these two ‘pale claret’ printings and the later 1894 ‘claret’ printing have resulted in confusion in past catalogues and past descriptions. The confusion possibly stems from Mencarini’s early description of the three issues:

#178 pale red ‘rojizo palido’ (20 Apr 1891)

#192 deep red ‘rojizo oscuro’ (1 Jan 1892)

#204 deep red ‘rojo oscuro’ (1 Jan 1894)  

Mencarini (1896) recorded the 1892 issue as being 'deep red' which has historically led to past catalogues confusing this for the 1894 issue which is generally described as notably darker than the 1891 and 1892 issues. However, the root colour description of the 1891 and 1892 issues "rojizo" suggest that Mencarini considered these two issues to be similar. As discussed below it is possible that Mencarini was also confused in the 1891 and 1892 descriptions.

Palmer (1912) offers additional guidance in distinguishing the three issues in the description of the paper and gum types.

#176 lilac rose, on thin paper, with white thin gum and evenly spread – not streaky (20 Apr 1891)

#190 pale lake (distinguished from #176 by thicker paper and gum type A)

#204 lake and shades (1 Jan 1894)  

Earlier Bartels et al (1904) had provided similar colour descriptions except that the descriptions had been complicated by recording that the 1892 issue occurred as cliché type I and II; however, no stamps of cliché type II are known and this observation therefore appears to be erroneous.

Although Mencarini, Bartels et al, Palmer F, and later Harradine (1987), suggest that there is a colour differentiation between the 1891 and 1892 issues (“lilac rose” and “pale lake” for example) and in the Scott 1895 catalogue two issues were described the two printings are only recognised in modern catalogues by Stanley Gibbons: “lilac rose” (1891) and “light carmine” (1892). The 1905 Stanley Gibbons catolouge describe two 10c issues in 1891 a 10c pale rose and a 10c lake; however, in this instance the description of 10c lake possibly relates to the 1894 10c claret issue which is not recorded in the 1905 Stanley Gibbons catalogue.

 Recent Scott catalogues also added further confusion as up until 2006/2008 the date for the 1894 issue (Scott #164 claret) was recorded as being 1892. (Note that the 1894 issue can be identified by the presence of gum type B).

Given the uncertainites that generally exist when considering colour shades for the the entire Babyhead series, it appears that Palmer's description of paper and gum type is likely to provide the most clearly distinguishable features between the 1891 and 1892 issues. Galvez (1942) also indicates that the 1892 issue is ‘on thick paper with brown gum and cannot be confused with the 1891 issue’ which is described as on thin semi-transparent paper.

Whether the 1891 issue was comprised solely of ‘thin paper’ examples or a mixture of ‘thin’ and ‘normal’ paper types is a question that is not easy to address. Certainly, thin paper varieties are rare, and perhaps rarer than the 1 in 30 ratio that the issue numbers suggest. Peterson (PPJ 2000-2) also notes the apparent scarcity of positively identifiable stamps for the 1891 printing (“from several hundred copies only two stamps that fit the description”).

Another method of identification is by using postally dated examples (note it is difficult to reliably confirm the paper type and gum type for used examples, so in these instances it is the date of use that provides identification). In these instances those stamps which are dated '1891' would appear to have originated from the first printing.

It is notable that the '1891' examples are typically darker in shade than the more normal 'pale claret' shade that is perhaps representative of the of the more common 1892 issue. Perhaps suggesting that Mencarini's original description of colour shades was in error.

It is also notable that examples on semi-transparrent 10c issues with white/clear thin gum exsit which are in dark shades that are closer in colour to the 1894 'claret' issues than the 1892 'pale claret' isues, again perhaps lending to mis-identification and may account for many of the apparently missing 1891 issues. However, the situation is not clear cut as examples of the 1894 claret issue also exist on thin semi-transparrent paper but with a distinctive gum type B.

Similarity is colour shades between the 1891 'pale claret' issue and the later 1894 'claret' issue. Left to right: postally used 1891 issue, mint example on thin semi-transparent paper with clear gum (1891) and 1894 issue with gum type B

Edifil:   #99 light carmine ‘carmin claro’ (1891-1893)

Scott:  #164 pale claret (1891)

SG:      #172 lilac rose (20 Apr 1891) and #183 light carmine (1 Jan 1892)

Peterson, D. 1999. First and Second Printings of the 1890-1896 Postal Issues. Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 21 no. 3, pp 9-15. (superseded by Peterson, 2000)

Peterson, D. 2000. Revision: First and Second Printings of the 10c Pale Claret Postal Issue (Scott #164). Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 22 no. 2, pp 21.

Peterson, D. 2005. Unusual Printings and Other Odd Ball Variations of the 1890s Issues. Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 27 no 1, pp 4-7.

Palmer, M. 2017. In Search of the 1891 10c Pale Claret. Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 39 no. 4, pp 22-24.

1894 10c claret


Cliché Type I, Gum Type B.

Sheets of 100 (5 x10 - 5 x10 with gutter) inscribed CORREOS  850,000 from 8,500 sheets issued 1 January 1894

Colour descriptions in past catalogues for this issue include ‘lake’, ‘carmine’ and ‘claret’.


#MP34 10c claret

As noted above, the description of the 1891/1892 10c pale claret issues and the later 1894 claret printing has resulted in confusion in past catalogues and descriptions of these issues. Edifil do not appear to list this issue, instead they describe a “light brown” 10c stamp as being issued in 1894 (although this is probably the 1896 10c yellow brown issue).

Although Palmer (1912) notes that colour shades exist, there have been no particular distinctions made in catalogues. Peterson (PPJ 2000-2) reports that a scarce colour variation occurs that could cause confusion with the pale claret of the 1891/1892 issue.

However, the 1894 issue can be clearly identified by the presence of gum type B

The sheet configuration for the 1894 issue is also different from the previous 10c printings. The 1894 sheets comprised two panes of 50 stamps separated by a gutter, whereas the earlier issues comprised a single pane of 100 stamps. The two panes that formed the new plate appear to have been derived from the clichés that were used for the earlier printings, with at least 13 positions reflecting constant flaws in both issues. However, the positions of the clichés in the 1894 sheet indicate that the plates was re-arranged beyond just dividing the larger pane into two.

Some rare gum and paper varieities of the 10c claret issue can have also been recorded:

thin semi-transparrent paper with Gum Type B, (compare this to examples of the 1891 issue with thin evenly distributed white gum)

normal paper with a smooth high gloss gum

normal paper with a textured gloss gum


Edifil:  not listed

Scott: #165 claret (1894) (earlier catalogues list date as 1892)

SG:     #194 lake, thick paper, greyish paper (1 Jan 1894)

Peterson, D. 2000. Revision: First and Second Printings of the 10c Pale Claret Postal Issue (Scott #164). Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 22 no. 2, pp 21.

Palmer, M. 2017. In Search of the 1891 10c Pale Claret. Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 39 no. 4, pp 22-24.

1896 10c yellow brown


Cliché Type III, Gum Type C.

Sheets of 200 (6x10 - 8 x10 - 6x10 with two gutters) inscribed CORREOS 1,000,000 from 500 sheets issued 1 January 1896

The final printing of the 10c issue in 1896 was from a new plate comprising new clichés of die type III. In addition the sheet composition comprised an arrangement of three panes 6x10, 8x10 and 6x10 each separated with a gutter.

Colour descriptions in past catalogues for this issue include 'flesh', ‘reddish brown', 'pale' or 'light brown', 'cinnamon' and 'yellow brown’.

Cotter (1897) describes the colour of this issue as 'orange'  although this not conssitent with other descriptions of that time.

Bartels et al (1904) described the occurrence of a “pale reddish brown” shade variety.


#MP35 10c yellow brown

Palmer F, does not specifically mention the sheet configuration for this issue, implying that the stamps were issued in sheets with a single panes of 100 stamps. Harradine indicated that it was printed in this format, (although this probably repeated the information from Palmer F). Peterson (PPJ 2005-1) although concurring that this was the common printing format for this issue described a block of 12 with a gutter in his collection, indicating (at that time) that a second sheet format comprising two panes of 50 with a gutter between them. However, Peterson (PPJ 2012-2) later indicated that the sheet format was ‘6x10 gutter 8x10 gutter 6x10’ but inscribed with UNION GENERAL POSTAL.

Personal correspondence with Peterson has given cause for a re-evaluation of the various reported information. In Peterson’s collection a block exists comprising the right-hand pane showing 6 stamps across the top and CORREOS in the margin, and along with the gutter block reported in (PPJ 2005-1) it appears therefore that the 10c yellow brown issue occurred in sheets of 200 in a ‘6x10 gutter 8x10 gutter 6x10’ format, i.e. similar to the 2c ultramarine sheets and the 1m ultramarine (IMPRESOS) issue. All three sheets were issued in 1896 and comprised clichés of die III (Palmer, PPJ 2015-1).

Edifil report the date of issue to be 1894, perhaps confusing records with the 1894 10c claret issue which is omitted from the Edifil catalogues. The contemporary records and the similarity in sheet arrangement and die type used for other 1896 issues suggest that the 1896 date is correct.

10c yellow brown shade varieties 

Edifil:  #114 light brown ‘castano claro’ (1894)

Scott: #166 yellow-brown (1896)

SG:     #202 cinnamon (1 Jan 1896)

Palmer, M. 2015. Cliché types in the Babyhead Issues. Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 37 no. 1, pp 32-34.

Peterson, D. 2005. Unusual Printings and Other Odd Ball Variations of the 1890s Issues. Philippine Philatelic Journal, vol 27 no 1, pp 4-7.

Postal Usage

 Correos circular date stamp [1890] on 10c blue green

 Correos circular Manila date stamp [ July 1891] on 10c blue green, usage overlapping with pale claret issue


 Correos circular Manila date stamp [1891] on 10c pale claret

 Correos circular Manila date stamp [5 Aug 1892] on 10c pale claret

Registration "Certificado" cancel (Peterson Type 6) on 10c plae claret in violet ink


 Correos circular Manila date stamp [25 June 1894] on 10c claret

 Correos circular Manila date stamp [18 Sept 1894] on 10c claret in blue ink

 Correos circular date stamp [Feb 1895] on 10c claret in violet ink

 Correos circular date stamp [11 March 1896] on 10c yellow brown in blue ink

Registration "Certificado" cancel (Peterson Type 6) on 10c yellow brown



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