Lot #: 134068

Asking Price: $1,300.00

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Mandate curio - first day 11 JUNE 1946 MASMIYA AL KABIRA single circle date stamp (Dorf #FEN) tied to 15m frank on cover addressed to Hemda Ben Yehuda (1873-1951, the wife of Eliezer Ben Yehuda, the main revivalist of modern Hebrew) in Talpiot JERUSALEM; backstamped next day arrival using large 27mm single circle date stamp (Sach #BA), reverse imprint of the Masmiya postmark is also visible; slit open at top.
Sacher catalogues this as #FB with 11 June as its earliest known date of use, and comments that it was not issued; Proud catalogues this as #D3 and writes that it was kept in stores in 1948 and used clandestinely; Dorfman lists the Masmiya postmark as a bogus datestamp used on various dates. Sacher also lists the Jerusalem datestamp (#BA) as having been forged specifically on 12 Dec 1942, but in use until 16 March 1947. Both Sacher & Dorfman also cast doubt on the EL MASMIYA AL KABIRA skeleton datestamp (#BS1/#FA), known by them dated only on 11 July 1946 - but Dr. Melvin A. Richmond in an article for the Israel Philatelist ("Palestine Small Town Postmarks, part 4", issue 2, vol 66, 2015, p.46-47) illustrates this postmark tied twice to a postcard sent to the famous collector Dr. E. Bowman in Haifa on 2 June 1947 and this appears to have been accepted as genuine. As such, the postmarks on this cover may also be genuine, with this cover appearing to have gone through the mails. The franking may either be for the inland 10m letter rate with 5m overpaid, or for additional weight for which this cover would be 1m underpaid.