Heraklion Straight-Line Cancellation
on Issue for British Sphere
Crete was a province of Turkey that, after decades of civil war, was occupied by British, French, Italian and Russian forces in 1898. Britain and Russia issued stamps for use in their areas of influence.France and Italy overprinted stamps with the name of the island. Britain administered the District of Heraklion while the Russians administered the District of Rethymnon. An autonomous Cretan government issued its own stamps in 1900.
The stamps shown above are from the issues of 1898 (which also included a 10 para blue value) and 1899 (which also included a 10 para brown value). What appears to be an overprint on these stamps is actually a straight line "Heraklion" (HPAKAEION) town postmark. This is the most common postal cancellation on this issue.
Rossiter, Stuart and John Flower. The Stamp Atlas. London: Macdonald and Co., 1986.
"Crete." Standard Postage Stamp Catalogue. 1997.
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