2 cent 1876 lilac-brown
NVPH no 5
The 2 cent lilac brown, issued in 1876, is one of the most challenging stamps to collect in classic Netherlands Indies philately. It was in circulation from the latter half of 1876 and through 1877, when it was replaced by the much more common 2 cent brown. I have seen two covers (printed matter, domestic rate) franked with a 2 cent lilac brown, and I consider this the rarest stamp of the Ned Indie classics to be found on cover.
Comb perforation 12½ x 12
Numeral cancels on the 2 cent
According to Hans Kruse's register of the numeral cancels, 16 different numerals are known on the 2 cent lilac-brown. Generally, the numeral cancels on the 2 cent are rather scarce, and the higher numbers exceedingly so (though I have seen a handful of stamps with the cancel 40 of Meester Cornelis). So far, I have acquired numbers 2 Samarang, 3 Soerabaija, 4 Batavia, 5 Padang, 7 Soerakarta, 8 Makassar, 13 Tagal, and 88 Gorontalo. These are the first registered examples of 13 and 88 on this 2 cent.
Round cancels on the 2 cent
This is the commonest cancel found on the 2 cent; it appears that the stamp had a rather limited circulation, mostly on printed matters sent from the major post offices in 1876 and 1877, especially from Batavia and Semarang. I have not seen round cancels of some of the smaller post offices on this stamp.
Small round cancel (kleinrondstempel)
This cancel was introduced in October 1877 and is much more commonly found on the later brown 2 cent stamp. It took over the function of the round cancel as a canceller of the lower value stamps on printed matter mail. It is comparatively rare on the 2 cent lilac-brown. Below are examples from Batavia (very late of 1883), Soerabaija (1879), Pasoeroean (May 1878).
The framed franco as a solo cancellation on the 2 cent. This cancel was used principally by the smaller sub-post offices. Extremely unusual on this stamp: unique?
Comb perforation 11½ x 12
An extremely rare letter - one of the very few recorded - franked with the 2 cent lilac-brown, postmarked by the line cancel of the Tanawangko sub-post office (unclear), with accompanying date mark 14-3-1878. The stamp was cancelled by FRANCO line cancel and, on arrival, by the number cancel 62 of Menado. Datestamped Menado 15/3 1878 by the small-round cancel in blue. This is a correctly franked printed matter from the right period. A desirable piece (not in my collection).