Mauritius: 1847 "Post Office"1d and 2d, a reprinted die proof in black.
Engraver: Joseph Barnard
Medium: Die proof
The first British Colonial postage stamps were issued in Mauritius in 1847. These are the famous “Post Office” issue, so called because of the inscription in the left margin. The design and colours were based upon the then current stamps of Great Britian.
The plate for the stamps was engraved and printed in Mauritius by a local engraver, Joseph Barnard. The plate was rediscovered in 1912 , and reprints from the plate were made - one in black is shown.
Altogether, only fourteen copies of the original 1d orange-red and twelve copies of the 2d deep blue are known to exist today. These stamps are considered as some of the most famous and important of all the philatelic rarities.