Penny Black Quiz

September 21, 2023

These questions were part of a quiz we ran in 2017 but we’ve left them on our site as you might enjoy answering or researching the answers, even if there is no prize!

Q1. Stanley Gibbons lists 3 shades of the Penny Black. Which of these 4 possible answers is NOT one of those shades?

1) Intense Black

2) Pale Black

3) Black

4) Grey – Black

Q2. Why are Penny Blacks from the last printing plates less likely to have a RED cancellation? Please pick the CORRECT answer from the 3 below:

1) The Victorians were concerned that the scarlet postmarks sent a less than positive message about the young Queen.

2) The red ink was thought to interfere with the elegant black design.

3) The red ink could be removed more easily than the black ink.

Q3. The check letters to be found in the lower corners of the Penny Black were a security device, to aid postal workers spot possible forgeries which would in theory show the same letters too often. How many different combinations of check letters were on a complete sheet? Please pick the CORRECT answer from the 3 below:

1) 240

2) 60

3) 120

Q4. Every schoolboy knows the First Day of the Penny Black was 6th May 1840, but which DAY OF THE WEEK was that? (Hint. Collectors search for the scarce Sunday use dates, the first of which was 10th May. Pick the CORRECT answer from the 5 below:

1) Monday

2) Tuesday

3) Wednesday

4) Thursday

5) Friday

Thank you, and good luck from everyone at Sandafayre!

(please note only entries received by 4.30pm (GMT) on 12/9/17 can be entered into the draw)

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