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Airmail Issue of 1931-1932

Airmail cover franked with Tripolitania Airmail Definitive of 1931-
1932 and Libyan 10th Sample Fair Commemorative of 1936

The territory that was to become the Italian colony of Libya was a province of the Ottomon Empire from the sixteenth century until the Italian occupation in 1911. The first Italian post office in the territory had been opened in Tripoli in January 1869. The first stamps for the Italian colony was issued in December 1912. Starting on October 24, 1923, separate commemoratives were issued for Tripolitania (as well as the eastern part of Libya called Cyrenica) which were used concurrently with the regular issues for Libya. .

Tripolitania/Libia Frank
The Tripolitanian airmail definitive shows an airplane over the columns of the Basilica of Leptis. The
Libyan commemorative for the Tenth Sample Fair in 1936 depicts a Bedouin woman.

Paris Backstamp
The cover has a backstamp with a slogan cancellation promoting airmail from Paris.

British Administration Issue
British definitive overprinted for use by the British administration in Tripolitania after the Italian
defeat in World War II. "M.A.L." is the abbreviation for Military Administration Lire.

During the British Military administration, British stamps overprinted "Tripolitania" were issued from July 1, 1948 to December 1951. On December 24, 1951 stamps from the 1950 issue of Cyrenica were overprinted by the united Kingdom of Libya for use Tripolitania. Subsequent issues were for use throughout Libya.


"Libya." Wikipedia. 23 Feb. 2007. Wikimeida Foundation, Inc. 15 Mar. 2007

Rossiter, Stuart and John Flower. The Stamp Atlas. London: Macdonald and Co., 1986.

"Tripolitania." Standard Postage Stamp Catalogue. 1997.



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