Every so often I acquire a postcard that I'm actually afraid to touch. Like this one. The undivided back tells us this card was printed in 1903 or earlier. I can't tell if the lace is just a paper embossed effect or if it is truly a piece of lace that has been adhered to the card. Either way, it is absolutely stunning and that's no hyperbole. The lace forms a frame around a medallion, a colorful illustration of a Marquise. Now, don't let the "P.M. Lyon" logo on front fool you. That mystery French company was simply the retailer/distributor. The superb quality of this card can be explained by the OPF trefoil verso. That's the printer's logo for Osnabruecker Papierwarenfabrik of Berlin. They were known for luxury postcards. In 1900-1902, they had a strong market in England until 1903 when postcards began to be marketed to the working class folks. One sender noted that she paid a 'very high price of 3 pence' for a single postcard! Thanks to The Postcard Album for this historical information. For its age, this card is in near mint condition. The bottom left corner tip shows wear. Typical antique postcard size of about 5.5 by 3.5 inches.
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