Set of eight Republique Française "Fables de La Fontaine" postage stamps
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Set of eight Republique Française "Fables de La Fontaine" postage stamps. Mint. Marked "La Poste 1995." A T of C stamp lists the last six stamps of the series amid a border showing The Fox and the Grapes. Then on the second stamp the neck-scarf of a portrait-bust of La Fontaine reaches out to enclose a scene of The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse. The six stamps follow, all showing a value of 2,80. The art is by R. and C. Sabatier. The last seven stamps in the series show "ITVF" in the lower right corner. £4 from Rowan S. Baker, The Covent Garden Stamp Shop, July, '98. One extra set for the same price at the same time.
(right top) "Le Lièvre et la Tortue" shows the tortoise breaking the finish-line tape while the hare chases a butterfly with a net. (center top) "Le Corbeau et le Renard" gives the serenading fox a violin.(left top) "La Cigale et la Fourmi" has the grasshopper playing an accordion and a tambourine. (right bottom) "Le Chat, la Belette et le petit Lapin" shows a cat already licking his chops as he holds a scale with one of the contestants in each pan. (center bottom) "La Grenouille qui se veut fair aussi grosse que le Boeuf" manages to present the nose-holding frog as being as big as the steer in the background. (left bottom) "Le Loup et l'Agneau" is one of the best; the wolf leers at the lamb, but as a reflection seen by the lamb in the water. I had heard of a recent set of French La Fontaine stamps and had asked for them at several places. It was luck and a whim that led me to ask for them when I passed this stamp shop during a very brief London visit. The eight stamps are a single strip, and the better copy has a margin attached on the left.