Six (out of six?) FDC envelopes featuring a first-day postmark
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Six (out of six?) FDC envelopes featuring a first-day postmark, one (or on the Grasshopper and the Ant envelope, three) of the La Fontaine fable stamps issued on June 24, 1995, and a hologram-like reproduction of art, especially by Auguste Delierre. FDC: Chateau-Thierry. Set of six for $15 from Loic-in-France through eBay, June, '05. Extras of "Le Chat, la Belette et le petit Lapin," GA, OR, and WL for $9.55 from Gilles Descary, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Canada, through eBay, April, '04.
The illustrations on these envelopes are the same as those on the set of "hologram" postcards I catalogued earlier. Thus "Le Chat, la Belette et le petit Lapin," The Fox and the Crow, The Tortoise and the Hare, and The Wolf and the Lamb feature work of Delierre in a strangely irridescent medium, while the illustrations for OR and The Grasshopper and the Ant, using the same medium, are attributed to "Imagerie de Paris" identified as from the 19th century. The illustration for The Grasshopper and the Ant is perhaps the most unusual, with its red mountain and a serpent that is not mentioned in any version of the fable of which I am aware. The verso of each envelope contains three elements: a short quotation from the fable, the first six lines from La Fontaine's verse preface to the fables on their purpose, and an identifying number after "1995/": The Grasshopper and the Ant has 39, The Ox and the Frog 40, The Wolf and the Lamb 41, The Fox and the Crow 42, "Le Chat, la Belette et le petit Lapin" 43, and The Tortoise and the Hare 44. It took just over a year to find the last two in the series after I had found the first four. It took three and a half years to catalogue those last two!