InterAsia Auctions

Sale 74

Lot 3192

Hong Kong, 1871 (7 July) envelope to Ploêrmel, Brittany France (24.8) via Marseille (transit c.d.s.) bearing 2c., 8c. and 12c., cancelled "B62" with "P.D." h.s. adjacent, showing "Hong Kong/C" origin, Guer (France; 24.8) and arrival c.d.s. on reverse, rated "11", light overall ageing, fine tri-colour franking usage sent at the scarce, short-lived 22c. rate to France via Brindisi, but actually sent via Marseille. S.G. 8, 11, 12.
Estimate HK$ 2,500 - 3,000

With the closure of the port of Marseille during the 1870-71 Franco-Prussian War and the required rerouting of mails via Brindisi, a 22c. rate was adopted for this route to France in effect from 16 Feb. 1871 to 30 June 1871, which entailed sending the mails via the Mount Cenis narrow gauge traction railway. With the reopening of the port of Marseille, the 16c. rate to France via Marseille was available again, effective 30 June, and in fact Webb notes that French packets would not carry mail thereafter marked for routes other than via Marseille. Apparently notification of the reduced rate had not reached the Hong Kong postal authorities by the posting of this cover (7 July) and it was charged at the Brindisi rate ("11" rating).

Realized HK$ 4,025

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