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THE HISTORY OF EASTER POSTCARDS
The History of Easter Postcards
The tradition to send Easter postcards to relatives and friends developed in the end of the 19th century. During the year 1898 there were only a few Easter cards sent but the amount of sent Easter cards raised in the following years worldwide. Soon it was courteous and polite to send Easter postcards. In the beginning, monochrome as well as colored cards were printed. Most of the time in the center of the cards was an oversized colored egg. In the first years of the Easter postcards often a part of the front side was empty. This was the space for the greetings of the sender because the post - order only allowed the address and the stamp on the back side. Because of that, the artist creativity was hindered and precious illustrations were deformed. In 1905 the post in Austria and Germany separated the back side of the cards in two halves. The right half served as before for the address and the stamp and the other one was the new space for the message. 1906 this was officially allowed by the world - post - congress in Rome.
In the years around 1910 on the cards were mainly monochrome pictures which were sometimes colored with children in the context with lambs, chickens, ducks and eggs. Young girls were a symbol for luck and hope. The Easter bunny which was a personified symbol of fruitfulness was often portrayed with eggs. German publishers were leading in the production of Easter postcards before the first world war.
During the time of the first world war the children were replaced through soldiers and a military appearance of the Easter bunny was quite common. After the first world war, photos were not the foundation for Easter postcards anymore but drawn colorful Easter sketches. At this time a very popular motive was Jesus in the open countryside surrounded by sheep. Also cards with flowers were sent very often too such as the Easter lily. In the time of prosperity during 1898 and 1918 the basis of the cards was chromolithography. There reveal very impressive cards with silver, gold and relief - stamping.
A huge reduction of sent Easter postcards occurred through the second world war. After the war, the amount of sent cards raised slowly but in the last ten years it fell rapidly because of the competition with telephony and e - mail. Easter postcards are still sent today but not with the fervor of the greeting card. The collection of the Easter postcard is quite collectible and not so easy to find.
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