Philatelic covers—those created by collectors to obtain a marking or particular usage—are nothing new. Long before the era of wallpaper commemoratives, collectors designed covers that suited their fancy for the unusual.
The example shown here, addressed to a stamp dealer, features the 1c, 2c and 10c Haarlem Coat of Arms definitives mixed with the 2c and 10c Allegories to correctly pay the 15-gram,
25-centime letter rate on January 20, 1884, to Hanover, Germany, from Relais Postes No. 7 [Kleinbettingen]. There is a faint Luxembourg transit on the front and a Hannover receiver dated January 21st on the back.
But for the poor preservation, I’d put this cover on the philatelic catwalk during Bangkok fashion week! It has been in my collection of relay cancels for over fifty years.