"From my Collection"
Some interesting examples from our collections

 

A CURE ALL? - 1

These Austrian Stamped to Order postcards sent at the cheap Foreign Printed Matter rate ("Drucksache") of 5 heller (= ½d) were a cheap method of publicising Marienbad tablets. The cards shown bear the head of the Emperor Franz Joseph from the 1908 issue and the second card was posted in 1910.

 

From the wording of the cards they are claimed to cure almost anything

and it is perhaps not surprising that it has been suggested that they were almost "quack medecines". They contained podophyllin, rhubarb powder and extracts of aloe, belladonna and cascara sagrada.

 

The product name capitalised on the fame of the fashionable Bohemian spa town of Marienbad, and was described as "totally misleading" in an address to the Royal Society of Medecine on "Proprietary, Patent and Secret Remedies" given in 1910.

 

The producer of the tablets also appears to have made use of theThe name of the distinguished Austrian physician Karl Samuel Ritter Von Basch who had died in 1905.  Von Basch had done great work in the measurement of blood pressure and had earlier been physician to the Emperor Maximillian of Mexico, witnessing and documenting the  and witnessed the Emperor's execution in 1867.

 

It is not clear how long these tablets were marketed.

The third card was sent to a doctor in Germany at the cheaper rate of 3 heller.

 

26/8/2020

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