[OVERSIZED VALENTINE.] Oversized Heart with Layered Papers, Girl in Bonnet and Concealed Message. [c.1900]
Oversized card heart (22.5 x 23.5 at largest points); with multiple layers; pink and gold embossed card, pasted onto which is a small verse; concealed behind a gilt, pink and green painted parchment paper; central image of girl with umbrella and flowers in bonnet; a largeish crease to verso not affecting the structural integrity of the card; along with a small scuff; else near-fine.
A doubly-concealed message; the second layer reads 'with my' and the third "Pure affection's sweetest token, Choicest hint of Love unspoken To my Valentine"
Concealed messages were popular for adding additional elements of surprise which could lie undiscovered upon the initial receiving of a card. In this way, admirers could pass messages safely to their lovers without fear of immediate detection.