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N.15 Aprile 2008

Postal History ENG 
The first Postal Service of Russia

Even under the reign of Nicholas I, who became Tsar in 1825, postal communication was almost entirely restricted to members of the nobility and the great merchants, while international traffic was extremely limited. As a result, postal documents of the period before postage stamps must always be regarded as quite rare. We know of an ordinance of 6 December 1839 which prescribed postal charges due to come into force the next 1 January; the interesting thing about this tariff is that the charge varied with distance. Up to the rough equivalent of 500 kilometres, a letter cost five kopecks; above that, there was a long scale up to a maximum of 25 kopecks, the charge for distances greater than (about) three thousand kilometres. By Benito Carobene

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