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Playing cards have been with us since the 14th century, when they first became a part of popular culture, perhaps seen as a miniature model of the universe. Over the centuries packs of cards, in all shapes and sizes, have been used for games, gambling, education, conjuring, advertising, fortune telling, political messages or the portrayal of national or ethnic identity. Their popularity is undoubtedy due to the imaginative artwork and graphic design which is sometimes overlooked, and the “then & now” of how things have changed.

Latest Articles

Qajar Dynasty playing cards

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 13, 2017 at 11:43am

Qajar Dynasty playing cards, Iran, 19th century. Read more →

Jeu des Quatre Saisons de l’An II

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 12, 2017 at 07:24pm

“Jeu des Quatre Saisons de l’An II” facsimile of French Revolution deck originally published by J. B. Debeine (Reims) 1793. Read more →

Jeu des Drapeaux c.1816

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 11, 2017 at 01:51pm

“Jeu des Drapeaux” commemorating Napoleon’s greatest battles, c.1816 Read more →

Mongolian Mask Dancing

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 10, 2017 at 03:00pm

Mongolian Religious Mask Dancing playing cards, c.2010 Read more →

Provinces de France

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 10, 2017 at 12:01pm

Jeu des Provinces de France published by Éditions Dusserre, 1979. Read more →

Alchimistenspiel

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 08, 2017 at 02:37pm

Alchimistenspiel - Jeu des Alchimistes designed by Elfriede Weidenhaus, 1967 Read more →

Il Destino Svelato Dal Tarocco

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 08, 2017 at 11:29am

The Cagliostro Tarot was first published in 1912 as “Il Destino Svelato Dal Tarocco”. Read more →

Nepal Souvenir

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 08, 2017 at 09:30am

Souvenir from Nepal marketed by Himalayan Map House Read more →

French Suited Piquet

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 06, 2017 at 11:38am

French Suited Piquet by David Vachet, Switzerland, c.1812. Read more →

Sorrento Napoletane

Posted by Simon Wintle •  September 06, 2017 at 10:42am

Souvenir of Sorrento by Carte Da Gioco Muoio, Naples, c.2010 Read more →

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