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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

Belle Vue Gueuze

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 28, 2017 at 03:20pm

Promotional playing cards designed by Wim Simons, Belgium, 1960s. Read more →

Georgian Fortune Telling Cards

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 24, 2017 at 12:40pm

Georgian Fortune Telling Cards, c.1800 Read more →

DSA Textil Berlin

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 22, 2017 at 11:08pm

Special deck for Erste Deutsche Sack-Centrale / DSA Textil Berlin manufactured by VEB Altenburger Spielkartenfabrik, c.1970. Read more →

Kleine Tierwelt

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 18, 2017 at 10:08am

“Kleine Tierwelt” wildlife quartet game designed by Heinz Osthoff, published by Bielefelder Spielkarten GmbH, 1963. Read more →

Jonas Fouquet Navarra Pattern

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 17, 2017 at 07:30pm

Navarra Pattern by Jonas Fouquet, c.1720 and c.1820. Read more →

Vizaĝo playing cards Blog Post

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 17, 2017 at 12:42pm

Vizaĝo playing cards created by Annette Abolins, 2017 Read more →

Black Cat Fortune Telling Cards

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 15, 2017 at 05:38pm

Black Cat Fortune Telling Cards published by Parker Bros, 1897 Read more →

Boulogne-sur-Mer Chamber of Commerce

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 14, 2017 at 08:39pm

Boulogne-sur-Mer Chamber of Commerce & Industry playing cards illustrated by James Hodges, c.1974. Read more →

Royal Cards Reign of Queen Anne

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 13, 2017 at 01:16pm

“Royal Cards Reign of Queen Anne” cover historical events, both honourable and treacherous, during the period 1702 to 1704. Read more →

Pedro Varangot, 1786

Posted by Simon Wintle •  December 11, 2017 at 10:26am

Archaic Navarra pattern produced for the Pamplona General Hospital Monopoly by Pedro Varangot in 1786. Read more →

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