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Swiss Costumes

C. L. Wüst: Swiss Costumes, c.1875

Wüst's Swiss Cantons souvenir deck was first published in Frankfurt in c.1875 for the emerging commercialised tourist market which took off in the mid-19th century. Since 1863 Thomas Cook offered guided holidays to Switzerland which catered to a mixed clientele, from heads of state and princes to upwardly mobile representatives of the middle, lower middle and working classes. French suit symbols were used in this pack of playing cards (rather than Swiss) making them appeal to international visitors, but the costumes and four Aces depicting Swiss scenes were, of course, very attractive as souvenirs.

Above: Swiss Costumes pack manufactured by Conrad Ludwig Wüst, c.1875. 52 cards, copper-plate engraving, stencil coloured, square corners, no indices. The illustrations are double-ended and different at each end and the four aces show: Thoune/Vevey, Neuchâtel/Rigi Staffel, Lausanne/Unterlaken, Berne/Chapelle de Guillaume Tell. (Click image to reverse). Images courtesy Rex Pitts.

Last Updated January 19, 2016 at 02:51pm

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