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Posted February 18, 2010 | Last Updated March 30, 2014 at 06:33am | Share this page on Facebook

Playing Cards manufactured by Hunt, 1790-1801

Joseph Hunt (1790-1801) was the first in a succession of manufacturers which culminated with Bancks Brothers (1866-1889). Gibson & Hunt operated briefly (1801-1803) and were followed successively by Hunt & Son (1804-1821), Hunt & Sons (1821-1840), Hunt, Hall, Bancks & Sons (1841), A & R.O. Bancks (1841-1865) and finally Bancks Brothers (1866-1889). Hunt's earliest cards (below, top two rows) are of the old archaic style, similar to those of Blanchard and Gibson. His later cards (bottom two rows) are more simplified and stylised, and it appears that woodblock cutters produced blocks for more than one manufacturer in a similar style.   Next page: Hunt & Sons

Above: playing cards by Hunt, c.1790. The Jacks have plants growing on the ground beneath their feet, and the King of Hearts is holding an axe behind his head, rather than a sword as in later examples. The soiling on the cards shows where the players' thumbs have been holding the cards.

pack manufactured by Hunt, c.1800

Above: Interesting pack manufactured by Hunt, c.1800, on which a previous owner has hand-written some notes regarding the cards. The court cards are all slightly smaller than the numeral cards, leading the previous owner to believe that this was a cheating deck, or possibly a conjurer's deck.   [Images courtesy Juan José Ruiz]


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