Historical / Theatrical playing cards manufactured by Joseph Glanz, Vienna, c.1865
Joseph Glanz of Vienna (1849-1912) was a leading Austrian manufacturer of fine playing cards. During its lifetime the firm had acquired Max Uffenheimer and Johann Ritter & Cie but was in turn absorbed by Piatnik in 1912. These finely engraved playing cards are hand-coloured using stencils, displaying the cardmaker’s excellent craftmanship from that period. The tax stamp on the Ace of Hearts (right) was used between c.1859-1877.
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Rex's main interest was in card games, because, he said, they were cheap and easy to get hold of in his early days of collecting. He is well known for his extensive knowledge of Pepys games and his book is on the bookshelves of many.
His other interest was non-standard playing cards. He also had collections of sheet music, music CDs, models of London buses, London Transport timetables and maps and other objects that intrigued him.
Rex had a chequered career at school. He was expelled twice, on one occasion for smoking! Despite this he trained as a radio engineer and worked for the BBC in the World Service.
Later he moved into sales and worked for a firm that made all kinds of packaging, a job he enjoyed until his retirement. He became an expert on boxes and would always investigate those that held his cards. He could always recognize a box made for Pepys, which were the same as those of Alf Cooke’s Universal Playing Card Company, who printed the card games. This interest changed into an ability to make and mend boxes, which he did with great dexterity. He loved this kind of handicraft work.
His dexterity of hand and eye soon led to his making card games of his own design. He spent hours and hours carefully cutting them out and colouring them by hand.
Publicity items for a group of entertainers, Southend-on-Sea, Essex, UK, 1911.
Theatre programme in the form of a pack of cards. East Germany, c.1967.
Miniature playing cards, possibly for children, with a romantic theatrical theme. C.L. Wüst c.1890.
This miniature pack is very similar to one made by C.L.Wúst in c.1890.
Two Black Peter games by Willy Mayrl published by Ferd Piatnik & Söhne, 1950s.
Panto People published by E. S. & A. Robinson, c.1930s.
Österreichisches Trachten-quartett Nr.282 published by Ferd Piatnik & Söhne.
Schwarzer Peter no.964 published by Josef Hohlweg, Vienna, early 20th century.
Black Peter card game designed by Willy Mayrl for Piatnik.
Le Jeu du Destin Antique, originally published by Grimaud in XIX c., republished many times since...
Gulliver’s Travels card game no.293 published by Piatnik, c.1950.
Baby Dolls pin-up deck designed by Willy Mayrl, published by Piatnik, 1957.
Facsimile of ‘Wilhelm Tell’ Hungarian deck by Salamon Antal, Keczkemét, 1860.
Humorous dog-themed Black Peter game illustrated by Willy Mayrl, c.1960.
Facsimile of patriotic 1878 Tyrolean playing cards published by Piatnik in 1992.
Notgeld - Emergency Money - was in rare cases issued on playing cards.
Austrian Folklore deck first published by Piatnik in 1934.
“Goal” Fußball Spielkarten manufactured by Ferd. Piatnik & Söhne Wien, c1930s.
Mary Queen of Scots and other Tudor period dignitaries, published by Piatnik, 1990.
Neue Deutsche Spielkarte (Reformkarte) conceived by Dr. Timon Schroeter, 1883.
“Cosmopolitan” № 2121 playing cards designed by Russian artist Valeri Mishin, 1996
Piatnik’s ‘Bourgeois Tarot’ in a version published in 1987 with nice quality images, especially the double-ended trump cards.
Non-standard French-suited cards published by Ferd Piatnik & Sõhne, Vienna, c.1940s.
Lakeland playing cards by Stuart Lawrence depicting famous characters & views of England’s Lake District, c.1988.
Skat deck for Austria’s excellent wines, Österreichischer Weinwirtschaftsfonds, c.1965
Dutch singers, TV and theatre artist playing cards for “Story” magazine, 1978.
‘Vienna pattern’ derived from archaic Lyon pattern by Ferd Piatnik & Söhne A.G., c.1926-1934.
Piccadilly Patience by Piatnik, c.1955
Piatnik’s Rococo style playing cards issued as “Rococo Patience”, “Luxus-Patience”, “Empire Patience”, “White Horse Patience”, “Patience-Whist No.140”, “Mini Patience” and “Lady Patience”
Kaiser Jubiläum Imperial playing cards made in Austria by Ferd Piatnik & Sons, Vienna.
“Baroque” by Ferd Piatnik & Sons, Vienna, reflecting a bygone era of fashion.
‘Stage’ card game © 1904 C. M. Clark Publishing Co. Boston, Mass. with portraits of popular actors and actresses.
Transformed playing cards featuring satirical caricatures of political figures then in the ascendant, Paris, c.1819.
Ferd. Piatnik produced a very large range of cards with many different standard and non-standard patterns. This is a survey of his standard English output.
Piatnik’s “Popular Playing Cards” No.257
Salzburger pattern by Ferd. Piatnik & Söhne, Vienna
Transformation cards designed and engraved by Vincenz Raimund Grüner, Vienna, 1809
Promotional deck for the Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP) printed by Piatnik, 1996.
A very impressive deck of cards featuring 54 different images from “Chinese Roles of Beijing Opera” published by HCG Poker Productions, 2005
Designed by Cesare Asaro to simulate decks from the 1700s or earlier, the Tarot of Musterberg is based on the traditional Tarot de Marseille but with an imaginary historical background.