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Published August 23, 2016 Updated March 15, 2024

Rococo Playing Cards

Piatnik’s Rococo style playing cards issued as “Rococo Patience”, “Luxus-Patience”, “Empire Patience”, “White Horse Patience”, “Patience-Whist No.140” and “Mini Patience”

1914 Austria Piatnik Art & Design Benno Fashion & Costume Rococo Patience Add to Collection

Rococo period style is one of the most popular with playing card designers and manufacturers over the years, with lavish embroidered costumes and white, powdered wigs and tricorne hats. These particular designs have been published by Piatnik with decorative aces in several formats since around 1914, including “Rococo Patience”, “Luxus-Patience”, “Empire Patience”, “White Horse Patience” then as “Patience-Whist No.140”, and “Mini Patience”.

Piatnik’s Lady slim sized playing cards with attractive historical court designs, 1950s Piatnik’s Lady slim sized playing cards with attractive historical court designs, 1950s

Above: Piatnik’s "Lady" slim sized playing cards with attractive historical courts imported into UK by Benno Products, 1950s. 52 cards + 2 jokers in box. These were normal-length cards but narrow (or slim), intended for use by ladies who tend to have smaller hands than men.

“White Horse Patience No.2018”

The cards were also repackaged as: “White Horse Patience No.2018” during the late 1970s.

Piatnik’s “White Horse patience no.2018”, 1978 Piatnik’s “White Horse patience no.2018”, 1978

Above: Piatnik's "White Horse Patience" No 2018 using the same face designs but with different style of indices and Lipizzaner horses on the reverse. Each deck has 52 cards + 3 jokers + extra card. Unusually, the date code is printed on the ace of diamonds rather than the ace of hearts. Images courtesy Matt Probert.

“Empire Patience”

Piatnik’s patience sized playing cards, 1970s

Above: Piatnik’s patience sized playing cards, 1970s. 2 x [52 cards + 3 jokers] in box. The box doesn't give any brand name, just "Piatnik Wien" but is was imported by a Belgian stationer called Baeyens, Galerie 48, Antwerp whose sticker is inside the lid. Courtesy Lotte Wintle and Francis Bevers.

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By Matt Probert

Member since March 02, 2012

I have adored playing cards since before I was seven years old, and was brought up on packs of Waddington's No 1. As a child I was fascinated by the pictures of the court cards.

Over the next fifty years I was seduced by the artwork in Piatnik's packs and became a collector of playing cards.

Seeking more information about various unidentified packs I discovered the World of Playing Cards website and became an enthusiastic contributor researching and documenting different packs of cards.

I describe my self as a playing card archaeologist, using detective work to identify and date obscure packs of cards discovered in old houses, flea markets and car boot sales.


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