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Wiener pattern

The Vienna pattern, or Wiener Bild, is a distant relative of the early Lyons pattern. The King of Hearts carries a scroll in his hand.

Austrian ‘Wiener’ pattern

The Vienna pattern, or Wiener Bild, a distant relative of the early Lyons pattern, is sometimes nicknamed 'Large Crown' on account of large crowns on the Kings. The King of Hearts carries a scroll in his hand (at first glance it looks like a fan), the Queen of Diamonds sniffs a flower and the King of Spades has a banner bearing the manufacturer's name.

This pattern first appeared in the early 19th century in this characteristically 'geometric' style. The pattern has always been double-ended and mostly in 32-card format, usually without corner indices. It is still produced today by Piatnik of Vienna.

Right: four cards from the Vienna pattern, or Wiener Bild, printed from engraved plates by Titze & Schinkay, mid-19th century.

Below: ‘Schnapskarten Nr.1700’ (Large crown) made by Ferd Piatnik & Söhne, Vienna, 1978. 24 cards in box

Vienna pattern, or 'Wiener Bild' pack, manufactured by Mathias Koller, Vienna, c.1815

Above: cards from 32-card Vienna pattern, or "Wiener Bild" pack, manufactured by Mathias Koller, Vienna, c.1815.


Small Crown

Piatnik Small Crown pattern, 1970s Piatnik Small Crown pattern, 1970s

Above: Piatnik Small Crown pattern, 1970s. 52 cards + jokers. Courtesy Rex Pitts.

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By Simon Wintle

Member since February 01, 1996

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Curator and editor of the World of Playing Cards since 1996. He is a former committee member of the IPCS and was graphics editor of The Playing-Card journal for many years. He has lived at various times in Chile, England and Wales and is currently living in Extremadura, Spain. Simon's first limited edition pack of playing cards was a replica of a seventeenth century traditional English pack, which he produced from woodblocks and stencils.


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