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Playing cards have been with us since the 14th century, when they first entered popular culture. Over the centuries packs of cards, in all shapes and sizes, have been used for games, gambling, education, conjuring, advertising, fortune telling, political messages or the portrayal of national or ethnic identity. All over the world, whatever language is spoken, their significance is universal. Their popularity is also due to the imaginative artwork and graphic design which is sometimes overlooked, and the “then & now” of how things have changed.

Browsing country:

Lithuania

12 Articles

During the 20th century Lithuanian printers produced striking playing cards containing Lithuanian symbols and national heroes.

Estonia

Estonia's first period of independence lasted 22 years, beginning in 1918, and this period was one of great cultural advancement.

Estonia

Four Races

“Four Races” playing cards designed by Latvian artist Vilnis Rasa in 1989.

Four Races

Lithuanian

Lithuanian Playing Cards, reprinted by Piatnik, 1995, 2004.

Lithuanian

Lithuanian Playing Cards

During the 20th century Lithuanian printers produced striking playing cards containing Lithuanian symbols and national heroes.

Lithuanian Playing Cards

Pilys

'Pilys' playing cards ('Castles') manufactured in Lithuania by Spindulys Printing House, Kaunas, c.1930-40.

Pilys

Vaivorykste

Vaivorykštė ('the Rainbow') playing cards manufactured in Lithuania by Spindulys, 1930s. The deck has been reprinted by Fournier (Spain, 2004) and also in Lithuania.

Vaivorykste

Istorinės

Istorinės Historical Deck from Lithuania manufactured by Spindulys Playing Card Manufactory, Kaunas, c.1930s

Istorinės

Kunigaiksciai

Kunigaiksciai ('Dukes') playing cards published by Spindulys Printing Co., Kaunas, Lithuania during the period c.1920-1940.

Kunigaiksciai

Klubams

Klubams (for the clubs) playing cards manufactured in Lithuania by Spindulys Printing House (Kaunas), c.1930.

Klubams

Estonia

Estonia's first period of independence lasted 22 years, beginning in 1918, and this period was one of great cultural advancement.

Estonia

Gironda

8 cards and two jokers from the 'Gironda' pack, showing eminent statesmen and politicians from Lithuania from the 1990s.

Gironda

Dviracio Kortos, 2001

Dviracio Kortos playing cards, based on 'Dviracio Zynios' ('The Bicycle's News'), a popular Lithuanian TV comedy show, in which actors satirize the vices and follies of modern society.

Dviracio Kortos, 2001