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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.

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Portugal

16 Articles

The Real Fábrica de Cartas de Jogar was founded in 1769, by Royal Charter of King José, under the master craftsman Lorenzo Solezio, brother of Félix Solesio who ran the Spanish Real Fábrica at Macharaviaya.

Portuguese Playing Cards

The Real Fábrica de Cartas de Jogar was founded in 1769, by Royal Charter of King José, under the master craftsman Lorenzo Solezio, brother of Félix Solesio who ran the Spanish Real Fábrica at Macharaviaya.

Portuguese Playing Cards

Middle Ages

Middle Ages by Germano & Cª, (Litografia Maia),

Middle Ages

Casais Portugueses

Matching game by Majora, Lisbon, c.1970, featuring figures in national dress from Portuguese provinces and colonies

Casais Portugueses

Madeira Souvenir

“Ilha da Madeira” Souvenir playing cards with 54 colour views of the archipelago.

Madeira Souvenir

Portuguese pattern

19th century Portuguese pattern, re-printed from original woodblocks.

Portuguese pattern

Whist No. 32

Whist No. 32 - Cartas de Jogar Nunes

Whist No. 32

Portuguese Type Playing Cards made in Belgium

Portuguese type pack with ‘dragon’ aces made in Belgium by Mesmaekers Frères, Turnhout, c.1875-1900

Portuguese Type Playing Cards made in Belgium

Portuguese Type Cards made in Belgium

Portuguese Type Playing Cards made in Belgium, c.1878.

Portuguese Type Cards made in Belgium

Fernando Pessoa & Co playing cards

Fernando Pessoa & Co playing cards - Lisbon

Fernando Pessoa & Co playing cards

Portuguese Conjuring Playing Cards

Portuguese Conjuring Playing Cards, c.1850.

Portuguese Conjuring Playing Cards

Early Spanish/Portuguese type

Fragment of a sheet of archaic Spanish-suited 'Dragon' playing cards found during restoration of a house in Antwerp built between 1559 and 1574

Early Spanish/Portuguese type

Portuguese Type Playing Cards c.1860

10 cards from a pack of later Portuguese ‘Dragon’ type cards from c.1860, with the Maid of batons about to club a dog.

Portuguese Type Playing Cards c.1860

Playing Cards by J J Nunes

Playing Cards by J J Nunes, Lisbon, Portugal

Playing Cards by J J Nunes

Portuguese Playing Cards

The Real Fábrica de Cartas de Jogar was founded in 1769, by Royal Charter of King José, under the master craftsman Lorenzo Solezio, brother of Félix Solesio who ran the Spanish Real Fábrica at Macharaviaya.

Portuguese Playing Cards