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The History of Playing Cards

The History of Playing Cards

Playing Cards have been around in Europe since the 1370s. Some early packs were hand painted works of art which were expensive and affordable only by the wealthy. But as demand increased cheaper methods of production were discovered so that playing cards became available for everyone...

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Navarra Pattern

Navarra Pattern

Navarra Pattern produced for the Pamplona General Hospital Monopoly.

Navarra Pattern, 1682 1682

Navarra Pattern, 1682

Navarra pattern produced for the Pamplona General Hospital Monopoly in 1682.

Navarra Pattern, 1793 1793

Navarra Pattern, 1793

Navarra pattern by an unknown cardmaker with initials I. I., 1793.

Navarra, XVII Century

Navarra, XVII Century

Facsimile of 17th century Spanish-suited playing cards produced by Erregeak, Sormen S.A., Vitoria-Gasteiz (Alava), Spain, 1988.

Netherlands

Netherlands

Playing cards have been known in the Low Countries since the 14th century

Notgeld - Emergen¢y Money

Notgeld - Emergen¢y Money

Notgeld - Emergency Money - was in rare cases issued on playing cards.

Old Bavarian pattern 1780

Old Bavarian pattern

Uncut sheets of playing cards of the Old Bavarian pattern by Michael Schatzberger, Passau, c.1780.

Origins Playing Cards 2014

Origins Playing Cards

Rick Davidson's “Origins” playing cards is an inspired, present-day re-design of the standard Anglo-American deck

Paris Pattern

Paris Pattern

The Paris pattern was established as such around the middle of the seventeenth century (based, perhaps, on the cards of Hector of Troyes).

Pedro Bosio

Pedro Bosio

Cards of the Spanish National Pattern 'Money Bag' type manufactured by Pedro Bosio, Genova (Italy) probably during the 18th century and for export to Spain or South America.

Pedro Varangot, 1786 1786

Pedro Varangot, 1786

Archaic Navarra pattern produced for the Pamplona General Hospital Monopoly by Pedro Varangot in 1786.

Perspectives on the History of Tarot 1435

Perspectives on the History of Tarot

Tarot, originally a 15th century card game from Italy, has evolved into a form of personal mysticism and spiritual exploration, offering new visions of expanding awareness.

Peter Flötner, c.1545 1545

Peter Flötner, c.1545

Seven cards from a satirical pack produced by Peter Flötner of Nuremberg, c.1545. The suit symbols are acorns, leaves, bells and hearts. The block-cutter and publisher was Franz Christoph Zell.

Phelippe Ayet, c.1574 1574

Phelippe Ayet, c.1574

Archaic, late medieval Spanish-suited playing cards printed by Phelippe Ayet, c.1574.

Pierre Marechal 1567

Pierre Marechal

Rouen became an important centre for card-making whose influence extended far afield. Cards from Rouen are significant because they became the model from which our English pack subsequently evolved.

Pierre Roiné Aluette 1785

Pierre Roiné Aluette

Archaic form of Aluette published by Pierre Roiné, Nantes, c.1785.

Playing Cards & Gaming

Playing Cards & Gaming

Soon after their first appearance in Europe we hear of playing cards being banned by the authorities...

Playing cards in the Upper Rhine region

Playing cards in the Upper Rhine region

Documentary evidence suggests that card playing established itself in Italy in 1376, and then spread rapidly northwards across the Alps into the Upper Rhine regions of Germany and Switzerland and westwards into France and Spain.

Playing Cards: A Secret History

Playing Cards: A Secret History

Playing Cards: A Secret History

Pope Joan Trays

Pope Joan Trays

Some traditional Pope Joan boards comprise a circular tray, others are square, divided into sections labelled Ace, King, Queen, Jack, Intrigue and Matrimony. In the game, the Nine of Diamonds is “Pope Joan”.