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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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11 Articles
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Naipes Argentinos 'La Partida' y 'Aparcero' published by Obsequios Empresarios Argentinos, Santa Fe • Jan 19, 2012

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Churchill in WW2

Churchill ‘Walking with Destiny’ playing cards published by the Imperial War Museum. • Jun 27, 2017

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Czech Hussite Deck

Czech “Hussite” Pack engraved by Karel Hoffmann and first printed by Jan Ritter in 1895. • Dec 08, 2013

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Czech Nationalistic playing cards

During the 19th century growing nationalist sentiment led to a rejection of Austro-Hungarian culture in favour of that of the native Czech people. One outcome from this movement was a ‘Nationalistic’ pack of playing cards painted by Emanuel Neumann. • Jan 01, 1970

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Gaucho Naipes

‘Gaucho’ Spanish-suited deck, anonymous manufacturer, made in Argentina, 2001 • Jun 27, 2016

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Gedimino Stulpai

Gedimino Stulpai playing cards made in Lithuania by Spindulys Printing Co., Kaunas, depicting Lithuanian national symbolism. • Jun 07, 2012

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Greek Playing Cards

Greek Playing Cards • Oct 03, 2011

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Naipe Nacional

Naipe Nacional designed by the architect, illustrator and artist Luis Alemany (1886-1943) • Jun 05, 2017

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National Misfitz

National Misfitz published by C.W. Faulkner & Co c.1900. • Feb 22, 2020

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Neue Deutsche Spielkarte

Neue Deutsche Spielkarte (Reformkarte) conceived by Dr. Timon Schroeter, 1883. • Apr 02, 2018

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William Tell

Facsimile of Swiss William Tell deck from c.1870 published by Lo Scarabeo. • Feb 26, 2021