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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

Dan Dare

Dan Dare sci-fi card game based upon Frank Hampson’s pictures in the Eagle comic, published in 1953.

Dan Dare

Astronaut

Astronaut card game published by Pepys Series (Castell Bros) celebrating the arrival of space travel, 1960s

Astronaut

Space Puzzles

The Space Puzzles Game published by Gametoy Development Co., Inc, Orlando, Fl, 1991.

Space Puzzles

Space Exploration

History of Transport ‘Space Exploration’ playing cards published by Heritage Playing Card Co., 2013.

Space Exploration

Space Age Game of Old Maid

The ‘Space Age Game of Old Maid’ published by Russell Manufacturing Company, Leicester, Massachusetts, USA, c.1965.

Space Age Game of Old Maid

Space-O

“Space-O” card game published by Pla-Mor Games manufactured by ARRCO Playing Card Co, USA, 1950s,

Space-O

Star Wars

‘Star Wars’ playing cards produced by Character Games, 2002

Star Wars

Dr Who

Dr Who is a long-running science-fiction television series produced by the BBC, first airing in 1963.

Dr Who

Dr Who Adventures

‘Doctor Who Adventures’ is a weekly magazine aimed at younger readers. From time to time free playing cards are included with the magazine

Dr Who Adventures

Star Wars Episode 1

“STAR WARS Episode 1” playing cards printed by U.S. Playing Card Co., c.1999

Star Wars Episode 1

Globalstar

Naipes Globalstar TE.SA.M. Telefonía Satelital playing cards, manufactured by Gráfica 2001.

Globalstar