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Published January 29, 2010 Updated July 04, 2023

Genoese pattern

The design is purely 'Parisian' but the colouring is green, red, yellow and black. Belgium has taken this pattern for general use.

1920 Belgium France Grimaud Van Genechten Genoese Pattern Patterns and Suit Types Add to Collection

Purely 'Parisian' pattern in design, but the colouring is green, red, yellow and black. 40 or 52 cards. The pack is basically an export pattern from post-1827 France. Belgium has taken this pattern for general use and it is commonly found in many other parts of the world. For some reason the Jack of Clubs often bears a Spanish arms. It is distinguished from the Piedmont pattern by the diagonal division of the double-ended courts.

Belgian 'Genoese' pattern

Above: Standard double-ended Genoese pattern cards from an uncut sheet manufactured by B. P. Grimaud, c.1920. Unlike the closely related 'Paris' pattern, the court cards are unnamed.

Below: Standard Genoese pattern playing cards, with French indices, manufactured by Van Genechten for Cigarrillo Holiday and the Estanco de Naipes del Perú, c.1965. The legend "Estanco de Naipes del Perú" is printed on the box and reverse of the cards in the centre of the advert for Holiday cigarettes.

Playing cards manufactured by Van Genechten for the Estanco de Naipes del Peru, c.1965

See also: Naipes Side-Car Genoese type manufactured by Luis Fourvel, Buenos Aires, Argentina, c.1940 • Genoese Pattern by E. Pignalosa, Naples, c.1950.

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By Simon Wintle

Member since February 01, 1996

Founder and editor of the World of Playing Cards since 1996. He is a former committee member of the IPCS and was graphics editor of The Playing-Card journal for many years. He has lived at various times in Chile, England and Wales and is currently living in Extremadura, Spain. Simon's first limited edition pack of playing cards was a replica of a seventeenth century traditional English pack, which he produced from woodblocks and stencils.


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