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Published April 28, 2023 Updated April 28, 2023

Conseil Général de la Somme

Famous people and places of the Somme department in northern France, with designs by James Hodges.

1985 France Grimaud James Hodges Souvenir Add to Collection

One associates the Somme department with the river of the same name (QH, AS) and various battles fought on its soil during World War I (JC and one of the Jokers). The Battle of Crécy also took place there in 1346 (AD). Amiens, the department’s capital, is famous for its cathedral (AH). Jules Verne served on the local town council (KH). These and other local subjects have been skilfully depicted by the artist James Hodges (1928-2019). In two corners of the court cards there are roundels incorporating heads taken from standard Paris pattern cards. The logo of the Conseil Général de la Somme is featured on the reverse – a white seagull flying from sea (blue) to land (green) within an ‘O’. Additional information about the department is provided on two extra cards (text in French).

playing cards designed by James Hodges and made by B.P. Grimaud for the Conseil Général de la Somme, France, 1985 playing cards designed by James Hodges and made by B.P. Grimaud for the Conseil Général de la Somme, France, 1985 playing cards designed by James Hodges and made by B.P. Grimaud for the Conseil Général de la Somme, France, 1985
playing cards designed by James Hodges and made by B.P. Grimaud for the Conseil Général de la Somme, France, 1985

Above: playing cards designed by James Hodges and made by B.P. Grimaud for the Conseil Général de la Somme, France, 1985. 52 cards + 2 Jokers + 2 extra cards in tuck box. Size: 63 x 88 mm. The tuck boxes have the same design front and back.

The decks were produced in single tuck boxes or a double box

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By Roddy Somerville

Member since May 31, 2022

Roddy started collecting stamps on his 8th birthday. In 1977 he joined the newly formed playing-card department at Stanley Gibbons in London before setting up his own business in Edinburgh four years later. His collecting interests include playing cards, postcards, stamps (especially playing cards on stamps) and sugar wrappers. He is a Past President of the Scottish Philatelic Society, a former Chairman of the IPCS, a Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Makers of Playing Cards and Curator of the WCMPC’s collection of playing cards. He lives near Toulouse in France.


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