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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.

Merry Andrews Happy Families

Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936.

Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, a promotional card game featuring Andrews Liver Salt, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936. The figures depict caricatures of typical 1930s characters in ten family sets of four cards each.

Boxem the packer • Wiseman the shopkeeper • Canister the tin maker • Sales the traveller • Truth the advertising agent • Toot the van driver • Careful the mixing foreman • Phizz the chemist • Dudliver the grouser • Merry Andrew the healthy man.

Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936
Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936 Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936 Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936 Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936 Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936

Above: Merry Andrews - the very Happy Families, published by Scott & Turner Ltd, 1936. 40 cards + rules leaflet in box.

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By Simon Wintle

Member since February 01, 1996

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Curator and editor of the World of Playing Cards since 1996.

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