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Ceki Cards

Indonesian Ceki cards

Ceki cards from Indonesia. The design of these cards is more or less identical to those produced by manufacturers in Malaysia or Belgium. The card second from right on the top row bears the inscription 榮興記 which also occurs in Belgian-made Ceki packs and which could be a maker’s name or simply an auspicious phrase. Most probably both Belgian and Indonesian makers copied their Ceki cards from a common source without knowing what the characters meant (or if they represented language at all). The presence of a bat on the wrapper is easily explained. In Chinese, the words for "Bat" and "fortune" are homonyms - a most appropriate symbol!

Indonesian Ceki cards

Above: Indonesian Ceki cards, c.1901.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Thanks to Anthony Lee for additional research. Visit his blog here

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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. 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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