Irish Legendary playing cards featuring figures in the Legends of Ireland, designed by Rachel Arbuckle, 1990. The four suits represent the four provinces of Ireland and the Shield of each Province is illustrated on the Ace of each suit. The picture cards feature the Kings, Queens and Warriors of the province as in the Celtic legends. The Gaelic terms for these are used on the cards: Ri for King, Bean for the principal woman of the Province and Laoch for the Chief Warrior. The Gaelic Bard takes the place of the traditional Joker. Further details on the extra cards►
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Rex's main interest was in card games, because, he said, they were cheap and easy to get hold of in his early days of collecting. He is well known for his extensive knowledge of Pepys games and his book is on the bookshelves of many.
His other interest was non-standard playing cards. He also had collections of sheet music, music CDs, models of London buses, London Transport timetables and maps and other objects that intrigued him.
Rex had a chequered career at school. He was expelled twice, on one occasion for smoking! Despite this he trained as a radio engineer and worked for the BBC in the World Service.
Later he moved into sales and worked for a firm that made all kinds of packaging, a job he enjoyed until his retirement. He became an expert on boxes and would always investigate those that held his cards. He could always recognize a box made for Pepys, which were the same as those of Alf Cooke’s Universal Playing Card Company, who printed the card games. This interest changed into an ability to make and mend boxes, which he did with great dexterity. He loved this kind of handicraft work.
His dexterity of hand and eye soon led to his making card games of his own design. He spent hours and hours carefully cutting them out and colouring them by hand.
Promotional pack for a Dutch Celtic folk band which performs Irish, Scottish and Dutch folk music, c.2004.
Rock paintings and engravings of the San people, better known as the “Bushmen”.
Original designs from the French overseas department of Martinique by local artist Martine Porry.
Cheerful, colourful designs on handmade paper from Nepal.
Estonian national costumes and everyday items feature on this pack made in Estonia.
A colourful pack of round cards with Ganjifa designs by Asha Industries, Mumbai, India, 2002.
Pack designed for La Maison de L’Artisanat Ltée, Mauritius, by Hervé de Cotter.
Non-standard designs on Nepalese handmade paper for Pilgrims Book House, Kathmandu, Nepal, c.2000.
The first of two decks designed by Ukrainian illustrator Vladislav Erko for “Korchma Taras Bulba” restaurant which serves traditional Ukrainian cuisine
Folk Cards designed by Krystyna Gruchalska-Bunsch for Lot Polish Airlines, 1962.
Irish Legendary deck featuring figures in the Legends of Ireland, designed by Rachel Arbuckle, 1990.
Chinese Costumes from the Winterthur Collection, published by Fournier, 1984.
Ethiopian playing cards designed for the Ethiopian Tourist Organization by Afewerk Teklé.
The Maya Deck produced by Stancraft for Hoyle, 1976.
Neerlands Glorie Kwartetspel published by Hausemann & Hötte N.V, Amsterdam, 1945.
Baraja Tonalamatl Mexican Aztec playing cards based on the prehispanic Codex Borgia manuscript.
National Misfitz published by C.W. Faulkner & Co c.1900.
Many Folk Misfitz published by C.W. Faulkner & Co., c.1906.
Matching game by Majora, Lisbon, c.1970, featuring figures in national dress from Portuguese provinces and colonies
Ethiopian Air Lines playing cards designed by Melles Habtezghi with courts wearing regional costumes, c.1969.
“Naipes Criollos” Gaucho playing cards, 1995.
Naipes Cardón designed by Mario Luis Rivero depicting traditional Argentine culture and identity, 2002.
German History Quartet published by Otto Maier Verlag Ravensburg, c.1930-35.
Classic Guinness Posters, 1999.
Characters from the Chinese novel “The Water Margin” - 水滸撲克.
Les Grandes Figures de L’Histoire Bretonne
Roman Empire playing cards designed by G. Wyatt for Green Board Game Co Ltd., 2011.
Austrian Folklore deck first published by Piatnik in 1934.
Happy Families of the World published by Pepys Games, 1963.
Souvenir playing cards from Garuda Indonesia Airlines, the national airline of Indonesia.
Native American Warriors from the Wild West Series published by SPCC, 2018.
Lovely Day for a Guinness deck published by Shamrock Gift Co Dublin, c.1980.
Far East playing cards with designs by Isabel Ibáñez de Sendadiano, c.1980.
Souvenir playing cards from the culturally diverse southwestern Pacific island of Papua New Guinea.
Mongolian Religious Mask Dancing playing cards, c.2010
“Allfours Carnival Playing Cards” designed by Gabby Woodham, Trinidad, 1995
Dutch singers, TV and theatre artist playing cards for “Story” magazine, 1978.
Scottish Legends playing cards illustrated by Mark Oxbrow. published by R Somerville, Edinburgh, 1998.
“African Art” Playing cards by John J. Beckvermit III, 1994
Sheba playing cards illustrated by Brent Bailer and published by Omega Concepts Ltd.