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Published December 16, 2022 Updated December 16, 2022

Liban Historique et Touristique

“Liban historique et touristique” souvenir of Lebanon playing cards manufactured by Heraclio Fournier.

1952 Lebanon Heraclio Fournier Souvenir Add to Collection

This french-suited pack showing the buildings and sites of Lebanon from original sepia archival photographs is one of a series of packs made by Heraclio Fournier between 1952 and 1963. Other countries in the series included Egypt, Kenya and Libya.

Each card shows an ancient city, historical monument, building, beach or scene of natural beauty with descriptive title beneath. There are two different jokers (one depicting a “paysan libanais” and the second “une chèvre dans une montagne déboisée), and a title card depicting the abduction of Europa by Zeus in the form of a bull, with the words “Europe, soeur de Cadmus”. Cadmus was Europa’s brother and commonly stated to be a prince of Phoenicia (primarily located in modern Lebanon). A small booklet in French and English accompanies. See the box

“Liban historique et touristique” souvenir of Lebanon playing cards manufactured by Heraclio Fournier “Liban historique et touristique” souvenir of Lebanon playing cards manufactured by Heraclio Fournier

Above: “Liban historique et touristique” souvenir of Lebanon playing cards manufactured by Heraclio Fournier.

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By Peter Burnett

Member since July 27, 2022

I graduated in Russian and East European Studies from Birmingham University in 1969. It was as an undergraduate in Moscow in 1968 that I stumbled upon my first 3 packs of “unusual” playing cards which fired my curiosity and thence my life-long interest. I began researching and collecting cards in the early 1970s, since when I’ve acquired over 3,330 packs of non-standard cards, mainly from North America, UK and Western Europe, and of course from Russia and the former communist countries.

Russian Playing Cards

Following my retirement from the Bodleian Library in Dec. 2007 I took up a new role as Head of Library Development at the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP) to support library development in low-income countries. This work necessitated regular training visits to many sub-Saharan African countries and also further afield, to Vietnam, Nepal and Bangladesh – all of which provided rich opportunities to further expand my playing card collection.

Since 2019 I’ve been working part-time in the Bodleian Library where I’ve been cataloguing the bequest of the late Donald Welsh, founder of the English Playing Card Society.


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