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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.

Grupo Editorial RAF S.A.

Grupo Editorial RAF S.A. de C.V. (founded 1962) has branches throughout Mexico.

detail from Mexican playing cards printed by Grupo Editorial RAF S.A.

Grupo Editorial RAF S.A.

Grupo Editorial RAF S.A. de C.V. (founded 1962) has branches throughout Mexico and specialises in didactic and commercial printing. The didactic department produces maps, wall charts and posters, calendars, office stationery, school text books and colouring books, dictionaries, collector cards, stickers, post cards, board games and playing cards. Visit their website here.

These Mexican-style playing cards are based on the Spanish Castilian designs first published by Naipes Heraclio Fournier (Vitoria, Spain) in the 1880s and which have become the basis of a large majority of Spanish-suited Mexican playing cards. The Ace of Coins has a Mexican flag.

Mexican Spanish-suited playing cards printed by Grupo Editorial RAF S.A.

Above: Mexican-style, Spanish-suited 'Intransparente' playing cards printed in Mexico by Grupo Editorial RAF S.A. 40 cards. The cards are designed with a green background to each card.

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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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