Real Fábrica de Macharaviaya (Málaga)
Revenues from the sales of playing cards in Central and South America had been a state monopoly since 1552, in the reign of Felipe II, who had issued a decree setting out the terms by which it was to be regulated. Packs were to be sold in paper wrappers tied with string and officially stamped. Officers were appointed to be in charge of ensuring the business was run correctly. To begin with cards destined for the Americas were manufactured solely in Mexico but due to irregular production as well as illegal imports (probably Italian) new orders were given that they should be produced in Spain.
The Real Fábrica de Madrid had been in existence since at least 1755, but in 1776 a Royal Letters Patent was issued authorising Don Félix Solesio to establish the Real Fábrica de Macharaviaya to supply playing cards to the Americas and particularly to Mexico - Para las Indias. The new factory was quickly built and was of benefit to the local community in terms of employment opportunities, urban development and cultural enrichment. It is recorded that in September 1777 15,000 decks produced in Macharaviaya were shipped to Mexico. Solesio was a distinguished name in the playing card industry, and as it happens, Félix Solesio's brother Lorenzo had been appointed master craftsman in the Portuguese Real Fábrica de Cartas de Jogar in 1769.
The date of closure of the Macharaviaya factory is reckoned to be 1815].
Member since February 01, 1996
Founder 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.
A limited edition art print of the Jack of Hearts 1984 woodblock joker.
A limited edition art print of the Queen of Clubs 1984 woodblock joker.
A limited edition art print of the King of Diamonds 1984 woodblock joker.
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Review of “Trzes’ Moorish Deck” facsimile published by Ulrich Kaltenborn, Berlin, 2023.
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Some early examples of popular German playing cards from the XV and XVI centuries.
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Raimundo García pattern produced by José Cumplido in Madrid, dated 1860 on the four of coins.
‘Amorcillos’ (Cupids), a masterpiece from the golden age of Spanish playing cards by Clemente Roxas,...
Costumes of people of Brazil, Peru and Mexico, with views of Rio de Janeiro on the aces.
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Aluette game by Fabrique Dieudonné Jeune, Orléans, for Spanish market, c.1850.
A Spanish-suited pack as conceived by 48 different artists from the region of Murcia.
Re-edition of a French-suited Spanish pack from the Napoleonic era, with designs by J. Carrafa.
Baraxa Galega designed by F. Perez Llamosas and published by Naipes Heraclio Fournier, 1983.
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‘Baraja Fiesta Taurina’ bullfight playing cards published by Heraclio Fournier, Spain, 1975.
Secrets of the Far East playing cards featuring the designs of Violeta Monreal , Spain, c. 1991.
Museo del Prado: Pintores y familias reales / Painters and royal families playing cards.
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