Playing cards had been produced for the Pamplona General Hospital Monopoly in the former kingdom of Navarra since 1631. As the monopoly contract was repeatedly renewed over time, and in order that cards could be differentiated from those of neighbouring kingdoms or tax jurisdictions, the designs became established as a regional pattern.
It is likely that wooblocks, and even completed packs of cards, were originally produced in France, before being produced in Spain, which explains why the designs contain features common to earlier, archaic French-made cards. Problems with the quality, as well as illegal imports, were often cause for disputes with cardmakers at the time of renewal of their contracts.
PEDRO VARANGOT, 1786
It is recorded that Pedro Varangot was married to Jeanne Darretche in Bayonne in 1743. Earlier packs attributed to him were made in Bayonne. see more →