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Published August 28, 2017 Updated June 11, 2022

Thackeray Transformation Cards

Transformation playing cards by William Makepeace Thackeray, 1876.

1876 United Kingdom William Makepeace Thackeray Transformation Add to Collection

William Makepeace Thackeray (1811-1863) was a popular novelist and caricaturist who designed this incomplete but vivid set (21 cards) of Transformed playing cards, which his daughter published after his death in the book The Orphan of Pimlico, 1876. He is said to have become bored with the project and never returned to it after his attempt to pass the time on a transatlantic crossing by designing these cards! The book illustrations shown here were re-drawn by artisans employed by the publisher of the book in which they were published.

Transformation playing cards by William Makepeace Thackeray, 1876 Transformation playing cards by William Makepeace Thackeray, 1876 Transformation playing cards by William Makepeace Thackeray, 1876

Above: Transformation playing cards designed by William Makepeace Thackeray, 1876. These cards are scarce and can only be obtained from the book.

REFERENCES and CREDITS

Field, Albert: Transformation Playing Cards, U.S. Games Systems Inc., Stamford, CT, 1987

Hargrave, Catherine Perry: A History of Playing Cards and a Bibliography of Cards and Gaming, Dover Publications, New York, 1966

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