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Kingdoms of Europe

A collecting game published in two series: the first series featuring Western Europe and the second series Eastern/Southern Europe.

Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885

Kingdoms of Europe, c.1895

Jaques' Games established 1795

This collecting game, similar to Counties of England, was published in two series: the first series featuring Western Europe and the second series Eastern/Southern Europe. The city cards are beautifully illustrated with coloured engravings, whilst the Key cards depict national flags.

Left: the front of the box from the 1st series, showing a decorative pattern with the text "A New Round Game, Beautifully Illustrated".

Europe experienced a period of unprecedented rapid expansion around the globe during the last third of the nineteenth century. European nation-states had become very powerful because of industrialization and the organizational efficiency of the nation-state, which led to easy dominance of non-European areas of the world. This Victorian family card game captures a snap-shot of European nations from this time.

First Series - Western Europe

Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885 Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885 Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885 Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885 Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885 Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885

Above: cards from the first series of John Jaques & Son's Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885, 45 cards in telescopic box, magnificently depicted at a time of powerful dominance, from the time of the inauguration of the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the revival of the Olympic Games in Athens. The cards have square corners and plain coloured backs. Courtesy Rex Pitts.

Second Series - Eastern and Southern Europe

Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885 Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885

Above: 16 cards from the second series of John Jaques & Son's Kingdoms of Europe card game, c.1885, 45 cards in telescopic box, featuring cities from Eastern and Southern Europe during the late 19th century. The cards have square corners and plain coloured backs.

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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. 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.


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