The World of Playing Cards Logo

Multum in Parvo Co., Ltd

Multum in Parvo published a range of indoor games during the period from 1884-1927.

Multum in Parvo Company of 7 Water Lane, Ludgate Hill, London, was founded by descendents of Mullord Brothers in 1884. The company published a range of indoor games until 1927, which were supplied wholesale. However, they were not all card games:

Animal Quorum, Auction Game, Birds, Beasts and Fishes, The Bogie Man, The Castle, Chameleon, Consil, The Dockyard or Ship Building at Home, Fairy Tales, Four Flags, Grand Prize, Happy Golliwog, Invasion, Judge & Jury, Koker-Nut Shy, Lifeboats, Merry Families, Money Matters, Music, Musical Dominoes, Nap, Newmarket, Nuhome, Our Fleet, The Poets’ Conversation Cards, Rabbits!, The Rescue, The Roaring Lion, Shop, Shute, Simple Games for Simple Folk, Snap, The Soccer Game, Speculation, Stock Exchange, Tennis, Tommy's Wedding, Touring, Turnover, The Walk to Brighton, Who Buys?, Word Making & Word Taking.

Most games sold for between 6d and one shilling, but miniature packs of playing cards, one penny.

Several of the card games shown below contain the same images, repurposed to fit a different game format, particularly the Merry Families and Snap characters. For example, the same animal caricatures are seen in “Birds, Beasts and Fishes”, “Consil” and “The Improved Game of Snap”.

Birds, Beasts and Fishes

“Birds, Beasts and Fishes” published by Multum in Parvo Ltd from 1884

Above: the Game of Birds, Beasts and Fishes, from 1884,   more

Consil

“Consil” published by Multum in Parvo Ltd, c.1900

Above: “Consil” published by Multum in Parvo Ltd, c.1900,   more

Some of the pictures in the above games were also used in The Improved Game of Snap

Merry Families

At least two different versions of Happy Families are known, one featuring tradespeople, the other occupations, or professions.

Merry Families, from 1884

Above: Merry Families (Trades), from 1884,   more.

Merry Families, c.1890

Above: Merry Families (Occupations), c.1890.   more.

Snap

Snap, c.1890

Above: Snap, c.1890.   more.

Fairy Tales

Fairy Tales, c.1884

Above: the Game of Fairy Tales, c.1884   more

Nap, or the Game of Proverbs

Proverbs, c.1900

Above: Nap, or the Game of Proverbs, c.1900   more

Four Flags

the Game of Four Flags, 1884

Above: the Game of Four Flags, 1884,   more

Who Buys?

Who Buys?, c.1890

Above: Who Buys?, c.1890.   more.

Auction Game

Auction Game, c.1890

Above: Auction Game, c.1890.   more.


CREDITS

All images courtesy Rex Pitts. Thanks to Neil Darbyshire for additional research.

avatar

By Rex Pitts (1940-2021)

Member since January 30, 2009

View Articles

Rex's main interest was in card games, because, he said, they were cheap and easy to get hold of in his early days of collecting. He is well known for his extensive knowledge of Pepys games and his book is on the bookshelves of many.

His other interest was non-standard playing cards. He also had collections of sheet music, music CDs, models of London buses, London Transport timetables and maps and other objects that intrigued him.

Rex had a chequered career at school. He was expelled twice, on one occasion for smoking! Despite this he trained as a radio engineer and worked for the BBC in the World Service.

Later he moved into sales and worked for a firm that made all kinds of packaging, a job he enjoyed until his retirement. He became an expert on boxes and would always investigate those that held his cards. He could always recognize a box made for Pepys, which were the same as those of Alf Cooke’s Universal Playing Card Company, who printed the card games. This interest changed into an ability to make and mend boxes, which he did with great dexterity. He loved this kind of handicraft work.

His dexterity of hand and eye soon led to his making card games of his own design. He spent hours and hours carefully cutting them out and colouring them by hand.


Leave a Reply

Recommended

1930 Waddington’s “Silkette” Playing Cards

Waddington’s “Silkette” Playing Cards

Cards made by John Waddington Ltd. for the Madras Club, Chennai (formerly Madras), India, c.1930.

2002 Highland Hospice

Highland Hospice

54 different personalities from the city of Inverness published by the Highland Hospice.

2017 Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Edinburgh Festival Fringe programme covers from 1956 to 2016 published by Winning Moves UK Ltd.

2010 Cape Wrath

Cape Wrath

Images from the Ministry of Defence Cape Wrath Training Centre, Sutherland, Scotland. Published 2010.

2014 Vesalius Anatomy Card Game

Vesalius Anatomy Card Game

Celebrating the work of Andreas Vesalius in the quincentenary year of his birth.

2005 Team GB

Team GB

Great Britains’s Olympic gold medallists from 1964 to 2004 published by the British Olympic Association.

2015 David Kindersley Centenary

David Kindersley Centenary

Celebration of the work of David Kindersley, stone letter-carver and typeface designer. Published by the Cardozo Kindersley Workshop, Cambridge, UK, 2015.

2003 Official England Rugby Playing Cards

Official England Rugby Playing Cards

Pack celebrating the rugby world champions of 2003. Produced by MMcardz.

1705 Royal Cards Reign of Queen Anne

Royal Cards Reign of Queen Anne

“Royal Cards Reign of Queen Anne” cover historical events, both honourable and treacherous, during the period 1702 to 1704.

Hall & Son

Hall & Son

Hall & Son

Black Peter

Black Peter

Two Black Peter games by Willy Mayrl published by Ferd Piatnik & Söhne, 1950s.

1850 Fortune-Telling Cards

Fortune-Telling Cards

Comic Fortune-Telling Cards published by Reynolds & Sons, c.1850.

1850 Comic Question & Answer cards

Comic Question & Answer cards

Comic Question & Answer cards by Josh. Reynolds & Sons, circa 1850.

1824 Myriorama

Myriorama

Myriorama of Italian scenery, 1824.

1870 Transformation Cards for Christmas

Transformation Cards for Christmas

Hand-drawn Transformation cards, c.1870.

PLAYING CARDS: A Secret History

PLAYING CARDS: A Secret History

PLAYING CARDS: A Secret History

Sergeant-Major

Sergeant-Major

Sergeant-Major card game devised by W.G.Smith

Rex Pitts (1940-2021)

Rex Pitts (1940-2021)

We are deeply saddened by news of the passing of Anthony Rex Pitts (1940-2021).

Pepys Games

Pepys Games

The Story of Pepys Games by Rex Pitts

J. W. Spear and Sons

J. W. Spear and Sons

Jacob Wolfe Spear founded his company manufacturing fancy goods in 1879 near Nuremberg in Bavaria, Germany

Chad Valley Co. Ltd

Chad Valley Co. Ltd

Chad Valley Co. Ltd (incorporating Johnson Brothers (Harborne) Ltd, the long-established UK brand bought by Woolworths in 1988 and now sold at Argos.

Multum in Parvo Co., Ltd

Multum in Parvo Co., Ltd

Multum in Parvo published a range of indoor games during the period from 1884-1927.

1954 Ariel Productions Ltd

Ariel Productions Ltd

The founder of Ariel Productions, Philip Marx, was a prolific publisher of children’s books and comics towards the end of and just after the Second World War.

Kum-Bak Sports, Toys & Games

Kum-Bak Sports, Toys & Games

Kum-Bak Sports, Toys & Games MFG Co., Ltd, London S.E.11

Crazy People

Crazy People

Crazy People children’s card game illustrated by caricaturist and graphic artist Walter Trier, c.1950.

1954 Andere Zeiten - Andere Kleider

Andere Zeiten - Andere Kleider

‘History of fashion’ cultural quartet game designed by Erika Werner-Nestler, 1954.

1983 Netherlands Kostuum Kwartet

Netherlands Kostuum Kwartet

Dutch costumes quartet game designed by Gerard Huijg, 1983.

1912 Panko

Panko

Panko (Votes for Women) suffragette card game published by Peter Gurney Ltd, c.1912.

Snap

Snap

Anonymous Snap game, 1930s.

1970 Nederlands Stedenkwartet

Nederlands Stedenkwartet

Nederlands Stedenkwartet with heraldic needlepoint patterns by Permin, c.1970.

Lion Coffee

Lion Coffee

Lion Coffee Mother Goose card game, late 19th C.

Panto People

Panto People

Panto People published by E. S. & A. Robinson, c.1930s.

Hats-Off!

Hats-Off!

Hats-Off! miniature card game published by E. S. & A. Robinson, c.1930s.

1930 Zoo-Boots

Zoo-Boots

Zoo-Boots published by E. S. & A. Robinson, c.1930s.

XIXth Century

XIXth Century

The XIXth Century published by John Jaques & Son, c.1875.

The ‘Rinker’ Snap

The ‘Rinker’ Snap

The ‘Rinker’ highly amusing snap game, c.1910.

1960 Österreichisches Trachten-quartett

Österreichisches Trachten-quartett

Österreichisches Trachten-quartett Nr.282 published by Ferd Piatnik & Söhne.

Round the World Happy Families

Round the World Happy Families

Round the World Happy Families by Chiefton Products Ltd of Bristol, c.1950s.

So Fängt Es An

So Fängt Es An

“So Fängt Es An” beautifully illustrated by M. Neugebauer, published by Helingsche Verlagsanstalt, c.1950.

Abbatt Animal Families

Abbatt Animal Families

Abbatt Toys Animal Families, c.1970.