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This meant that playing cards could be produced with stencils, a hundred times more quickly than using the traditional techniques of wood-cutting and engraving.
With improved processes in manufacturing paper, and the development of better printing processes, including Gutenberg's printing press , the slower and more costly traditional woodcut techniques previously done by hand were replaced with a much more efficient production.
For sheer practical reasons, the Germans lost their earlier dominance in the playing card market, as the French decks and their suits spread all over Europe, giving us the designs as we know them today.
One interesting feature of the French dominance of playing cards in this time is the attention given to court cards. In the late s French manufacturers began giving the court cards names from famous literary epics such as the Bible and other classics.
It is from this era that the custom developed of associating specific court cards with famous names, the more well-known and commonly accepted ones for the Kings being King David Spades , Alexander the Great Clubs , Charlemagne Hearts , and Julius Caesar Diamonds , representing the four empires of Jews, Greeks, Franks, and Romans.
Notable characters ascribed to the Queens include the Greek goddess Pallas Athena Spades , Judith Hearts , Jacob's wife Rachel Diamonds , and Argine Clubs.
The common postures, clothing, and accessories that we expect in a modern deck of playing cards today find their roots in characters like these, but we cannot be certain how these details originated, since there was much diversity of clothing, weapons, and accessories depicted in the French decks of this time.
But eventually standardization began to happen, and this was accelerated in the s when taxing on playing cards was introduced.
With France divided into nine regions for this purpose, manufacturers within each region were ordered to use a standardized design unique to their region.
But it was only when playing cards emigrated to England that a common design really began to dominate the playing card industry. Our journey across the channel actually begins in Belgium, from where massive quantities of cards began to be exported to England, although soldiers from France may also have helped introduce playing cards to England.
Due to heavy taxes in France, some influential card makers emigrated to Belgium, and several card factories and workshops began to appear there.
Rouen in particular was an important center of the printing trade. Thousands of decks of Belgian made playing cards were exported to countries throughout Europe, including England.
In view of this, it is no surprise that English card players have virtually always been using the French designs. But playing cards did not pass through Europe without the English leaving their stamp on them.
To begin with, they opted to use the names hearts, spades, diamonds, and clubs to refer to the suits that the French had designated as coeurs, piques, carreaux, and trefles.
We do not know why, but they based two of the suit names spades and clubs on the names of the Italian deck rather than directly translate the French terms piques pikes and trefles clovers ; one possible explanation is the Spanish suits were exported to England before French ones.
The word diamond is also somewhat unexpected, given that the English word for carreau wax-painted tiles used in churches at the time was lozenge.
Whatever the reasons, it is to usage in England that we owe the names that we use for the suits today.
The English government passed an Act that cards could not leave the factory until they had proof that the required tax on playing cards had been paid.
This initially involved hand stamping the Ace of Spades - probably because it was the top card. But to prevent tax evasion, in it was decided that from now on the Ace of Spades had to be purchased from the Commissioners for Stamp Duties, and that it had to be specially printed along with the manufacturer's name and the amount of duty paid.
As a result, the Ace of Spades tended to have elaborate designs along with the manufacturer's name. Only in were approved manufacturers finally allowed to print their own Ace of Spades, but the fate of the signature Ace of Spades had been decided, and the practice of an ornate Ace with the manufacturer's name was often continued.
As a result, to this day it is the one card in a deck that typically gets special treatment and elaborate designs. The artwork on English court cards appears to have been largely influenced by designs produced in Rouen, Belgium, which produced large amounts of playing cards for export.
They include details such as kings with crowns, flowing robes, beards, and longish hair; queens holding flowers and sceptres; and knaves that are clean-shaven, wearing caps, and holding arrows, feathers or pikes.
But whatever variety was present, slowly disappeared as a result of the industrious efforts of Briton Thomas de la Rue, who was able to reduce the prices of playing cards due to increased output and productivity.
This mass production he accomplished in the s gave him a position of dominance in the industry, and the smaller manufacturers with their independent designs eventually were swallowed up, leading to the more standardized designs as we know them today.
De la Rue's designs were first modernized by Reynolds in , and then again by Charles Goodall in , and it is this design that effectively still used today.
It was also around this time that double-ended court cards became common to avoid the need to turn the cards, thereby revealing to your opponent that you had court cards in your hand and the existing full-length designs were adapted to make them double-ended.
Players are shown holding square-cornered cards fanned in their hands, hidden from view, and playing cards onto the table. They are playing a 4-handed trick-taking game, following suit, and piling tricks cross-wise for ease of counting.
The deck uses the Latin suit-signs coins and staves are shown , and the game is being played for money or counters, shown on the table. Card playing is not mentioned in the text but there is mention of the imprisoned men entertaining themselves.
A fragment of two uncut sheets of Moorish -styled cards of a similar but plainer style was found in Spain and dated to the early 15th century.
Export of these cards from Cairo, Alexandria, and Damascus , ceased after the fall of the Mamluks in the 16th century.
The earliest records of playing cards in Europe is believed by some researchers to be a ban on card games in the city of Berne in ,   although this source is questionable.
Among the early patterns of playing card were those probably derived from the Mamluk suits of cups, coins, swords, and polo-sticks, which are still used in traditional Latin decks.
In the account books of Johanna, Duchess of Brabant and Wenceslaus I, Duke of Luxembourg , an entry dated May 14, , by receiver general of Brabant Renier Hollander reads: "Given to Monsieur and Madame four peters and two florins, worth eight and a half sheep, for the purchase of packs of cards".
From about to  professional card makers in Ulm , Nuremberg , and Augsburg created printed decks. Playing cards even competed with devotional images as the most common uses for woodcuts in this period.
Most early woodcuts of all types were coloured after printing, either by hand or, from about onwards, stencils. These 15th-century playing cards were probably painted.
The Flemish Hunting Deck , held by the Metropolitan Museum of Art , is the oldest complete set of ordinary playing cards made in Europe from the 15th century.
The names pique and spade , however, may have derived from the sword spade of the Italian suits. In the late 14th century, Europeans changed the Mamluk court cards to represent European royalty and attendants.
In a description from , the earliest courts were originally a seated " king ", an upper marshal that held his suit symbol up, and a lower marshal that held it down.
In England, the lowest court card was called the "knave" which originally meant male child compare German Knabe , so in this context the character could represent the "prince", son to the king and queen; the meaning servant developed later.
Although the Germans abandoned the queen before the s, the French permanently picked it up and placed it under the king.
Packs of 56 cards containing in each suit a king, queen, knight, and knave as in tarot were once common in the 15th century.
In , the Mistery of Makers of Playing Cards of the City of London now the Worshipful Company of Makers of Playing Cards was incorporated under a royal charter by Charles I ; the Company received livery status from the Court of Aldermen of the City of London in During the mid 16th century, Portuguese traders introduced playing cards to Japan.
Packs with corner and edge indices i. The first American-manufactured French deck with this innovation was the Saladee's Patent, printed by Samuel Hart in This was followed by the innovation of reversible court cards.
This invention is attributed to a French card maker of Agen in But the French government, which controlled the design of playing cards, prohibited the printing of cards with this innovation.
In central Europe Trappola cards and Italy Tarocco Bolognese the innovation was adopted during the second half of the 18th century. In Great Britain, the pack with reversible court cards was patented in by Edmund Ludlow and Ann Wilcox.
The French pack with this design was printed around by Thomas Wheeler. Sharp corners wear out more quickly, and could possibly reveal the card's value, so they were replaced with rounded corners.
Before the midth century, British, American, and French players preferred blank backs. The need to hide wear and tear and to discourage writing on the back led cards to have designs, pictures, photos, or advertising on the reverse.
The United States introduced the joker into the deck. It was devised for the game of euchre , which spread from Europe to America beginning shortly after the American Revolutionary War.
In euchre, the highest trump card is the Jack of the trump suit, called the right bower from the German Bauer ; the second-highest trump, the left bower , is the jack of the suit of the same color as trumps.
The joker was invented c. Columbia University 's Rare Book and Manuscript Library holds the Albert Field Collection of Playing Cards, an archive of over 6, individual decks from over 50 countries and dating back to the s.
Since , Vanderbilt University has been home to the 1,volume George Clulow and United States Playing Card Co.
Gaming Collection , which has been called one of the "most complete and scholarly collections [of books on cards and gaming] that has ever been gathered together".
Contemporary playing cards are grouped into three broad categories based on the suits they use: French, Latin, and Germanic.
Latin suits are used in the closely related Spanish and Italian formats. The Swiss-German suits are distinct enough to merit their subcategory.
Excluding jokers and tarot trumps, the French card deck preserves the number of cards in the original Mamluk deck, while Latin and Germanic decks average fewer.
Latin decks usually drop the higher-valued pip cards, while Germanic decks drop the lower-valued ones.
Within suits, there are regional or national variations called "standard patterns. Some patterns have been around for hundreds of years.
Jokers are not part of any pattern as they are a relatively recent invention and lack any standardized appearance so each publisher usually puts its own trademarked illustration into their decks.
The wide variation of jokers has turned them into collectible items. Any card that bore the stamp duty like the ace of spades in England, the ace of clubs in France or the ace of coins in Italy are also collectible as that is where the manufacturer's logo is usually placed.
Usually the cards have their indices printed in the upper left and lower right corners, assuming they will be held in the left hand of a right-handed person.
This design is often uncomfortable for left-handed people who may prefer to hold their cards in the right hand. To mitigate this issue non-biased designs exist, that have indices in all four corners of the card.
French decks come in a variety of patterns and deck sizes. The card deck is the most popular deck and includes 13 ranks of each suit with reversible "court" or face cards.
Each suit includes an ace , depicting a single symbol of its suit, a king, queen, and jack, each depicted with a symbol of their suit; and ranks two through ten, with each card depicting that number of pips of its suit.
As well as these 52 cards, commercial packs often include between one and six jokers, most often two. Decks with fewer than 52 cards are known as stripped decks.
The piquet pack has all values from 2 through 6 in each suit removed for a total of 32 cards. It is popular in France, the Low Countries , Central Europe and Russia and is used to play piquet , belote , bezique and skat.
It is also used in the Sri Lankan, whist-based game known as omi. Forty-card French suited packs are common in northwest Italy; these remove the 8s through 10s like Latin suited decks.
A pinochle deck consists of two copies of a 24 card schnapsen deck, thus 48 cards. The 78 card tarot nouveau adds the knight card between queens and jacks along with 21 numbered trumps and the unnumbered Fool.
Each card has two sides, the face and the back. Normally the backs of the cards are indistinguishable. The faces of the cards may all be unique, or there can be duplicates.
The composition of a deck is known to each player. In some cases several decks are shuffled together to form a single pack or shoe.
Games using playing cards exploit the fact that cards are individually identifiable from one side only, so that each player knows only the cards they hold and not those held by anyone else.
Some games that are placed in the card game genre involve a board. The distinction is that the gameplay of a card game chiefly depends on the use of the cards by players the board is simply a guide for scorekeeping or for card placement , while board games the principal non-card game genre to use cards generally focus on the players' positions on the board, and use the cards for some secondary purpose.
The object of a trick-taking game is based on the play of multiple rounds, or tricks, in each of which each player plays a single card from their hand, and based on the values of played cards one player wins or "takes" the trick.
The specific object varies with each game and can include taking as many tricks as possible, taking as many scoring cards within the tricks won as possible, taking as few tricks or as few penalty cards as possible, taking a particular trick in the hand, or taking an exact number of tricks.
Bridge , Whist , Euchre , , Spades , and the various Tarot card games are popular examples. The object of a matching or sometimes "melding" game is to acquire a particular groups of matching cards before an opponent can do so.
In Rummy , this is done through drawing and discarding, and the groups are called melds. Mahjong is a very similar game played with tiles instead of cards.
Non-Rummy examples of match-type games generally fall into the "fishing" genre and include the children's games Go Fish and Old Maid. In a shedding game , players start with a hand of cards, and the object of the game is to be the first player to discard all cards from one's hand.
Common shedding games include Crazy Eights commercialized by Mattel as Uno and Daihinmin. Some matching-type games are also shedding-type games; some variants of Rummy such as Paskahousu , Phase 10 , Rummikub , the bluffing game I Doubt It , and the children's games Musta Maija and Old Maid , fall into both categories.
The object of an accumulating game is to acquire all cards in the deck. Examples include most War type games, and games involving slapping a discard pile such as Slapjack.
Egyptian Ratscrew has both of these features. In fishing games, cards from the hand are played against cards in a layout on the table, capturing table cards if they match.
Scopa is considered one of the national card games of Italy. Cassino is the only fishing game to be widely played in English-speaking countries.
Zwicker has been described as a "simpler and jollier version of Cassino", played in Germany. Comparing card games are those where hand values are compared to determine the winner, also known as "vying" or "showdown" games.
Poker , blackjack , and baccarat are examples of comparing card games. As seen, nearly all of these games are designed as gambling games.
Solitaire games are designed to be played by one player. Drinking card games are drinking games using cards, in which the object in playing the game is either to drink or to force others to drink.
Many games are simply ordinary card games with the establishment of "drinking rules"; President , for instance, is virtually identical to Daihinmin but with additional rules governing drinking.
Poker can also be played using a number of drinks as the wager. Another game often played as a drinking game is Toepen , quite popular in the Netherlands.
Some card games are designed specifically to be played as drinking games. Many card games borrow elements from more than one type. The most common combination is matching and shedding, as in some variants of Rummy, Old Maid , and Go Fish.
However, many multi-genre games involve different stages of play for each hand. The most common multi-stage combination is a "trick-and-meld" game, such as Pinochle or Belote.
Other multi-stage, multi-genre games include Poke , Gleek , Skitgubbe , and Tichu. Collectible card games CCG are proprietary playing card games. CCGs are games of strategy between two players though multiplayer exists too.
Both have their own personally built deck constructed from a very large pool of individually unique cards in the commercial market.
The cards have different effects, costs, and art. Obtaining the different cards makes the game a collectible and cards are sold or traded on the secondary market.
Magic: The Gathering and Yu-Gi-Oh! These games revolve around wagers of money. Though virtually any game in which there are winning and losing outcomes can be wagered on, these games are specifically designed to make the betting process a strategic part of the game.
Some of these games involve players betting against each other, such as poker, while in others, like blackjack , players wager against the house.
Poker is a family of gambling games in which players bet into a pool, called the pot, the value of which changes as the game progresses that the value of the hand they carry will beat all others according to the ranking system.
Variants largely differ on how cards are dealt and the methods by which players can improve a hand. For many reasons, including its age and its popularity among Western militaries, it is one of the most universally known card games in existence.
Many other card games have been designed and published on a commercial or amateur basis. In some cases, the game uses the standard card deck, but the object is unique.
In Eleusis , for example, players play single cards, and are told whether the play was legal or illegal, in an attempt to discover the underlying rules made up by the dealer.
Most of these games however typically use a specially made deck of cards designed specifically for the game or variations of it.
The decks are thus usually proprietary, but may be created by the game's players. Uno , Phase 10 , Set , and Blank White Cards are popular dedicated-deck card games; Blank White Cards is unique in that the cards for the game are designed by the players of the game while playing it; there is no commercially available deck advertised as such.
A deck of either customised dedicated cards or a standard deck of playing cards with assigned meanings is used to simulate the actions of another activity, for example card football.
Many games, including card games, are fabricated by science fiction authors and screenwriters to distance a culture depicted in the story from present-day Western culture.
They are commonly used as filler to depict background activities in an atmosphere like a bar or rec room, but sometimes the drama revolves around the play of the game.
Some of these games become real card games as the holder of the intellectual property develops and markets a suitable deck and ruleset for the game, while others, such as "Exploding Snap" from the Harry Potter franchise, lack sufficient descriptions of rules, or depend on cards or other hardware that are infeasible or physically impossible.
Any specific card game imposes restrictions on the number of players. The most significant dividing lines run between one-player games and two-player games, and between two-player games and multi-player games.
Card games for one player are known as solitaire or patience card games. See list of solitaire card games. Generally speaking, they are in many ways special and atypical, although some of them have given rise to two- or multi-player games such as Spite and Malice.
In card games for two players, usually not all cards are distributed to the players, as they would otherwise have perfect information about the game state.
Two-player games have always been immensely popular and include some of the most significant card games such as piquet , bezique , sixty-six , klaberjass , gin rummy and cribbage.Edited by Ettinghausen, R. Shire Album No. Hungaria Books, Budapest, translation from Royal Flush Hungarian text in English. Playing cards may have been invented during the Tang dynasty around the 9th century AD as a result of the usage of woodblock printing technology. The earliest known text containing a possible reference to card games is a 9th-century text known as the Collection of Miscellanea at Duyang, written by Tang dynasty writer Su E. Playing cards or tiles were invented in China as early as the 9th century during the Tang Dynasty (–). The earliest unambiguous attestation of paper playing cards date back to The modern game of Dominoes developed from early Chinese tile based games. The history of card games is a long one, after all people in all time periods liked to have fun! First playing cards actually originate from China before AD. These cards ware the ancestors of dominoes, well actually they ware more or less paper dominoes. A Concise History of Playing-cards. P laying Cards are believed to have originated in China and then spread to India and Persia. From Persia they are believed to have spread to Egypt during the era of Mamluk control, and from there into Europe through both the Italian and Iberian peninsulas during the second half of the 14th century. Product description Chronology is a card game of all time. During the game each player builds a timeline of cards, with each card listing an historical event and the year in which it occurred. To start the game, players are dealt two cards, which are then placed face up in chronological order.