HISTORY OF PLAYING CARDS from 200BC

HISTORY OF PLAYING CARDS

HISTORY OF PLAYING CARDS

:
The game of playing cards began long back around 13th Century. Pieces of cards with numerical and pictorial sequences and various thematic markings were used to play the game. this is a game of skill and chance. Most probably this game was originated in Asia during the earlier stages. The number of cards has been sometimes 97 and some times 78 or 62. The special attraction of the bigger set of 97 was 21 cards called as outs at or trump cards. It was generally thought that the gypsies who came from the east have introduced the cards into Europe. In England the card game was thought as a Devil’s game from Asia. Here are some stories about the invention of the playing cards. As we Indians think the devil’s dwelling is towards the western part of the world, the Europeans think that anything remote and mysterious is devilish and Asiatic. In this background Saint Bernard in 1423 A.D said in a sermon that a devil has invented the playing cards Satan was nothing but “Satan” of India. Its origin can be traced back to Chinese or Indian playing tablets or discs which have a resemblance of ganjifa cards based on Hindu mythological stories, the well-known chess game has also had its part in the development of skilled moves of playing cards.
There was evidence that there were games played with cards in Egypt during the time of Joseph. And Queen among the cards can be traced back to Bible in the book of Judith.

King was present in all nations’ packs. Queen was not present in Spain and early Germen pack. Earlier numerical signs were projected as eight batons or nine swords which caused lot of confusion which lead to fights in Italy because of small size cards, where it was a problem showing them clearly.
Early French packs were simplified and were produced by stencil work, and were exported to other nations in Europe. This continued till tax was imposed in France over cards. And the card makers moved to Germany and Netherlands. Spanish pack has 48 cards only, without no.10.

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