History of Playing Cards

history of Cards

Cards are the main tool of many gambling games at PlayAmo. However, few people know when and where they appeared. Their history conceals many mysteries and riddles over which scientists are still racking their brains.

Three Theories of the Origin of Cards

There were formed three basic theories explaining the appearance of maps were formed and each of them has the right to exist. However, it is not known which one is the most trustworthy.


The first theory says that the cards, resembling dominoes, appeared in the Celestial Empire no later than the VIII century. The locals used them not for entertainment, but instead of money.

For the games were first used sticks and sheets with different characters. Then they were replaced by cards.


Cards came to Europe from Egypt – the second theory testifies. It was propagated in 1785 by the newest occultists, whose representative is Jean-Baptiste Alette.

For a long time, the involvement of Arab countries in gambling was denied. Only later it was possible to prove that Muslims not only loved such entertainment but also invented the original deck.

Ancient Egyptian cards were tablets of pure gold, which were marked with mysterious symbols. It was believed that the priests imprisoned the wisdom of the world in them. There were 78 such tablets, and 56 of them became gambling cards, and 22 became fortune-telling Tarot cards.


Playing Cards

Cards first appeared on the European continent in the fourteenth century. Gamblers were none other than monks from Bern. They played in secret, because gambling entertainment was not considered a God-pleasing thing and was under strictest prohibition in the holy walls. They could have been excommunicated for it.

In 1392, King Charles VI’s jester created his own deck. The courtier used it to entertain his mentally ill lord.

King Charles VI was nicknamed the Madman because he was mentally ill. His mental illness began at a young age, twenty-four. One day in a fit of madness, the king rode a horse, brandishing a sword, and as a result cut down several people.

Jacquemain Gringonner’s deck consisted of 32 cards. It had no ladies and was not widely used. Ladies were added a century later.

The Origins of Cards in Europe

At the end of the fourteenth century, cards in Europe were made to order. They were drawn by artists. Such a pleasure was expensive, and the process of creation itself took a long time. Only with the advent of engraving was mass production possible.

There were three types of playing cards – in Italy, France and Germany. The Italian cards were the most peculiar. They were made in the technique of engraving on copper in the amount of 78 pieces. Their length reached 22 centimeters, so they were quite inconvenient to use. In addition, because of the large deck, the rules were complicated and confusing. Therefore, such inventory was soon simplified.

At the end of the fourteenth century, Italian cards came to France. Under Charles VII, new national suits appeared – heart, month, trefoil, and spade. Such a deck did not last long. The suits were replaced by the traditional hearts, diamonds, spades, and clubs. They are still in use today.

For a long time cards were forbidden. Those who used them were subject to serious sanctions. For example, if a person was spotted playing, he was forced to pay a monetary fine. At worst, they were disenfranchised and banished from the country.

After the French Revolution, the government promoted gambling. Among others, it commissioned the famous artist Jacques Louis David to create cards with new drawings. They used to depict kings. But the latter fell into disgrace, so the new cards replaced them with war heroes, artists, and political figures.

Up to the end of the seventeenth century, people were drawn full-length. The first “two-headed” maps were issued by Italy, but they did not take root and only in the 19th century were they used in France.

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