deck; box

Vancouver : Museum of Vancouver

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Document Record
Creator Searles, R., (Mrs.)
Title deck; box
Published Vancouver : Museum of Vancouver
Identifier 66721
Language English
Media Image
Contributor Museum of Vancouver
Description Legend claims that playing cards were invented centuries ago by bored wives and concubines in eastern harems. History tells us that playing cards first appeared in Europe during the early years of the Italian Renaissance, around 1376. As they spread throughout the continent, different versions of the deck were used in different areas. Court cards appeared in the earliest known decks. The four suits which we use today originated in France and represented the different social classes: hearts symbolized the Church; spades, the aristocracy; diamonds, the well-to-do; and clubs, the peasantry. Souvenir cards enjoyed a tremendous vogue in Europe and America during the late nineteenth century. This deck was first manufactured in London around 1900. Photographs of scenic attractions of Western Canada, such as Lake Louise, Kicking Horse Canyon, and English Bay, appear on the faces of the cards. Decks such as this would have appealed both to those visiting British Columbia and residents of the province.
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