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Cards' origin

Cards' origin Share

Cards that we get used to play are nowadays an inalienable attribute of many games of chances: poker, blackjack, bridge…The long history of cards development precedes the cards popularity. How cards have managed to capture the world and have developed from sticks into paper you will know from this article.

It is impossible to name the actual date of cards creation as well as the place of their "birth". Some recourses state that cards were created in China; others refer cards development to the Egyptian civilization. It is hard to accept this fact, but initially cards looked like sticks or wooden boards. Sometimes shells decorated with pictures and various colours were used as cards. However Indian cards were decorated with four-handed Shiva that held a goblet, a sword, a baton and a coin. It is commonly believed that they were those things that gave suits to the modern cards.

The Egyptian version of cards creation states that priests have left (recorded) their wisdom on 78 tables, and 56 of them as a result have become the playing cards. But we don't have any direct proofs of this fact.

The cards appearance in Europe is also obvolute with guesses and legends. On the one hand it is explained by Gypsy appearance on the territory of Europe and from the other hand there is the version that an unknown artist has created cards to calm the King of France Charles VI The Mad. And from 1422 to 1461 they got the geographical pictures and their names that we use nowadays.

Let's get back to India in order to understand what suit has got each of things that were in the Shiva's hands. So the sword has become "spades", the goblet – "hearts", the coin – "diamonds" and the baton – "clubs".

Thus the cards started their traveling across the Europe. In a while it resulted in the creations of gambling, and authorities couldn't leave this fact without their attention. But in spite of cards and gambling ban the mania didn't stop. Still people had found the way to play, and some slyboots made a market of the cards. Thus in Germany workshops were created that produced and improved cards manufacturing. People found a lot in common between cards and zodiacal signs, weeks of year, seasons and so on. This relation was depicted on cards respectively. But the most interesting thing for people was to guess who were the prototypes of the main cards heroes – kings and queens.

With kings it is easy to guess. They prototypes were the greatest monks of ancient times. Hearts were Charles the Great, Spades – the Biblical King David, diamonds – Julius Caesar, Clubs – Alexander the Great. The situation with queens is little bit more complex. The role of Queen of Hearts played Helen of Troy, Dido and Judith in different times. The spades were Joan of Arc, Minerva and Athena. Clubs were – Lucretia and Argina (the last one is associated with vanity and bustle).

Russia didn't stay aside and also gave its contribution to the history of cards. We all get used to the satiny cards, that when we face cards of other material they seem to us very weird. It is due to Russians. In the middle of XIX century the problem of the art design of cards was issued quite seriously. The technology and laconism played their role in the cards development. The creators of satiny cards were Adolph Charlemagne and Alexander Beidman.

Nowadays you may find playing cards practically in each house. Someone likes to play patience, others play bridge or something else. Now you can play cards at home, in the casino and even online casino. Each computer initially has patience "Spider" or "Solitaire". This is the real game acceptance, isn't it?