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pack of playing cards

pack of playing cards

  • Place of origin:

    Florence (made)

  • Date:

    circa 1730-40 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Panichi, Giovanni (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Woven silk - cream satin gathered with supplementary weft of black for Clubs and Spades, red for Hearts and Diamonds, and four or five colours for the Court cards: black, blue, green, red and beige. The one exception is the King of Hearts which has additional red.

    Etching on paper - backs consist of an etching of a halbedier supporting the arms of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany wrapped round the woven silk card.

  • Museum number:

    271:1-48-1866

  • Gallery location:

    Europe 1600-1815, Room 1, case CA1

This card in woven silk comes from a pack of forty eight (all the tens are missing). The backs of the cards in the pack, which are all identical, are covered with a seventeenth century print of a halbedier holding a shield bearing the arms of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany. The backs are wrapped around the edge of the woven image, a characteristic of Italian packs of the period. The Court cards (King, Queen and Knave) are based on a French design known as the Auvergne pattern. These cards may have been made as a gift, possibly a wedding present. The six of Hearts has the name of the maker, Giovanni Panichi, and his weavers’ mark, woven into the design.

Physical description

One of a set of playing cards in woven silk with a print of a halbedier supporting the arms of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany on the reverse

Place of Origin

Florence (made)

Date

circa 1730-40 (made)

Artist/maker

Panichi, Giovanni (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Woven silk - cream satin gathered with supplementary weft of black for Clubs and Spades, red for Hearts and Diamonds, and four or five colours for the Court cards: black, blue, green, red and beige. The one exception is the King of Hearts which has additional red.

Etching on paper - backs consist of an etching of a halbedier supporting the arms of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany wrapped round the woven silk card.

Dimensions

Height: 9.6 cm, Width: 5.6 cm

Descriptive line

Six of Spades; playing card in woven silk with print of a halbedier used as the back from a pack of forty eight; Florentine; circa 1730-40.

Materials

Silk; Paper; Printing ink

Techniques

Etching (printing process)

Categories

Playing cards & Tarot cards

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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