Factors affecting the value of a deck of playing cards are these: desirability, scarcity, completeness and condition. I have bought decks of playing cards on eBay that were described as being in great condition and that were, when I received them, in terrible condition. If it is a standard 52-card deck, are there 52 cards? Let's talk about condition for a moment, because you can do that right now. For instance, the popular Bicycle playing cards were sold in boxes with a gilt edge starting in circa 1885. The ace of spade mimics the stamp that was used to indicate that the tax on playing cards had been paid to the British monarchs of the 1400s and 1500s. Finding a rare and truly valuable deck of playing cards doesn't happen every day, but it does happen; and it would be great if it happened to you! What you need to do is to identify your deck, determine the desirability of it, and candidly assess the deck's condition.
Playing cards were decorated with intricate designs reminiscent of Muslim carpets and. Lori can offer you to help you find the biggest thrift store find ever. There are two in the United States, and two in Great Britain, the most prestigious of all groups being the. Some decks have copies of tax stamps that are obviously not original making those easier to spot. B not sealed but in excellent condition free of any faults this grade is used for a deck that is not sealed but has seen little use the cards will be in excellent condition. These are often collected for the unique artwork and designs on the cards.
Chief among these resources, if one is speaking of American playing cards, is the , edited by Tom and Judy Dawson. Now, what about identifying the cards themselves? Themed decks Themed decks are collected for what is on the deck. You can, of course, also do internet research. Edges are crisp and intact. Do they smell the slightest bit musty? Although there is indication that cards were used in games as early as the ninth century in China, cards as they are known today are thought to be from the early 1300s. Lori reveals secrets to getting thrift store discounts, understanding how to spot steals, and how to use the thrift store's calendar in your favor.
Playing cards immediately fascinated people as an art form and they began to show up in collections by the 1600s. This is a reprint of an older work, so there's no up-to-date information in it; but it is a very informative work, and has the added advantage of being remarkably inexpensive. It is a great work, and card collectors owe the Dawsons a tremendous debt for their fine work with this encyclopedia. Later taxes were imposed due to the association of cards with gambling and mysticism frowned upon by religious institutions. Card playing was brought to Europe from the Islamic Mameluke Empire.
B not sealed but in excellent condition free of any faults this grade is used for a deck that is not sealed but has seen little use the cards will be in excellent condition. In the 16th century the French playing cards began to take on a more modern appearance with the use of kings, queens, and jacks. History of Playing Cards Playing cards have a long and fascinating history. Your deck probably isn't worth that; but then, I can't say. Engraved cards were more expensive than the woodcuts and so are very rare. Armed with these two works, you'll have a working knowledge of the historical development of playing cards did you know they used to have square corners? Plus, a secret that only Dr.
It is a little known fact that playing cards only had rounded edges after 1875. Look for a trademark, logo, or location marking on the deck or box. Of these, desirability comes first. Makers added images of royal soldiers and ranking monarchs to the existing deck. Starting in the early 1400s printed decks were manufactured in Europe by professional card makers.
Is the deck complete, or at least complete as far as you know? Often a deck will have at least one card missing or badly damaged. Chinese playing cards that accompany mah jongg sets and didactic sets are only the tip of the playing card iceberg. It is important to keep them in sleeves to keep them clean. It might have bent corners, creases, soiling, etc. It is generally believed that playing cards as we know them reached England by circa 1520. Pickvet provides a complete list of the stamp codes with corresponding dates in his book.
These early cards were made by hand. Now for the last step; join or at least contact a playing card collector's group. Single examples Collecting single examples of antique playing cards is possibly the easiest way to begin collecting. Don't be someone who does that. With Faults - This would be a deck in one of the desirable categories but that has a missing card or missing box. The short answer, and the most accurate, is that your old deck of playing cards is worth exactly what someone else is willing to pay you for it. Every once in a while - and, when I'm busy, much more frequently than that - a reader sends me an e-mail describing an old deck of playing cards, and asking how much the deck is worth.
Evaluating Antique Cards Evaluating antique playing cards can be difficult. There should be no creases or bent corners. Resources for doing so are few, but they do exist. A technique for woodcut prints to fabric was tweaked so that it was usable on paper. If not, ask your local library to obtain a copy. As with most antiques and collectibles reaching a certain price point, playing cards have been remade in old styles.
Poor - A deck that does not fit into the above categories. These issues are important, because if you're going to try to sell the deck to someone, you need to describe it honestly. Italian playing cards or tarot cards have a close association with fortune telling or cartomancy dating to the late 14th Century. Want to find the next bargain whose story goes viral and makes you rich? For instance, the King of Spades was modeled after the biblical figure of King David, and the King of Diamonds was Julius Caesar. In this way the cards will last for many generations. Adding the indices is considered to be a major improvement in playing card history.