OLD PLAYING CARDS
ENGLISH STANDARD PLAYING CARDS TO 1828
MAKERS INCLUDE GROSER, GIBSON & GISBORNE,
FRENCH, HALL, HUNT & SONS,
I HARDY AMONGST OTHERS 

Complete pack [ 52/52 ] of George III
English Playing Cards by Gibson & Co c1765-1776

Gibson was located at 30 Gerrard Street in Soho, London, the premises previously being occupied by Christopher Blanchard. 
 
These cards would have been printed under the management of Charles Gibson who was a maker from 1772 to 1798.
 
Tax from 1765 to 1776 was One Shilling [ 5p in decimal money ] and was applied as six pence on the Jeu [ maker’s wrapper – name originating from the French trade] and six pence on the duty wrapper so this copper engraved Duty Ace of Spades bears no reference to duty.
 
From 1776 onwards duty would be additionally added to the ace of spades progressed in three six pence increments to 1801 when the tax stated on the ace of spades was one shilling and sixpence [ or six pence three times ] making the total tax on a pack of playing cards as two shillings and six pence.
 
The court cards are full length with no indices and are ‘unturned’ ie the pips are not uniformly on one side.
 
The backs, as was the case with English Standard Playing Cards of this period, were plain white.
 
Condition = some cards exhibit surface wear and the ten of clubs has an inferpection in the second left hand pip.
 
Despite some minor imperfections [ no tares or bent corners ] the cards are rated 5++/10  and are extremely scarce in any condition.

REF: Gibson_97     
 

£2,000.00

Ken Lodge - the British Playing Card Industry 1600-2000

Laurence Alt - The Card and Dice Office The Playing Card Volume XX No:1 & 2

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1765 by Rowley & Co Playing Cards

These are cards are copper engraved .

1765 was the year that the taxing authorities attempted to introduce a standard Ace of Spades to show the tax paid. These were printed by the revenue and released to the individual makers on payment of the required duty; it is therefore amazing that this Ace should be so different to all the other makers.

The unusualness of this pack also extended to the pips and the court cards. So this was the first non-standard design on a standard pack of playing cards of the United Kingdom.

Half length courts within ovals frames, representing kings and queens with court body-guards as Jacks.

The suit signs are ‘red chalice’, with a heart in the chalice, a ‘black pike head’, an ‘orange topaz’, cut in a diamond shape and a green clover leaf.

The court cards correspond to England, France, Spain and Portugal. The Aces of chalices, topazes, and clover are in oval cartouches decorated with a mitre, crozier and croos, a winged hat, caduseus and trident, a wreath and farm tools.

Rowley and Co operated at No.6 in the Old Bailey, London.

Duty Ace George III Number 11.

The pack is complete 52/52 with plain backs. The condition is worn plus the occasional surface mark.
They have been heavily played with but there are no tares or bends.

This is a very scarce 18th Century Pack and the price reflects the overall condition.

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REF: Rowley_No11     
 

£1,250.00

POSTAGE AT COST

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C1785 A complete set of Piquet Playing Cards by Gibson & Gisborne

Ace of Spades [ Engraved ] George III One 6d No. 20
With 31 woodblock printed cards in small format
[ 58mm x 86mm – Inner Frame 33mm x 57mm ]
These cards in the four regular suits with
Ace, King, Queen, Jack, Ten, Nine, Eight and Seven
Full standing unturned courts.
32 cards [ complete ] in total were often sued for the game of Piquet or Faro.
The cards are in first class condition – the Ace of Spades is a little darker; often seen as usually the top card of the pack attracting a little dust – also engraved printing by the Stamp Office

REF: GG_20     
 

£750.00

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A unique complete set of 18th Century playing cards by Christopher Groser  

Three sets are known by this maker – this is the only complete one and has uniform, non-mixed, courts.

The Duty Ace of Spades tells us it was registered between 1789 and 1801. This conflicts with John Berry’s detailed listings of the Stamping Office records but this is certainly no exception – records were lost and misplaced.

Berry1 does list a Groser Duty Ace for the period 1801-1828 with duty of One Shilling and Six Pence
[ six pence added three times ] but this could have just been a notation error by Berry given the size of his undertaking.

So this George III packs of playing cards shows duty on the Ace of Spades of One Shilling
[ six pence added twice ] making the total duty for the pack as Two Shillings [ two further sixpences were applied to the Jew and the Wrapper ] and was most probably issued c1790-95.

Groser is cited as operating from 14 Prince’s Street, Cavendish Square at the time of this packs production.

The acknowledged expert of the English Standard Pattern, Dr Ken Lodge2, has identified the courts as being made by Gibson, operating from 58 Mortimer Street, Cavendish Square during this period.

Christopher Groser and Charles Gibson were both Liverymen of the Worshipful Company of Makers of Playing Cards and had both held the esteemed position of Master of that Company. Groser in 1784 and Gibson in 1773.

Given their premises close physical proximity to each other, see map, and their involvement, at a senior level, in the Worshipful Company is not only reasonable to assume that they knew each other well but one could speculate that Gibson produced the basic pack, 51 cards, to go with Groser’s Duty Ace of Spades for a fee.

It is quite probably that Groser was involved in the production of other wares, maybe of a stationary type, and this using of Gibson for outsourcing would make sense all ways round presuming his sales were of a low volume supported by number of instances of his Duty Ace known

I can only presume that the Stamping Officer would visit Groser’s premises to duty the final product – it making no difference to the stamping office who actually made the 51 cards as long at the duty was paid.

The cards are in very good condition and represent a high standard of workmanship with an unprinted reverse.

1 Taxation on Playing-Cards in England from 1711-1960 – John Berry
2 The British playing card industry 1600-200: the makers and their products. Ken Lodge

groser_aos_2

REF: GROSER    
 

£4,500.00

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An 18th Century English Revenue Ace of Spades - perhaps not

Liberty & Beef

This interesting item came to light at a recent auction of Italian Printed Sheets and Cards.

To all extant and purposes is an English Duty Ace of the 1765 to 1776 period.

Aces were printed by the Stamp Office, using intaglio plates, then these sheets were returned to the Playing Card Maker for pasting onto the backing board.

So what can we say about this Ace.

Firstly,  no such maker is recorded by the Worshipful Company of Makers of Playing Cards despite the fact that one website has a pack of the correct period with this Duty Ace with the addition of the words GENOA.

Examining the Ace shows that the regnal number III is partly obliterated by a decoration. That decoration should be in a leaf format as it should be on the right hand side of the garter.

The symbol, under the DIEU ET MON DROIT, looks nothing like it should.

It was at that point that the engraver would denote any re-cuts.

So this is a fake, maybe the Italians, if indeed they were the forgers, were trying to cache in on the this lucrative trade that was seated in Belgium.

The paper is adjudged to be early 19th century.

So it is offered as a Fake but an interesting one.

REF: LB_ACE    
 

£90.00

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c1800 A sheet of 'FAKE' English Playing Cards - GIBSON & GISBORNE

Made in Belgium, quite possibly in Brussels, the sole purpose to avoid British Tax which was excessively high.

Whilst the Ace is very obviously a fake being cut from a woodblock as opposed to a genuine British Duty Ace being from an engraved plate, the court cards are very typical of the period.

This sheet , measuring 15.25 inches by 13.5 inches, has the benefit of portraying all the courts, the ‘Duty Ace’, the Two of Spades and the Nine of Spades.

The condition of the sheet is typical of it’s type – not being square cut.

POST IS FREE ON THIS ITEM

REF: CSA5258         

£700.00

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c1812 Playing Cards by Josiah Stone with George III Duty Ace.

An interesting pack from a hard to find maker.

The Ace of Spades has a portion of the engraving scratched out. This would have read “EXPORTATION” .

There was no duty on packs for exportation and you can see this Ace has no duty detailed on it. This is only possible if the Ace was produced between 1765 and 1776 – Stone was not a maker unto c1800

So what we have is a pack destined for export that either found it’s way back to the England and was sold as a normal pack or is from a batch of cards that were fraudulently diverted from export to the domestic trade. Either way we are talking about a savings of 2/6d [ one eight of a pound ].

Stone experienced problems c mid twenties and his Duty Aces were added to the account of Creswick – one could speculate that maybe he was a naughty boy – though there is no evidence of that.

The courts are Type II and the backs of the cards are plain.

52 cards complete – card are very good condition – played with but with no bends or tares – light surface marks from whist perhaps?

REF: JS_EXP     
 

£550.00

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Henry French Exportation Ace Playing Cards c1800/1805

We know of only two other packs from this maker, both EXPORTATION Aces, and count this as one of the rarest 18th/19th Century English Playing Card Makers – this is Ace number 18 of 20.

Henry French operated from 11 Broad St, Bloomsbury from 1794 to 1805.

He was Warden of the Worshipful Company of Makers of Playing Cards in 1800/1801 and became Master in 1802.

His court cards bear a similarity to those of Brotherton and T Wheeler. This is especially true with the Queen of Hearts which has the clasped Tulip un-opened compared to the vast majority of his piers where the tulip [?] is fully opened.

The cards are in excellent condition. The Jack of Diamonds exhibits bottom margin slippage [ a printing anomaly ] and the Queen of Spades has a very slight colour run, top left of card not affecting the design.

The cards have a plain back.

Insured Postage is free on this item.

REF: CSAHF_18         

£3,000.00

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Hunt & Sons c1827 Complete Deck of Playing Card - a Georgian Pack.

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REF:ES_28_Hunt_95
£400

This deck has single figure unturned courts and plain white backs.

All but the Duty Ace of Spades were printed from Woodblocks.
The duty card was printed from Intaglio plates in sheets of 20
This Ace was from a plate laid down in May 1827 and bears the Die Number 95

The Duty levied on this ace is ONE SHILLING AND SIX PENCE

This is the GARTER ACE design instituted in 1765 to replace the previous Red Duty Handstamp

The Ace bears the George IV notation above the Garter on the left GIV

Cards are complete and in very fine condition ranked 9/10
There are small edge marks on the 3 lower club pips

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Hunt & Sons c1817 Complete Deck of Playing Card - a Georgian Pack.

REF:ES_28_Hunt_42
£350

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This deck has single figure unturned courts and plain white backs.

All but the Duty Ace of Spades were printed from Woodblocks.
The duty card was printed from Intaglio plates in sheets of 20
This Ace was from a plate laid down in 1817 and bears the Die Number 42

The Duty levied on this ace is ONE SHILLING AND SIX PENCE

This is the GARTER ACE design instituted in 1765 to replace the previous Red Duty Handstamp

The Ace bears the George III notation above the Garter on the left GIII

Cards are complete and iin slightly played with condition ranked 7+/10

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Hunt & Sons c1827 Complete Deck of Playing Card - a Georgian Pack.

REF:ES_28_Hunt_115
£325

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This deck has single figure unturned courts and plain white backs.

All but the Duty Ace of Spades were printed from Woodblocks.
The duty card was printed from Intaglio plates in sheets of 20
This Ace was from a plate laid down in c1827 and bears the Die Number 115

The Duty levied on this ace is ONE SHILLING AND SIX PENCE

This is the GARTER ACE design instituted in 1765 to replace the previous Red Duty Handstamp

The Ace bears the George IV notation above the Garter on the left GIV

Cards are complete and in a slightly played with condition with occasional surface mark ranked 7/10

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LAW AWAY PLAN

WE CAN OFFER YOU A ZERO INTEREST LAW AWAY PLAN TO ENABLE PURCHASE OF EXPENSIVE ITEMS, IN INSTALMENTS, WITH UP TO ONE YEAR TO PAY.

WE ARE VERY FLEXIBLE AND WILL TAILOR A PLAN FOR YOU – TELL US WHAT YOU ARE INTERESTED IN AND WE WILL SUGGEST A PLAN.

c 1820 English Standard Hand Drawn & Coloured Complete Pack on Bananna Leaf

They were believed to have been made in Ceylon and are on either palm leaf or 
banana leaf. They are mounted and housed in two books and were previously part of a 
collection by Captain H. E. Rimington Wilson of Broomhead Hall. 

His collection was sold in 1971 and although it only contained about 100 items of playing cards Sylvia Mann was totally impressed with the quality of the collection.

Insured Postage is free on this item.

REF: CSA3810       

£2,500.00

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LAW AWAY PLAN

WE CAN OFFER YOU A ZERO INTEREST LAW AWAY PLAN TO ENABLE PURCHASE OF EXPENSIVE ITEMS, IN INSTALMENTS, WITH UP TO ONE YEAR TO PAY.

WE ARE VERY FLEXIBLE AND WILL TAILOR A PLAN FOR YOU – TELL US WHAT YOU ARE INTERESTED IN AND WE WILL SUGGEST A PLAN.

Gibson Hunt & Son c1801 / 1803 Playing Cards

A complete deck [ 52/52 ] of George III English Playing Cards by Gibson Hunt & Son

The Duty Ace of Spades carries duty of Six Pence – added three times and is numbered No: 5

The Court cards are full length and the cards carry no indices. The court cards are famed within the card and have large borders – the inner frame measuring 32mm X 55mm

The backs of the cards are plain and measure 58mm X 87mm – this is the smaller sized cards known as Piquet sized Playing Cards.

The cards are in Lightly played with – no tares or bent corners rated 7/10

First Class / Air Mail Postage: to UK – £4.45 / to Europe – £8.00 / to Other £10.95 Insurance is an additional £5.00 to any Country for the first £250.00 We combine postage and only charge our costs.

REF: CSA2196_0011 

  

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Hall & Son c1820 Complete Deck of Playing Card - a Georgian Pack.

REF:ES_28_Hall_115_0001



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This deck has single figure unturned courts and plain white backs.

All but the Duty Ace of Spades were printed from Woodblocks.
The duty card was printed from Intaglio plates in sheets of 20
This Ace was from a plate laid down in May 1819 and bears the Die Number 115

The Duty levied on this ace is ONE SHILLING AND SIX PENCE

This is the GARTER ACE design instituted in 1765 to replace the previous Red Duty Handstamp

The Ace bears the George III notation above the Garter on the left GIII.

Cards are complete and in very fine condition ranked 8+/10

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c1812 GIII HALL & SON EXPORTATION PLAYING CARDS

A complete set of Playing Cards 52/52 with Plain Backs and full standing courts.

The Ace of Spades being engraved, for the maker by the Stamping Office, the other 51 cards being woodblock printed and hand stencilled coloured.

The cards are in very good condition with no bends tears and we would rate them 7/8 out of 10, with 10 being Mint condition.

Insured Postage is free on this item.

REF:CSA65060011     

 

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Hunt & Sons c1820 Complete Deck of Playing Card - a Georgian Pack.

Note: Due to the heavy taxation in this period - there were vendors who sold single cards to 'make up' sets where a card had gone missing.
This is perfectly acceptable to collectors - this pack could not have been, easily, 'made up' because it has the patterned back.

REF:ES_28_Hunt_76_007

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This deck has single figure unturned courts and with red 'zig-zag' patterend backs

All but the Duty Ace of Spades were printed from Woodblocks.
The duty card was printed from Intaglio plates in sheets of 20
This Ace was from a plate laid down in c1820 and bears the Die Number 76

The Duty levied on this ace is ONE SHILLING AND SIX PENCE

This is the GARTER ACE design instituted in 1765 to replace the previous Red Duty Handstamp

The Ace bears the George III notation above the Garter on the left GIII

Cards are complete and in a slightly played with condition ranked 7+/10

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c1805 HALL Playing Cards

A complete pack of George III playing cards by cardmaker HALL.

Duty is One Shilling and Sixpence [ sixpence added three times ] and this is from plate No 11 [ third re-cut for those who are interested ].

Courts are single figured and stencil coloured.

The cards are in very good condition rated 8/10

Insured Postage is free on this item.

REF: CSAH_no11_0031       

 

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Unknown Maker c1800/1810 “TOY”
small format Playing Cards

A complete deck [ 52/52] of George III English Playing Cards by an Unknown maker

No tax levied on this item so plain Ace of Spades – stamped SUPERFINE

The Court cards are full length and the cards carry no indices. The backs of the cards are plain and measure 35mm X 58mm

The cards are in near Mint Condition 9+/10

First Class / Air Mail Postage: to UK – £4.45 / to Europe – £8.00 / to Other £10.95 Insurance is an additional £5.00 to any Country for the first £250.00 We combine postage and only charge our costs.

REF: CSA2171-005
 

 

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Hunt & Sons c1820 Playing Cards

A complete deck [ 52/52 ] of George III English Playing Cards by Name

The Duty Ace of Spades carries duty of One Shilling and Six Pence and is numbered No: 66

The Court cards are full length and the cards carry no indices. The backs of the cards are plain and measure 63mm X 93mm

The cards are in Excellent Condition [ near Mint ] 9/10

First Class / Air Mail Postage: to UK – £4.45 / to Europe – £8.00 / to Other £10.95 Insurance is an additional £5.00 to any Country for the first £250.00 We combine postage and only charge our costs.

REF: CSA2197_057

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c1818 I HARDY EXPORTATION PLAYING CARDS

Complete pack of these George III Playing Cards by the maker I HARDY.

These cards were made for exportation, the colonies, USA, Europe or the Far East, and thuis bear no duty.

They are Ace number 37 [ Recut 1 ] which dates them 1817-1820

Cards are in very good condition.

Insured Postage is free on this item.

REF: CSA5397-0021

        

 

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Hunt & Sons c1818 Playing Cards

A complete deck [ 52/52 ] of George III English Playing Cards by Hunt & Sons

The Duty Ace of Spades carries duty of One Shilling and Six Pence and is numbered No: 73

The Court cards are full length and the cards carry no indices. The backs of the cards are plain and measure 64mm X 93mm

The cards are in Near Mint Condition 9/10

First Class / Air Mail Postage: to UK – £4.45 / to Europe – £8.00 / to Other £10.95 Insurance is an additional £5.00 to any Country for the first £250.00 We combine postage and only charge our costs.

REF: CSA6150-600     

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Hunt & Sons c1809 Playing Cards

A complete deck [ 52/52 ] of George III English Playing Cards by Hunt & Sons

The Duty Ace of Spades carries duty of One Shilling and Six Pence and is numbered No: 18

The Court cards are full length and the cards carry no indices. The backs of the cards are plain and measure 64mm X 94mm

The cards are in Lightly played with – no tares or bent corners rated 7/10

First Class / Air Mail Postage: to UK – £4.45 / to Europe – £8.00 / to Other £10.95 Insurance is an additional £5.00 to any Country for the first £250.00 We combine postage and only charge our costs.

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Complete set of George III English Playing Cards by Hall c1800

A complete set [ 52/52 ] set of English Standard Playing Cards from the maker HALL c1799-1800

Hall took over from the playing card maker, Llewellyn in 1786 

The Duty Ace of Spades bears One Shilling in Tax by the inscription “SIXPENCE / SIXPENCE ADDL DUTY / ADDL DUTY” making the total tax Two Shillings.

From 1776 tax was One Shilling [ 5p in decimal money ] and was applied as six pence on the Jeu [ maker’s wrapper – name originating from the French trade] and six pence on the duty wrapper and subsequent additional three pence duties were applied to the ace of spades – those being, in this case, in 1776 and 1789

The court cards are full length with no indices and are ‘unturned’ ie the pips are not uniformly on one side.

The backs, as was the case with English Standard Playing Cards of this period, were plain white.
 
The cards are in good condition with no bends or tears but there is the occasional, 
non-distracting evidence of surface markings, we would rate them 6/10.

REF: Hall_24_0501   
 

Ken Lodge - the British Playing Card Industry 1600-2000

Laurence Alt - The Card and Dice Office The Playing Card Volume XX No:1 & 2

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Unknown Maker c1800/1810 “TOY”
small format Playing Cards

A complete deck [ 52/52] of George III English Playing Cards by an Unknown maker

No tax levied on this item so Ace of Spades is infact a Black Spade !!

The Court cards are full length and the cards carry no indices. The backs of the cards are Pink Patterned and measure 39mm X 57mm

The cards are in lightly played with condition – rated 7/10

First Class / Air Mail Postage: to UK – £4.45 / to Europe – £8.00 / to Other £10.95 Insurance is an additional £5.00 to any Country for the first £250.00 We combine postage and only charge our costs.

REF: CSA2181 _053     
 

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