20 November 2002
RENAISSANCE PLAYING CARDS -- An uncut strip of five Italian-suited cards from a regular pack, late 15th or early 16th century (93 x 240mm), printed in the xylographic manner, with stencil colouring in brick-red, to an obsolete design. From the left, the cards are: the Cavalier of Cups, King of Swords, King of Batons, King of Coins and Queen of Cups.
With two further woodcut cards (97 x 57; 98 x 56mm), the Queen of Batons and Trump XVIIII ('Judgement' or 'The Angel'), from an Italian-suited Tarot pack of so-called 'Orfeo' or 'Lucca' type, early 16th Century, possibly from the same workshop (minor losses, wear and occasional thin-spots on the reverse).
Literature: S Kaplan, The Encyclopaedia of Tarot, Vol II, p. 281-3; M. Dummet, 'A survey of 'archaic' Italian cards,' The Playing-Card XIX, no. 2, pp. 43-5.
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