Introduction into Europe

['Moorish' card]

Islamic cards were introduced into southern Europe about 1350. The suit signs—again Coins, Cups, Swords, Sticks—were variously adapted. The Polosticks, still unfamiliar to Europeans, were changed to Sceptres, Batons or Cudgels. (Note that one of our own suits is called "Clubs.") An early Swiss report, c. 1377, says that Europeans experimented with different kinds of courts, sometimes as many as six (King, Queen, Knight, Lady, Valet, Maid).

"Moorish" card, 14th century (?) (Instituto Municipal de Historia, Barcelona)


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