The "Suicide King"

Last modified : 01 Nov 2006
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Early English king of hearts

This image of an early English playing-card shows the king of hearts wielding an axe. Due to poor copying by blockmakers the axe lost its head over the years and the shaft was turned into a sword which appears to be driven into his head, hence the nickname "Suicide King".

More images of the king of hearts changing over time are available.