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Suit System:G
Recommended Name:  the Tell pattern Type 4.

Alternative names: Magyar kártya, helvé:ét or svájci német kártya, Schweizer Deutsche, Doppeldeutsche, Dvouhlavé. Previously known as Tell or Seasons pattern (B/A).


In about 1859 when Austrian makers began to produce a version of the Tell pattern, they replaced two of the figures by other more important characters from Schiller’s play. On the Ober of Bells "Stüszi vadász" was replaced by "Arnold von Melchthal", and on the Unter of Hearts "Kuoni pásztor" by "Werner Stauffacher". At the same time all the pictures of the seasons on the Deuces were changed. Oddly enough, Summer now shows a reaper with a scythe (much as in Type 1, [IPCS #90]) and Winter shows a single fur-hatted man crouching by a camp fire (reminiscent of Type I). But the figure shown on Autumn is now tasting the juice, while the girl seen on Spring is quite differently posed. When Hungarian card makers created a new pattern in about 1860 (see [IPCS #91]) they used the above Austrian Ober of Bells and Unter of Hearts but restored the old names. When they ceased making that pattern and started making this pattern they continued to perpetuate the error. Thus, in particular, we can find an Unter of Hearts named Kuoni pásztor who is plainly anything but a shepherd. The names are found either in German or Hungarian, other cards are without names (in the former Czechoslovakia).

Characteristic features

The Deuces, Obers, and Unters are named in German or Hungarian or not at all.

The Deuces show allegories of the seasons:

Kings are royal figures on horseback.

Obers: same as type 2 [IPCS #91]

Unters: same as type 2 [IPCS #91]

On the pip cards are depicted some typical places, events and people from Schiller’s play. The name of the firm or card-maker is on the VII of Bells, together with the tax stamp, if present.


32 cards: Daus, King, Ober, Unter, X to VII

24 cards: Daus, King, Ober, Unter, X, IX

Some makers

All the Hungarian makers, but also some of the Austrian, German and Bohemian card-makers produced type 4 of the Tell pattern, e. g. C. Titze, Wien, 1859; F. Pittner, Graz, 1860; J. Nejedly, Wien, 1875; J. Glanz, Wien, 1888; First Hungarian Playing-card Factory S. C. 1869-1896; Ceska G. Unie, Prag, 1920; Brüder Willner, Teplitz-Schönau, 1935; F. Piatnik & Sons, Budapest, 1896-1947; Piatnik (Ritter), Prag, 1925-1947; F. Piatnik & Sons, Vienna, 1864, 1890 and still today; Playing-card Factory and Press, Budapest, 1950 until today, VASS, Altenburg; Modiano, Triest.

Some References

REISINGER, Klaus, Herz, Schelle, Laub, Eichel, Wien, 2004.

MANN, Sylvia, Alle Karten auf den Tisch – All Cards on the Table, Leinfelden und Marburg, 1990.

JÁNOSKA, Antal, A Magyar Kártya – Die ungarische Karte, Budapest, 1997.

JÁNOSKA, Antal, Játékkártyák Magyarországon, Kecskemét-Wien, 1991.

ZSOLDOS, Benö, A Játékkártya és története, Budapest, 1980.

Tell pattern, Type 4

Illustration of Tell pattern Type 4 (jpg 1920 x 2324)
Top three rows: Piatnik Nándor és Fiai, Budapest, c.1910;
bottom three rows: Glanz Jószef, Bécs, c.1905 (Josef Glanz, Wien).
(Please note that the illustrations show Deuces, Obers, and Unders; Kings are not shown)

The International Playing-Card Society 8/2008 FH/AJ

For comments please contact the Pattern Sheet Editor: Kay Stolzenburg (

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Last updated 10th September 2010