Home Columnist What is the real meaning of the cards in the deck?

What is the real meaning of the cards in the deck?

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Whether in an environment with several players or just two, a table game guarantees fun, entertainment and a good laugh, doesn’t it? And the most popular games are played with cards, which are so ingrained in our lives that we don’t even realise.

Want an example? You may have already heard someone say (on everyday occasions) that they had “a card up their sleeve” or that they were going to “play the last cards”. Or that excellent expression, “They are your suit!”

This article brings you the meaning of cards and other curiosities. Ready? Then here we go!

The meaning of the cards

The most common deck of cards is the French deck, which has 52 cards representing the number of weeks in a whole year. Curious, isn’t it? But you haven’t seen anything yet.

The sequence from Ace (A) to King (K) has 12 cards representing the months of the year.

And if you add up all the cards in the deck, assigning a value of 1 to the joker, the sum is 365, the total number of days in an entire year.

Amazed? There’s more.

The colours of the red and black suits symbolise day and night and, as the story goes, the suits symbolise the seasons of the year, with diamonds being spring, clubs summer, hearts autumn and spades winter.

Oh, and for those who say the deck doesn’t have a number 1: it does!

Ace in Latin means 1. So that’s why after the ace comes the 2.

Why doesn’t the king of hearts have a moustache?

There is no explanation for this, but the history of the deck raises two theories:

Theory 1: The king (K) of hearts would be the purest of the four kings in the deck. It’s like being clean-shaven is a sign of goodness, you know? If this explanation doesn’t make sense to you, we have one more.

Theory 2: In one of the printed lots, the king of hearts came out without a moustache, purely by the distraction of the printing workers. And apparently, no one cared.

What does the joker in the deck mean?

The first printing of the joker was in 1860, and the intention was to create a trump card in the deck, creating new possibilities in the game.

There are games in which it is removed from the deck. In others, it is present, having different value assignments depending on the type of game.

And finally, one more curiosity about the deck!

We hope you have enjoyed discovering curiosities about the deck and, to finish in style, nothing better than a little more knowledge!

The figures of the kings in the deck have already been represented by historical personalities such as:

  • The king of clubs figure would have a forceful attribution, representing Alexander the Great;
  • The king of spades would bring an authoritative figure, representing King David of Israel;
  • The king of diamonds would represent nobility and would be associated with Julius Caesar;
  • The king of hearts would have his figure associated with dignity and is characterised by Charlemagne.

And if you want to take a closer look at the cards in the deck, you can log on to https://irishmoc.org/ and have fun with all the board games we offer.

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