Who Are The Kings On Cards?

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Although the figures on cards in a playing deck were around before names were ascribed the them, they represented specific kings at a time. These kings—David, Caesar, Charlie, Alexander—were chosen by the French during Henry IV's reign (1553-1610) and lasted into the 18th century. The names still appear on the king cards in France.


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Key Facts In This Video

  1. Playing cards are believed to have originated in either China or Persia. 00:08

  2. Thirteen cards in a suit represent the thirteen lunar months that occur in a single year. 00:37

  3. Early playing cards were hand-painted, and only the affluent could afford to own them. 01:22