Sunday, August 24, 2014

Sizes of swap cards

Another area I thought it was time to address is sizes of swap cards. They can range from mini's to wides. Lets start with the biggest.... 

1. Wides or Poker size: 
Early Wides (so from 1800's and earlier) are large, designed for men to hold. There are square cornered Wides (blunt cut cards) from the 1800's and earlier, then they began rounding the corners of the cards in the early 1900's. In more modern times Poker became a popular game and the cards are in the same wide format as in earlier times.   Examples here of a square corner wide and slightly later rounded corner one:

2. Bridge size or "regular playing cards": 
Some people call bridge size "regular sized" playing cards, but really they are not. They came out originally in the 1920's as women began to play cards (was mostly a men's game before that, so the cards were wider to fit a man's hand). Bridge cards (or "narrows" were specially designed to fit in a woman's hand. Also in this category are Whist sized cards, they are a slight difference to bridge cards and were made for the game of Whist. So really saying bridge cards are "regular" sized is a bit of a misnomer because they were not the first cards and certainly not regular in size at all.   The following scan shows firstly a regular bridge card from c1940's, next to it a Whist sized card and the two after it are Wides in 2 different sizes (the one with white border is slightly bigger than the ship card).

3. Patience sized or mini cards: 
These were used to play the game of Patience and used mostly by women or children. They can range in size from really teeny tiny to just small. Here are some examples of the range of sizes (height and width differences) with minis (sorry yes some are upside down!):

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