hist-games: chess-board w/ playing-cards

Christian Joachim Hartmann lukian at Null.net
Tue May 19 07:03:38 PDT 1998

I'd like to thank everybody for contributing to my
question regarding the "chess-board" with playing cards.

I've received now a (private) email from an authority that
was able to identify the board. He even remembered when it
has been sold for the last time!

I was given two references to books containing material
on this board.
Luckily, these book were present at the Uni-lib.
Therefore, I'm now in the possession of two more
illustrations AND of original rules for this game!

The solution:

The board is called an "Offenes Kartenspiel" [Open card deck]. This is a kind
of Roulette with the playing cards replacing the numbers of a Roulette-wheel.

Better known examples of "Offene Kartenspiele" look somewhat different:
The 48 cards are arranged radially - like spokes on a wheel, in 12 sectors,
every sector consisting of 4 cards. [I hope I can add a scan to make this clear!]

The four single large suit signs in the corners are also present.

One of the boards pointed out to me had the rules of the game written on it!
[that should've been made compulsory I say]

First example, taken from:
Himmelheber, Georg (Ed.): "Spiele. Gesellschaftspiele aus einem Jahrtausend",
 Munich, 1972 (= Kataloge des Bayrischen Nationalmuseums, 14),
 ISBN 3-422-00653-2. Cat.-Nr. 352, p. 146-8.
This is a board from the Bayrisches Nationalmuseum in Munich. It is dated
1583, of size 38.5 x 39 cm. On on side of the board, the "Offenes 
Kartenspiel" is shown, the other side is for the game of Poch.
Actually, this is the board which is illustrated in full glowing colours
in Grunfeld's "Games of the World" in the section on "Glückshaus".
I scanned both sides.

The example illustration is from:
"Sammler, Fürst, Gelehrter. Herzog August zu Braunschweig und Lüneburg, 1579-1666",
  Wolfenbüttel, 1979, ISBN 3-88373-007-0 [Exhibition Wolfenbüttel, 1979]. Cat-Nr. 361, p. 178/79
This is a board serving as an insert, to be inserted into a solid chessboard to use it for other
games. It was made in Augsburg, in the workshop of Ulrich Baumgartner in 1616. The whole set
measures 46.5 x 38 cm.
It was made for and owned by the duke Augustus himself and is now in the Herzog-August-Museum
in his capital Braunschweig.
And the rules enlarged:

Since I don't want to post the rules to the group, may those of you who like
to receive them (and an English paraphrase) drop me a mail please?

With Greetings,

**       Christian Joachim Hartmann 
**       lukian at Null.net
**       christian.hartmann at uni-duesseldorf.de

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