10 SECRETS Hidden in a Deck of Playing Cards

Hey it’s Mike Chen. It is one of the most
common items that you see on an almost daily basis. A deck of cards has become ubiquitous part of our lives and a cheap way of entertaining ourselves and
our friends. I mean you can spread them across a table to build a house of cards
or have your buddies gather for a poker night. The standard 52 deck of playing
cards it seems a mundane to us but it has like so many things quite a story to
tell. In each suit and each character on it has its unique tale so in this video
we’re going to count down to 10 amazing facts about a standard deck of cards.
Number 10 the magic number. Ask anyone and they will say that a deck of playing
cards should always have 52 cards but not a lot of people know why. The
number 52 actually represents the number of weeks in a single year and
incidentally the four suits represent the four seasons – not the hotel. The 13
cards in each suit are the 13 weeks and each season the court or the twelve
Royals represented twelve calendar month and the two red into black suits are the
four different solstices. Also the four suits represent the four natural
elements heart is water club is fire diamond is earth and spade is air. Number
nine the odd card out. Check out any deck of playing cards and you will notice
that the ace of spades stand out in appearance. Whether is the
imagery on the face of the card or the amount of text accompanying the
illustration or maybe how sparse it looks. It is definitely in odd card out. The reason behind this is that playing cards were a popular form of
entertainment in medieval France and like today almost anyone from all walks
of life has a deck. So in order to exploit its popularity the French rulers
would put a tax on the ace of spades the card would from then on have open
spaces where officials would use to place stands indicating that a tax has been paid but these days the open faces on the ace of spades are used to
print information about the manufacturer trademarks or any other bits of random
information. Number eight one card short Due to the tax placed on the ace of
spades by the French monarchy and of course tax evasion people would
therefore buy their decks and opt out on the ace of spades to avoid that extra
charge so they would always have to play a game with one card short. This is where
the phrase not playing with a full deck originated from. These days if you say
that it would usually mean that a person is odd or not in their
right mind but back in the day it would quite literally mean that you are
playing with an incomplete deck. Number seven older than you think The first
recorded use of playing cars was in Asia around twelve century. While we may
associated these cards with the Europeans or even the Middle East it was
in the continent of Asia more specifically China that the game
was first conceived. Initially it was played similar to a mahjong or dominoes
where players would use bone or ivory tiles as cards later on the Chinese
switched it to its paper form that we know of today.
Number six familiar faces. The look and layout of the modern-day playing cards
owes itself to the French. Particularly the courts, or the cards with faces.
These face cards were named after and designed to look like famous historical
monarchs and they are as follows: the King of Hearts is supposed to be
Charlemagne the King of Diamonds is must be Julius Caesar the King of Spades is
supposed to be King David from the Bible in the king of club is supposed to be
Alexander the Great. The queens and Jack’s were also taken after historical
figures. For example, the Queen of Hearts is a representation of a biblical figure
named Judith and the Jack of Clubs represent Lancelot.
Number five suit up. Across different countries and cultures and over the
course of centuries there have been different variations of the suits to a
deck of playing cards. However it is difficult to pinpoint the exact origins
and reasons as to why. On the other hand suits that are similar to modern-day
playing cars have appeared as early as the 15th century in China. In these suits
all four of them represent different amounts of money. In Europe, countries
like Italy, Germany, Spain, Switzerland and many others developed their own form of
the suits but it was the French version of the suits with its spades hearts clubs
and diamonds that have spread worldwide and are now recognized as a standard any
deck of playing cards Number four collector’s item. Unlike say
comic books were cards where there are industry where community standards. Card
collecting is a popular hobby but there is no clear market price for any kind of
deck. Regardless, people buy different decks from different manufacturers and
of different rarity. Speaking of rarity a mid 15th century 52 deck of tarot cards
from the Netherland was considered to be the rarest and oldest in the world of
cards and decks and it was sold to a private collector in the 1970s
with a price tag of $2,800 and now resides in New York’s Metropolitan
Museum of Art. Number three coming to America. Playing cars arrived on American
shores with the British colonists, since then they have become quite popular in
North America. Centuries after it was introduced the deck went through several
changes in the hands of Americans. For example the varnished or high-gloss
finish on cards was an innovation to ease shuffling and if you would notice most
playing cars today have rounded edges this is to prevent them from wear due to
constant playing and preventing them from folding up when shuffled. But
perhaps the most innovative change done by the Americans was the double
headed court cards that prevented players from turning them right-side up during
play or dealing. Number two an ace in the hole During the Vietnam War
crates upon crates of aces of spades or sent to the American troops the troops
would then wear these aces like badges or scattered them around areas where
rebels can’t because the general belief was that the Vietnamese rebels were
superstitious and associated the ace of spades with bad luck and they allegedly
fled at the site. However the story was later on proved to be a myth,
perhaps a kind of propaganda where psychological warfare done to raise the
chances of the American troops of defeating the Vietnamese communists. And finally number one the deck that won the war. At the height of the Second World
War, the American government would send decks of bicycle brand cards to troops
imprisoned in Nazi camps. At first glance the decks and cards would appear
ordinary but what was amazing about them was that when they became wet the cards
would peel apart to reveal parts of a map. Assemble in a specific way the
52-card deck would reveal an intricate map that charts out escape routes for
the imprisoned American soldiers. So I guess an ordinary deck of cards may not
be so ordinary after all. All right guys, thank you all so much for watching this
video. I’ll see you later.

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7 thoughts on “10 SECRETS Hidden in a Deck of Playing Cards

  1. THIS HAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH LIBERALS!! AND and and and TRUMP! (In before the popular trolls actually say this…)

  2. Did I get that right? POWs were sent playing cards with escape routes hidden in them? That's genius! I want to know more about that, did anybody make it out okay?

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