All sports and competitions have certain equipment. Football players have pads, baseball players have bats, and golfers have clubs. In poker games,
there is one piece of equipment that is absolutely indispensable and that is the poker card. Here are some interesting facts about the poker card.
It is thought that poker cards derive from cards invented in ancient China. It is believed that these Chinese cards were used as money or at least to represent money.
In the 14th century, Egyptian decks of cards found their way to Europe.
These decks, which had 52 cards divided into suits of sticks, coins, swords and cups (suits still used in Tarot Decks) are almost certainly the precursors of modern decks which have suits of spades, diamonds, clubs and hearts,
one of which appears on every poker card.
The figure on each “paint” or “court” poker card represents a famous historical figure. The King of Hearts represents Alexander the Great, The King of Spades, King David, Diamonds, Julius Caesar and Clubs, Charlemagne.
Beginning in the 19th Century, designers began putting the card’s value in the corner of each poker card, so that players could see them easily without exposing their hand.
In a similar vein, court cards were made so that the design would be right side up no matter how the poker card was held, so that players would not tip off their hand by turning a card “right side up” during play.
The poker card has undergone few design changes since that time, as a standardized deck benefits all players. With the advent of online play, some cards aren’t really “cards” at all, so much as digitized images.
Fortunately, what we think of as a poker card is universally agreed upon by players, so everyone knows what to expect when the cards come out. What you do with those cards once you get them, of course, is up to you.