April 15


Good news! I have finally been able to make 2 appointments for vaccination with the Pfizer vaccine. The first will be on April 26 and the second on June 1st. So I'm hopeful to spend 10 days or more in the Drôme region in France mid June. That is, if the restaurants and bars will be open there by that time.
Okay, back to reality. The lockdown continues and so does this series. Today's deck is known as part of a double deck, the Lion & Unicorn. The courts in both decks are the same, the difference is in the back designs. This deck shows the Unicorn holding a standard with the Scottish flag, while the other shows a lion holding a standard with the English flag. The unicorn has been the national animal for centuries. First added to the Scottish royal coat of arms by William I in the 12th century. The unicorn is always depicted with a golden chain around his neck. The legend says that the wild unicorn could only be tamed by a virgin maiden, but it's possible that the chain also represents the power of the Scottish kings to tame the unicorn.
The courts depict historical figures from England and Scotland, using only 3 colours. Nice to see how some of the names have been shortened: Jas for James, Hy for Henry, Chas for Charles, Geo for George on the kings. On the queens only Eliz for Elizabeth, while other longer names were printed in full. And the portrait on the JS needs no further introduction than Mr. W.S.
The decks were printed by Thomas De La Rue and published in 1958. The deck comes with 2 similar designed jokers. Obviously a luxury edition, as the cards have solid gold edges.