Exceptional set of beautiful cards made by Brepols c.1919, commonly titled, “Premiere Guerre Mondiale II.” The Roman numeral designation “II” is to distinguish it from a very similar deck made by Brepols in 1918 or 1919 commonly titled “Premiere Guerre I.” (In Fournier, compare Belgium 50 and Belgium 51). In its auction in 2007, Galerie Bassenge titled this deck “Guerre Mondiale II” (i.e., no “Premiere” reference); obviously, when the cards were made there had not been a Second World War, and this may be what they were called when made. The Aces portray scenes relevant to WWI (i.e., “Géneral Plumer à Cologne” etc.) with two scenes per Ace. The Kings and Queens depict royalty of the time, and the Jacks depict prominent generals.
The deck is complete at 36 cards (Ace, 6-K), plus 1 Joker. The cards are bridge size, measuring 89mm x 58mm, with gold gilt at the corners. There is no box. They came to me in a plain wrapper and will travel to a buyer in it, but I do not believe that the wrapper is original to the cards.
The cards are mint, and the plain wrapper is “as new,” except for a tear at one fold.
Reference: Fournier, Playing Cards, Belgium 51.
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