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Front of the game card 29 from "Characteristics; An Original Game by a Lady"

EP001.08.TMP.010 (RS18521)


This is card 29 in the game, Characteristics, an Original and Amusing Game by a Lady, published by the firm W. & S. B. Ives of Salem, Massachusetts in 1843. The goal of the game was to collect cards by identifying famous personages by their personality traits. When a player failed to match the person to their characteristics, she or he had to read a pair of admonitory epigrams on the back of the card. The question on the front is: "England, died A.D. 901. He was distinguished for: genius for government and for war; learning; taste for poetry and music; beauty; energy, prudence; ingenuity; punctuality; piety." The answer is Alfred the Great, King of England, who died in 901. The epigrams on the back are: "O, foolish youth! Thou seek'st the greatness that will overwhelm thee" and "If human woes her soft attention claim, a tender sympathy pervades her frame." A pattern of palmettes decorates the edge of the card. W. & S. B. Ives, one of the firms of William and Stephen Bradshaw Ives, was bought out by Parker Brothers in 1887.

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Collection Name
Ephemera collection
Collection Code
Date Notes
Physical Description
1 playing card
Collection Type
Description Level
Additional Identification Number
DigitalID: 000347
AccessID: 637
Other identifier: HNEDID-000347
Reference Code

Record details

W. & S.B. Ives (Firm) (publisher)
Other People
Abbott, Beverly
Alfred, King of England, 849-899
Ives, Stephen Bradshaw, 1801-1883
Ives, William, 1794-1874
Descriptive Terms
borders (ornament areas)
card games (game sets)
educational games
kings (people)
palmette (motif)
printed ephemera
Material Type
playing cards
Salem (Essex county, Massachusetts)
Wessex (England, United Kingdom) [general region]
Front of 000449
Location Note
Ephemera: Card Games: Box 1

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