card party

An Evening Card Party
in Regency England

Flip top card tables in the drawing room would be brought from the walls to the center of the room and set up for guests to play cards. Whist, vingt-et-un, piquet, or loo might be played. Wine, cheese, fruit, and bread would be served from salvers on the pier tables. Perhaps a trendy French jelly with its translucent color reflecting the candle light will be served. The hostess will look on with satisfaction as the candle light reflects a mellow glow in the highly polished silver and sparkling glass of her service.
D-shaped folding card table c.1790
Loo is played using all 52 cards by 3 to 8 players. Players have the opportunity to stay in or drop out. Anyone who stays in takes a proportionate share of the pot for each trick they take, but has to pay in an amount equal to the whole pot if they fail to take any tricks. playing card 1805
Piquet – is a game for two players using 36 cards (sixes through Aces). The players cut for the deal of each hand, and the person who draws the low card is dealer. Each player is dealt 12 cards in groups of 2 to 4 cards. The remaining 12 cards are placed between the players. Scores are counted in each hand. Each player may draw up to 8 cards. Blanks, ruffs, sequences, sets, and tricks all score points according to the rules of the game. The first player to score 100 points wins.
Whist--The classic 52-card game of whist is a plain-trick game without bidding for 4 players in fixed partnerships. Although the rules are extremely simple there is enormous scope for scientific play.
Vingt-et-un— is also called twenty-one or pontoon. It can be played by any number of players from two upwards using a standard 52-card pack. For a large number of players, say 8 or more, two 52 packs can be mixed together. An ace is worth 1 or 11 at the holder's choice, kings, queens, jacks and tens are worth ten, and the remaining cards are worth their pip value. Each player's basic aim is to form a hand whose total value is as near as possible to 21, without going above 21.
pier mirror For the card party a variety of English cheeses has been ordered from the famous cheesemongers Paxton & Whitfield. Bread, fruit, and wines will also be offered.
The Georgian menu might include:
pier table c.1810 Cheshire a cheese with a slightly salty tang.
Cheddar is a firm rich close textured cheese ideal for slicing and grating.
Derby is a firm close textured cheese that is sometimes mixed with sage.
Double Gloucester is made in large wheels and has a full flavor.
Double Lancashire has a rich creamy texture.
Leicester is a midland cheese with a granular texture and a mellow flavor.
Stilton is referred to as the king of English Cheeses. It is associated with a coach stop on the Great North Road.
Wensleydale is a flaky textured wildly sweet cheese from Yorkshire.
Sherry would be served for the ladies and port wine for the gentlemen would be pulled from the wine cooler or cellaret. In those days a wine glass rinser, an attractive tub of lemon water, was available in the serving room for guests to rinse their glasses between types of wine. Regency wine cooler
Georgian wine glass Georgian barrel port glass Bristol Blue glass wine glass rinser Georgian silver salver
Georgian wine glassGeorgian barrel port glassBristol Blue glass wine glass rinserGeorgian silver salver
Try an English Cheese Assortment
A History of Playing Cards and a Bibliography of Cards and Gaming by Catherine Perry Hargrave
Antique Playing Cards : A Pictorial History by Henry Rene D'Allemagne
Magazine devoted to historic playing cards: International Playing Card Society Membership [MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION]


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