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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site


Card Games

Pack of playing cards

Pack of playing cards from The Philippines

Collected by Edward Belcher
Christy Collection
Gift of A.W. Franks

Ethno 8171.a-ay

Playing cards spread across the world from China. The first European playing cards had the four suits of coins, sticks, swords and cups, which are still used in Italy and Spain today. The pack shown here is from the Philippines. It has the suits of hearts, clubs, diamonds and spades. These were first invented by the French, but are now used across the world.