Did you know?

Having just bought a complete set of Georgian playing cards I did a spot of research about them.

Did you know there was a tax on playing cards? Like many items in the Georgian period, but what was unusual about this was the act

stayed in place until relatively recently it was abolished on 4 April 1960.

Playing cards was seen as addictive gambling and as such proved to be an easy source of income generation. In order to prevent tax avoidance the Ace of Spades was held by customs and only issued once duty had been paid by the card maker. The Ace of Spades was the chosen card to show the tax due and every maker of playing cards had to have a mark of his own to indicate recognition of his name on the card.

The set photographed is by Hunt & Sons and the duty paid was one shilling and sixpence., mashed George III.

The cards would have originally been in a leather outer, the box was made specifically for storing cards with diamond inlay to the lid and diamond ace to the base.

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We first became involved in Antique Treen and furniture some twenty five years ago and since then a passion for Treen, small wooden snuff boxes and decorative wooden items has developed into Opus Antiques.

This web site shows only a  small selection of our current stock for sale, if you are looking for something you don't see, please contact us.


We are also interested in buying Antique Treen items. As well as using our Contact page, you can also email or telephone us on 07941 285532


The word Treen is derived from the word tree and is a term used to describe wooden household objects, all turned from one piece of wood e.g. a bowl, plate, gingerbread mould, and spoons, always having a function.

Nowadays when we talk about Antique Treen it tends to cover all small wooden items including antique snuff boxes, candle stands, spice towers, etc. often made from several pieces of turned wood.


When a piece of wood has been painstakingly turned or carved, handled, polished and loved over a few hundred years old, it can develop a wonderful colour and patina and becomes an irresistible piece of Antique Treen.

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Address: Bath, Somerset       Contact Telephone: 07941 285532       Email:  sally.honey@icloud.com