Introducing a precisely digitally hand-recreated reproduction of the next Cotta’s almanac deck full of history, and for the third time, strongly touched by Schiller’s works, continuing a year after the previous green and the blue one, which was the first published complete transformation playing card deck in the world!
The yellow “Wallenstein” deck is the third in a series of six famous transformation playing card decks we plan to release… This third Cotta’s almanac playing card deck was originally published in 1807. It draws on aspects from Schiller’s work; the famous historical drama Wallenstein and the theme of the 30 Years’ War.
In contrast to previous Cotta’s decks issues where the court cards were designated with the words “Valet”, “Dame”, and “Roi”, which are the French terms corresponding to the Jack, Queen, and King, here on the court cards of this 3rd issue, Jack and Queen are not described, only King is described with Crown at upper left.
The central figure of Albrecht von Wallenstein, the Duke of Friedland who served the Holy Roman Emperor in the Thirty Year’s War, is represented as the King of Hearts.
Also depicted are his general Christian von Ilow (“Illo”, King of Spades), and his lieutenant Octavio Piccolomini (King of Clubs). Instead of following his intelligence, Wallenstein foolishly followed his astrologer Baptista Seni (Jack of Hearts). By his many schemes involving multiple countries, Wallenstein eventually found himself in a position where nobody could trust him. Piccolomini was one of Wallenstein’s assassins, along with the English captain Walter Devereux (Jack of Clubs). Other contemporaries of Wallenstein that are depicted include his wife, the Duchess of Friedland (Queen of Hearts).
Some characters blur the line between fiction and reality. This includes Countess Terzky (Queen of Spades), who in real life was Wallenstein’s wife’s sister, but takes on fictional actions in Schiller’s play. Wallenstein’s secretary Newman (Jack of Spades) also makes an appearance, but in the deck becomes the fictional cavalry captain and assistant of Count Terzky. Max Piccolomini (King of Diamonds), the son of the killer Octavio Piccolomini, is also a fictitious character. The same is true of Wallenstein’s princess and daughter Thekla (Queen of Diamonds), her servant von Rosenberg (Jack of Diamonds), and her lady-in-waiting Fraulein Neubrunn (Queen of Clubs).