Playing cards are an everyday object used for gambling and game playing the world over. But the familiar deck of cards conceals hidden meanings that have links to secret societies and the occult. Why are there four suits and why hearts, spades, diamonds, clubs? What is the significance of the picture cards? What is the meaning of the symbolism of the Tarot? We look beneath the surface of the playing card and reveal an intriguing journey from their much disputed roots in China, Persia, and Egypt. And we uncover the secrets of card design, investigating rumored Masonic links and the way the design has changed to mirror the cultures and beliefs of the people who used them through the ages. What emerges is an extraordinary story that reveals the mysteries and meanings of the humble playing card--a history that is intimately entwined with the occult, voodoo, and man's fascination with mystical beliefs.