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Mr. de Talleyrand was at death’s door this morning and everybody was wondering whether the sly devil was playing some sort of practical joke. We know he never acts without a purpose, but no-one could figure out what advantage there could be in suffering the pangs of death. -Le Charivari, 1838 as translated by Philip G. Dwyer

Talleyrand is a cutthroat trick-taking game for 3-5 players set during the political turmoil of the French Revolution. Players use multi-suited cards to win tricks, but winning too much too quickly can make one vulnerable to being purged when the regime changes. Players must anticipate purges to retain influence (won cards) and end on top. Each round takes about 15 minutes, with multiple rounds for optional extended play.

Representation of the actual cards and box as produced by DriveThruCards.

Based around the political turmoil of the French Revolution, Talleyrand is named after Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord, an incorrigible gambler and political schemer who managed to ride out the manifold purges and executions of the revolution, while maintaining multiple positions in many of the successive governments and lining his pockets. Always able to escape with his head and reputation (mostly) intact just prior to everything falling apart, Talleyrand held key roles during the reign of Louis XVI and the Revolutionary Government; he was at Napoleon's side when he toppled the Directorate and later when he declared himself Emperor, and even managed to survive Napoleon's downfall thereafter with a career intact in the restoration of the Monarchy — twice. Talleyrand was, above all, a survivor, and this game celebrates that trait.


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File Last Updated:
January 05, 2023
This title was added to our catalog on February 04, 2023.
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