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Tarot of Marseilles/78 Cards With an Instruction Booklet

by U S Games Systems

Buy the book: U S Games Systems. Tarot of Marseilles/78 Cards With an Instruction Booklet

Release Date: September, 1997

Edition: Cards


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Buy the book: U S Games Systems. Tarot of Marseilles/78 Cards With an Instruction Booklet

Very Nice Re-Creation of a Classic Marseilles Deck

To be honest, when I first saw this deck I didn't like it because the pictures are crudely drawn. The male figures on the Lovers and Chariot cards look sleep-deprived, and the figure on the World card is male rather than female. However, I came to appreciate the deck a great deal after researching its history. The deck is a re-creation of one published by Jean Dodal in Lyon, France around 1701 and is one of the oldest Marseilles designs currently on the market. Card titles are in English, and suits are Wands, Cups, Swords, and Coins (not Pentacles, as in occult decks). Coloring is based on the original artwork and is done in aqua blue, golden yellow, clear red, hunter green, and flesh tones.

The male figure on the World card depicts Christ. Some early Marseilles decks show the World figure as a nude, risen or ascended Christ--with halo, cape, scepter, and sometimes a leafy girdle. The Christ figure in the Dodal deck has a cape, scepter, leaf girdle, but no halo. (Somehow this figure metamorphosed into the female dancer that later became the Marseilles standard for this Trump.) Other interesting cards in the deck include Justice, who is winged rather than enthroned, and the Devil, who has a face on his belly and eyes on his knees (a depiction invented by medieval monks). The Dodal designs closely resemble the Payen tarot, circa 1760, pictured in Kaplan's Encyclopedia of Tarot, Vol. II, pg. 316.

Included with the deck is a small (4.75" x 2.5") 55-page instruction booklet that describes symbolism, traditional interpretations, and card combinations for each Trump, all of which I found interesting. However, some of the descriptions refer to occult symbols not found in the Dodal deck, and many of the card combinations are weird (e.g., Sun + Wheel indicates "persecution"). The booklet also lists interpretations and card combos for the suit cards, but these tend to be brief, nontraditional, and confusing. The only problem in doing readings with the deck is that you can't distinguish reversals for half of the pip cards (mostly wands and coins). For each of these cards, I marked a small dot with a permanent black marker in both "top" corners of the card to designate its upright position. This works well and detracts little from the designs.

From Amazon.com

The CLASSIC Beginning wizard's Tarot

As a student of wizardry, this is my first deck, which is particularly handy for later reference. The "Lovers" card here is not an Adam and Eve scene, and this tarot ditches all the biblical crap you come across these days, leaving pure French patriotism. The Magician card here may not look as good as he does in "The Vampire" Tarot or "Robin Wood Tarot", but the pope card is perfect( I am not a Christian, so I find this card annoying), while the High Priestess is absolutely lovely, and the "Death" card may cause mirth or fear, depending on your personality .Based on medieval woodcarvings, this is a great beginning Tarot deck for ALL students of witchcraft and wizardry.

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