The tarot, first known as trionfi and later as tarocchi or tarock is a pack of playing cards, used from the mid-15th century in various parts of Europe to play games such as Italian tarocchini, French tarot and Austrian Königrufen, many of which are still played today. In the late 18th century, some tarot decks began to be used for divination via tarot card reading and cartomancy leading to custom decks developed for such occult purposes.
The word Tarot and German Tarock derive from the Italian Tarocchi, the origin of which is uncertain but taroch was used as a synonym for foolishness in the late 15th and early 16th centuries.
Playing cards first entered Europe in the late 14th century, most likely from Mamluk, Egypt, with suits of Batons or Polo sticks which are commonly known as Wands by those practicing occult or divinatory tarot, Coins which are commonly known as disks, or pentacles in occult or divinatory tarot, Swords, and Cups. These suits were very similar to modern tarot divination decks and are still used in traditional Italian, Spanish and Portuguese playing card decks.
The first documented tarot packs were recorded between 1440 and 1450 in Milan, Ferrara, Florence and Bologna when additional trump cards with allegorical illustrations were added to the common four-suit pack. These new decks were called carte da trionfi, triumph cards, and the additional cards known simply as trionfi, which became “trumps” in English. The earliest documentation of trionfi is found in a written statement in the court records of Florence, in 1440, regarding the transfer of two decks to Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta.
The original purpose of tarot cards was to play games. A very cursory explanation of rules for a tarot-like deck is given in a manuscript by Martiano da Tortona before 1425. Vague descriptions of game play or game terminology follow for the next two centuries until the earliest known complete description of rules for a French variant in 1637.
The 18th century saw tarot’s greatest revival, during which it became one of the most popular card games in Europe, played everywhere except Ireland and Britain, the Iberian peninsula, and the Ottoman Balkans. French tarot experienced a revival beginning in the 1970s and France has the strongest tarot gaming community.
Italian-suited tarot decks
These were the oldest form of tarot deck to be made, being first devised in the 15th century in northern Italy. The so-called occult tarot decks are based on decks of this type. Three decks of this category are still used to play certain games:
The Tarocco Piemontese consists of the four suits of swords, batons, cups and coins, each headed by a king, queen, cavalier and jack, followed by the pip cards for a total of 78 cards. Trump 20 outranks 21 in most games and the Fool is numbered 0 despite not being a trump.
The Swiss 1JJ Tarot is similar, but replaces the Pope with Jupiter, the Popess with Juno, and the Angel with the Judgement. The trumps rank in numerical order and the Tower is known as the House of God. The cards are not reversible like the Tarocco Piemontese.
The Tarocco Bolognese omits numeral cards two to five in plain suits, leaving it with 62 cards, and has somewhat different trumps, not all of which are numbered and four of which are equal in rank. It has a different graphical design than the two above as it was not derived from the Tarot of Marseilles.
Italo-Portuguese-suited tarot deck
The Tarocco Siciliano is the only deck to use the so-called Portuguese suit system which uses Spanish pips but intersects them like Italian pips. Some of the trumps are different such as the lowest trump, Miseria (destitution). It omits the Two and Three of coins, and numerals one to four in clubs, swords and cups: it thus has 64 cards but the ace of coins is not used, being the bearer of the former stamp tax. The cards are quite small and not reversible.
French-suited tarot decks
The illustrations of French-suited tarot trumps depart considerably from the older Italian-suited design, abandoning the Renaissance allegorical motifs. With the exception of novelty decks, French-suited tarot cards are almost exclusively used for card games. The first generation of French-suited tarots depicted scenes of animals on the trumps and were thus called “Tiertarock” (‘Tier’ being German for 'animal’) appeared around 1740. Around 1800, a greater variety of decks were produced, mostly with genre art or veduta. Current French-suited tarot decks come in these patterns:
The Industrie und Glück (Industry and Luck) genre art tarock deck of Central Europe uses Roman numerals for the trumps. It is sold with 54 cards; the 5 to 10 of the red suits and the 1 to 6 of the black suits are removed.
The Adler-Cego animal tarot is used in the Upper Rhine valley and its neighbouring hills such as the Black Forest or the Vosges, and has 54 cards organized in the same fashion as the Industrie und Glück. Its trumps use Arabic numerals but within centred indices.
The Tarot Nouveau has 78 cards, and is commonly played in France and is somtimes used to play Cego. Its genre art trumps use Arabic numerals in corner indices.
German-suited tarot decks
German-suited decks for Bauerntarock, Württemberg Tarock and Bavarian Tarock are different. They are not true tarot packs, but a Bavarian or Württemberg pattern of the standard German-suited decks with only 36 cards; the pip cards ranging from 6 to 10, Under Knave (Unter), Over Knave (Ober), King, and Ace. These use Ace-Ten ranking, like Klaverjas, where Ace is the highest followed by 10, King, Ober, Unter, then 9 to 6. The heart suit is the default trump suit. The Bavarian deck is also used to play Schafkopf by excluding the Sixes.
Tarot Card Readings
The earliest evidence of a tarot deck used for cartomancy comes from an anonymous manuscript from around 1750 which documents rudimentary divinatory meanings for the cards of the Tarocco Bolognese. The popularization of esoteric tarot started with Antoine Court and Jean-Baptiste Alliette (Etteilla) in Paris during the 1780s, using the Tarot of Marseilles. French tarot players abandoned the Marseilles tarot in favour of the Tarot Nouveau around 1900, with the result that the Marseilles pattern is now used mostly by cartomancers.
Etteilla was the first to issue a tarot deck specifically designed for occult purposes around 1789. In keeping with the misplaced belief that such cards were derived from the Book of Thoth, Etteilla’s tarot contained themes related to ancient Egypt.
The 78-card tarot deck used by esotericists has two distinct parts:
The Major Arcana (greater secrets), or trump cards, consists of 22 cards without suits:
The Minor Arcana (lesser secrets) consists of 56 cards, divided into four suits of 14 cards each;
The Magician, The High Priestess, The Empress, The Emperor, The Hierophant, The Lovers, The Chariot, Strength, The Hermit, Wheel of Fortune, Justice, The Hanged Man, Death, Temperance, The Devil, The Tower, The Star, The Moon, The Sun, Judgement, The World, and The Fool. Cards from The Magician to The World are numbered in Roman numerals from I to XXI, while The Fool is the only unnumbered card, sometimes placed at the beginning of the deck as 0, or at the end as XXII.
Ten numbered cards and four court cards. The court cards are the King, Queen, Knight and Page/Jack, in each of the four tarot suits. The traditional Italian tarot suits are swords, batons, coins and cups; in modern occult tarot decks, however, the batons suit is often called wands, rods or staves, while the coins suit is often called pentacles or disks.
The terms “Major Arcana” and “Minor Arcana” were first used by Jean-Baptiste Pitois (also known as Paul Christian) and are never used in relation to tarot card games. Some decks exist primarily as artwork, and such art decks sometimes contain only the 22 major arcana.
The three most common decks used in esoteric tarot are the Tarot of Marseilles, the Rider-Waite-Smith tarot deck, and the Thoth tarot deck.
The six most common Tarot Spreads are the;
Here is a little you should know about the ‘love’ spread. This type of reading evaluates the relationships relevance, how strong and happy they are. Every relationship has its ups and downs and with this six-card spread you will be able to evaluate your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual connections with your partner. The ‘love’ spread has its own 6 cards which represent the following:
#1-The first card signifies what you currently feel about your relationship, your approach, and your outlook.
#2-The second card represents your partners current emotions towards you, his attitude, and expectations about your relationship.
#3- The third card is a connection card. For example; common characteristics of both of you
#4– The fourth card indicates the strength of your relationship.
#5– The fifth card shows the weaknesses in your relationship.
#6– This final card is your true love card. It interprets if the relationship is going to be successful or not.
Briefly about the ‘Success’ spread; it is a remarkably situational spread. It’s often used when a person is facing an obstacle or hardship. It can also be helpful if you don’t know how to face or overcome a problem as it will point you in the right direction.
#1- it helps you to find out about the true colours of the challenge in front of you. It will help you to identify what sort of skill set and resources you will need in order to not just solve but also overcome the challenge.
#2- this further clarifies on your current problems and challenges.
#3- The third card reveals the hidden factors affecting your current situation. You need to have knowledge about what these factors are to really overcome the obstacle you’re facing.
#4- The fourth card represents new plans, people, or objects that can help you grow further. By adapting yourself to these new aspects, your vision of the situation will change, leaving you with better solutions to your problems.
#5- The final card shows what requirements you need to fulfill in order to be proven successful and things you should avoid as they will lead you to failure. It will point you towards success if proven to be a positive card but in other cases it could be a negative card and will warn you about an upcoming disaster in your life.
Celtic Cross Spread
Despite its complications the ‘Celtic Cross’ Spread has stood popular for many years. This is most likely due to the fact that its importance lies in its difficulty. Each result of the Celtic Cross can be illustrated in a variety of ways depending on the direction of the of the fallen cards. Though not recommended for beginners, once anyone understands it, he or she can use this spread to find out the full depth of the situation. With enough practice it can it can be taken in use to find the answer to any problem. Celtic Cross deals with intricate situations.
#1– presents the current situation the person finds themselves in the and the reading is about the question they are facing.
#2– is placed over the first card, pointing to the left and is always read in an upright position. It shows what the basic challenge is that needs to be solved or the mental or physical object holding them back.
#3– The third spread reveals the subconscious influences. These strange influences have an extremely strong and powerful effect on one’s everyday life, especially in scenes relating to the question.
#4 – The fourth card shows what resources one has and the things they can use to face and solve the problem shown by the second card and in the process reach their ultimate goal, shown by the third card.
#5 – The fifth card shows the prologue of the scene. A negatively influenced past may have an effect that prevents their success on their current situation and they will need to let the memory go in order to stop it from negatively influencing their current situation so they can face and eventually overcome the problem at hand as shown by the second card. A positive past should be can simply be called inspiration. Even though the person may be facing a challenge in their current part of life, the problem
They are up against is natural growth of the positive past they had the benefit of experiencing and after they have overcome all their challenges, things will look even brighter than they were in the past.
#6 – The sixth card is the headlight. If the card states there is some form of negative energy on the way the five previous cards should give a good reasoning of why this is taking place and what we could do to prevent it.
#7 – The seventh card represents the person’s attitude. It illustrates your physical actions, thinking and ideals regarding the current problem. This will give you more to work with into whether the person’s attitude is conducive to a likable outcome or whether it’s time to retrack the way the person perceives the information.
#8 – The eighth card is an energy card. It talks about the energy surrounding them and the energy other people and the environment is letting off and if these energies are helping in any shape or form.
#9 – The ninth card tells us about what the person’s desires and fears. This is a revelation card. It gives importance to the things a person should be aware of in their current situation and might change the way a person acts which should not be neglected by them.
#10 – This is the final outcome and emphasizes on the energies, if they are complementing or conflicting. It also tells the person about the future that will take place immediately and if it is necessary or not to face the future.
Similar to the Success Spread, the Spiritual Guidance spread is used when faced with problems that are of a spiritual nature. These sorts of challenges are usually related to spirituality in a person.
#1 – The first card represents your main concerns. You may think you know about the problem but this spread goes more in depth with it.
#2 – The second card looks into your motivation for looking for guidance.
#3 – The third card looks into the things about your life you are insecure or worried about.
#4 – The fourth card emphasizes on the parts of your life that you are not aware of.
#5 – The fifth card is your advice card as it will guide you to the steps to face your fears. It ties in with the previous cards.
#6 –The sixth card guides us to a life with no worries so that we could move forward on our spiritual journey.
#7 – The seventh card teaches you to deal with the situation with the resources you have at hand.
#8 – Finally, the eighth card finishes the Spiritual Guidance Spread by telling us that the result of the tarot cards all depends on our reaction to it whether we focus on the positive or negative.
Career Path Spread
This spread is for times where we feel left out on our career. We work hard hoping for a promotion but to no benefit. It helps us with these kind of challenges that we face in our professional life.
#1 – The first card basically asks us if our job that we have right now is indeed our ideal job
#2 – The second card emphasizes on the actions we must take to further boost our career. A positive card means we should stay at the same position we are in right now whereas a negative one means we should make some changes.
#3 – The third card tells us about certain things about our job that we can no longer alter. The card may tell you to look for a job in the same category we are working in right now.
#4 – The fourth card refers to our skills on our job to see if they’re enough to get us a promotion or if we are behind everyone else.
#5 – The fifth card tells us about the things we can do in our career to improve and start a new one or just small things we can do in our current career to at least get noticed.
#6 – The sixth card gives us the answer to the question that if our past mistakes are influencing our career now.
#7 – The final card tells you that if the card is negative it might lead to a bad outcome as it might result in you making other bad career choices.
However, if you aren’t sure of the outcome, use the card again after a few days or weeks to see if the reading changes as your attitude changes.
The simplest and the most useful spread, ‘The Three Card Spread’ only uses three cards. This is what makes it the most popular. This is one of the most powerful spreads and can find answers for you really quickly for almost anything, let it be overcoming a problem or an obstacle or if you are simply just feeling lost or left behind.
Linear 3 Card Tarot Spreads
As you can imagine, this layout is good at suggesting some sort of linear path, sequence of events, cause and effect, or a way of getting from point a to point b.
Past, Present, Future
You, Your Path, Your Potential
You, Relationship, Partner
Situation, Action, Outcome
Idea, Process, Aspiration
Balanced 3 Card Tarot Spreads
In this layout, each card of the spread has a common intersection. They are all equally important, like three sides of a pyramid. Without any of these, the whole structure collapses.
Mind, Body, Spirit
Physical State, Emotional State, Spiritual State
Subconscious, Conscious, Super Conscious
Option 1, Option 2, Option 3
What I think, What I feel, What I do
Foundational 3 Card Tarot Spreads
I think think one is a little harder to explain, but I like thinking of these spreads being communicators of advice in a way such that “given X and Y, the result is Z”. X and Y attempt to give you a clearer understanding of options, and Z is a summary, a crux, a way to move forward given the information that is there. In fact, even when phrasing these spreads, I like saying them in a way that follows this formula to make the point clearer. The bolded items represent the actual card positions.
Given your strengths and weaknesses, this is my advice.
Given what worked well, and what didn’t work well, this is the key lesson.
Given that this brings you together, and that this pulls you apart, you must focus on this.
Given that you want this from the relationship, and your partner wants this, your relationship is heading towards this.
Given Option 1 and Option 2, This is what you need to know to make a decision.
Crossed 3 Card Tarot Spreads
As the layout would imply, this is about understanding conflicts and obstacles. The card that crosses over is something that stands in the way and that needs to be overcome, something that blocks you from attaining your ultimate goal, while the third card acts as a sort of advice card, looking at the situation from a more distant viewpoint. These can also be used as simpler 2 card spreads if you want to use only the crossing cards.
What to focus on during Venus RX (May 13 - June 25)
use your Sun, Moon, Rising, and Venus.
aries - work on connecting your intentions to your actions. if you know what you want, prioritize the tasks that will make it happen. try to look around and figure out what is blocking you from taking action.
taurus - take a look at your beliefs. which ones serve you? which ones could you let go? work towards sorting through your belief systems and letting go of what is no longer needed, it will bring you to a place of higher consciousness.
gemini - think about where you have already been and where you want to go. you have the power of choice right now, so focus on making sure you know what you want before committing to a new direction.
cancer - work on finding a balance between giving and taking. look at where you are spending your emotional resources and think about if you are taking more than you’re giving, or maybe giving more than you’re getting.
leo - this is a time to focus and heal your physical and spiritual self. good things are coming, just make sure you acknowledge that after the darkest hour comes the dawn of a new day.
virgo - work on building a foundation for yourself so that the intentions you are setting can come to fruition. remember that you still have a lot to learn, but you know enough to get started.
libra - take time to evaluate if you are on the right path. do you know what your goals are? are you still working towards them, or have you become sidetracked? make adjustments so you can achieve what you truly desire.
scorpio - remember that slow progress is still progress, and what you are doing right now will become long-lasting. focus on working hard and try not to be stubborn. use what you have learned from the past.
sagittarius - you have already set things in motion, so remember to stay confident and optimistic in your vision. work on forgiving yourself and others for the past so you can function as your highest self.
capricorn - take a look at your belongings, habits, and thought patterns and see what you need to purge. there is a lot to work through here, but by acknowledging the issues you will lower your stress and avoid unwanted problems in the future.
aquarius - work on balancing your feelings and behaviours. try to look at where you overcompromise yourself in order to please others and question if it is really beneficial to you. dont try to make too many changes at once.
pisces - learn from the losses and disappointments you have experienced, and move forward from them. focus on what you have now and what you can do to work towards your goals. try to be a little more optimistic every day.
PSA for all the signs: DO NOT GET BACK TOGETHER WITH AN EX.
i hope this is a time of growth for all of you! peace! ♡
every reader will tell you something different, and spreads/context (!) can shift things around, but for the sake of knowing when there’s a strong impulse in your reading — what tarot cards pack a punch?
the major arcana
being long-term trends, they always compel. out of the 22, these 8 can be a rather big deal in your spread:
THE MAGICIAN — an urgent message to start now.
DEATH — a metamorphosis that stops before no one.
THE TOWER — tarot’s great shake-up.
THE EMPEROR — an authority steps in.
STRENGTH — a brave, bold act.
JUDGMENT — the big reveal.
JUSTICE — dreaded or fair consequences.
THE CHARIOT — vast success.
pages, knights and queens do have questions where they are the most powerful answers. however, the kings are last in the court with good reason. they rank rather straightforwardly.
KING OF WANDS — power itself.
KING OF SWORDS — toughest master strategian.
KING OF COINS — money/survival is power.
KING OF CUPS — family and great compassion.
watch for these folks; they carry a lot of intensity.
ACE OF WANDS — the firestarter of the tarot.
ACE OF SWORDS — breakthrough!
FOUR OF CUPS — a crippling loss.
FIVE OF WANDS — a brawl gone right.
FIVE OF SWORDS — a brawl gone wrong.
SIX OF WANDS — coming out on top.
EIGHT OF SWORDS — trapped and lost.
TEN OF SWORDS — ultimate defeat.
TEN OF COINS — hitting the jackpot.
TEN OF CUPS — every wish fulfilled.
as for the remaining suits, before someone underestimates them — it’d like to quote gwyn mcvay:
“Obviously Gandalf and Saruman are very powerful good and evil wizards, respectively, in The Lord of the Rings, but it’s the Hobbits—small, not magically or physically powerful — who get the actual main quest accomplished.”
OMG Diana!!! I watched one of your latest pick a cards and you said that Magician and High Priestess are a spiritual couple while Emperor and Empress are more focused on the material. It's the first time ever that I even thought of tarot cards and the couples within. You have allowed me to see them as living people with actual personalities and relationships!!! Can you tell us more about tarot couples, pleaaaaase???
The path of least resistance beckons. It urges you to turn away from that which causes you pain. Know that anything worth while will most likely bring about a reasonable amount of suffering. But understand that it is only through pain that you will eventually know strength. In time, you will look back upon the lesser traveled path and know you made the right choice. Until then, let persistence and determination be your mantra.
Tarot reading about how they would treat their significant other..
interesting one, anon 👋
🌹 jimin — 8 OF WANDS (rev)
The message of the card centers around not rushing things. Jimin has immense patience: To wait for his future partner, to see their personal development through stages of life, to let the bond grow. He won’t overwhelm them with passion and control his desires instead. Someone has his hormones reined in. You’ll be surprised, Jimin fears and eschews the heat of the moment. Which will delay things and stifles his energy, but will save the relationship from haste because he knows he is prone to jump right in. He’s a keeper.
aries - there is a lack of control over something in your life to the point it may feel like you’re going backwards. the universe has intervened because there is a reason you aren’t meant to move forward with it in this moment, so try not to overthink things and just enjoy the other things you have going on.
taurus - try to think before you speak to avoid miscommunications. try also to not convince yourself of things that arent really there, as this will halt your progress forward. if you have hurt someone, think deeply about what you said and use your words to admit fault.
gemini - you might be feeling some loss or grief right now. remember that it is healthy to acknowledge your emotions, but don’t become too fixated on it. there is a lot you haven’t lost and the things you are losing are to show you where you need to make emotional adjustments in your thinking.
cancer - try to make sure the choices you’re making are out of love and not just pure logic. logic is needed, but when you follow your heart it leads you to where you need to be. try to view everything from a place of love and compassion rather than judgement.
leo - don’t lie to yourself to avoid an unpleasant truth. it may provide a temporary escape, but in the end it will be a lot easier to face it head-on than to continue repressing your feelings and keeping yourself in a low vibration. there is room for growth if you can face your issues.
virgo - try to have a more mature approach to the things you’re facing this week. apply yourself to the things you need to work on and take the steps you need in order to manifest the future you want. keep an eye on your finances so that you don’t end up regretting it later.
libra - trust in the ever-changing cycles of the universe and that things always balance out. you have recently gotten past a hard time and now it is your time to enjoy your fresh, happy start. focus on a positive future and help others wherever you can.
scorpio - don’t manipulate others to get what you want. think about the way lying and deceit have affected your life and remember that other people feel the same way when they are treated like this. if you’re feeling guilty about something, try to figure out why so you can release it and move on.
sagittarius - take time to show gratitude for the progress that you have made and honor your hard work. there may be some sort of life transition happening for you right now, so make sure to look at the future with optimism and plan what you want so you’re able to manifest it. celebrate yourself!
capricorn - be a leader and focus on listening to your gut. you’re authentic and able to make good decisions, so put those traits to work for you in your life. focus on enjoying your life and exploring different things, but don’t get too carried away with it.
aquarius - have an open mind and don’t make assumptions. anything could happen and it probably will, so go along for the ride with a light heart and know that the universe will guide you to the path you are supposed to be on. do something fun!
pisces - think about the lessons you learned in childhood that are relevant now. have you let go of past patterns created in your childhood or are you still living them? connect with your inner child and practice feeling the kind and bright feelings of a child (before we crush their dreams).
Without the following process, tarot cards are simply paper with a dormant spirit- basically sleeping. Each deck has its own personal spirit that lives within the cards and assists in readings, but needs to be awoken if you wish to work with them. The process goes as such:
Buy a cloth to keep your cards wrapped in, have it be special and kept clean.
When sleeping, keep the deck beneath your pillow
Keep the cards away from mundane objects (coins, other papers, etc.) when possible
After about 28-29 days (a Lunar month), the cards should be awoken, and one who is skilled in sensing energies should feel this happening. With the spirit awoken, the personal meanings of the cards will be combined with your own personal interpretations.
Care for each of your decks, but if you have a favourite, it will eventually become bound to you. A bound tarot deck will be more accurate since it cannot be affected by outside influences (the Waning Moon, other spirits, environmental energies, etc.). It will also cause your readings to not exhaust your energy.
Cleansing Your Deck:
When cleansing your deck, be sure to respect the cards and use either incense or your own energy to envelope the cards in fire and burn away any impurities. You especially must do this if buying your cards second-hand, since any residual energies will negatively affect your readings. Try to cleanse each deck every month or so, or after they are touched by someone else.
🔮 Venus in Retrograde & Love Messages 💘 How will this transit affect you? Pick-a-Card Reading 💌
🔮Venus entered Retrograde in the sign of Gemini beginning May 13th, where she’ll stay until June 25th (not counting the shadow periods). Your natal chart will indicate more placement specific information for what to expect, but for now pick from piles 1-4 (read left to right) for some energetic insight. There were LOTS of messages from Spirit, so these readings are quite lengthy. I was also pleasantly surprised at the relative amount of positive and encouraging energies, but I’ll take them. Please let me know what resonates! 💞💗💘💌
All are gently used (max of maybe 5 readings each.) Please DM me if interested. I will try to notice if any are claimed by reblogging or comments but I make no promises. Selling because I never use them.