• What’s the difference between Tarot and Oracle cards?
    • Tarot cards have a structured format
      • 78 cards, some decks occasionally add extra cards
        • 56 Minor Arcana Cards
          • 40 Pip Cards – These represent daily life events
            • Ace-10 of Cups, Pentacles, Swords and Wands
            • 16 Court Cards – These represent personalities
              • Page –King of each suit
        • 22 Major Arcana Cards (also known as Trumps)
          • These create a life cycle of major events in one’s life
    • Oracle Cards are very fluid without structure
      • The number of cards varies but on average is between 28-55 cards, some have less and some have more
      • Oracle cards are usually themed (Astrology theme, Mermaid theme, Nature, etc.)
  • Why do some tarot decks number the cards differently or have different titles
    • There are three main tarot card systems:
      • Rider Waite Smith (RWS) – These cards have illustrations for the Major and the Minor Arcanas. Strength is usually numbered as card VIII (8) and Justice as XI (11), this is opposite of the Tarot de Marseille.
      • Tarot de Marseille – The pips have pictures of the suit repeated for the numbered card (example: the four of cups would show four cups with no additional imagery). These court cards are sometimes referred to as The Honors or the Royal Arcana and are illustrated. The Major Arcana also have full illustrations. Justice is usually numbered as card VIII (8) and Strength as XI (11) this is opposite of RWS.
      • Thoth – The illustrations of the Thoth deck are highly symbolic and incorporate many different disciplines into them (The Tree of Life, Egyptian, etc). Some of the Major Arcana have been renamed and Court cards are: Princess, Prince, Queen and then Knight.
# RWS Tarot de Marseille Thoth
N/A The Fool Le Mat (The Fool) The Fool
I The Magician Le Bateleur (The Magician) The Magus
II The High Priestess La Papesse (The Papess) The Priestess
III The Empress L’Impératrice (The Empress) The Empress
IV The Emperor L’Empereur (The Emperor) The Emperor
V The Hierophant Le Pape (The Pope or The Hierophant) The Hierophant
VI The Lovers L’Amoureux (The Lovers) The Lovers
VII The Chariot Le Chariot (The Chariot) The Chariot
VII Strength La Justice (Justice) Adjustment
IX The Hermit L’Hermite (The Hermit) The Hermit
X Wheel of Fortune La Roue de Fortune (The Wheel of Fortune) Fortune
XI Justice La Force (Strength, or Fortitude) Lust
XII The Hanged Man Le Pendu (The Hanged Man) The Hanged Man
XIII Death La Mort (Death, this is also
sometimes left unnamed)
XIV Temperance Tempérance (Temperance) Art
XV The Devil Le Diable (The Devil) The Devil
XVI The Tower La Maison Dieu (The House of God,
or The Tower)
The Tower
XVII The Star L’Étoile (The Star) The Star
XVIII The Moon La Lune (The Moon) The Moon
XIX The Sun Le Soleil (The Sun) The Sun
XX Judgment* Le Jugement (Judgment)* The Ӕon
XXI The World Le Monde (The World) The Universe

*Judgement vs Judgment – British English vs American English, just depends on where the author of your deck is from.

  • Many readers associate the four elements to the four suits. You can choose whether to incorporate this into your style.
Cups Pentacles Swords Wands
Water Earth Air Fire
  • What are reversals?
    • Reversals are when a card appears upside down during a reading. It depends on the reader if they choose to read reversals. Some choose to interpret reversals as there being a block for the querent to understand the full meaning of the card and some choose to put the card right side up again and ignore reversals. There is no right or wrong when it comes to reversals.
    • Sometimes a deck is created by the author with the intention that they deck is used with reversals and sometimes and author chooses that the deck shouldn’t be used with reversals, such as the ShadowScapes tarot. Readers can choose to follow these guidelines from the author(s) or not. Again, there really is no wrong when it comes to reversals.
  • What are some good resources for someone totally new to Tarot Cards?
    • Tarot Books
      • Tarot 101: Mastering the Art of Reading the Cards this is a great workbook
      • A Magical Course in Tarot this is a great cover to cover book
      • Holistic Tarot
        • This is a great Dictionary/Desk Reference for study not so much a read through cover to cover book. The author has Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced study guides for free in PDF form on her website.
    • Tarot Blogs
    • Tarot Classes
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