Tarot Consulting Charges

The tarot (also known as tarocchi, tarock or similar names) is typically a set of seventy-eight cards, comprising twenty-one trump cards, one Fool, and four suits of fourteen cards each—ten pip and four face cards (one more face card per suit than in ordinary playing cards).Playing cards first entered Europe in the late 14th century with the Mamelukes of Egypt, with suits of Scimitars, Polo Sticks, Cups and Coins. These designs rapidly evolved into the basic 'Latin' suits of Swords, Staves, Cups and Coins (also known as disks, and pentacles), which are still used in traditional Italian and Spanish decks. Although there are quite a number of alternative theories on the origin of Tarot, evidence gathered at this time seems to indicate that the first decks were created between 1410 and 1430 in either Milan, Ferrara, or Bologna, in northern Italy, when additional trump cards with allegorical illustrations were added to the more common four suit decks that already existed. These new decks were originally called carte da trionfi, triumph cards. The first literary evidence of the existence of carte da trionfi is a written statement in the court records in Ferrara, in 1442. The oldest surviving Tarot cards are from fifteen fragmented decks painted in the mid 15th century for the Visconti-Sforza family, the rulers of Milan.

No documented examples exist prior to the 18th century of the tarot being used for divination. However, divination using similar cards is in evidence as early as 1540; a book entitled The Oracles of Francesco Marcolino da Forli shows a simple method of divination using the coin suit of a regular playing card deck. Manuscripts from 1735 (The Square of Sevens) and 1750 (Pratesi Cartomancer) document rudimentary divinatory meanings for the cards of the tarot, as well as a system for laying out the cards. In 1765, Giacomo Casanova wrote in his diary that his Russian mistress frequently used a deck of playing cards for divination.

Tarot cards had been used for several decades as playing cards. However, in the late 1800’s A.E. Waite discovered that the cards could be used to predict future events. The Rider-Waite deck version conceived by Waite was in fact based on the work of Eliphas Levi; a Catholic Priest in the early 1800’s who laid the foundation for the most popular Tarot cards currently in existence. In the early 1900’s Tarot cards were initiated in the Western culture and gained popularity during World War I.

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