The Hermetic Tarot
The Hermetic Tarot was published in 1979 by US Games Systems Inc. (copyright mentioned on the cards). The booklet shows a copyright of 1980. This first edition was printed in Spain by Fournier and distributed by US Games System Inc. We don’t know how big the first print run was, but according to the enclosed control paper, this one might be copy number 5618.
The cards are printed entirely in black and white and the details and symbols in each card reveal many of the esoteric workings of the Secret Order of the Golden Dawn, which flourished around the turn of the century.
Godfrey Dowson’s subtle black and white designs emphasize the Golden Dawn’s astrological attributes with further sephirotic, angelic, geomantic, numerical, and kabbalistic elements. All 78 cards feature an exquisite level of detail that highlights the powerful symbolism.
The 48-page instruction booklet is written by Godfrey Dowson and includes an introduction by Stuart R. Kaplan edited by James Wasserman. The booklet also gives instructions for the classic ten-card Celtic Cross layout and presents a chart of the elemental and astrological symbols, and a diagram of the ten spheres and 22 Hebrew Letters of the of the 22 Paths of the Tree of Life.
The box looks as might be expected from an almost forty-year-old deck, but it shows no tears. The cards are in good condition.
A truly magical set of cards that instantaneously brings one in the right mood to work with the tarot.