Our Shop is now Online!
We started e-mailing out a newsletter, which eventually was named the Tarocks Tribune. These newsletters were extensive from the beginning, so we decided to make them more accessibly by sharing them here. This is our sixth. To read them all, click on the Tribune category near the top of our blog page.
This month we offer you an incredible newsletter filled with mystery!
Here is what this letter covers:
If, while reading this newsletter, you think of someone in your life who loves cards as much as we do, feel free to forward them this e-mail.
The February newsletter contained a caption ‘Spring is in the Air’ accompanied by the image of a leaping frog, restrained by a feathery something resembling an angel or a gnome.
The card on which the image was shown is titled ‘L’Energia’ (energy). We chose this card from the Tarocchi dell’Alba Dorata because of its lively symbolism associated with a new beginning (springtime…).
And then… then it started to rain, wicked events took place and progress slowed down. However, the frog did leap!
Previously we have mentioned the necessity of a Tarocks web shop and now it’s there! It will take some time before all items we plan to offer are present, but additions will be made continuously. Please be advised that new additions will not always be advertised in our monthly newsletter but will also be added at irregular moments. The items that are available now vary from special editions to vintage and first Lo Scarabeo and US Games publications that are now out of print.
We truly hope that you will like our first choice of decks.
Were we able to add new findings? The answer is yes, but only one Tarot deck. Fortunately, we found books and one modern but already rare oracle deck.
The first book we found is a rare first edition of Les Fleurs Animées with beautiful color illustrations by J.J. Grandville. The accompanying text (in French) was written by Taxile Delord, the introduction was written by Alph. Karr. It was published in Bruxelles in 1852 by A. Delavau, Editeur. The book is cloth bound in half leather. It contains two volumes in one binding, resp. 282 and 272 pages with two frontispieces in color. All in all, there are 51 color plates.
The illustrations that represent various botanical scenes are of an extraordinary beauty. The lining of the drawings is extremely accurate and very romantic, almost sensual. The coloring is incredibly warm and inviting, that they offer an almost supernatural experience. And precisely that emotion was also recognized by a Belgian fortune teller who used 36 of the 51 images in order to compile ‘Het Bloemenorakel’ (The Flower Oracle).
This oracle was based on the divination pattern as developed by Mlle Lenormand. The images taken from Les Fleurs Animées seem randomly chosen. The oracle deck itself has been published in 1990 and is now out of print. It is a much sought-after deck of cards.
‘What has been will be’ The Oracle of Ishtar and Nebo Uttered by a Woman Baya (or Witch) a Native of Arabela.'
‘I proclaim it aloud – What Has Been Will Be – I am Nebo – The Lord of the Writing Tablet – Glorify Me’,
These are the first sentences of another addition to our collection and is a reference work on Prophetical, Educational and Playing Cards written and compiled by Mrs. John King Van Rensselaer (born Maria Denning King, 1948-1925), also author of The Devils Picture Book.
This book, published in 1912 by Hurst & Blackett in London and printed in Philadelphia, USA, offers a sound description of all kinds of tarot- and playing cards and contains many illustrations in black and white. This is probably first edition has been rebound in earlier day, but is in fairly good condition. It can still be considered as an important addition to the never-ending research on cards.
French occultists had (or maybe even have) a thing with the [hidden] symbolism of the Old Egyptians. This is cleary shown by the information on the title page of Le Tarot Divinatoire by Dr. Papus (pseud. Gérard Encuasse), published by Librairie Hermétique in Paris in 1909.
‘Le livre des Mystères et les Mystères du Livre. Le Tarot Divinatoire, clef du tirage des cartes et des sorts. Avec la reconstitution complètes des 78 lames du Tarot Égyptien et de la méthode d’interprétation’.
This book offers an interpretation of all 78 ‘Egyptian’ tarot cards. It also contains [then] rare images of plates by Etteilla and Eliphas Levi in black and white. A truly important work, as Papus was one of the ‘Founding Fathers’ of the French ‘Tarottists’. The book has been rebound in half linen and is in fairly good condition.
Finally, we discovered a rare book on the Egyptian Tarot written by Elie Alta (Gervais-Annet Bouchet 1863-1927). The book is in French and was published in 1922 by Bouchet-Dreyfuss a common bookshop in Vichy (not Vichy-France, that was a later period). Maybe the bookshop belonged to the [family of] author. This is number 244 of a limited edition of a thousand copies, cloth bound, half leather.
Le Tarot Egyptien, (the original title of the book), is about how to read the symbolism of the tarot, about its background and… about Eteilla! Remarkably, the images shown are of the Tarot de Marseille and not the ones from the Grand Etteilla…
This leads us to the last item we discovered: a Tarot deck. On the damaged and repaired box, the name Z. Lismon can be read, the name of the deck is Jeu de 78 Tarots Egyptiennes – Livre de Thoth. We are not you sure how to judge the exact publication date of this deck, but as you can see, one of the cards shows the official stamp of the République Française (the tax office). Unfortunately, the date is not visible, but similar stamps date from ca. 1890. Further research revealed that this edition might have been published as early as 1853. The condition as well as the type of paper used support this research. Other cards are marked by hand and are stamped with the symbols of common playing cards like diamonds, hearts etc. That might indicate that deck has been used as a regular set of playing cards in later days.
The cards are I reasonable condition, the box unfortunately is not. Still, it is a rare edition of the Etteila cards.
The following decks have been added to the archive since the last newsletter. Just click on the name of the deck to be taken directly to its page:
1. Tarocchi dell'Immaginario
2. Tarocchi di Vetro
3. I Tarocchi Lanzichenecchi di Giorgio Trevisan
4. Carte Romantiche Italiane
In case you need a little reminder, the Blog is where we publish two decks twice a month in the form of a blog post that includes many detailed photos. You can take a look here.
We are constantly extending the Index (the complete overview of everything in our collection) with decks that ultimately will also find their place in the Blog.
Until then please feel invited to browse through the Index, you will find many rare and interesting decks, some of which are for sale. If you are interested in purchasing anything, please contact us using our contact form.
If, while reading the newsletter, you think of someone who would also enjoy it, please feel free to forward them this e-mail and let them sign up by clicking here or visiting our website.
Finally, we hope again that this newsletter as well as the information provided on Tarocks will satisfy your expectations. In case you have any suggestions or discover any inconsistencies, please don’t hesitate to let us know.
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