Where Are Tarot Cards From

fortune-telling. The first tarot decks were created in Italy in the 1430s by adding a fifth suit of 21 specially designed cards called trionfi (“triumphs”) and an odd card called il matto to an already existing four-suited pack (“the fool). (The modern joker, which was created in the late 19th century as an unsuited jack in the game of euchre, is not related to the fool.)

What kind of religion are tarot cards?

Tarot cards are frequently cited as a component of New Age thought and practice along with astrology, aspects of Buddhism, paganism, and First Nations teachings in the eclectic scholarly approach to the New Age.

Who is the tarot’s creator?

The sniper threatening Greater Washington, D.C. placed a taunting tarot card near the shooting scene with the words “Dear Policeman, I am God.” Where are tarot cards made?

In the late 14th or early 15th century, northern Italy is where tarot cards most likely first appeared. The Visconti-Sforza deck, the oldest surviving set, was made for the family of the Duke of Milan sometime around 1440. The cards were used to play tarocchi, a bridge-like game that was then quite popular among nobility and other leisure enthusiasts. The whimsical designs on the cards, from the Fool to Death, were reportedly inspired by the costumed characters that marched in carnival parades, according to tarot historian Gertrude Moakley.

The tarot originated in Egypt.

Contrary to what some people may believe, the tarot did not begin in ancient Egypt. However, the occult tradition that derives from 18th-century myths about the Egyptian mysteries underpins modern Tarot decks. Tarot cards are frequently used by mystery schools to outline the stages of their initiations and incorporate Egyptian god forms and symbolism.

According to Mystery Schools, words and symbols have secret significance that can only be discovered by personal experience and cannot be taught. The educational institutions direct a person through a sequence of ceremonies that start or “start the process of awareness transformation. This wakes the body’s organs and subtle energies, triggering powers that the general public is typically unaware of. The highest level of these teachings and abilities is thought to have been obtained in Egypt. Manly Palmer Hall, an expert on the occult, felt that these institutions are the institutions of Isis, the mother of the Mysteries, from whose dark womb initiates are born into a second or philosophical birth. The descendants of Isis are all adepts. Each initiate is a Horus, a hawk of the sun, whose mission is to exact revenge on wisdom’s destruction, which is represented by the assassination of his father Osiris. The widow Isis is the Mystery School itself, and she keeps producing possible saviors from within herself.

But what relevance does tarot have to this? The issue is that between 1420 and 1440, Northern Italy rather than Egypt was the place where tarot first appeared. The belief in the mystical power of images was a defining feature of this time period. At the same time, there was a massive migration of scholars and manuscripts from Constantinople, which was being conquered by Muslim Turks, and from Spain, where Jews were being persecuted. Cities in Northern Italy that took in these refugees developed into centers of learning with libraries stocked with texts on magic, astrology, and long-lost Greek philosophical writings. Alexandria, Egypt, which is home to a diverse collection of Egyptian, Coptic, Greek, Roman, Hebrew, and East Indian learning, has retained a large portion of this information. The Hieroglyphics of Horapollo, a Greek book from the fifth century, arrived in Florence in 1422. It greatly influenced Renaissance thought and mistakenly claimed to unveil the hidden meaning of Egyptian hieroglyphs. Although few of the pictures directly appear in the tarot, they added to the myth that Egypt was the source of ancient knowledge.

Pythagoras, the creator of one of history’s most important mystery schools, studied in Egypt. Through him, the sacred mathematical concepts entered Western culture. Egyptians were regarded as the wisest men by Plato, Pythagoras, and Plutarch, among others, and their temples served as archives for mystical studies. The Eleusinian mysteries of Demeter and Persephone were united with those of Osiris and Isis in Greco-Roman Alexandria to create the Serapis and Isis mysteries, which later spread throughout Europe. In Paris, the Notre Dame cathedral was constructed on an Isis temple, and many of the oldest “Isis and her son Horus are depicted in sculptural form as black Madonnas.

Tarot cards didn’t become prominent in relation to the adoption of Egyptian-inspired initiation rituals by the Rosicrucian and Masonic secret societies until the height of France’s 18th-century Enlightenment. There was a scholarly movement in France looking for the origins of language, which was thought to be a kind of Hebrew preserved from the language of the gods recorded in Egyptian hieroglyphs. Their phonetic properties and genuine meanings weren’t understood until the translation of the Rosetta Stone in the 1830s.

The Comte de St. Germain, Cagliostro, Anton Mesmer (who invented hypnotism), Benjamin Franklin, and Antoine Court de Gbelin, the head Egyptologist of the French Academy, were all involved with Egyptian rites of Freemasonry and Rosicrucianism in pre-revolutionary France, as were many other extraordinary individuals. The Krata Repoa, a compilation of ancient and Hermetic writings on Egyptian mysteries organized into seven initiation rites, served as the basis for these and was originally published in Venice in 1657.

Court de Gbelin was the first to attribute occult knowledge to the cards when he declared that an ancient Egyptian book, the Book of Thoth, still existed in his encyclopedic work of anthropological linguistics, Le Monde Primitif (1781). He asserted that it was the only thing to survive the destruction of their libraries and that it contained their most fundamental beliefs in a form that had been widely disseminated, albeit unappreciated, throughout most of Europe by gypsies, whom he believed to be Egyptian. He explained that this book of odd figures on 78 leaves is definitely symbolic and adheres to ancient Egyptian ideas. One evidence was the existence of both male and female priests. The triple cross on the Pope or Hierophant card symbolizes the renewal of all of Nature and is the djed pillar (backbone) of Osiris. The star depicted on the Star card is Sirius, the Dog-Star, which rises at the beginning of the New Year in Leo along with the Nile’s flood. Isis, Queen of Heaven, is seen below spilling water from her jars since it was her tears that caused the annual flooding of the Nile. When it was time for the Nile to rise, one of her tears would fall from the Moon. The mighty demon Typhon (or Set) appeared on the Devil card. The Hebrew alphabet’s letters were represented by the twenty-two trump cards. Swords represented aristocracy, Cups the priests, Staffs (or cudgels) represented agriculture, and Coins represented trade. These four suits represented the four social groups in ancient Egypt.

This “He claimed that the book of destiny was entirely Egyptian, being made up (falsely) of the words tar, which means “way, road,” and ro, which means “king, royal.” Thus, it demonstrated the “We must pursue the Royal Path of Human Life. The tarot helps us understand how events unfold and how they end, and the Egyptian wise men used these sacred images to foretell the future and decipher dreams.

One hundred years later, French occultist Paul Christian described an Egyptian initiation ceremony that was exactly that old compilation of classical sources, the Krata Repoa, to which he had added a section involving the tarot trumps in his book The History and Practice of Magic. He claimed that the Giseh Sphinx functioned as the entryway to the holy chambers where the Magi conducted their examinations. The Great Pyramid’s underground passageways led to areas where the applicant had to endure potentially fatal situations. A hidden entrance into a long gallery with twenty-two statues in facing pairs depicting enigmatic beings and symbols was located after he descended a seventy-eight step ladder into a bottomless pit. The candidate was here welcomed by the “guardian of the sacred emblems” with these words:

On what do tarot cards are based?

There are still many gaps in the overall history of fortune-telling cards, despite the fact that historians like Kaplan and Matthews regularly publish fresh information on divination decks. Wolf notes that persons who utilize cards for divination frequently disagree with historians who are studying their past. “According to Wolf, there is a lot of disagreement among tarot historians and card readers over the history and use of tarot cards. “According to the evidence, they were initially created for games and only subsequently developed for use in divination. Personally, I think they were made for playing games, however I think the design is a little more advanced than many tarot historians seem to think.

“The earliest known tarot cards weren’t created with mysticism in mind; rather, they were intended to be used for a game akin to contemporary bridge.

By the middle of the 18th century, mystical card uses had spread from Italy to other regions of Europe. The tarot was said to be based on a holy book authored by Egyptian priests and brought to Europe by Gypsies from Africa by writer Antoine Court de Gbelin in France. Tarot cards really existed before there were Gypsies in Europe; they originated in Asia, not Africa. Despite its errors, Court de Gbelin’s nine-volume history of the globe had a significant impact.

In 1791, teacher and publisher Jean-Baptiste Alliette published Etteilla, or the Art of Reading Cards, which is now considered to be the first book on the tarot. (Alliette invented this ethereal alias) “Etteilla only by flipping his last name.) Etteilla’s writings claim that he initially learnt divination using a 32-card deck made for the game Piquet, coupled with his unique Etteilla card. The significator card is one of this kind and is often used to represent the person having their fortune read.

Who designed the original Tarot deck?

Things become a little mystical around Halloween, when horror movies are playing nonstop on TV and your holiday-loving neighbors’ yards are decorated with grotesque decorations. We decided to explore the background of tarot cards in honor of one of the most enchanted seasons of the year.

Tarot cards were initially just another card game, one that was a lot like the bridge that is played today, despite the fact that we now link them with the occult. Like other decks, the earliest known tarot cards appeared in Europe in the fifteenth century, with the wealthiest households in Italy purchasing the most well-liked sets. It was expensive to commission what was practically dozens of tiny paintings because there was no printing press and only hand-painted cards were available.

These early tarot cards, known as tarocchi in Italian, included suits, trump cards, and even pips, just like any other deck.

While others experimented, the mainstream use of tarot cards for divination didn’t begin until Frenchman Jean-Baptise Alliette produced the first comprehensive book on tarot card reading in the late 1700s. Under the alias Etteilla, he published his own deck along with a user’s manual for the cards. He incorporated ideas about astronomy and the four elements to give each card a purpose. He asserted that he had taken extensive inspiration from the Book of Thoth, a work purportedly penned by Thoth, the Egyptian god of wisdom.

He incorporated ideas about astronomy and the four elements to give each card a purpose.

Etteilla was the first to allocate the cards to a certain sequence and spread, including a front-to-back method that is still in use today. He issued a revised edition of his manual in 1791 when his writings gained popularity, making him the first known professional tarot reader.

The next significant change to tarot cards occurred in 1909. You’ve probably seen the pictures for the Rider-Waite deck, created by publisher William Rider and tarot reader A. E. Waite. The Rider-Waite deck, like Etteilla, came with a written manual explaining how to interpret the cards and what each one meant. When the cards in this deck were arranged together, the intricate scenes presented a narrative. The Rider-Waite Deck was updated and reprinted in the 1970s, along with a new instruction manual by Stephen Kaplan, which led to the most recent tarot card renaissance.

Is astrology a branch of tarot cards?

These days, almost everyone you know possesses a tarot deck and regularly receives readings. Tarot is no longer simply for the esoteric. Tarot has evolved over time into an intuitive art that may assist you in planning for both the best and worst scenarios. Tarot cards are filled with symbolism, but you might not be aware of how closely it is related to astrology. For instance: In the Major Arcana, a card corresponds to each sign of the zodiac.

Tarot or playing cards: which came first?

With the surge in popularity of alternative religions, witchcraft, and paganism, tarot reading and tarot cards have grown increasingly popular in recent years. It seems fitting that the Tarot is one of the most obvious and approachable gates to that path as topics like astrology, energy work, and more become more widely known. But how did the Tarot come to be used as a tool for divination and self-examination, and where did it originate?

At first glance, one may think that the Tarot has some kind of ancient history; some have even asserted that the cards represent the remains of an old Egyptian manuscript that was destroyed in the Alexandrian library fire. Were they aliens? the divine? Actually, no. We are aware of no ancient origins for tarot. It was most likely developed much more recently.

Since nobody actually knows who made the original card decks that would later develop into the Tarot as we know it, I suggest “probably.” It turns out that conventional playing cards work the same way. Sometime in the 14th or 15th century, playing cards initially arrived in Europe from, well, somewhere that wasn’t Europe. We don’t know if it was Arabia or China, but considering the lack of connection between Mah Jong and our current card decks, my money is on China. Therefore, it is difficult to say for sure whether Tarot or playing cards emerged first, while either might have happened and it is possible that they both descended from a single, long-lost ancestor.

Is creating your own tarot cards acceptable?

Tarot cards have been created by numerous people over the years. Ones that are blank and have already been cut and sized for you are available for purchase. You can then design your own artwork to place on them. Alternatively, you may print them out on card stock or picture paper and cut them out by hand. The act of creating itself is wonderful and can be a tool for fostering spiritual development. You may simply incorporate any hobbies or talents you have into your artwork if you have them.

Where is the Thoth book?

The piece of writing, which the editors refer to as the “More than 40 Graeco-Roman Period papyri from Berlin, Copenhagen, Florence, New Haven, Paris, and Vienna’s collections contain the Book of Thoth. A papyrus with fifteen columns, located in the Berlin Museum, serves as the main witness. The Book of Thoth, which is nearly fully written in the Demotic script, was likely created by scribes of the “Scriptorium of the Temple, House of Life. It mostly consists of a conversation between the divinity He-who-praises-knowledge (probably Thoth himself) and the mortal He-who-loves-knowledge. The book covers subjects including the scribal art, sacred geography, the afterlife, knowledge of animals, temple ritual, and wisdom. One section (the) stands out as particularly noteworthy “Vulture Text), in which a vulture is used to represent each of Egypt’s 42 nomes. The language is poetic, and the lines are frequently arranged into verses in a clear manner. Many scholarly issues are raised by the subject, dialogue structure, and striking phraseology; particularly intriguing are the potential connections between this Egyptian work, in which Thoth is called “Hermes Trismegistos plays a significant role in both the classical Hermetic Corpus and the thrice-great. Interpretative articles and discussions of certain topics, including the manuscript tradition, script, and language, are included in the first book. The transliteration, translation, and discussion of the Demotic text make up the bulk of the publication. The first volume is concluded with a consecutive translation, glossary, bibliography, and indexes. Nearly all of the papyri’s photos in the second book are of their original size.

What main god is there in Egyptian mythology?

The culture of the ancient Egyptians was extremely sophisticated. Egypt worshipped hundreds of different gods and goddesses over the years, with many experiencing popularity peaks and valleys. Numerous of these gods were shrouded in legend, as in all good mythologies. Their worship was fueled by stories of strife, deceit, and love. The situation was made more difficult by the fact that some of the most famous pharaohs in the nation attained a rank similar to that of a deity! Many of Egypt’s most visited attractions today were initially constructed in their honor. Edfu and the Kom Ombo Temple, for instance. We’ll introduce you to a few of Ancient Egypt’s most significant deities in this article. So whether you’ve already planned your vacation to Egypt or are considering going there in the future, prepare yourself by learning about Egyptian mythology and one of the most illustrious civilizations in history. A word of caution: things can occasionally become challenging.

One of Ancient Egypt’s most enduring legends, the myth of Osiris, features a cast of characters that we’ll discuss first.


In ancient Egypt, the Underworld God Osiris served as a metaphor for both death and rebirth. He was in charge of the annual cycle of flooding of the Nile, which was vital to agriculture and the continued existence of the Egyptian civilisation. One of the most significant myths in Egyptian culture states that Osiris, the King of Egypt, was cruelly killed and mutilated by his envious brother Set. Set became king while dispersing Osiris’ fragments around Egypt. Isis, Osiris’ bereaved wife and sister, set about collecting her husband’s fragments and raising him from the dead. Horus, the couple’s son, was made possible as a result. Osiris returned forever to the Underworld after completing this mission. Osiris was most frequently pictured as a green-skinned, mummified ruler to symbolize the death he stood for.


Isis was the wife of Osiris and the mother of Horus. She was the goddess of the moon, a healer of the sick, and a protector of women and children. Eventually, word of her legend reached Greece, where shrines to her still endure. Isis helped her son exact revenge on Set for killing her husband by raising him from the dead. She was the most significant goddess in Ancient Egypt up until its collapse. In her honor, the Temple of Philae in Aswan was constructed. In order to shield it from floods brought on by the Aswan High Dam, it was infamously moved from its original location in the 1970s.


Horus is an illustration of how intricate things will become, as I did warn you. The god is known to have existed in six different forms in Egyptian mythology. The most well-known is that Horus is the son of Osiris and Isis, as was indicated above. He was portrayed as a falcon-headed man and revered as the God of the Sky and War. He would eventually get revenge on his uncle Set for his father’s death by ascending to the throne of Egypt. Horus lost his eye during this battleyou’ve surely heard of The Eye of Horus. Another significant version involves the union of Horus and Ra (more on him later!) to form Ra-Horakhty. The Egyptian gods were more complex than basic deities, as seen by this. Numerous gods and goddesses melded into one another throughout the course of millennia as the stories altered.


Set, the last figure in the Osiris myth, serves as the antagonist in this narrative. Out of jealousy, he killed his brother, then tried to murder his own nephew. The god of chaos, violence, deserts, and storms was named Set. It is only fitting that archaeologists have been unable to identify the creature Set was meant to represent. He often has a long nose and long, square ears. It has a face unlike any other animal that has ever lived in Egyptian times or since. Perfectly disorderly!


The fact that Sobek was portrayed as having a crocodile’s head added to his reputation as a ferocious god. Sobek, who was honored alongside Horus at the Nile’s edge temple of Kom Ombo, is credited with aiding Ra in the creation of the world and with creating the great river from his sweat. For Sobek, the Egyptians mummified crocodiles. Many of these are still on display at the crocodile museum in Kom Ombo. An added advantage is that along this section of the Nile, there are lots of live crocodiles to see.


Ra, the Creator God, was arguably the most significant deity in ancient Egypt. One of the first characters to appear in Egyptian mythology was him. Ra is the creator of all the gods and living things that live in the three kingdoms of Earth, Heaven, and the Underworld. Many ancient Egyptians thought that Ra’s tears and perspiration gave birth to them! Ra carried the sun across the sky throughout the day and spent the nights traveling through the Underworld before assisting in bringing the sun up once more the next morning. Many of Egypt’s pharaohs built enormous sun temples in an effort to persuade their citizens that they represented Ra on Earth. One of these was in Heliopolis, an ancient city. Here in contemporary Cairo, one obelisk that is more than 4,000 years old still stands.