Tarot Deck Reviews

Here are my ratings of many and various Tarot decks in my personal collection. Grouped in the  following:

CLICK the category in which you are interested:     or     Return to Tarot Home        Index of Decks Reviewed

(publisher abbreviations: (LS) Lo Scarebo; (USG) US Games; (MP) Magic Realist Press; (LLW) Llewellyn; (StM) St. Martin's Press; (PP) Privately)

  Modern Traditional decks
   (good choices as primary reading decks)
Occult Decks (Thoth, Golden Dawn etc.)
    Rich in Hermetic attributions
   Artistic and Collectors Decks Variety Tarot (fun, variety)

   Historical decks, essential study.

Non-Tarot Decks (Oracle, Enochian etc.)


OR Click on one of the names of one my favorite decks here:   Greenwood    Thoth

Essential Historical:           Tarot de Marseille   Visconti Gold Grands 

Best Artistic:    Margarete Petersen     Ansata     Stone    Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg    Lunatic

Best Variety:     Fairytale     Fey     Haindl    

Best Waite-Colman variations:  Fenestra    Victorian Romantic       Druid Craft    Rider-Waite-Colman

Others:   Roots of Asia      Tarot of the Spirit      Ancient Egyptian  The Secret Tarot


Primary reading decks.

Tarot Deck

Rating (of 5)

Primary Recommendations based on readability, symbols and artwork.

Thoth 5+

This is a Hermetic deck descending from the Golden Dawn. This is and has always been my favorite deck for readings. The Thoth is magical, spiritual and very deeply embedded with symbols and attributions. It provides very accurate readings for those in harmony with it. It is an incredible achievement in depth and beauty. (USG)

Druid Craft 5 Beautiful Celtic/Wicca/Druidry deck. A larger deck of beauty and very closely following the Rider-Waite-Colman, while avoiding Christian imagery; a magical, earthy, mystical and sensuous deck. (LS) (CN)
Victorian Romantic 4.5

Collages (but so seamless that you wouldn't know it) created from engravings of various 19th century artists. Each card retains the meaning of the original cards and this deck connects with me very easily. One of the most beautiful decks in my collection.  (MP)

Roots of Asia 4.5

Beautiful, very artistic images (sort of a soft cubistic style on some cards) with a strong Eastern influence  (Buddhist, Vedic etc.). Listed in both  my "Art" section and primary section. Some minor cards could be better represented (USG)

Rider-Waite- Colman


R-W-C   Many versions to choose from; here are a few with my ratings: Original Rider Waite (4.5) (USG); Universal (4) (LS), Albano-Waite (3.5)  (USG), Radiant Rider-Waite (4) (USG); Illuminated Tarot (4) (PP)

The Secret Tarot 4.5 A darker, fantasy deck with medieval and Renaissance images (and a slight Gothic feel) by artist Marco Nizzoli; it a nice alternative to the Waite while clearly maintaining the same meanings with well illustrated minors. Maybe less than a 4 for the art, but it is a great reading deck and I always find it interesting to examine for it's symbols. (LS) (LLW)
Fenestra 4+ Very nice artwork, Slightly Pagan in style but very close in meanings when compared tto the Waite deck. An good alternative to a Rider-Waite version if you wish to stay close to the meanings of the Waite deck. However, the images are much too small (due to large borders). With larger images it would be a 5, this could be an outstanding deck with a better printing. (USG)
Nigel Jackson 4+ Medieval Enchantment Tarot. Medieval, classical, Roman symbolisms. Very pretty, "water-colored" images. Good alternative to the R-W-C (LLW)
Llewellyn 4

Beautiful Celtic deck based on the legends and mythology of Wales, nice, illustrated minors (LLW)

Tarot of the Old Path 4 A Neo-pagan deck of beauty and depth, drawing on a number of cultural traditions. A nice alternative to the Rider-Waite. (USG)
Prague 4 Very nice artistic collage-style deck. Somewhat lacking in attributions, but beautiful.  (MP).
Cosmic 4 A mystical, New Age deck of beauty and depth. Artwork by Norbert Losche. A nice alternative to the Rider-Waite. Reprinted by several companies (USG, AGM) (Note: The AGM is a much better printing, with higher quality cards). Two different books have been written on this deck, one by Huets and another by Clarson.(Not to be confused with the inferior  "Cosmic Tribe Tarot")
Morgan-Greer 3.5 Another nice variation (and alternative) on the R-W-C; but it's less creative artistically, so I'd prefer the Fenestra or Nigel Jackson as a reading deck.  (USG)


  Good or Above Average Decks that have clear standard meanings
Tarot of Dreams 3.5 A beautiful deck. Somewhat shallow  in attributions and symbols, missing the "energy" of many cards with far too many static, posed figures. (PP)
Sharman-Caselli 4/3

Nice alternative to the Rider-Waite.   (packaged in the "Beginner's Guide to the Tarot" book-card set). Prettier, softer, but clearly following the R-W in meanings. Art/usability is a 4, but the actual card (paper) quality is very poor (so the 3 rating). (StM)

Robin Wood 3.5

Nice, very Pagan in style and symbolism, R-W-C alternative. Women seem to really like this deck. (LLW)

Golden Tarot 3.5

Each card is a collage created from artwork of the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance . Nice, but not a deep deck. I prefer the Victorian Romantic; but this deck may appeal to you, especially if you like the Christian references. (USG)

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Occult Decks: Thoth and other Hermetic decks.

Tarot Deck

(of 5)


Thoth 5+ This is my favorite deck for readings. The Thoth is magical and very deep with symbols and attributions. It provides very accurate readings for those in harmony with it's magic. The images (by Lady Freda Harris) are an amazing accomplishment and the depth of meaning is unmatched. I prefer the oversized deck for the clarity of details.  (USG)
Ancient Egyptian 5 Draws on Egyptian history and mythology to create a beautiful deck, that retains most of the attributions of the Thoth deck. Large pictures are nice to read. (Clive Barrett, Element Books)
Tarot of the Spirit 4.5 Stunning and esoteric; slightly abstract, pastel/watercolor images.  (USG); Has an excellent companion book about the spiritual use of Tarot.
Hermetic 4.5 This is only in black and white, but is very deep in hermetic symbology and is a great deck for study if you want to go into the esoteric attributions, based on the Golden Dawn and Mathers designs.  (Dawson) (USG)
Servants of the Light 4.5 The Servants of the Light Tarot was conceived by Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki and is very deep in hermetic/magical/occult symbolism. The Majors are truely exceptional in beauty and richness and one of my favorites (the art of the Majors was done by the creator of the Gill Tarot). The Minors are illustrated, but not very interesting (done by another artist). The suits are renamed as Staves,   Crescents (Cups), Weapons (Swords), and Spheres (Pentacles). The court cards have been renamed Maker (Knight/King), Giver (Queen),  Keeper (Prince/Knight), User (Princess/Page),.
Liber T 4 Tarot of Stars Eternal. A nice, soft, modern version of the Thoth. Missing some of the Thoth's detail, but the minors have been developed as expressing the Decans (Astrology) as presented in the great Liber Hermetis. Scion (at Aeclectic Forum) has an indispensable guide.  (LLW)
Navigators of the Mystic SEA 3.5 Hermetic deck (based on the Golden Dawn/Cabala), very interesting artwork on the Majors, the minors are somewhat lacking, and the cards/images are a little too small. (OOP)
Ceremonial Magick 3 Very useful for study of Western Magical attributions (Astrology, Enochian, Goetia) (USG)
Golden Dawn Magical 3 Cicero's deck, based on the Golden Dawn's Tarot card descriptions in the "Book T". Interesting to study; much better than the USG version (below).
Pythagorean 2 Below average art quality and illustrations, but includes an interesting book about attributions (numerology, Jung, Greek myth etc.)
Golden Dawn 2 Reconstructed Golden Dawn Deck (from the direction of Israel Regardie). Interesting for study; but the art quality of the images is not acceptable for use as a regular deck. (USG)
Jungian 0 Surprisingly poor images with some incorrect attributions; not recommended..
Lurianic 4 Aligns the cards with Lurianic teachings of the Kabbalah, very  interesting, but after much study, I'v decided the Thoth (GD) ordering is correct.

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Artistic Decks

Tarot Deck

 Ratings (of 5)

Note: The Ratings here are for ArtworkBeauty and Interest. Other sections may give a different rating as a reading deck.

Margarete Petersen 5+ Very abstract, modern art version; stunningly beautiful, so abstract that some cards are difficult to recognize, but they all have titles. English and German versions; I prefer the German because of the border color. A wonderful deck that reads well. A favorite. (Konigs Furt; Germany)
Ansata 5 An easy 5 on the scale for interest and beauty;  - contains only the majors and is a somewhat darker, but it is captivating, and one of the most cherished in my collection.  (out of print, collectors item)
Roots of Asia 5 Beautiful, very artistic images (sort of a soft cubistic style on some cards) with a strong Eastern influence  (Buddhist, Vedic etc.). Listed in both  my "Art" section and primary section. Some minor cards could be better represented (USG)
Dante Tarot 4.5 I Tarocchi di Dante e Dei Fedeli D'Amore.  A stunning artist deck by Italian artist Wolfgang Poggi, it's Minor Arcana illustrate scenes from Dante's works. Published in 1983 by USG, it's out of print and a collector's item. Some of the illustrations are questionable for Tarot use.
Templar 4.5 An unique, beautiful, somewhat dark deck based on the Knights Templar, with many medieval images. The images are borderless (a major plus for me) and have very intense coloring; the energy level (but not the style) reminds me of the Stone Tarot. A few of the cards don't follow the standard meanings (Waite or Thoth);  if those cards were redone, it would be a 5++. Very useable for readings also.
Russian T. of St. Peterburg 4.5 Stunningly beautiful and spiritual. Painted by  Yuri Shakov, who was a famous miniature art painter, this is one of the most artistic and unique decks ever created. Normal sized cards and images, with fine detailing, a result of the artist's background in  miniature painting. Illustrated minors, similar to the Waite images. Generally I like borderless, or smaller borders; in this deck the borders create an atmosphere that enhances the effectiveness of the images. Cherished in my collection. (USG)
Stone Tarot 4.5+ Powerful, very beautiful deck from oil paintings by Alison Stone over a period of nine years. The colors have amazing energy, maybe the most powerful use of color in any deck. The minors are very simply illustrated, but very clearly portray the energy/meanings of each card (some have incredible energy). The real disappointment is how poorly the faces are drawn of the people appearing in the cards, and a few other things are strangely drawn  (Majors only). If a few of these cards were redone, (Chariot for example), it would be a 5++. Very useable for readings also.
Ananda 4.0 Spiritual, dreamlike, New-age Majors with many semi-transparent/ghost-like figures; low on details, but stunningly beautiful. Very weakly illustrated minors (4.5 for the Majors; but only 4 for usability).
Namur 4.5 Majors only. Another very beautiful deck.
Tarot Mystique 4 Majors only. Very beautiful modern art (excellent artist, whose style is somewhere between Picasso and Dali). OOP
Masonic 4 Great Majors (rich in symbols); however the minors are unillustrated. (Grimaud)
Prague 4 Very nice artistic collage-style deck. Somewhat lacking in attributions, but beautiful.  (MP).
Stairs of Gold 4 Another Russian, artistic deck. Unillustrated minors and I'd prefer smaller borders, larger images; but nice Majors.
Starlot 3.5 Majors only. Beautiful, simple, unusual square shaped Tarot blending astrology and the Major Arcana.
Tarot Lenormand  2 56-card deck based on the 19th century French cartomant,  Madame Lenormand (famous for reading for Napoleon's Josephine), the images come from the Book of Thoth by Etteilla and from Madame Lenormand's oracle cards, but is tenuous in definition and is not really a tarot deck (in the modern sense). (LS) (there are several "Lenormand" decks, each varies in the number of cards.)
Stained Glass   Decks Using a Stained Glass Effect
Revelations 4.5 Somewhat of a "stained-glass" effect deck (makes some details hard to see), but this one of the more artistic, deeper and one of the best Tarot reading decks in this category. Zach Wong is the artist, and he has produced an exceptionally vibrant deck. Images use reversible artwork. A powerful reading deck.
Tarocco delle Vetrate 4 Beautiful deck (Artist Scapini). Artistically the best of the stained-glass window category. The details are somewhat hard to make out because of the effect, but the images are larger (smaller borders) and very artistic.
Crystal Tarot 3.5 Pretty deck. Sort of a stained-glass window effect within a limited color range. The Swords are the "Water" element, and the minors are unillustrated. Details are difficult to see. (LS)


4 For something different, this is a much darker gothic deck of great beauty and romance. The best of the Gothic decks (artist Vargo). I don't use it much for readings, but it is gorgeous to look at if you like Gothic. The card stock however is very poor quality, it is very thin, and the cards are too small, otherwise this would have a 5 star rating.   4 for Art; 2 for quality of printing.
Black Tarot 4 a dark gothic fantasy deck by comic book artist Luis Royo, emotional, great Majors. Unillustrated minors. (Founier)
Archeon 3 Dark, Gothic deck; Shows that collage can create art in the hands of a real artist. Very emotional cards. Majors are very good, but loses it's way in the minors (misses the meaning of some cards), otherwise a 4 or 4.5 rating. (USG)


  Decks with a Goth/Gothic Influence
The Secret 4 A darker, fantasy deck with medieval and Renaissance images (and a slight Gothic feel) by artist Marco Nizzoli; it a nice alternative to the Waite while clearly maintaining the same meanings with well illustrated minors. Maybe less than a 4 for the art, but it is a great reading deck and I always find it interesting to examine for it's symbols. (LS) (LLW)
Labyrinth 4 Majors only. Very beautiful muted tone, slightly gothic.


  Decks with an Anime Influence
Lunatic 5 Exceptional! 5.0 for it's Art; this is a very interesting, slightly dark, beautiful (somewhat goth) anime style deck; who would think a deck with this name could be successful, but it's amazing as art and for the emotional portrayal of each Tarot card. I was totally surprised by this deck; essential for collectors. I also have the portfolio version, 5+ for that (China)
Manga 4 Japanese Comic book style with an Eastern philosophy influence. Artist: Minetti & Lazzarini. (Note: not the Lin Manga) (LS)
Les Fleurs du Mal Tarot 4 Another  a very interesting and beautiful anime style deck, Majors only, Very nice art, not useable as a Tarot reading deck, each card is a portrait of the person in each Major Arcana, but there are no other details that would be on a normal Tarot version of the card. (China)
Love & Mystery 4- Shinpi no Tarot Uranai. A romantic Japanese deck Very beautiful muted, soft tone, watercolors. Very creative, artistic Majors;  Minors are unillustrated. Not a good reading deck.

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Variety Decks: Interesting variations.

Tarot Deck

Rating (of 5)



  Fairy Theme 
Fairytale (LS) 4.7 Absolutely charming, children and adults will love it. Fairies, Elves, Trolls,  Sylphs, Nymphs,  The Majors especially are great;  but many of the Minor cards vary from the standard Waite meanings or are unclear; otherwise it would be a 5. Still wonderful.... so I guess I'll give it a 5 for wonderful, a 4 for usability. Artwork by Lupatelli. (LS)


4.5 Beautiful and charming this is a colorful fantasy/fairy deck. Nice images, but note that the images don't show up as brightly as the internet images which are larger and more colorful than the actual cards. A great deck, would be a 5+ with a reprinting with slightly deeper colors. (LS)


  Celtic and/or medieval legends etc. .. 
Greenwood Tarot 5+ Wonderful, unique, magical pre-Celtic deck. Out-of-print. My favorite deck (vying with the Thoth). Very powerful, high energy cards, one of the best meditation decks.
Druid Craft 4.5 Beautiful Celtic/Wicca/Druidry deck. A larger deck of beauty and very closely copying the Rider-Waite-Colman.  (LS) (CN)
Northern Shadows 4 Very interesting, simple but attractive. Has Great Majors, the minors have many deviations in  meanings (compared to Thoth or Rider Waite etc.), which will be seen as a detriment for some readers. I just read it as it is designed. A potentially great deck.
Llewellyn 4 Beautiful Celtic deck based on the legends and mythology of Wales, nice, illustrated minors (LLW)


Subtitled "The Arthurian Tarot"; Celtic like, based on the legend of King Arthur and Camelot. But with weakly illustrated minors; (LLW)
Arthurian 3.5 Based on the legends, history, and tradition of Arthurian Britain. Okay Majors, weakly illustrated minors. My least favorite of the Celtic, Arthurian type. (Harper Collins)
Celtic 3.5 Art by Julian de Burgh with scenes from Irish mythology in delicate, pretty watercolor style. St Martins Press
Celtic Dragon 3.5 Very interesting, charming dragon themed Celtic deck. However the switch of swords/fire and wands/air is a minus.


  pagan and neopagan
Tarot of the Old Path 4 A Neopagan deck of beauty and depth, drawing on a number of cultural traditions. A nice alternative to the Rider-Waite. (USG)
Robin Wood 3.5 Nice, very Pagan in style and symbolism, R-W-C alternative. Women seem to really like this deck. (LLW)


Romani 4.5 Buckland's Gypsy Tarot deck. Nice borderless, truly exceptional artistic cards portraying English gypsies (post WW2) with great expression.
Fairytale (MP) 4.5 Another wonderful deck from Magic Realist Press, not a beginner's deck, but the association with fairytale stories (but not a Disney version) does add something to the meaning of the cards, however you'll have to read the associated book, since many of the stories are not familiar ones .(MP)
Haindl 4 Very nice, new-age, multi-cultural deck. Artistic Majors (very artistic, somewhat abstract); however the minor are unillustrated (but labeled with (mostly) Thoth titles). (USG)
Universal Fantasy 4 Images from a world of fantasy, magic and medieval stories. Very nice artwork, wonderfully detailed and attractively colored. Interesting, but some of the minor card illustrations don't work for traditional meanings. (USG)
Universal Fantasy 4 Based on fantasy stories, mystical lands with monsters and heroes. My teenage son's favorite. (LS) (LLW)
Tarot of Eden 4 Nice "world, cross-cultural" deck. Unillustrated minors, but the Majors and Court cards are imaginative. (Important note: the 2005 reprinting is far superior, larger, better printing of the original "Zukunfts Tarot" of 2001 which has small images and very large empty white borders. Avoid that edition)
Tarot of Reflections 4 Another beautiful, vibrantly colored deck.
Tarot of the Hidden Folks 4 Dorata Tarot. Elves, sprites and many other fantasy creatures with wonderful artwork. Previously named the "Enchanted" and the "Tarots of the Golden Dawn"
Quest 4 A computer-generated deck with additional attributions for each card. When I first purchased this deck, I wasn't very impressed, but I have grown to appreciate the dreamy and luminous 3-D like images; now I  think it's a great deck, with much greater depth than many other computer-art decks. But the unillustrated Minors are a definite drawback.
Metamorphosis 4 The theme of the deck is metamorphosis, so each card shows some type of transformation (such as that of an object into a being or other object). Very beautiful, creative; may take time to learn as it does not reproduce any of the Rider-Waite images. (LS)
Amber 3.5 Very nice Majors only (worth a 4.5 at least); based upon a fantasy series by Roger Zelazny (but only unillustrated minors)  (Descartes)
Arcus Arcanum   3.5 Very masculine King Arthur comic book style (in a good way) deck. It's nice to have a strongly masculine deck option to the predominantly feminine influence of mainstream modern decks. Out of print, but great images for the Majors. Stripped of all the esoteric symbols, simpler; fun. A few of the minors are poorly illustrated  (for Tarot meaning). (USG)
Eclectic 3.5 Interesting cross-cultural/religions artwork; A few  of the Majors are interesting, with standard meanings, but the artwork is only average; not an essential deck; the minors are unillustrated. (Platnik)
Intuitive Tarot 3 Intended to uses images to open communication with your subconscious to develop imagination  and unlock your creative/intuitive. But the artwork for the deck is below average quality and doesn't attract my attention. (StM)

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Historical decks for study and/or readings


Tarot Deck

Rating (of 5)


1420-50 Visconti Sforza Tarocci 4.5 A precise reproduction (does show the age and wear of the replicated cards) of the oldest deck (Milan Italy), dating from  the mid-late 15th century. It has 4 missing cards (of 78) that have been recreated (The Devil, The Tower, The Knight of Coins and the 3 of Swords). This is a large (oversized) deck with no added printing (titles, numbers, suits) that makes it great for study.   (U.S. Games Systems)
1400-50 LS Visconti Tarot 5 A restored version of the (Pierpont-Morgan) Visconti Sforza deck (with four cards recreated to replace those missing, but standard size and with titles added). Stunningly beautiful, gold with delicate coloring. (LS) (LLW)
1400-50 Visconti Gold Grands 5+ A large set of Majors of the previous edition. Stunningly beautiful, Essential for the collector. (LS)
1430-50 Gringonneur 5 Adds the Hanged Man, Death, The Tower, Judgment to complete the Major Arcana. Very similar to modern Major Arcana.
1490 Sola Busca 3 Late 15th century Italian deck, the first deck to show full scenes on the minor Arcana cards. Interesting, if only for that reason. The majors are pictures of warriors of antiquity rather than the Major Arcana we know today. (LS)
1500 Rothschild 3 Interesting: Star, Tower, Sun, Devil, Chariot
(possibly as early as 1672)

Tarot de Marseille


 Essential for the study of mediaeval origins, these "simple" illustrations have much greater symbolic depth that may be apparent at first glance (much deeper than the Visconti decks). Many published versions, each is colored differently, so you'll have to compare a few to know which you prefer :  follows a few recommendations:

Marseille version


 Jean Noblet faithfully reproduced by Jean-Claude Flornoy
  Marseille version


 Fournier (5) (restored more subdued colors with a warm background, the a favorite for reading);
  Marseille version


 Universal (5) (LS) nicely recolored;
  Marseille version


Camoin Tarot of Marseilles (4) (An important, fully restored version, brighter colors);
  Marseille version


Hadar (restored more subdued colors);  Dodal (original);
  Court de Gebelin - French writer (and Freemason) who in 1781 proposed Tarot was actually a "book" of esoteric wisdom influenced Etteilla (Comte de Mellet at the same time attributes a Hebrew letter to each Major)
1788/91 - 1870



First writer on Tarot divination, important for the hermetic attributions (elemental and astrological, upright and reversed meanings). (Etteilla "decks" are only derived from descriptions of the original as only a few of the original cards exists). Some hints of divination implied in earlier writings, but not conclusively. (1865 copied)
1750 Mayer 3  Shows full development of Major Arcana
1835  Soprafino 4.5 Reproduction of the 1835 "Soprafino" deck. Exceptional.  (The word Soprafino  means "fine") Published by Il Mengeghello in a limited edition of 2000.
1845 Tarocco Italiano Dotti 4.5 A finely detailed reproduction of a deck published in Milan by Dotti circa 1845 Published by Il Meneghello in a limited edition of 2,500 copies. The deck includes 78 huge cards in full color. Packaged in a book cover with tie ribbons.
1835-80 Ancient Italian 4 Reproduction of a deck from the 1880's which was based on the 1835 "Soprafino" deck, but nicer drawings and subdued coloring. (LS) 

Tarot of the Bohemians


Papus: Added a Hebrew letter for each Major card and worked out attributions for the Minor Arcana. Illustrations for all the Majors (Wirth).

Waite Colman


 Essential for study, a landmark of modern Tarot.

Giant Waite Colman

5 Over-large size makes it great for the study of details (USG)


4 Published in 1912 as Il Destino Svelato dal Tarocco, artist Bruno Sigon based many of his designs on Gabriel Boulinat's illustrations in Papus's book Le Tarot Divinatoire. The Majors are interesting, the minor are like Poker cards.


5 Essential for the study of the Hermetic branch of Tarot. See the main entry
Oswald Wirth 5 Designed an original (Majors only) deck in 1889 (based largely on the Marseilles decks) with attributions based on Levi's book. Wirth withdrew the deck shortly after it was published and revised it (but it was not published until 1926), in his book, "The Tarot of the Magicians"  Wirth's deck was the major influence on Waite and Paul Case (BOTA).

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Average decks

Barbara Walker    
Black Tarot   a dark gothic fantasy deck by comic book artist Luis Royo, obviously for teenage boys.
Celtic Dragon   cute, Celtic
Celtic 2 (Paterson) okay, nice art, sort of stained glass effect
Celtic   (Lo Scarabeo) average
Ceremonial Magick   Okay as an introduction to Ceremonial Magick study. Lon Duquette's deck has attributions on each card from various Hermetic systems (Qabalistic, Enochian, Astrological, etc.) (USG)
Dal Negro   Visconti
Egipcios Kier 3 Egyptian style, with some attributions (Hebrew, Astrological) but the assignments vary from the Thoth, Golden Dawn system. Includes magical sigils, hieroglyphs and Tree of Life references. Minors illustrated, but do not follow traditional Tarot.
Old English 3.5 Medieval English style art is nice, beautiful, simple; unillustrated minors (USG)
Forest Folklore    
Gendron 2.5 Some very nice, beautiful and original images in the Majors, but  the Minors are poorly done.
Guilded   beautiful but very shallow.
Gnomes   cute
Hanson Roberts   (USG)
Ibis   Egyptian motif, unillustrated minors
Labyrinth   interesting, but unillustrated minors
Love and Mystery   Japanese romantic/comic-book style; interesting, but unillustrated minors
Maat   very artistic, not for beginners
Mary-el   art
Mythic   minimal
Ramses   Nice Egyptian, but minors meanings are changed
Rohrig 3.5 Cards are larger than most, computer/collage images. A simpler deck, low on detail of symbols.
Sacred Circle 1.5 pagan, photo collage, few details or attributions, "posed" figures instead of energy
Spiral 3 Nice, a little to darkly colored through out, but pretty and interesting. (USG)
Stairs of Gold 3 Almost makes it; nice artistic majors (images too small) but unillustrated minors

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Other Oracle/Magical Decks (non-Tarot)


Osho-Zen Tarot 4 If you are looking for something different, with New-Age, Eastern and Zen influences, this is the deck for you. It is beautiful and gives good readings, and the meanings are not too far from the traditional tarot (though I had to remove the extra "Master" card that it included with Osho's image). (StM)


Enochian Tarot 4 Good if your doing the Enochian pathworking, (powerful magick).
Oracle Tao


I-Ching based cards. Very good.
Faeries Oracle 5 Beautiful art (5) by Brian Froud the artist for the movies Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal, not Tarot, but a useable Oracle deck (4)

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Comments on other decks.

A few comments on other  decks.

T. of Atlantis 2 A Fantasy deck about the legend of Atlantis; for a fantasy deck, this has many interesting and attractively illustrated cards, but there are many cards with portrayals that are too far from standard meanings to be useful. (LS)
Angel Tarot 4/3  By Maria Miduki & Michel Angela. A beautiful deck (4), but laminated cards (3). No Minors. (PP)
Black Tarot 4 Great art; a dark gothic fantasy deck by comic book artist Luis Royo, popular with teenage boys.
Blue Moon   Great art, majors only
Bosch   Great art, too strange for a regular deck, poor minors
Bruegel   Great art
Celtic Wisdom 2.5 Striking, attractive, great potential, but intimately very disappointing. Many of the cards (especially in the Majors) are stunning in color and artwork (simplified). But many of the cards have very poor (childlike) artwork (almost looks like a different artist). That combined with the renaming and difference in meanings from traditional Tarot make this a poor choice as a Tarot deck. Some will find a connection with it. It could easily be 5+ quality deck with a major revision and reprinting. Many of the card images have been cropped poorly from the original paintings losing much in the process.
Connolly 3.5 nice, simpler version of Waite
Demetra 4 Several different decks called the "Demetra". One is a Wirth-like deck, very nice.
Faeries Oracle   Beautiful art by Brian Froud the artist for the movies Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal, but not Tarot, see Oracle decks
Fantastical 3 Beautiful majors, minors are totally useless
Haindl 4 Nice deck. Artistic Majors (very artistic, somewhat abstract); however the minor are unillustrated (but labeled with Thoth titles). (USG)
Solleone 4 Different, darker artistic.
Tarot of the Spirit World 4 Beautiful, interesting, may be usefully for introspection and journaling. Not a good starter or basic deck. But may be interesting for the experienced.

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Index of Decks Reviewed

A D I O S  
Arcus Arcanum  
Celtic Dragon
Ancient Egyptian **
Ancient Italian
Ananda *
Ansata *
Black Tarot
Buckland Romani **
Ceremonial Magick
Druid Craft ***
Egipcios Kier
Enochian Tarot
Faeries Oracle
Fey **
Golden Dawn Magical
Golden Tarot
Gothic (Vargo) *
Greenwood Tarot ***
Haindl *
Hidden Folks
Intuitive Tarot
Tarot Lenormand 
Les Fleurs du Mal Tarot
LS Fairy
Liber T
Lunatic **
Margarete Petersen **
Tarot de Marseille **
Navigators o Mystic SEA
Nigel Jackson
Old English
Tarot of the Old Path
Osho-Zen Tarot
Oswald Wirth
Tarot of Reflections
Rider-Waite- Colman
Robin Wood
Romani Tarot *
Roots of Asia *
Russian St Peterburg **
The Secret Tarot
Servants of the Light
Sola Busca
Stairs of Gold
Stone Tarot **
Tarocco delle Vetrate
Tarot of Dreams
Tarot Mystique
T of Northern Shadows
Tarot of the Spirit **
Templar **
Thoth ****
Universal Fantasy
Victorian Romantic **
Visconti Sforza Tarocci
Visconti Tarot
Visconti Gold Grands **
Waite Colman  **
Giant Waite Colman

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The requirements for a good rating in the main sections (intended for study or use in readings) are listed here. (This shows the  pluses show the weighting factors in my evaluations: +++ required; ++  preferred; + bonus).

3+ required ==::  symbolism/meanings expressing traditional meanings 
2+ preferred==:   illustrated minors (required, except for historical decks)
2+ preferred==:   a card should portray the energies/meanings, not posing  figures;
2+ preferred ==    quality of art; depth of symbols;
2+ preferred ==  emotionally moving; intuition enticing
2+ preferred == High degree of referential or attributed details
2+ preferred ==  Hermetic attributions
1+ bonus  ==== I do like historical, mythological, magically rich decks; also
                       legend-based, Celtic, and creative decks -- all of which open one's intuition
1+ == bonus  =====  multi-cultural/religions
2+ == preferred =====aesthetic response

***ALSO: I prefer larger cards, or standard size with larger images so that the picture details can inspire intuition.


NOTE:  I don't consider "novelty" decks (any related to sports, animals, movies, TV shows, Cartoons, food, clothing, clothes pins); but in other sections I do make recommendations for artistic and for some variety decks (Gothic, Fairy, Egyptian, Romantic), even for the "other" categories, the decks must still correlate with standard Tarot meanings.   (NOTE: My favorite decks are marked with HIGHLIGHTED RATINGS)

Court de Gebelin
Tarot of the Bohemians

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Last modified: December 20, 2012

Updated: December 24, 2012 03:13:56 AM