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Tarot of Cleopatra - tarot decks

Playing Cards
Playing Cards -> Tarot decks

Price: US $15.50

ProductID: alt0941

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About this item
  • The Tarot of Cleopatra is Ancient Egyptian in theme and appearance. The 78 cards feature authentic-looking Egyptian
  • -style figures and deities painted against a papyrus-like background, with teal-coloured borders.

Name Tarot of Cleopatra
Creators Silvana Alasia, Etta Stoico
Publisher Lo Scarabeo 2006
Deck Type Tarot Deck
Cards 78
Major Arcana 22
Minor Arcana 56
Strength is 11
Justice is 8
Card Language English


"The Cleopatra Tarot synthesizes the religious and astrological culture of that time, reuniting the 78 Egyptian divinities divided into groups according to their power. "

The major arcana of the Tarot of Cleopatra are linked with 22 ‘superior’ Ancient Egyptian divinities, and the court cards with 16 ‘slightly inferior’ divinities. The four Aces are linked with the three traditional seasons of the Egyptian calendar, plus 'the ascent of Sothis'. The 32 numbered suit cards have been matched with 32 ‘doyens’, which are celestial divinities, associated with the zodiacal calendar by the Egyptians. The booklet explains that these divinities, or 'monthly spirits', were shown in a bas-relief in the Temple of Denderah that dates back to the time of Cleopatra, that illustrates a map of the ancient sky, the zodiac, and the concept of Egyptian astrology.

Visually, the Tarot images are placed inside a teal-blue border and appear on a papyrus-like background, with frayed edges, for an authentic look. The colours used remind me of ancient scrolls or friezes, as the orange-reds, blues, sludgy greens and orange-tan skin-tones paints appear worn, smudged, or rubbed off entirely in areas. The major arcana cards feature the individual deity in the centre of the card, while the minors are busier. They’re not complete scenes as in the Rider-Waite, nor are they pip cards, but they feature people, animals, glyphs, and Egyptian objects in arrangement composed on the cards. (As for the backs, they show reversible designs of an Egyptian women wearing a head-dress and carrying an ankh and a staff.)

The companion booklet is the usual multi-language stapled booklet from Lo Scarabeo. It has the typical short meanings for each card, plus an Egyptian word for the associated deity, season or doyen, and a unique spread for the deck. Here is it 'The Cleopatra Oracle', a divinatory spread that uses 12 cards. An example of the card meanings:

1. The Magician. Toth. Decisional capabilities. Initiative. Diplomacy. An able and well-prepared person. A higher vision of life.
Ace of Swords: Chemu: Spring. Dynamism. Desire to expand one’s own area of action. Over sensitive character.
Five of Pentacles: Aphruimis. Saturn in Leo. A moment where egoism prevails over feelings. A very jealous and at time violent person.

The imagery of the Tarot of Cleopatra seems to have more of a connection to Ancient Egyptian symbolism than Tarot symbolism, and a good knowledge of both would help with these cards. As I’m not an Egyptophile or knowledgeable about their form of astrology, I found it hard to use the cards without constantly referring back to the booklet.

The art production of the Tarot of Cleopatra is of a high standard, but practically, I would recommend it only to experienced readers who have a passion for Ancient Egypt or collectors who simply must have every Egyptian-themed deck available on the market. With decks like this one that merge a complex topic such as Egyptian astrology with Tarot, the end-users would really benefit from a detailed companion book.

Combine shipping is possible.

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