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Tuesday, December 9, 2014

My Tarot Decks: The Llewellyn Tarot

One thing I’ve been mulling over is sharing my Tarot and Oracle decks. As a collector of Tarot and, more recently, Oracle decks, I must admit I love to show them off! I always bring several decks with me to my Tarot meetup.

These posts will be somewhat review-like, especially with decks I've had long enough to use in readings for myself and others. I’m going to start off this series of posts with the Llewellyn Tarot deck because, at the time of this writing, it’s the deck that I’ve been using in readings.

The Llewellyn Tarot deck is based on/inspired by Welsh mythology. You can see this in the Major Arcana cards, which include both the name of the Major on it and the name of a figure in Welsh mythology. For example, The Emperor is Bran the Blessed.

Llewellyn Emperor

I first purchased this deck in March 2014 when I was on vacation in Seaside, OR. I purchased this deck and my Magical Mermaids and Dolphins Oracle deck (which I’ll discuss later) at a store called The Crystal Wizard. Like any other Divination tool I use, this deck has its pros and cons. First of all, I love the artwork. It’s very flowy, pretty, and easy on the eyes. The artwork has a similar feel to the Renaissance Tarot deck that I used to own.

Another thing I like about this deck is that it is, for the most part, Waite-based. This is important to me because I’m frequently picking up new books on Tarot and the majority of them use the Universal Waite Tarot deck. Because the two decks use similar symbolism and imagery, it made the Llewellyn Tarot easy for me to learn and read, while just being different enough to not be another Waite clone. I can also feel confident enough following along in a book with this deck for reference. For these reasons, I can recommend this deck for beginners.

This deck was also easy for me to connect with. Unlike my Gilded Tarot deck, I’ve never felt blocked while working with the Llewellyn Tarot. My personal belief is that certain decks have their own “personalities” and that some decks are more forthcoming and easier to read than others. This is one of the points on which i judge certain decks, as well as in deciding which decks to use in readings.

Rider-Waite High Priestess (left) and Llewellyn High Priestess (right)
The most important pro, of course, is accuracy, and this has definitely proven to be an accurate deck. In fact, this was the deck I was using when I got my first two reviews on Oranum! I’ve used this deck multiple times in readings, which is something I wouldn’t do if a deck wasn’t accurate.

Earlier I mentioned that I pick up new Tarot books. This deck, which came as a boxed set, came with its own book. It was well-organized and informative, and even included a pronunciation key for the Welsh that is found throughout. This was much appreciated, as I’d have had a hard time with some of the words otherwise!

The book begins with an introduction to the deck, and the Tarot key, like in other books, starts with the Major Arcana, followed by the Minor Arcana. The only overall con I found, though, was in the book, but it was relatively minor so fear not! As much as I love mythology, which is included in the Major Arcana section as a page-long story that corresponds to each card, I skipped over it. Basically I wasn’t in the mood to read it and was just reading this book as a way of getting to know my own deck and learn other meanings of the cards. (Meanings sometimes vary from source to source.) As I said, this was just a minor thing and pretty nit-picky on my part.

Overall I love this deck and certainly recommend it.

What are some of your favorite decks? Have you used the Llewellyn deck before? Feel free to leave your feedback in the comments section below! If you would like to see this deck in action, you can visit my store for a reading.

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