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Rider-Waite Tarot Deck (aka Waite Tarot and Rider Tarot)



The Rider-Waite Tarot is the classic Tarot deck, perhaps the most well-known in the Western world. Great for beginner and experienced tarot readers alike.

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The Rider-Waite Tarot is a classic Tarot deck, perhaps the most well-known in the Western world. It is often called the first modern Tarot deck, as the cards drawn by Pamela Colman-Smith and commissioned by Waite were the first to use detailed pictures on the minor arcana cards.

The images of The Rider-Waite Tarot are well known. This is the most widely circulated tarot deck in the world. Its classic images have served as the basis for countless other tarot decks through its many years in print. The images go well beyond the consciousness of tarot enthusiasts. At the mention of Tarot, it is the images of this classic tarot deck that most people will see in their mind's eye.

The deck's author, A.E. Waite gave detailed instructions as to the content of the Major Arcana to the artist Pamela Coleman Smith. The Minor Arcana, however, are thought to be Smith's own creation. It is her unique illustrations that have ensured the decks posterity. She was the first to consistently apply pictorial scenes to the pip cards, reflecting their divinatory meaning. She unwittingly created a new tradition so that even today, the majority of divinatory style tarot decks follow her system.

It is a credit to Pamela Coleman Smith's insight that her seemingly simple illustrations have such a hold on the imagination to this day. Its difficult to look at many of these scenes and conceive of a better way to encapsulate the meaning of the card itself. On another level, the drawings are timeless Its very easy to forget that they are nearly a hundred years old.

The name of the deck derives from the deck's original author and publisher. It was originally published by Rider and Sons, London. Rider and Sons' publication ended during World War II when the printing plates were destroyed in the London Blitz. U.S. Games began publishing the deck in 1971. They now own the copyrights and patents on all of the various permutations of the deck.

This is an excellent deck for beginner and experienced Tarot readers alike. Every Tarot collection should include at least one version of the Rider-Waite Tarot. You'll likely find it to be a permanent cornerstone of your tarot reading activities and study. None of your other favorites would exist if it were not for this deck by Pamela Coleman Smith. It is, after all, the tarot deck that started it all.

Contents: 78-card deck and instruction booklet.

Card Size: 2-3/4 x 4-3/4 inches


Mechanics divination, tarot, Rider
Designer Waite, Arthur Edward and Pamela Colman Smith
Author Waite, Arthur Edward and Pamela Colman Smith
Illustrator Pamela Colman Smith
Publisher U.S. Games Systems
Year Published 1971
Binding Box
Condition New
Card Size 2 3/4 by 4 3/4 inches
Number of Cards 78

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