Tarot Of The Renaissance (Lo Scarabeo)

Tarot Of The Renaissance. Lo Scarabeo, Italy. Full divinatory tarot deck, Mediterranean suited, 78 single-headed cards. Size: 66mm x 120mm.

Deck make-up:
Trumps: 0-21.
Pentacles (i.e. coins), wands (i.e. clubs), chalices (i.e. cups), swords: A, 2-10, knave, knight, queen, king.

The Renaissance Tarot is the work of Giorgio Trevisan (b.1934), an Italian illustrator of children's books and magazines specialising in picture strips, particularly those with a historical edge. In the late-1980s/early-1990s he produced two watercolour trumps-only decks for card maker Lo Scarabeo: Tarocchi Romantici (Romantic Tarot) and I Tarocchi Lanzichenecchi (The Landsknecht Tarot). A few years after the release of the latter, Trevisan expanded it into a full 78-card deck called Tarot Of The Renaissance. It has been in print ever since in a variety of regular-size, compact and enlarged editions.

Tarots with modern imagery on them never look quite right to me. I think tarot was born to have (vaguely) medieval pictures on it, certainly nothing later than Victorian. Things like the Morgan-Greer or Hanson Roberts decks just don't do it for me – the illustration style (and sometimes even the content) reeks so much of the 1970s that you might as well get out your Charlie's Angels Ouija board and have some fun with that instead. The irony is that such things actually date far faster than those involving more old-worldy visualisations. That's what I like Trevisan's tarot here – it has all the timeless settings and clothing we have become familiar with through decks like Waite's RWS, and it isn't going to age.

Having said that, I've no idea whether this deck has genuine tarot credentials. Apart from the trumps, do the cards have bona-fide esoteric details therein, or do they just contain random-ish nice pictures? ... Still, I like it.

Note that this tarot is not to be confused with others with similar naming (e.g. Brian Williams' Renaissance Tarot, or The Golden Tarot Of The Renaissance).

Click on any card to explore the design.

(Comments, corrections or can-I-use requests, please e-mail: Click to see e-mail address.)


Card 20 might have been inspired by Georges Muchery's 20 Taureau card (from his Le Tarot Astrologique, q.v.)
Note the mistake in the numbering of the corner index on card 21. Oops.

Pentacles (i.e. coins)

The naming here isn't very consistent. The foreign-language titles for this suit all refer to coins; the English name has "pentacles", which aren't shown anywhere in the artwork.

Wands (i.e. clubs)

Note the face on the ace.

Chalices (i.e. cups)





Links to other full tarot and divinatory decks

Ancient Italian Tarot / Tarocchino Milanese (Lo Scarabeo)

Tarot: Spécial Cercle / Tarot Nouveau / Tarot A Jouer / Jeu De Tarot / Bourgeois Tarot (Grimaud)

The Golden Dawn Tarot (U.S. Games Systems)

Grand Jeu De Mlle Lenormand (Grimaud)

(Petit) Lenormand / "Blue Owl" Lenormand (AGM-Urania)

Grand Etteilla (Tarots Egyptiens / Egyptian gypsies tarot) (Grimaud)

Tarot De Marseilles (Conver-Camoin)

Sola-Busca Tarot (privately commissioned deck)

Aleister Crowley Thoth Tarot Deck (AGM-Urania)

The Urban Tarot (U.S. Games Systems)

Minchiate Fiorentine (Baragioli)

Le Tarot Astrologique / The Astrological Tarot (Grimaud)

Learning Tarot Cards (Witchy Cauldron)

Golden Dawn Magical Tarot (Llewellyn Books)

RWS Panorama (Deckstiny)

The Hermetic Tarot (U.S. Games Systems)

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