Edmund Dulac Tarot Deck
The Victorian era gave the world great artists. They depicted everyday life through fabulous images, conveying hidden meanings. One of these masters was Edmund Dulac. His work captured the minds of all the nobility of the early 20th century. After about a hundred years, a deck of the same name was created in honor of the artist. Edmund Dulac Tarot brings to mind favorite stories and fairy tales. The cards are romantic, beautiful and a bit sad. They cause longing for something sublime and inaccessible, but so attractive.
History of creation of the Edmund Dulac Tarot Deck
The Edmund Dulac Tarot is a relatively new deck. Publishing house Lo Scarabeo released the cards in 2020, but they have already managed to win the love of many practitioners. The idea of creating Arcana and their design belongs to Giacomo Gailli. As a basis, the author took the work of the French artist Edmund Dulac, who worked in the Victorian era. This period was characterized by transition. Despite many difficulties, people still believed in fairy tales, finding comfort in them. Edmund Dulac illustrated such works as: "1000 and 1 night", the works of the Bronte sisters, "The Tale of Tsar Saltan" and many others. Postcards, stamps and even French banknotes were decorated with his works. The artist also collaborated with Walt Disney, developing fairy-tale characters with him.
Giacomo Gailli, with the help of Dulac Tarot, was able to once again recall the legacy that the artist left behind. After all, through fantasy images, he spoke about reality, about problems and joys. Colorful illustrations helped to better perceive and understand the meaning of stories and fairy tales. Now the field of influence has expanded even more. The author of the Edmund Dulac Tarot deck superimposed all the favorite and recognizable stories on the world of predictions. The characters have turned into archetypes, speaking with the questioner in a special magical language. And although all these wonderful works were created at the beginning of the 20th century, they still remain relevant to this day. After all, at all times people want understanding, manifestation of their talents and love.
Key features of the Edmund Dulac Tarot
The deck belongs to the English school. There are standard 78 Arcana here, the Fool without a number, Justice is the 11th. For the Major Arcana of the Edmund Dulac Tarot, the author tried to choose the artist’s works that are most similar in meaning. So, a winged giant appeared on the Fool from the fairy tale "Garden of Eden" by Andersen. The spirit of the wind carries the prince on his back towards adventure. The card denotes a new beginning, a path to something not yet known, but attractive. The Strength Arcana depicts a girl leading a black panther on a short rein. The image again refers to the inner support and confidence. After all, in order to manage a wild dangerous animal in this way, one must not have fears. The illustration is taken from "One Thousand and One Nights" and shows the queen of the islands.
The suits by Edmund Dulac Tarot are classic: Cups, Coins, Wands and Swords. For the Air group, the author chose dark, sometimes frightening works. They are shrouded in mystery and a veil of sadness. But the Cups are characterized by more calm pacifying scenes. Each card here has an image of water, which perfectly reflects the energy of the group. Some Aces have Edmund Dulac’s characters on them. The court group is shown as various characters, whom the author tried to unite under a common auspices. For example, the Snow Queen from Andersen’s fairy tale of the same name is painted on the Queen of Coins. Newspapers are scattered on the floor in front of the heroine. The card in its meaning indicates work with documents and possession of some information, as well as state. The queen is paired with Bluebeard, a well-known villain and rich man.
The Minor Arcana of Edmund Dulac Tarot deck individually can be considered rich in ideas. Each card is able to give a lot of hidden meanings. At the same time, the author also tried to choose those images that are easiest to layer on Waite’s traditions. For example, the Eight of Wands shows a whole dance of angels rushing to the dome of the cathedral. This Tarot Arcana shows the rapid development of circumstances, the supply of energy, just like in the classics. The Ten of Wands depicts a hunched old man carrying a bundle of brushwood. And here, too, one can easily guess the severity, great responsibility and many obligations. But on the Three of Swords, a frightening image appears - black spirits with evil faces. Scene taken from "The Fall of the House of Usher" by Allan Poe. The novel tells about the curse of the family. Ushers are too sensitive, and therefore live in the midst of gray landscapes. The card is similar in meaning to the classic Waite’s Three of Swords. It shows the inner world of too warm-hearted people.
Style and symbolism of the deck
The Dulac Tarot deck is made in dark shades. All the plots here seem to be covered with a thick fog, in which faces and images are visible. At the same time, the figures and facial expressions of people are worked out quite accurately. All characters differ in type and character. Clothing and landscapes tell about different eras and cultures. A fortune-teller, as if by magic, finds himself either in an eastern palace among sheikhs and beautiful dancers, or in simple European houses. Even within the same suit, the images change like in a kaleidoscope. The color scheme varies from ocher shades to evening blue. Even on the Sun, in addition to the light blue skies below, a dark city is shown, immersed in greenery. Such a move once again emphasizes the mysticism of the deck.
In terms of design, the Edmund Dulac Tarot also has a characteristic feature - the ornate frames at the top and bottom are translucent, superimposed on top of the image. However, there are no inscriptions here. At the top there is a numerical designation or a symbol of the rank, at the bottom there is an object denoting the suit. The tarot card back showcases a black night sky with golden stars. Fabulous horses with a lush mane gallop along it. The image is mirrored, which makes it easier to work with reversed positions. This image perfectly reflects the energy of the Tarot deck. Even the most mundane and simple plots are shown here as sublime, containing a certain secret.
Interpretation of the Edmund Dulac Tarot cards
The interpretation of the Edmund Dulac Tarot deck can be made based on your own intuition. After all, it is not necessary to know the context in order to count poverty on the Five of Coins or the beginning of a new project with the Ace of Wands. You just need to pay attention to the faces, clothes of the characters. The Tarot deck is quite objective, which allows you to shift it to real life. For example, musical instruments from the Queen of Wands and the Four of Cups clearly hint at the creative abilities of the fortuneteller or the person on whom the spread is made. Chess from the Ace of Coins can speak both about the game and about thinking through the plan, the ability to move step by step towards your goal.
If you familiarize yourself in advance with the works from which the author took illustrations, then the spreads on the Edmund Dulac Tarot deck will become even more informative. The prediction will sparkle with new meanings, easily transferring to real life. It will not be superfluous to study the legacy of Waite. Still, the deck came out very understandable, albeit with its own characteristics, secrets. The prediction obtained using the Edmund Dulac Tarot deck turns out to be veiled, requiring a clue. But this approach allows you not to get hurt about the truth, to penetrate deeper into meanings and take advantage of problems.
What questions is the deck suitable for?
Fortune-telling on the Edmund Dulac Tarot deck perfectly reveals the true feelings and motives of human behavior. In many ways, the cards can be called feminine, quiet and attractive. That is why the Tarot deck is perfect for working out issues related to personal life, searching for the second half. It teaches how to accept and show love, and also highlights dangerous people who can break your heart. After all, behind the same image of Bluebeard is a treacherous man who takes advantage of the gullibility of defenseless girls. And the Little Mermaid from the Eight of Swords is a vivid example of sacrificing everything for the sake of someone who will never love you.
Through archetypes from fairy tales, Edmund Dulac Tarot deck gives a detailed description of a particular person. This information will help you find a common language or compromise in a conflict, even with a very difficult person. After all, often the heroes themselves go to tricks in the fight against evil. So, on the Ace of Swords, a storm is shown, arranged by the spirit of air Ariel. Through it, the magician Prospero introduces his daughter to her future husband. Thus, even the most difficult trials can become the gateway to a new happy life. Fairy tales speak metaphorically about everyday life. But it also has a place for miracles.
Who are the Edmund Dulac Tarot cards for?
The Edmund Dulac Tarot deck will appeal to fans of the artist himself, as well as the art of the Victorian era in general. Indeed, often such illustrations, and the fairy tales themselves, are written for adults, rather than for children. A mature person can see in veiled images a reflection of real life with all its hardships and joys. Foremost, of course, the Edmund Dulac Tarot will be clear to women with their subtle mental organization. At the same time, beginners can get confused in metaphorical pictures. It is best for them to familiarize themselves with the works of Waite in advance in order to find support in working with cards.
Also, the Edmund Dulac Tarot deck will appeal to collectors. The Arcana came out very beautiful and attractive, and together they generally make up a collection of illustrations for the magical world. It is not necessary to work with the deck. You can simply laminate the cards, from time to time, admiring the brainchild of the creator Edmund Dulac. Also, the deck is quite suitable for practitioners working with elemental spirits and totems. It is not for nothing that very mystical images appear in the system. They will be most understandable to experienced practitioners, who will not be frightened by metaphors and riddles.