I have been a fan of Harry Potter since I was a child, so when I discovered that there was a published deck based in the novel, I had to get my hands on it immediately! I expected to add just a curiosity to my collection but the truth is that this deck is much more than I thought it would be. It will not only delight the fans but also well seasoned Tarot readers. If you are familiar with the story you will be able to find deep and cohesive layers of meaning in its readings!
The Tarot of Harry Potter was created by Eleonore Pieper, a very talented artist and I guess a huge fan of the novels. You can find more about her artwork here.
This is a deck very comfortable to use, it is standard size, perhaps a little bit more narrow than a usual deck. The card-stock is flexible but it doesn’t feel weak and the cards feel a little rough which is great for shuffling and handling. The deck has a lovely sepia tone and the printing is of a pretty good quality. The titles come in english and russian and the printing house is Ankh.
I’m a little bit concerned about the backs of the cards, since they show the initials “Hp” in the font of the franchise but it doesn’t seem to be registered and so do the cards, it may induce to the idea that we are talking about an official product and it doesn’t seem so. So probably, in case this deck became more known there could be an issue with its commercialisation on a bigger scale.
I can’t tell a lot about the book that comes with the deck, since regrettably it comes in russian, but for those of you who have some understanding of the language, for what I can guess, it explains the cards thoroughly.
This deck has 78 cards, just as a regular Tarot deck and it is based in the Thoth system, so although it is comprised by the usual four suits and Major Arcana, minors are named as you would see in a regular Thoth deck.
The fact that the deck is Thoth based has strongly caught my attention since these days it is not usual to find many decks following the system. I feel that I will have to get more experience with the deck in order to extract its fullest potential.
Looking deeper into the deck.
The four founders make their appearance in the minor arcana as the Aces of their suits. This way Godric Gryffindor is the Ace of Wands, Salazar Slytherin is the Ace of Cups, Rowena Ravenclaw is the Ace of Swords and Helga Hufflepuff is the Ace of Pentacles.
Now, I might be Captain Obvious, but I hadn’t really thought about it before, so please, don’t take this as if I were giving you all a lesson in breathing!
Let’s give a look to the words of The Sorting Hat.
The Sorting Hat Song
(Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone.)
“You might belong in Gryffindor,
Where dwell the brave at heart,
Their daring, nerve, and chivalry
Set Gryffindors apart.
You might belong in Hufflepuff,
Where they are just and loyal,
Those patient Hufflepuffs are true
And unafraid of toil;
Or yet in wise old Ravenclaw,
if you’ve a ready mind,
Where those of wit and learning,
Will always find their kind;
Or perhaps in Slytherin
You’ll make your real friends,
Those cunning folks use any means
To achieve their ends.”
The point I mean to make, I had never realized that the Four Houses have elemental correspondences and well, it kind of makes perfect sense!
Gryffindor – Lion – Wands – Fire. – Bravery, daring attitude, nerve, chivalry.
Slytherin – Serpent – Cups – Water. – Fraternity, ambition, resources, subtlety.
Ravenclaw – Eagle – Swords – Air. – Intelligence, wit, creativity, wisdom.
Hufflepuff – Badger – Pentacles – Earth. – Hard work, patience, loyalty, justice.
These are the kind of details that get me thinking that there’s a lot of potential in this apparently whimsical deck!
As well, while giving a look to the name of each card, I also found elemental correspondences between the actions, attitudes, feelings or events they describe and the element they belong to, and this worth some thinking, doesn’t it?
See it yourself in the chart below!
|Ace. – Godric Gryffindor||Ace. – Salazar Slytherin||Ace. – Rowena Ravenclaw||Ace. – Helga Hufflepuff|
|2. – Domination||2. – Love||2. – Equilibrium||2. – Change|
|3. – Exploration||3. – Abundance||3. – Sorrow||3. – Work|
|4. – Perfection||4. – Comfort||4. – Truce||4. – Stability|
|5. – Conflict||5. – Disappointment||5. – Defeat||5. – Torment.|
|6. – Victory||6. – Happiness||6. – Knowledge||6. – Success|
|7. – Bravery||7. – Illusion||7. – Deception||7. – Failure|
|8. – Swiftness||8. – Despair||8. – Interference||8. – Circumspection|
|9. – Power||9. – Joy||9. – Cruelty||9. – Gain|
|10. – Oppression||10. – Repletion||10. – Destruction||10. – Wealth|
The deck is definitely a treasure! And this is only a shallow analysis, I do not discard the idea of writing more about this deck when I have worked with it for a while. The minor arcana are full of secrets and underlying meanings and I could write for a while of what I have seen so far, but by the moment, let’s stop here and say more a while ahead in the journey!
What are your views about this deck? I would love to hear what you have to say!
Have a lovely rest of the week you all!