The Little Known History of Tarot

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Throughout its history, tarot has been associated with various ancient mystery schools and esoteric ideologies. However, evidence points to a deck of cards that wasn’t used exclusively for fortune telling until centuries after its creation. Occult historian and author Mitch Horowitz sheds some light on how this powerful tool transitioned from an early version of bridge to a mystical divination tool. Special thanks to Lighthouse Bookstore in Boulder, Colorado and to Mitch Horowitz.

This Post Has 46 Comments

  1. Bliss WKC

    Thank you so much dearest sweeties💐
    You’re such an inspiration 🙏😇
    Stay Blessings always 🕉💖

  2. Donald Schoenroth

    why do you have the music so loud?

    1. Claudette

      I had to stop watching because of the loud music. I couldn’t understand what she was saying

    2. KT GE

      Because this one goes up to eleven

    3. Donald Schoenroth


    4. KT GE

      Donald Schoenroth Most only go up to ten but this one goes to eleven.

    5. Eric Sandmeyer

      I agree! This is the 3rd or 4th video I’ve tried to watch today involving noisy music with some dim narration accompaniment

  3. Just Me TV

    I just want that fat orange cat sleeping on that guys chair😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣😂

    1. Shira ARDS

      😍 me tooo

  4. Draziw Drow

    if you really want to know about tarot, read alejandro jodorowskys book ‘the way of the tarot’

    1. Isabel McNelly

      thank you =)

    2. Jenova Lee

      I love that man dearly, and he inspires everything I do, as does Lynch.

    3. Chad

      Draziw Drow I’m not even gonna try and pronounce the last name

    4. The Build x Grow Show

      @Chad joe-duh-rou-ski

    5. Chad

      Blu X Grean thx

  5. 寂しいLonely


    1. 13 AC

      Found my jojo comment

  6. Бранко

    is this a jojo reference?

    1. 57badarse

      Yare yare

  7. Maddy Joh

    I love the cat napping on the chair in the background! Who else thinks that’s one who really has all the answers? 😜😽

  8. Izzy Sauls

    I hope this happens with Yu-Gi-Oh decks in the next 100 years

    1. MrMikeyification

      Izzy Sauls that would be epic and also extremely confusing for future generations. Haha

    2. Remy Militello

      Im not even kidding I was thinking the exact same thing

    3. J Nighs

      Back in my day we played with Pokemon and we were happy Damn kids yugizo

    4. AzajosEli

      Hahahahaha best comment ever

  9. A&E Coins

    The Etteilla I deck from 1791 was the first deck expressly made for occult purposes, not the RWS deck from 1911. The earliest known tarot is from the late 1300’s, although we don’t have the cards from it, we have is the book describing it. Levi talked about Etteilla’s deck at great length, he was not the first person to say they were for more than just playing cards. Court de Gebelin said in “Monde Primatif cashier 6″ in the mid 1700’s that they had a mystical origin. Plus, Waite was one of the higher ups in the Golden Dawn. They used tarot to advance degrees. So he most certainly did NOT say they were just a game. The RWS deck was also not the first to have illustrated ‘pips” (number cards). Many decks had them a few 100 years before the RWS deck. This guy just doesn’t know what he’s talking about historically. He held up a 9 card (a pip card), then called it a court card, then a ‘minor trump”. Christ. Not that I believe one way or another that tarot is anything at all, this is just terrible misinformation.

    1. Jamie Todd

      I agree, this guy’s information is extremely off

    2. Elixis 28

      A&E Coins lol minor trump. My immature page self had a giggle

  10. Jacob DeCoursey

    Lots of angry wizards claiming this video is misinformation without backing up their claim.

    Be adaptable, ya’ll. Dogmatism is psychic suicide.

    1. James Chessman

      The vid is just not accurate, fool.

  11. Maxine Alexandra

    Hmmm, Thoth deck is a difficult deck to read, even for the experienced reader. Wouldn’t be my choice for a beginner. Good luck. And Blessings.

  12. SWU TV

    alot of misinformation being spread throughout video. Best to do your own research!!!

  13. Han von Arian

    The history of the Tarot goes much further than the 15th century, they are referenced by the Cathars (Catharism (11th – 14th Century France) and Cathari (4th – 8th centuries)), Joachim of Fiore (c. 1130/35-1201/2 AD), and the Oracles of Leo the Wise (866 – 912 AD). Where would the early Christian Cathari have taken the idea of the Tarot with its already highly developed meanings and symbolism that invoked such wrath from Rome? – The biblical Urim & Thummim (Lights & Perfections / Alephs & Tavs / Alphas & Omegas) were a set of 22 ancient (probably pre-Sumerian) Runes that spawned the Phoenician and Hebrew alphabets and an array of similar later Rune sets throughout Europe and the Middle East. The 22 Major Arcana reflect symbolism and imagery from deep in the Hebrew Texts, themselves redactions of much older texts.

  14. Tamar 4272

    Tarot – I am no expert on this – one thing I do know – it all depends on the readers consciousness . Make sure the reader cares about people and has a good heart – thoughts & words carry lots of power. This applies to choosing a doctor , a therapist , a spiritual guide , and all the people you surround yourself with .

  15. david c smith

    Cards were made for divination purposes in the beginning Not for games of chance or entertainment.
    However in some areas religious zealots were always on a witch hunt
    So if approached was better to say we are playing games!

    1. Russell Richards

      I’m sorry but you are most definitely incorrect. The original Italian types have been in continuous production for hundreds of years and absolutely were and still are used to play card games (tarocchi).

      Even the various types of standard Italian regional playing cards still used to this day are connected to tarot, in fact tarot developed off these regular playing cards which are still produced to this day.

    2. Russell Richards

      Here you go, a standard deck of trevisane cards from the veneto region, used to play regular Italian card games. In fact, these trace their lineage to mamluk Egypt from the days when the Venetian Republic ruled the Mediterranean and did extensive trade with the Islamic world, note the curved Arabic swords on the cards. It is from these cards that all north Italian playing cards evolved including tarot

    3. Stephen Dedalus

      Do you have a source for that then? Or are you just projecting your own wishes on to the past?

    4. Kittywampus Drums

      Yea and dice and tea leaves, etc… allot easier to “camoflauge” what’s actually going on lol. Drukama uploaded an interesting thing about tarot also check it out if you can find it.

    5. James Chessman

      Tarot was always for divination plus games. Always.

  16. Birdy

    I had always heard you cant buy your own deck but it must be given, does anyone know where that comes from?

  17. Christopher Bell

    If all the books on Tarot have different opinions on it’s origin and meaning then who’s to say this guy’s explanation is 100% accurate?

    1. James Chessman

      It’s not, actually. They’re ignoring how tarot cards were always mystical from the beginning of their existence, as they were used for games plus fortune-telling too.

  18. Ádám Babucs

    And of course every card has a stand inspired by it in the world somewhere.

  19. Jens Tiefschneider

    Difficult to listen to, the music is much too loud.

  20. Gaia

    Explore Ancient Mystery Schools and Esoteric Ideologies on Gaia – Start Your Free Trial –

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