Sometimes all it takes to know that there is something amazing in the works is seeing the artist’s name in your DMs. Alexander Daniloff’s newest deck, the Orient Tarot, was just that. To know that my little Tarot heart was greedy, I had to only see the first image.
The Orient Tarot, a deck of 80 cards printed in limited quantities (500), is a private-printed deck. Like other Alexander decks, we have the option to choose Justice or Strength as Arcana VIII or XI.
This deck is inspired by the ancient culture and magic of Scheherazade-1001 Nights. It sparkles with jewel-box colors and reads like a dream straight out of the box.
Check out my quick tour of the entire Orient Tarot. Loki, my greyhound, gave me a hard time as I tried to place the cards. He was defeated, however.
The cards are full of details, and some of these details will become easier to understand as you get more familiar with them. Check out the jewels on the front of Hierophant’s turbans – these are the astrological symbols of Aries and Taurus. However, I must admit that I cannot find the astrological symbols on every card with an associated astrological organization. But that doesn’t mean they can’t be found, hidden away in the details of a costume or wrapped in ribbons. There are many gems scattered all over. I will keep looking, and so should you.
The Majors are named and numbered as you would expect. However, the Minors have their own numbering system. The symbols used to depict the suits include a curved blade (for Swords), a stylised cup (for Cups), a cudgel shape (for Wands) and a stylised coin shape (for Coins). This is the beauty of it – you can call them whatever you want – Vessels , Cups, Chalices Swords, Scimitars, Blades … Coins, Denari, Pentacles, Disks …. Wands, Batons, Sticks.
This blog is about court cards, so I will be focusing on the Courts. Each court is represented with a letter that indicates its rank: P for Page, a small K for Knights, Q to Queen, and capital K for Kings.
Each image includes a symbol that indicates the connection between each Court and Astrology. Each Page is placed in a background that indicates the suit. Knights have symbols on their shields. Queens have their tent flaps. Kings are embroideried behind them. The foot of the card contains the astrological symbols.
The Coins Courts
This image shows the Page, who is in the element Earth. The Knight riding a camel and wearing the symbols of Virgo can be seen. The symbols of Capricorn, Earth, and Taurean bull imagery are used by the Queen and King. These cards seem to have a predominant use of orange tones.
Courts of Orient Tarot Cups
The Page is in the element Water. The Knight sports Pisces imagery. Or am I just imagining it?
Courts of Orient Tarot Swords
The Page is surrounded by clouds, the element of Air and swifts. The Knight is Gemini, while the Queen Libra is Libra. The King is Aquarius’ water bearer. He also has a pillow of swifts and clouds. These guys have a dark purple vibe.
Courts of Orient Tarot Wands
The fiery Wands are our last set of courtly characters in the Orient Tarot – the Page stands in front of a volcano, while the Knight has Sagittarius icons and the Queen Aries. These are evoking an Alazarin Crimson vibe to me.
The courts are my favorite – I love the graceful, fleet-footed knights and their mounts. But, I don’t mind if an elephant is included, but that’s because I love elephants and there aren’t enough in art. What’s not to love about the luxurious robes and beautiful environments?
It is very good quality card stock. It is a good size to hold in your hands (RWS-sized). The corners are nice and round to keep it in top shape. It is a joy that every little tarot reader will love and I highly recommend it to beginners as well as experienced readers.