This Tarot deck is done in what the booklet calls "an original old Russian style." The style is similar to that of the Russian Tarot of St. Petersburg, but the art is not as finely detailed. The art is excellent, however, with bright colors on a dark background. The Major Arcana scenes are on a black background, Wands on a brown background, Cups on a dark olive green background, Swords on a very dark purple background, and Coins on a very dark brown background. Many of the Major Arcana have been renamed, specifically:
Justice is VIII and Strength (which is misspelled "Strenght" on the card) is XI. Each card has a gold metallic border with the name of the card in the bottom border in English and in what appears to be Danish and in French. The Major Arcana have the card number in a gold metallic medallion on the top of each card. The court consists of King, Queen, Knight and Page. The Minors are illustrated, and the influence of the Waite-Smith is easily seen, though the scenes have been rendered in the Russian style. I can only assume that this style of art requires sad facial expressions. Even the dancing girls in the Three of Cups have a look of consternation. There is also some use of color to provide continuity within each suit, primarily in the clothing. The card stock used in this deck is heavier than most and it does not shuffle easily.
The little booklet that comes with the deck suffered greatly in the translation process. This situation is not improved by the author's (or translator's) use of larger words than are necessary to convey the ideas at hand. The grammar is such that many sentences have to be read several times in order to glean their meaning.The booklet describes the artist's views on Tarot, and provides upright and reversed interpretations for each card. The interpretations are fairly traditional. A person familiar with the Waite-Smith deck should have no difficulty reading with this one.
I recommend this deck for those who are familiar with the Waite-Smith and would like a change of pace. The deck is attractive, though some might find the style a little severe. This deck was in US Games last catalog (No.39), but not in its latest (No. 46), so if you see it somewhere, get it while you can.
See more images from the Egorov Tarot
- Egorov Tarot
- Piatnik Wein No. 1975
- Images copyright 1992, Alexander Egorov
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