The Alchemical Tarot 5th Edition is out of print
A New 6th Edition will be here by February 4th
but you can preorder it now.
The newest edition
In a cloth covered box with a slipcase
With silver edges
And with 80 cards
The 6th Edition is the Blue Sky Edition
This is the latest edition of my Alchemical Tarot, based on alchemical symbolism. The art is mostly the same as the 4th and 5th editions, but there are some changes. The background skies are blue instead of the parchment backgrounds found on the previous editions. The World card has changed and there are some changes on other cards. The biggest change is that there are now 80 cards in the deck. Besides the traditional 78 cards there are two versions of the Lovers cards, as in previous editions, and there is a new 22nd trump called Truth. Truth is based on a vision that Rosemary Ellen Guiley, my partner on the book for the first edition, had after that edition was published. Hermes Trismegistus came to her in night and presented the 22nd trump to her. I have included my illustration of this vision in the deck. Also the cards have silver edges, they come in a two-part cloth covered box, and there is a little book included. It is recommended that to fully understand the deck you purchase my latest book, The Tarot, Magic, Alchemy, Hermeticism, and Neoplatonism.
To learn more about the new addition to the trumps read my blog post The Twenty-Second Trump:
The deck will be here by February 2nd, but you can preorder the deck now
for $40 plus shipping
$9 in the US, $26 for Canada, or $40 for other countries, shipping in the US is the same for one or two decks and a book
for international orders,
contact me at:
Use this link to preorder the deck in the USA:
The companion book for The Alchemical Tarot is
US customers can use this link to preorder the
The Tarot, Magic, Alchemy, Hermeticism, and Neoplatonism, Third Edition
and The Alchemical Tarot 6th Edition together:
for international orders,
or just because you want to
contact me at:
Born out of the mystical vision of artist Robert M. Place, The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed 6th Edition is a full 80-card Tarot deck that demonstrates the close link between alchemical symbolism and traditional Tarot imagery and illustrates that the Tarot, like the alchemical quest, is designed to lead one to the gold of inner wisdom.
One of the most beautiful and sought after modern Tarot decks, the out of print first edition Alchemical Tarot has sold at auction for over $2,000. Now it is back in print at an affordable price.
The 6th edition of The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed is a digitally redesigned version of the original with improvements in the drawings, reproportioned so that the art is more prominent, and colored with transparent colors on a rich antique paper background, like antique alchemical illustrations. The cards are 4.75 x 2.75 and come in a two-part cloth covered box. They are printed on heavy card stock with a durable mat finish and silver edges.
The deck includes the original Lovers card that was censored in the first publication along with the one that was first published. The 6th Edition has additional alchemical symbols added, such as the symbols for the alchemical operations correlated with each trump card, and a new card back. It also has a 22nd trump card called Truth, based on a vision of Hermes Trismegistus presenting the card to Rosemary Ellen Guiley, my writing partner on the first edition. The Truth card depicts a pyramid with four stone layers and three non-material layers. It is a three-dimensional depiction of the Pythagorean Tetractys, a symbol representing the process of emanation, or how the divine essence manifests in the material world. Rosemary died in 2019 and this card is a homage to her.
Each card in the 6th edition of The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed is beautifully drawn and captures the enigmatic symbols of alchemy that are natural vehicles for communication with the unconscious mind. It can be used by Tarot readers at any level.
To learn more about The Alchemical Tarot, read my page on my inspiration for the deck:
One way to learn about The Alchemical Tarot
is to read how it can address a serious subject,
such as the Covid-19 pandemic
A 152-page full-color book by Scott Martin, covering the entire Alchemical Tarot and applying the wisdom gained from each card to life during a pandemic.
The book is $20 plus shipping: $9 in the US, $26 for Canada, and $40 for other international orders.
To order, you may email Robert Place and request a PayPal invoice:
US Customers may use this button to order through Gumroad:
US Customers may use this button to preorder the book
together with The Alchemical Tarot deck through Gumroad:
“I have come to realize that I really need to use your a Alchemical Tarot to communicate with people with advanced knowledge and understanding. They recognize the language, and they readily respond to the way you explain the cards, especially where you differ from Smith Waite. I always read from my full arsenal of Tarot understanding, but I very frequently veer off into your personal meanings for your cards.
I just wanted to thank you again, and acknowledge that your Alchemical Tarot is really a masterpiece of art and esoteric wisdom.”
Here are the trumps and the Fool from The Alchemical Tarot;
each card includes a symbol for its alchemical operation:
The Minor Suits
The Card Back
Preorder the 6th Edition Now
U.S. customers may use this link
For combined shipping on orders, or for international orders,
or just because you want to
contact me at:
The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed 4th Edition
review by Shy Fox
The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed
review by Bonnie Cehovet, TE
Author: Robert M. Place
Artist: Robert M. Place
The first edition of the “Alchemical Tarot” appeared in 1995. It has been out of print for some time now, except for the “oh so elegant” art print edition – which is (and rightfully so!) oh so costly! The buzz on the “Alchemical Tarot: Renewed” began as soon as the idea for the project got out, and has been building since then. The reason for this is evidenced in the theme itself: it is a Tarot based on alchemical symbolism and imagery. From the “Alchemical Tarot” site:
“The power of the “Alchemical Tarot” lies in its ability to act as a tool for communication with our inner wisdom.”
Place is an internationally known mystical artist (“The Buddha Tarot”, “The Tarot of the Saints”, the soon to be released “Vampire Tarot”, and “The Tarot: History, Symbolism and Divination”). For him, the deck began with this flash of insight: (a) symbolic images from alchemical texts were interchangeable with the standard Tarot trumps, and (b) the Tarot outlined the same process of mystical transformation as alchemy. The result of eight years of study and work was the “Alchemical Tarot” – the ultimate melding of traditional Tarot imagery and symbolism with that of traditional alchemy. The alchemical symbols magnify the symbolic purpose of the Tarot. From the “Alchemical Tarot” site”
“Each card in The Alchemical Tarot was carefully drawn to capture real alchemical symbols in a way that is clear and concise and in harmony with the aesthetic balance of the composition. They are the natural vehicle of the unconscious and they can be used by any Tarot reader at any level, from beginner to master, in the same way as other decks.”
The renewed edition is a 79 card deck with accompanying LWB (Little White Book). The box the deck comes in shows the High Priestess on the front, and the Emperor on the back. The box opens from the top.
The LWB begins with an introduction by Place, where he talks about his initial flash of insight into this project during the Harmonic Convergence in August of 1987, while he was studying an alchemical image that symbolized the Philosophers Stone. He also states that in this new edition the illustrations have been improved, and the columns that flanked the cads on the original publication removed, so that the imagery is larger, and fills more of the card.. This edition also contains two versions of the Lovers card (hence a 79 card deck) – the original version (that was more sexually explicit than traditional versions), and the toned down version that actually made the first publication.
The Major Arcana relates to alchemical materials and processes, with the Philosopher’s Stone itself (also known as he Red Stone) represented by the World. The four suits relate to the four elements (Earth, Air, Fire, and Water) and the four Jungian functions of consciousness ( sensation, thinking, feeling, and intuition).
The Major Arcana is presented with a short discussion of the energy of each card, with a black and white scan of the Fool at the beginning, and a black and white scan of the World at the end. The Pips (numbered cards) and Court Cards are presented with short descriptions of their energy, and keywords. A black and white scan of the Ace begins the section for each suit.
The traditional titles are retained for the Major Arcana. The suits are Coins, Vessels, Swords, and Staffs. The Court Cards are Lady, Knight, Queen and King.
The non-reversible card backs show a red rose against a green and white pattern, surrounded by a red border, which itself is surrounded by a black border, The card faces show a white border. The title for the Major Arcana appears at the bottom of the card, in black lettering against a beige background. The Major Arcana cards (with the exception of the Fool) are numbered in small Roman numerals at the top of the card. The Pips show small black Roman numerals at the top of the card, but do not show the suit. The Court Cards show the title and suit at the bottom of the card, in black lettering against a background color representative of the suit.
The cards themselves are 4.75 by 2.75, of sturdy, glossy cardstock. The colors are intense and clear, with great attention to detail. There are animals throughout the deck: the rabbit that accompanies the Fool, the bird-like figure on the Emperor’s left shoulder, the dragon on the Devil, the rabbit on the Ace of Coins, the Lion as the King of Coins, the fish on the Ace of Vessels, the elephant in the Four of Vessels, the Deer-like creature in the Nine of Vessels, the fish on the Knight of Vessels, the Mermaid as the Queen of Vessels, the fish as the King of Vessels, the bird and snake on the Ace of Swords, the owl on the Two of Swords, the coyote-like animal on the Seven of Swords, the mythical animal on the Eight of Swords, the dragon-like animal on the Knight of Swords, the bird as the King of Swords, the salamander on the Ace of Staffs, the two fighting creatures on the Seven of Staffs, the mythical creature on the Nine of Staffs, the Phoenix on the Ten of Staffs, and the mythical creature as the King of Staffs.
There is a myriad of unique imagery in this deck: the Fool is blindfolded, with a rabbit at his feet; the High Priestess is literally standing on water; the Empress has a child at her feet; to the left of he Hierophant we see a male statue, to the right of the Hierophant we see a female statue, behind the Hierophant, to his left, we see a red candle against a full Sun, behind he Hierophant, to his right, we see a white candle against a night sky and the Moon; the Chariot appears to be floating in the air, and is shown from the back; a red and yellow Ouroboros is shown in the sky to the left of he Hermit; the Hanged Man is tied with a snake would around his ankle (while coins very realistically fall from his pockets!); Death stands with a Raven on his shoulder;
While the presentation of the “Alchemical Tarot Renewed” has a very different feel from the original deck (due to the pillars on the sides of the cards in the original publication), it is stunning, and quite easy to work with. There is a fair amount of nudity, but it is placed in context of alchemical imagery. The reissuing of this deck is a great gift, as this is a deck that can be used by all levels of Tarot students.
Copyright March 2008
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Issue 62 of the Restored Temple of Hermes was sent out on November 22, 2021. If you did not receive it you may need to send me an updated email address.