Six Editions of the Alchemical Tarot

This page is designed to help people who are collecting the Alchemical Tarot to identify the different editions. There are six editions identified below by the box cover, and the front and back of the Star card. I picked this card because it was the first one I designed for the deck and it was the first to be published when it appeared in a article in Gnosis Magazine, in 1989, before the deck came out.

ONE (out of print)

The first edition of The Alchemical Tarot, called simply The Alchemical Tarot, was published in 1995 by Thorsons, the UK branch of HarperCollins. The original Lovers card I designed for the deck was considered too sexually explicit. So I redesigned it with the Lovers only kissing.  Also I designed the cards to be the same proportions as the Waite Smith cards but the publisher wanted them wider. So I devised the border design with the columns to take up the extra width. It came in a boxed set with a book that I co-authored with Rosemary Ellen Guiley.  That is why both our names were on the box, and the box is actually larger in relation to the cards than is pictured.

72dpi Alchemical Tarot 1

TWO (out of print)

The second edition of The Alchemical Tarot was published under my publishing label, Hermes Publications, in 2007. This was called The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed. For this edition, I reproportioned the cards so that I did not need the border design.  This allowed the imaged to take up a larger space on the card without making the card larger. I scanned all of the drawings into the computer, made improvements, and recolored them.  I also included both versions of the Lovers card, the censored one and the one that was originally published, making it a 79 card deck.

72dpi Alchemical Tarot 2

THREE (out of print)

The third edition was published by Hermes Publications in 2011. It was called The Alchemical Tarot; Renewed Third Edition.  It again had 79 cards. I made improvements in the coloring and drawing and added some additional alchemical symbols. One of the biggest changes was the addition of wings on the beast depicted on the Eight of Swords, making it a combination of the four beasts of the Evangelists, depicted in the corners on the World card.  The design for the back depicts the four elements and the two principles on a checked background.  In 2011, Hermes Publications also published an updated and greatly expanded companion book, Alchemy and the Tarot: An Examination of the Historic Connection with a guide to the Alchemical Tarot. This book is now out of print. It was meant to be a guide to all versions of the Alchemical Tarot and even to the Tarot of the Sevenfold Mystery, which is closely linked to the Alchemical Tarot.

72dpi Alchemical Tarot 3

FOUR (out of print)

The fourth edition was published by Hermes Publications in 2015, and it is called The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed Fourth Edition. For this 79 card edition I totally redesigned the coloring by placing the drawings on a tan antique paper and coloring them with layers of transparent color, like an antique alchemical manuscript.  I again made improvements in the drawings and added many more alchemical symbols, particularly on the trumps, where I added a symbol for the alchemical operation that each card represents. These are all operations that are part of the Great Work of alchemy, the work that leads to the formation of the Philosopher;s Stone.  I again redesigned the card back, which depicts the Lady Alchemia, the mother of the elements, the the material of the Stone. In 2017. This edition does no contain a little-white-book, but I published a new expanded and updated book that is a companion for this deck and for The Tarot of the Sevenfold Mystery. It is called The Tarot, Magic, Alchemy, Hermeticism, and Neoplatonism. It can be purchased on this site.

72dpi Alchemical Tarot 4

FIVE (out of print)

The fifth edition was published by Hermes Publications in 2020. It is called the The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed 5th Edition (the Quintessential Edition). The art for this deck is the same as the 4th edition, but the cards have gold edges, they come in a two part cloth covered box, and the deck includes a little book with a color cover beside the more extensive The Tarot, Magic, Alchemy, Hermeticism, and Neoplatonism still being available.


The sixth edition published by Hermes Publications in 2022, is called the The Alchemical Tarot: Renewed 6th Edition (the Blue Sky Edition). The art for this deck is mostly the same as the 4th and 5th editions, but the skies are blue instead of the parchment background color, the cards have silver edges instead of gold, and the two-part cloth covered box is blue instead of green. The deck includes a little book with a color cover, But the more extensive The Tarot, Magic, Alchemy, Hermeticism, and Neoplatonism is still available. The biggest change is that there is a 22nd trump card called Truth. This card is based on a vision that Rosemary Ellen Guiley, my partner on the first edition, had after that edition was published. Rosemary died in 2019 and I included my illustration of the 22nd trump as a homage to her. you can read more about it in my blog post: The 22nd Trump


Other Tarot decks by Robert M. Place that are not sold on this site include, The Angels Tarot, The Tarot of the Saints, The Buddha Tarot, and the Vampire Tarot.  You may be able to find copies of these on the Internet.  I am  also the author of The Tarot: History, Symbolism, and Divination, which was given a stared review in Booklist and said to be maybe “the best book ever written on โ€ฆthe tarot.” Copies of this book can be found on the Internet and in many libraries.

To receive The Restored Temple of Hermes, my free newsletter e-mailed every three months or so, with links to my latest articles and news about up-coming lectures, workshops, and publications, send an e-mail to me with The Restored Temple of Hermes in the subject line. Also, please let me know what state or country you live in.

The 63rd Temple of Hermes newsletter was sent on July 26, 2022. If you did not receive yours, you may need to update your email address.

55 Responses to Six Editions of the Alchemical Tarot

  1. Carla rosario says:

    Hello is possible I buy with to you one deck which edition ?
    Thank you

  2. Hello, I tried to buy the 4th edition of the Alchemical, yet it seems only possible to put the adress as America it seems

  3. susan says:

    Hello. I have the first edition of the deck but I do not have the book. Would you know if that is ever sold separately? Thanks.

  4. Pingback: Voice of the Vampyr: Working with the Vampire Tarot - Isabel DuneWitch

  5. I just purchased a 4th edition deck from Rosemary at the Los Angeles Conscious Life Expo. Her husband gave me some of the backstory on the deck and I must say, I was very excited to get it home! The cards and artwork are absolutely exquisite. Each card and each symbol have their place and I really appreciate the amount of work that went into the deck. The two Lovers cards were a mystery, but mystery solved (one was deemed too explicit!). I do have a question for you, Robert: when doing a reading with this deck, would you recommend leaving in both Lovers cards, or taking one out?

  6. Hi again to Robert Place! I took your workshop and bought the first book and deck just after it was published, so I guess it was around 1995? In Berkeley, I believe, or nearby Petaluma, Sonoma County? I want to buy the most recent book of yours mentioned above and the deck. I can buy the book signed by you off of Amazon, no problems, I just wanted to let you know it is me, one of your earlier students.

    • robertmplace says:

      You should buy the decks and book directly from me. I will sign it for you and I can combine them in one package to save on shipping, It will be $63.00 I can send you a PayPal invoice for the correct amount if you give me your email address.

      • J Banner says:

        I would like to order the latest alchemical Taro with the signed book. I have the first addition and I love it!! Please let me know how/where to do this. Jorhdin

      • robertmplace says:

        Send me your email address and I will send you a PayPal invoice. Email it to me at alchemicaltarot@aol.con, I will also need to know if you live in the US or elsewhere.

    • robertmplace says:

      I am the principle author of the book as well as the designer of the Alchemical Tarot decks, Rosemary was my coauthor on the first edition of the book.

  7. JD Dyslexic says:

    Hello, is it possible to purchase your and Rosemary’s book with the fourth edition cards? I like the additional designs in the fourth edition but wanted the book from the first edition

  8. anne robinson says:

    I have #44 of your self published initial edition of the Alchemical Tarot. The backs are a turquoise and white design and the deck is quite thick and came in a unpainted wooden box. It’s a treasure.
    Do you not consider this edition the first edition? Before Thorsons?

  9. anne robinson says:

    Oh, so what edition do I have?
    Was mine the 2nd edition? The one that came in a wooden box? With the light blue design with birds and stuff?
    Sorry to bother you with this.

  10. Angela owens says:

    I’m going to buy this deck. I bought a deck recommended for learning but these make more sense to me. Will your book explain to me the cards in more detail? Or is it something else?

  11. Laurena says:

    I would love to order the 4th edition of the alchemical tarot, how do I go about doing so?

    Thank you !

  12. craig says:

    Is it possible to get replacement cards. I inherited i believe a 1st edition thats missing 4 cards

  13. Laura says:

    I would like to buy the 4th edition of the alchemical tarot deck and I would like to take the book, but I see that “alchemy and tarot” no longer exists anywhere! Does the new book explain the deck in detail? Card by card? I would like to use it as a guide to learn. Thanks

  14. Shelly Nakagawa says:

    Hi Mr. Place,
    I would like to buy 4th edition of Tarot Alchemy cards and book. How to do that. Thank you. Shelly

    • robertmplace says:

      The deck is $30 plus shipping, $7 for the US and $35 for international. To order send the payment with PayPal. You can use this Or I can send you a Pay Pal invoice if you give me your email address.

  15. Pingback: Maybelle Maciarello

  16. Kathy says:

    Greetings! I would love to order from you, the Alchemical Tarot 4th edition and your latest book, please! Please PP invoice me (US)
    Thank you so much! ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿ’ž๐Ÿ™

  17. Melissa Gignac says:


    I was wondering if it is still possible to order the rose back second edition of the alchemical deck.

    Please let me know.

    Thank you.


  18. Cynthia Ryckman says:

    Hi! Is it possible to get the companion book for the Angel Deck?

  19. Justine says:

    I just received my 4th Ed. deck, yet the booklet was not included. Can I access that on one?

  20. Mary Brown says:

    Which book do you suggest as reference for Alchemical Tarot Renewed 4th edition? When I purchased my deck no book was included. I have look at the Little White Book. Thank you for your assistance.

  21. Christos says:

    The deck Tarot and Alchemy and the Book are there available for outside the us delivery?

  22. Inge Maumus says:

    I’ve been trying to find prices and availability and learn of comparative content/configurations between Tarot and Alchemy and your tome ( I think, am I right?) Tarot…..Neo Platanism. And before I can find much out other than I think I’d v much like to own the first, I see that availability and even pricing info is tough to find, Can you help with some basics that aren’t in evidence on your site, which I will now peruse in depth, beginning with availability and price for the first one? My eyes are beginning to cross on the online hunt! Thanks Inge

  23. S.Elisabeth says:


    Is it possible to buy one card, that is missing? It’s an extra “Lovers” card from 4th edition…
    I’m not sure if the deck can be used without this card…

    Thank you .

  24. Lila Ryan says:

    Dear Robert, I have a first edition with the book signed by you, 8/22/96. The box is long gone and some time ago I made a little bag for the precious cards. Where were we then?? In a good place, apparently. Thank you for the beauty and wisdom.

  25. anne robinson says:

    Where does my copy #44 of the Art Edition of the Alchemical Tarot fit in your timeline?
    THanks, Anne

Leave a Reply