Arthur Edward Waite was American but he spent most of his life in England, he designed the deck and Pamela Colman Smith, illustrated it.
It was published in 1909 and was followed soon after by his book “The Pictorial key of the Tarot”.
He had a logical and scientific approach to occultism and his spiritual research.
The Tarot deck is composed of 78 cards. The deck is segmented into two parts, the Major Arcana and the Minor Arcana.
The images are simple but there are plenty of details and the backgrounds feature abundant symbolism.
The more you understand about their symbolism, the deeper your understanding of what they represent.
The 22 Major Arcana represent situations teaching us important lessons and values.
They show significant interactions and events which take place and the people we come across in our life.
They describe conditions and can give directions when interpreted with the surrounding Arcana.
The Fool: Air *0 *Uranus Experimentation
The Magician: Air/Earth* 1 *Mercury Understanding
The High Priestess: Water* 2 *Moon Imagination
The Empress: Earth* 3 *Venus Art
The Emperor: Fire* 4 *Mars Competitivity competitiveness
The Hierophant: Earth* 5 *Taurus Security
The Lovers: Air* 6 *Gemini Feelings
The Chariot: Water*7* Cancer Emotional
Strength: Fire *8* Leo Protection
The Hermit: Earth Virgo *9*Analyze
Wheel of Fortune: Fire* 1* Jupiter Expansion
Justice: Air *2* Libra Balance
The Hanged Man: Water* 3* Neptune Illusions
Death: Water *4* Scorpio Mystery
Temperance: Fire *5* Sagittarius Optimism
The Devil: Earth *6* Capricorn Determination
The Tower: Fire/Water* 7 * Mars Power
The Star: Air *8* Aquarius Humanitarian
The Moon: Water *9* Pisces Intuition
The Sun: Fire *1* Sun Vitality
Judgement: Fire/Water *2* Pluto Transformation
The World: Earth/Air *3* Saturn Positivity
The 56 numbered Minor Arcana have specific influences on people and situations.
There are Wands, Pentacles, Cups and Swords. Ranks in the different sequences show the stage of development in a precise field.
The element of the Wands is FIRE: it represents energy, impatience, desire and passion.
The element of the Pentacles is EARTH: it represents the material plane, money, possessions and security.
The element of the Cups is WATER: it represents creativity, intuition, emotions and feelings.
The element of the Swords is AIR: it represents the intellect, communication, travel and knowledge.