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on 29 October 2012
One of the most stunning decks of an Arthurian theme I have ever seen, rivalled only by the Hallowquest Tarot by the same author, (different artist). This may be Worthington's finest artwork to date, exceeding that of the recent 'wild' success, the Wildwood Tarot. Each card is a compelling and powerful gateway, with faces of such expression and such vital, hypnotic eyes that it hard to conceive of anyone not being able to unlock some wisdom with this deck.
The Oracular system itself is one that the author has been using in thier teaching for some time, and therefore is a well trod path already, well devised and easy to folow for all levels.
Here is an opportunity to work with the great Arthurian archetypes as rendered by one of the world's leading authorities on the subject- highly reccomended!
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on 11 July 2013
What's included
The deck comes in a sturdy box featuring a large portrait of Arthur on the cover. Inside the box, you will find a 128-page companion book, a large paper layout sheet referred to as the 'Lands Adventurous', and a deck of 40 cards: 32 Arthurian characters called 'Archetypes' and 8 Path cards.

The cards
The cards are a reasonable size, measuring 7 x 12 cm. They have narrow white borders. The cards feel like cards, not plastic. If there is lamination, it is extremely light. (Certainly you should think twice before getting them near liquids or reading while eating crisps! -- not that you would!) The texture is very pleasant. The cards are thick enough to feel substantial but still thin enough to easily riffle shuffle, if that's something you like (which I do!). The colours are rich, and more reminiscent of the artwork in Worthington's Druidcraft and Plant and Animal Oracles than his more recent Wildwood Tarot. I am a tremendous fan of Worthington's art; I bought this deck because he painted it, so I am biased toward him. But I find these cards extremely beautiful.

The archetype cards
There are 32 archetype cards featuring characters from Arthurian legends. Most of the portraits contain enough attitude in facial expression, stance and background to help you understand the qualities represented. A few of the cards were modelled by members of Will Worthington's family, and they really stand out from the rest. For some reason, portraits from a model always seem more 'human' than those from the imagination. Each card features the archetype in a character-revealing pose. The character's name is shown at the bottom of the card, framed by a scroll. Bedivere is my absolute favourite card. I love everything in the card: his aged, noble face, the stance he's taking as he reaches back to fling Excalibur into the lake, the moonlight across the water. This card is epic. I can almost hear the music from the movie 'Excalibur' playing in the background when I look at it. The most compelling card is Igraine. She's amazing. Literally. The first time I saw this card, I thought she would be Morgana. But putting the Morgana and Igraine cards side by side, I can see why the choice was made. Igraine's look is so knowing, and so completely NOT 'otherworldly'. (It so happens this card is one of the ones based on a real model. So is Gareth, by the way.)

The path cards
There are 8 additional 'path' cards in the deck, which will be explained below under 'The System'. They are black and white images, very evocative.

The book
The book is a sturdy, 128-page, full-size book. The pages are nice and thick, and the book is stitched and glued, so that if you play around with it a bit, you can get it to lie flat (if you're careful). It's constructed just like the Druidcraft book.

It is divided into five parts: Intro, Archetypes, Paths, Places and Working with the Camelot Oracle. For the Archetypes, Paths and Places sections, there are 2 pages per card. A black and white image of the card, a list of aspects and qualities, a brief summary of the character's role in the Arthurian legends, then the character as champion, challenger and in meditation. (More on these below). The book finishes with instructions for how to use the layout sheet and cards, gives one sample reading, three short guided meditations, a list of other characters you might want to research further, and suggestions for further reading.

All in all it is a useful and practical guide to using the cards, though I would have liked to have been given more back story about what each character does in the Arthurian legends, but I suppose that would have made the book too long, and might be tedious for those familiar with the stories.

The system
The system for using the cards appears to have grown out of meditation exercises Matthews conducts in his workshops. In essence, you imagine you have gone into the Arthurian universe where a character will help you find your way to the answer to your question or problem. Along the way, you will encounter another character who challenges you in typical Arthurian fashion--by posing a question to you.

The method is this: You separate the deck into archetypes and paths. You then draw one path card and two archetypes. The first archetype is your champion. You can choose your champion rather than draw it, if you wish. The second archetype is your challenger. The path is the journey you are on in finding the answer to your question, or whatever the issue is that you are reading for.

Your journey always begins at Camelot, where in your imagination you have stated your case or asked your question of the Round Table and have been assigned a champion to accompany you on your journey. You place the champion archetype on the Camelot spot the layout sheet provided. Then you look at your path card, laying your challenger card on the place where that path leads.

The contemplation then begins, as you check in the companion book for the explanation of your Path card and the Place of your destination. You read the personal message your Champion has for you. Then you turn to your Challenger's page where he or she will pose a question to you. Pondering the answer to this question is meant to give you your answer.

It's an interesting concept, almost like a combination of board game, role play and self-help. There are variations on this basic method given in the book. The book also encourages you to meditate on and journey in the cards.

I am very taken with the deck, intrigued by the system, which I feel that as your familiarity with the archetypes and method grows, will feel less clunky, more natural and of course you would begin to make it your own, doing things your own way.
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on 14 February 2013
I just had the privilege of reviewing this for the OBOD newsletter and I love it!
The pack consists of 40 cards - all beautfully illustrated by Will Worthington - and a fold out map of the Lands Adventurous. Thirty two of the cards bear a portrait of one of the archetypal characters from the Arthurian legends. The remaining eight represent paths shown on the map, where the quests and journeys undertaken by Arthur's knights took place. Each path has its own quality - as does each of the Archetypes. Also on the map, situated at each of the Cardinal points of the compass are some of the most significant places to which the knights made their way - places that have acquired their own archetypal presence and have come to embody truths and situations that we all experience at one time or another.
The Oracle works by you selecting cards - either randomly or deliberately. You selct one Path card and 2 of the Archetypal character cards. One character will be your Champion on the journey - they will be your guide and supporter. The other character will be your Challenger - who poses a question to make you think more deeply about your quest.
It is the combination of the qualities, people and situations represented by the 2 sets of cards that create the Oracle. Together with the characters' questions or guidance, the paths, along with the places on the map, generate answers.
If on drawing the cards and answering the questions and/or receiving the guidance from your Champion/Challenger/Place/Path, you feel you would like a more detailed answer,there are ways of developing the reading. For instance, by looking at the Mirror path - the exact opposite from the path that you are on - and seeing what the Challenger and the Place have to offer from a different perspective.
Other options include; getting an overview of your life situation; setting up a number of Challengers to ask many questions on your issue and hence deepen your insights.
There is an alternative way of working with the Oracle which involves meditating using the imagery of the cards. This gives the possiblity of enabling you to experience a deeper journey and getting a more powerful and immediate answer to your issue. Guidelines for meditating with each character and place are given in the accompanying book.
I really enjoyed working with this Oracle and would still be at it, given half a chance! In additon to it being a really useful tool for guidance, it has the romance and excitement of the Arthurian Legends to add that extra something to the whole experience. I found it versatile and enjoyable. It had just been on my Wish List up till now - but it will be getting added to my basket very soon now!
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on 19 December 2012
Gosh how do you describe something so lovely ?! I'm such a Will Worthington fan, I dare buy without havivng seen anything by this artist !! John Matthews & Caitlin are such lovely authors too !! :-)))) I'm in awe of this deck. The cards are large, , but in this instance this is not a bother, being an Oracle deck. A truly beautiful & gorgeous quality deck - Stunning! I'd give them a 10 out of 10 - can you tell I love this deck :-))?!! A beautiful deck to give as a gift. Kind regards, L.B.
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on 25 February 2013
I love Will Worthington's images, and have many oracle and Tarot cards illustrated by him. This resonated with me as soon as I read about the Camelot Oracle, and I tested the readings on attendees of my monthly spiritual circle. They loved the adventure of going on a quest from Camelot with a champion riding beside them, and a challenger, which is the theme of all hero's journeys. The unravelling of the journeys taken unveiled deep meanings for them. I also shared a quest with my 10 year old grandson, and the meaning behind his question was understood by him immediately. He loved the adventure, as I have recently introduced him to the stories of Arthur and the Knights of the round table. A treasure. Thanks to Will and John for creating it.
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on 1 January 2013
After the stunning beauty of Will Worthington's artwork on The Wildwood Tarot, I had high hopes for more of the same on the new Camelot Oracle. Sadly, based on my first impression of the Oracle, they have been dashed. Never before have I seen an assembly of the most boring awkward and lumpy figures committed to print. With the exception of the eight black and white 'path' cards the thirty two 'archetype' cards are a real disappointment. It looks as though Will used real people as models for his artwork. However their modern faces look out of place sitting on fantasy figures, almost like they have been stuck on in some cases. There is not an attractive one amonst them and some, like for instance, the creepy Galahad' are downright disturbing. Is the man ill or what?

I am afraid I cannot comment on John Matthews's text in the accompanying book. He is an author I really admire ever since I bought his Arthurian Tarot many years ago. However, in this case, I was so put off by the artwork that I have packed the cards, map and book back into their cardboard box to be resold or dropped off at the nearest charity shop.

Extreme? Yes I guess so. But for anyone, like me, who was amazed at the beauty and clarity of the images in the Wildwood Tarot, the Camelot Oracle is easily the most disappointing Tarot/Oracle deck I have ever bought. I must have over twenty of them by now, as I am grabbed by one, then another. I seem to have an endless fascination for them. Usually I do my research and read all the reviews. However, this time I went on trust. Bad move.
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on 15 September 2015
When the deck arrived I loved it as much as I thought I would. I love the work of the artist, already owning the druidcraft deck, and have recently been drawn to the Arthurian legends.
It will take a bit of practice to work with the deck as it is not a typical oracle deck so I wouldnt suggest it for beginners, but a great addition for anyone's collection.
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on 11 November 2015
I was really looking forward to receiving this oracle which was dispatched by amazon on time thanks but was disappointed by the oracle the cards are lovely, but I dident find them to answer questions that made sense.I dident like the fact you had a map that certain cards had to be placed on, it dident flow very easily. And was all a bit disjointed.
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on 27 February 2016
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