Top positive review
13 people found this helpful
Outstanding deck for anyone working within the Celtic or Arthurian traditions
on 9 December 2006
This is far and away my favourite deck, and has stood the test of time. For me, the images and connections work even better than the OBOD "Druidcraft Tarot".
I am not a diehard fan of the Matthews by any stretch of the imagination: certainly I have taken issue elsewhere with the dubious scholarship and mistranslations that underlie some of their published work. However, in developing the Arthurian Tarot, I believe they have played to their strengths, and produced a deck of stunning beauty and deep insight.
The images resonate profoundly with anyone familiar with the magical places of Britain and Ireland: on many of the cards I just know that I recognise the background, even if I can't quite place it. There is an uncompromising combination of ethereal beauty and almost matter-of-fact savagery in the deck, reflecting the realities of life and death which have bound both us and our ancestors to the wheel of incarnation.
The acccompanying booklet, as other reviewers have noted, balances the need for brevity with sufficient information to allow even a beginner to dig below the superficial and start to make their own connections as they work with the deck.
I also recommend the companion "Hallowquest" book for further study, particularly the year-long course of meditations based upon the cards. Although I would not agree with some of the conclusions the Matthews draw, the approach they advocate definitely brings an understanding of the relationship between the suits, the Major Arcana, the passing of the seasons and the Land itself: this is highly charged and very effective. For pagans and Druids in particular, the correspondence between the outer world and the Inner / Otherworld will become clearer and deeper as they work with the deck through the year.
Very highly recommended - all in all a first class tool for divination, ritual, and personal growth.