the extra suits


While wanting to create a good one-to-one adaptation of the tarot, based on Pamela Colman-Smith and Arthur E. Waite’s deck, F. Sickly observed that, in many ways, while quite thorough, there are many aspects of life that the standard deck deals with in antiquated ways, or skips over almost altogether. This is to be expected from works of art over a century old. While some of these themes and aspects of life can be seamlessly padded into the meanings of the standard cards, without outright altering the meanings. Many creators have side-stepped these insufficiencies by essentially making up a new “oracle” deck. This can be risky, both for the creator and the audience. As a creator, do you basically want to play god with others’ divinations? As an audience, are you going to trust a creator to hand you a stack of cards that are going to have a meaning to you, or are you going to place yourself in the hands of an established set of card meanings? Generally finding these “oracle” decks a bit tacky – which have not much to do with the tarot, but basically pretends to be the tarot, usually operating about the same, but with a different vocabulary made mostly from scratch – F. Sickly decided to add cards to the deck to fulfill these extra needs and updating the outcomes of readings. With the Sickly Tarot, you can separate out these extra cards, and read the seventy-eight standard cards the same as other decks. You can also do the opposite and just read from the extra cards. Obviously, reading from the full 109 cards is the most thorough.


As of this writing, a version of tarocchi that uses the full Sickly deck has not been developed.

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