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Joy Tarot
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 Posted: Fri Sep 14th, 2007 07:25 am
1st Post

Joined: Sat Sep 8th, 2007
Location: California USA
Posts: 101
During the years that I was searching for the Szerelmi jóskártyák (usually referred to as the Erzsebet Tarot), I had registered a search for it with a Hungarian antiquarian bookshop. Although I eventually found it through a different shop, I got a notice from the first shop last month that they had a copy. Since it comes in a set with a book and I had discovered that the book is most often available used without the cards, I inquired as to whether the cards were included. They replied that it came with three packs of cards and posted this photo. Three decks, but none of them the Erzsebet.

I was vaguely intrigued by the bottom pack, a good deal more intrigued by the top one (most likely an oracle deck), and not in the least interested in the cartoony thing in the middle. Since the total cost of the book, the three decks and shipping from Hungary was under $25, I decided to get them.

They arrived last week and from the logo on all of the card backs and a little Googling, I ascertained that they had all been published by (or were at least in some way associated with) a Hungarian magazine called Joy. The bottom deck is what Tarotgarden refers to as YAMGD (yet another multi-cultural goddess deck) - competent but not particularly inspired. The top deck is indeed an oracle that is artistically quite interesting. But surprisingly, the cartoony thing, which I initially paid little attention to, turns out actually to be a tarot.

The semi-amusing thing about it is that it appears to co-opt the tarot structure to tell its own story of what appears to be some sort of romantic triangle. With the exception of the Devil, all of the cards are populated by the same three characters - what I have come to think of as the "big spiky-haired guy," the "thin curly-haired guy," and "the woman."

I'm not entirely sure I completely follow the story (except that the woman and the curly-haired guy end up together at the end), so I have posted pics of the entire deck for your interpretation:

Magician through Hermit.
Wheel of Fortune through Moon.
The rest, plus the card back.

Obviously little to do with traditional tarot symbolism (though I did chuckle a bit at the World (as I sit here typing at the computer)).

All that being said, it's definitely not my style and was initially headed to the "to trade" pile. But after the auction events of yesterday, I noticed that bunny on the Magician card and given that this is way more rare than the Alchemical, I think I'm going to contact a certain ebay bidder and arrange for my retirement fund.

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 Posted: Sat Sep 15th, 2007 10:29 am
2nd Post

Joined: Wed Sep 5th, 2007
Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom
Posts: 1249
I am one of those collectors who really likes these little decks issued with magazines. 

Perhaps some of our fellow collectors could help draw up a list of these rather obscure but often charming tarots.


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