As soon as I managed to unwrap the Ludy Lescot Tarot, I was blown away. This deck, inspired by Ludy Lescot herself, is indeed a seductive new take on darkness-themed Tarots. It depicts an occult world laced with pain, power, and darkness. The masterful use of muted tones by Patrizio Evangelisti goes surprisingly well with his artistic style. Right away, this one of my favorites Tarot decks.
These cards are bordered black, with a thin elegant frame around the imagery. Each card contains either a number or symbol at the top and bottom. No labels are used in this desk. The dark theme continues at the back of the cards. A thin frame surrounds the image of two hands reaching toward each other over a background of grayish leaves. One is palm up (male), and the other palm down (female). In the frame, a Latin quote is written.
The Major Arcana are numbered top and bottom with roman numerals, but starting with null symbol for the Fool. In this deck Strength is VIII and Justice is XI. There are many cards in the Major Arcana full of symbolism. For Example: In the Fool, a barefoot child playing a flute replaces the classic Fool, while a chicken seems to replace the dog. This child is being followed by multitude of rats like in the medieval story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. In the Lovers, a woman is sitting in a bench. Her lover approaches her from her back and as he binds her arms, bites her on the shoulder drawing blood. A book lies open in the floor and towards the right, a rider is seen approaching them. In Strength, it is not the lion a beast to be tamed as we see a naked woman on her knees and hands facing us ferociously.
The Minor Arcana are labeled with a symbol for the suit at the top. The standard symbols of swords, wands, cups or pentacles. The pips are labeled with a number at the bottom, but it also incorporate a number of the suit symbols subtly depicted within the card imagery. Sometimes it is very subtle. For Example: In the Eight of Wands a woman runs up stair, where eight wooden steps are seen. In the Seven of Pentacles, a woman looks at herself on a mirror. On her seat beside here, there are seven dark roses in a bouquet.
The court cards are labeled with a symbol at the bottom for page, knight, queen, or king. These depict the usual characters. All the knights ride horses, although their poses show different levels of power and majesty. These knights: (Wands) consider with determination, (Swords) charge with aggressiveness, (Cups) ride with passion and (Pentacles) bows with diplomacy.
The only thing not to like about this deck is the Little White Book (LWB) that comes with it. This is not to say the LWB is bad. For example: Ludy relates her early wishes to have Evangelisti to illustrate her tarot deck. Once you see the images in this deck, you can tell she was spot on. Also, few sentences you get for each card really fleshed out their meaning, even as one can easily guess the meaning of each card as these are very intuitive. In the end, I can not help but feel that the LWB only touches the tip of the iceberg about this deck. I'm still wishing for a full guidebook, that's all.
I'm really in a bind not to recommend this one for beginners. In one hand, this deck is very intuitive, but in the other, is very dark and lacks labels. This is one esoteric tarot that I'm certain very few tarot collectors would let go.
Other decks by Evangelisti:
Initiatory Tarot of the Golden Dawn Deck (Lo Scarabeo Decks English and Spanish Edition)
Initiatory Tarot of the Golden Dawn Deluxe (Lo Scarabeo Decks English and Spanish Edition)