The untold tale of the most widely used tarot cards in the world

Smith might have been giving instructions on how to read tarot cards. She did, after all, draw the illustrations for the most widely used tarot card design in the world. 

 Smith and poet and mystic Arthur Waite first connected in 1909 through a covert organization called the "Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.

Together, they combined Waite's ideas with Smith's Art Nouveau-style illustrations to create a tarot card deck because of their shared beliefs in spiritualism, rituals, symbolism, and psychic practices.

Originally published in 1910, the deck is now referred to as the "Waite-Smith" or "Rider-Waite-Smith" deck (Smith's contribution was largely removed from the title and eclipsed by Rider, the original publisher, until the 1990s). 

However, a new edition, titled "The Tarot of A.E. Waite and P. Colman Smith: The Story of the World's Most Popular Tarot," published by Taschen, goes into great detail about the deck's creation and includes a full deck of the original cards as well as a number of contextual essays about Smith, Waite, and Waite.

According to Dolly PartA 78-card deck of illustrated tarot cards, which were first produced in Italy in the fifteenth century, features distinct symbols and characters on each card. on, she has no regrets about not having a child. 

The book's editor, Johannes Fiebig, whose own connection to tarot study dates back more than 40 years, stated that the Waite-Smith deck's creation represents a "significant cultural intersection" of the early 20th century.

"At this time, there was a positive sense of personal liberation, of living more artfully and freely," he stated. The First and Second World Wars, however, put an end to these uprisings.

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