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Sulis  Sulis is offline
believer in magic
Join Date: 03 Feb 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 23,197
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Renaissance Tarot (Jones / Lyle) - Death XIII

The dreaded Death card.
I like this version a lot, mainly because I love the phoenix and it makes it a lot less scary when reading for other people.
I don't think I've read for anyone who hasn't turned pale at the site of the skeleton with his scythe.
With this Death card, I don't think that folks would even notice it too much.

Against a deep purple background we see a very large golden phoenix. It's emerging from flames with it's wings unfolded and a very impressive sight it is too.
He looks to his left (our right) and to the future.
Below the phoenix is a sort of pewter coloured plinth which is engraved with a central skull and cross-bones flanked by 2 griffins, each one looking towards the edge of the card and away from the skull and cross-bones.
It almost looks as if the plinth is a coffin or sarcophagus and the phoenix is rising from it.
The physical body may be dead but the soul lives on.

The phoenix is a symbol of rebirth and tells us that things have to die and to come to an end before rebirth and new growth can happen.
Death is the one certainty in life and without it, there would be stagnation.

I'm not too sure about the significance of the griffins (will have to go and look them up) but the other card that features griffins in this deck is The Chariot.

The skull and cross-bones is a sort of warning sign to me as it's usually seen on the Jolly Roger, the pirate flag. Here I think it's just a reference back to the traditional skeleton usually seen on Death cards. I have a feeling there is more significance to it than that but it's escaping me.

Griffins anyone?
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