Card Fortune Telling: A Lucid Treatise Dealing with All The Popular & More Obtruse Methods

Aug 22, 2012 by

CARD FORTUNE TELLING: A LUCID TREATISE DEALING WITH ALL THE POPULAR & MORE OBTRUSE METHODS by Charles Platt is an interesting book on fortune telling with cards originally published in the early 1920’s.  I’m a wee bit obsessed with old fortune telling books, and Card Fortune Telling is one of my new favorites.

Mr. Platt is very logical in the introduction as he explains why we should be interested in divination: “It is impossible for any thinking, reasonable person to deny that the Present — or the Past — does and must influence the Future — to what extent this may go is still a mystery. “ So There!  Before getting into all the different forms of card divination, he gives us a short history of playing and tarot cards: “It is a very popular belief that cards were invented in order to amuse King Charles VI of France, at a time when that monarch was mentally unstable. This legend, however, like so many pretty stories of the past, has no foundation in fact, as cards were known long before the mad monarch’s days. It is true that a court miniature painter, named Gringonneur, did paint or originate some cards which he introduced to the King, but cards were first used in the East in very ancient days, and it is a curious fact that the other great world-popular indoor game. Chess, also originated in the East, and is still played today by means of a pack of cards. It also seems obvious that cards reached the West in the same way and by the same route as Chess, probably through the gipsies, that strange, unconquerable Eastern race of wanderers, whose actual origin still baffles our researches. Naturally a race of people with no settled home or nationality would find much difficulty in moving their personal belongings from place to place, and would appreciate any amusement that could be reduced to the form of a pack of cards. “

Once he gets into how to read cards to tell someone’s fortune Mr. Platt is very very specific, and I realize some “newer” books may have indeed borrowed or perhaps were heavily influenced by his and other how-to divination books from the early 1900’s and before. Here’s a small example: “If there is a run of a particular suit it will be seen that Clubs will be an omen of the brightest character, while a similar run of Spades will indicate the worst possible phases of fortune. A run of Hearts will foretell successes in love, of Diamonds in money. Combinations of Court cards are important. Amongst others the following may be noted : When the Aces come together they denote new surroundings. How this will affect the future fortune depends upon the influence of the cards that follow them. Sepharial suggests that the Aces coming together portend always a change of life. Foli thinks they imply danger and financial loss. But this is lessened if they are reversed ; three Aces, temporary trouble. It should be remembered that the modern Ace, when not used as the One, represents the old Fool, which had the power of upsetting or changing everything. Bear this in mind when reading the cards. Kings coming together denote business, or as another authority has it, ‘honours, preferment, good appointments.’ If reversed, of less value, but arriving earlier. Three Kings are a good omen unless reversed. Four Queens imply talk and scandal, or a social gathering, spoilt if the cards be reversed. Three Queens denote friendly visits, but if reversed possible danger to the consultant. When the Jacks come together, workmen or agents about the house, or roistering and noisy conviviality. Three betoken annoyances from friends. If reversed the evil is not so considerable. Four Tens and four Nines stand respectively for good fortune and surprises. Three Tens are very bad, but three Nines good. Four Eights, a mixed omen of success and failure. Three Eights, new family ties. Four Sevens, trouble is imminent ; three, ill-health, loss of friends. Nine of Diamonds and the Eight of Hearts together is regarded as a sure indication of a journey. Ten of Clubs, followed by an Ace, betokens a large sum of money. A sequence of Ace, King, Queen, and Jack of one colour foretell Marriage, so also do the Ten of Hearts and Ace of Diamonds. When the Nine and King of Hearts appear together, they form a good combination for lovers. Before proceeding to lay out the cards in any of the methods detailed in the following pages, the card-teller must take the pack in hand and proceed to shuffle them. This is for the purpose of getting rid of the influence of any other person who may have been handling the cards recently. The pack is then handed to the consultant, who is required to shuffle it very thoroughly. The attitude of mind in which this shuffling should be done depends upon the purpose for which it is effected. If the general fortune, past, present, and future, is required, then let the consultant maintain a passive mind, neither anxious nor intent, but wishing only to know the truth, and to accept, without cavil or protest, anything the diviner may predict from the cards. ”  Enjoy Charles Platt’s CARD FORTUNE TELLING: A LUCID TREATISE DEALING WITH ALL THE POPULAR & MORE OBTRUSE METHODS and happy divination to you!



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