I was delighted this morning to see the newest entry at Mary Greer’s blog, Oldest Cartomancy Meanings in English:

Dr. Flamstead’s and Mr. Patridge’s New Fortune-Book containing, I. Their new-invented method of knowing one’s fortune by a pack of cards appears to be the oldest book with instructions on fortune-telling-with-cards in the English language.  The 2nd edition is estimated to be from 1730, so the first edition was probably from the 1720s—well before Etteilla wrote his book on “cartonomancie.”

I encourage anyone with a whit of interest in the history of cartomancy to read this article.

The card meanings are told with cute little rhymes — as always, a helpful way to memorize card meanings that have no structural basis — although I had to chuckle at the predominance of love, affection and weddings. Or the warning that the woman who takes up with the Knave of Spades shall be known as the hussy she already is!

Read the entry here.

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