New Deck Interview: Fantastic Menagerie Tarot


Now that I’ve had some sleep, here’s the new deck interview with my other deck for this week. Let’s see what the Fantastic Menagerie has to say to me about our time together.

What do I need to learn from you during this week? Seven of Swords

A hen is helped out of a first floor window by a fox, with another hen waiting for her turn. At first it looked like a rescuing scene (for some reason I think the house is on fire), but then I saw the chicken feet sticking out from the pocket of another fox that’s standing in the front and holding a pocket watch… A dog concierge counting money and a monkey carrying some kind of bucket are also in the picture.

In this picture, things are not what they seem. There is no trace of the house really being on fire, and the idea of a fox altruistically rescuing a pair of hens doesn’t seem all too convincing. The other fox seems to say “Hurry up before they catch on!”

I take that to mean that the Fantastic Menagerie deck may at first look like a harmless little funny-animals-in-clothes deck, but it does pack a punch if you look a bit closer. Then again, that shouldn’t come as a surprise when you know that Grandville (who created the original images) was a political caricaturist. And the more I think about it, the more connections I can find between the Fantastic Menagerie and the Discordian Deck…

How can I learn best from you?Three of Swords

Two birds (peacocks?) sit kissing under a tree, watched by a third one who doesn’t seem to enjoy the sight but looks shocked and angry.

I believe this means I need to make time and space for the Fantastic Menagerie, no matter how intrigued I also am with the Discordian Deck. Maybe I should take a page out of polyamory’s book and find a way to get up close and personal with each of the two without feeling that I’m neglecting any of them? After all, there’s no need to set up the two as rivals when I can also join them as cooperators for the benefit of all concerned. I’m looking forward to my first combined reading with the two decks!

Our future relationship? – King of Swords

A bald eagle with crown and sword sits on a throne. A skull (deer? cow?) lies at the foot of the throne.

Well, you don’t mess with Bald Eagle, that’s for sure. If he speaks, you better pay attention. At the same time, Eagle is a rare occurence to me, so I think the Fantastic Menagerie may remain on my shelf for special occasions instead of becoming one of the approximately 5-7 decks I use most.


I enjoy the fact that I picked two decks for this week that both offer plenty opportunities to do background research and learn more about where they come from. In fact, I’m a little worried that these two decks may be a bit much for just one week when each of them provides enough food for thought and exploration for more than just a week already. Thank goodness I have this and the next week off!

At any rate, I’m already looking forward to going through all of the images in this collection of Grandville illustrations to see if I can find more of the originals that were used by the deck’s creators.

P.S. As I was uploading the photo of the spread, I realized that it is all Swords cards. Seems this will be quite the intellectual enterprise here!


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