Now you can download the Sola Busca tarot, the out of print and most coveted tarot deck. These are the oldest tarots that arrived complete to us and the origin of all modern cards, a must in any tarot collection.
The oldest tarot deck that survived complete to our time and the only completely engraved deck from the 1400s, is the Sola Busca tarot, a beautiful Italian set of cards.
There are no modern editions of this precious tarot deck.
This deck is composed of seventy-eight cards including twenty-two triumphs, and fifty-six pip cards divided into the traditional four Italian suits of cups, swords, wands and pentacles.
The Sola Busca deck is the earliest tarot deck designed with this classic structure that was followed by most later decks. Also artist Pamela Coleman Smith, author of the Rider-Waite tarot deck, was clearly inspired by the Sola Busca tarot.
The cards are printed on paper from bulino engravings, colored in tempera and decorated with gold. The deck was painted in Venice in 1491 as engraved on some of the cards.
The symbols on the cards are magnificent.
This is one of the earliest decks where all the cards are numbered.
The characters don't have much in common with the mystical imagery so frequent in the other decks of the period but are often taken from Biblical heroes or Roman history .
The rich imagery though is pure joy to look at and absolutely fascinating for any serious tarot collector.
It is interesting to note that also all the Minor Arcana show an elaborate imagery instead of the repetitive symbols of most pip cards of the period.
A recent research was able to attribute the artwork of the Sola Busca deck to the painter Nicola di Maestro Antonio from Ancona, Italy. He was influenced by the work of Girogio Schiavone and Carlo Crivelli who started working in Le Marche region in 1468.
It is noticeable in Nicola's style a taste for characteristically forced poses and distinct body expression that can be traced in the work of Crivelli and Schiavone.
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