Now that we’re into the body of the post, I can tell you that in tarot circles, it’s called the Rider-Waite-Smith, or RWS. I didn’t call it RWS in the heading because if I say RWS to non-tarot peeps, they are sometimes confused. “You mean the Rider-Waite?” they’ll say tentatively. So with that business all settled and behind us, let’s move to the next paragraph.
Click here to download my trusty RWS notes. These are notes and card meanings for each card in the RWS tarot. I compiled these notes back when I first got into tarot around 2007. I went on a rampage through the tarot corner of the internet, grabbing card meanings wherever I could find them, and then poring over and sometimes copying turns of phrase. The result was a splendid document for use with the RWS tarot.
When I compiled these meanings, I basically took whatever I thought was cool and useful from maybe twenty to thirty different sources. I don’t know any of the sources anymore. The compiling is mine. The writing isn’t all mine. Standard copyright infringement disclaimers apply.
The document is letter-size, squeezed to fit on two pages, and if you fold it in 8ths, it’s about the size of a tarot card and can be slipped in a tarot bag with a deck quite easily.
Oh, and who is Smith? That’s Pamela Colman Smith. She was the artist of the original Rider-Waite tarot deck. She worked closely with the author, A. E. Waite, and is believed to have had significant input into what the scenes would depict. (If I’m wrong about something with this, I honestly haven’t researched it; it’s just info I picked up at a tarot forum back in the day.)
So I hope you enjoy my RWS notes. That is, assuming you use them only for good.