Tarot decks were invented in Italy in the 1430s by adding to the existing four-suited pack...a fifth suit of 21 specially illustrated cards called trionfi (“triumphs”) and an odd card called il matto (“the fool”) were added.
The standard modern tarot deck is based on the Venetian or the Piedmontese tarot. It consists of 78 cards divided into two groups: the major arcana, which has 22 cards, also known as trumps, and the minor arcana, which has 56 cards.
The cards of the major arcana refer to spiritual matters and important trends within our lives. The minor arcana cards deal mainly with business matters and career ambitions, love, conflict, money and material comfort.
The tarot deck is shuffled and then laid out in a special pattern called a “spread.” The meaning of any card is modified according to whether it is upside down, its position in the spread, and the meaning of adjacent cards.