Sibilla Card Divination

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The first known Sibilla Cards were created in 1827. Published by the French publishing firm, B.P. Grimaud, they were called “La Sibylle des Salons” or literally, ‘The Sibyl of the Salons.’ The first Sibilla cards were designed by renowned French illustrator, J.J. Grandville, who was commissioned by Grimaud to create the deck. This deck came into being at a time when Marie-Anne Therese LeNormand was a highly-celebrated seer and diviner in France. Madame LeNormand was consulted by a very select clientele. Grimaud, probably noticing her popularity, likely had the Sibilla deck created as a way of cashing-in on nineteenth-century society’s general desire for parlor games, and specifically those of a divinatory nature. This deck made it possible for those who didn’t have the means to consult Madame LeNormand, to do their own fortunetelling. I have no idea if Madame LeNormand herself used the Sibilla deck, but I think it’s highly-unlikely that she did.

Of course, an idea this great isn’t going to stay with just one publisher, and there have been a number of Sibilla decks issued in the nearly two centuries since Grimaud published the first Sibilla deck. If you go to Amazon.com and type in the search term, ‘Sibilla cards’, it offers at least thirteen different kinds of Sibilla decks for sale. Italians appear to have taken to the Sibilla cards so readily, one could be forgiven for thinking an Italian invented them; Italian publisher Lo Scarabeo alone offers several different Sibilla decks. But from what I’ve gleaned, the first Sibilla deck originated in France.

There are 52 cards in the Sibilla deck, the same number of cards as the standard playing deck. Unlike the standard playing card deck, the Sibilla cards aren’t divided-up into suits, with pip cards and court cards. Like the Lenormand and Kipper decks, each Sibilla card has a unique image and concept attached to it. Unlike the Lenormand and Kipper cards, they are not numbered. Like the Tarot cards, the Sibilla cards do have an upright and reversed meaning to each card. They are arranged in alphabetical order by the name of the card. Let’s begin.

Published by

Euphonia Carstairs

Retired librarian and part-time diviner. I see both pursuits as the same thing--connecting people with information. This site came into being as the result of one question in my mind which refused to go away until I did something about it: if I was going to design a divination curriculum, how would I do it? I am also a member of many years' standing in Ar n'Draiocht Fein: A Druid Fellowship.

12 thoughts on “Sibilla Card Divination”

  1. Thank your for this post, this is amazing and very helpful! 🙂 Unfortunately there is very few material about Sibilla cards out there.

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      1. I do not know anyone on youtube that use them. Could you send me the link? In Brazil many people use Sibilla, but it seems people do not teach much about how to use them. I’ve seen a series of videos from a brazilian sibilla reader that helped me a lot, but I still like to look for other sources.

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  2. Thanks so very much for sharing your knowledge!! I’m just beginning Sibilla and simply love your willingness to help others learn. 🤗

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    1. You’re quite welcome! It’s odd–I’ve never wanted to be a teacher, but when it comes to the subject of divination, I have this odd tendency to slip into teacher-mode. I’ve been a ‘collector’ of various divination methods over the years, and I enjoy sharing them with others.

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      1. Sadly, he’s a huge target for readings these days! I look forward to the day when he’s just a distant memory, and not a big focus of concern. I like it when Marie uses the Gypsy Oracle Card Sibilla deck, because those, I have a pretty-good grasp of.

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      2. Indeed. I found out some people are making many readings about Bolsonaro in Brazil as well. They are more accurante than the ones of Mary. I feel Mary often shuffles it wrongly and doesn’t formulate good questions…”What’s going on with Trump?” It is such a vague question in my opinion…

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    1. Hello, look for Tom Benjamin and Kelly The Truth in Story in YOU TUBE, both read and have some teaching there with Sibillas.

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