Difference Between RWS and TDM tarot

Could anyone tell me the difference in these two, are the meanings the same for both(as in do they carry over universally from one to the next) I have both a RWS(Druid craft) and TDM(Deviant Moon) and while looking through the images of both while the art styles are completely different, and the TDM deck only having labels for the Major Arcana, the basis of the images on both seem to be technically the same, am I missing something here, and could any of you guys offer up some insight on this?


The main difference between the Tarot de Marseille and the Rider-Waite Smith Tarot is in the Minor Arcana cards (Ace through Ten) :

Here’s an example of the Five of Wands in both decks:

Tarot de Marseille:

Tarot Marseille 5

Rider-Waite Smith:


The Tarot de Marseille is much older, invented around the 15th century.

The first lesson in the Whole Tarot Video Course tells us that the first Tarot decks were made for playing a game of trumps. You can tell that the Five of Wands in the TdM looks just like a 5 of clubs on a deck of Spanish or French playing cards:

cincobastos unnamed

The Five of Wands in the Rider-Waite features the five wands being used. It has a lot more imagery than the other decks. Each card has a unique symbolism that goes beyond its number and suit.

This added imagery helps with the interpretation. The RWS was designed for divination, while the Marseille deck is more basic, it’s just a card game deck so it’s read like playing cards: Each number has a meaning, and each suit governs an area or topic in life.

There are hundreds of Tarot decks to choose from, and most of them are influenced by the RWS.


I looked up the Deviant Moon deck online and it doesn’t seem to be inspired by the TdM. Like you mentioned, both decks are similar so they are probably both inspired by the RWS.

If you’re a beginner, I would strongly recommend getting the Rider-Waite Smith deck and mastering that one before moving on to more fun and decorative decks.


Thank you Francisco!
I have been trying to learn with my current RWS deck, which is the druid craft tarot, although some of the names have changed, such as the “Emperor” being the “Lord” in my deck, its strikingly close to a traditional “old school” RWS deck. I draw a daily card, then I will research the meaning, draw what I take from the card, then I journal afterwards, I’m beginning to grasp and get used to the meanings of the cards little by little, I need to completely watch the full tarot course within the site to increase my knowledge on the subject and the meanings, Thank you again for your informative reply, I really appreciate all of the knowledge and effort you put into your responses!


You’re very welcome, @Trey!

Yes, I feel that the daily card or daily spread helps a lot. Even when I don’t have time to journal or research, I take a photo of the spread or card with my phone. Then before going to bed I meditate or read about it online to see what insight I get.

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