Rune Cards by Tony Linsell

I have several sets of Runes and several decks of Rune Cards. Of the decks, this one is my favorite. There are 30 cards in this deck. They are fairly large, measuring 3 3/8" X 5 1/8." Each card has a scene which suggests the card's meaning. The scenes are black and white and the art is excellent. The scenes are highly detailed, and the black and white gives the deck a ruggedness that I find more representative of the spirit of the people who used runes than some of the "pretty" rune decks currently on the market. The rune letter is worked into each scene and there is a border on the bottom of the card that provides the English translation or each letter. The alphabet used in this deck depicts the 29 letters of the Anglo-Saxon Rune Poem plus the modern innovation of the "blank rune" or wyrd. The deck comes with a 90 page booklet which provides a history of the runes, spreads for "casting" the deck, and interpretations based on the Anglo-Saxon Rune Poem. There is information on using the deck for meditation, contemplation and even pathworking.

I am not familiar enough with Runes to comment of the accuracy of the information provided in the booklet, though much of it jibes with other works I have read. I spent some months on a Rune discussion list and I know that many people expend considerable energy and time striving for historical accuracy in their Rune work. To many people, the idea of a rune deck (vice staves) is an abomination from some New Age Hell. The popularity of rune decks can not be denied, however, and if you choose this method of exploring the runes, it would be worth your while to find this deck. It is not as readily available as some of the larger publisher's offerings, but I think it is worth the extra effort to find it. You should be able to order it from your local bookstore using the ISBN and author's name.

Excerpt from the booklet

Runes can be used for various forms of meditation and many people will find the cards stimulating and useful for that purpose. However for some forms of meditation the pictures may be too intrusive and you may wish to just use the runic symbols. If you would prefer to do that simply draw the runes on pieces of card or, perhaps make you own set of runes in the traditional manner described later (page 17).

The thirty runes provided in the accompanying pack have been designed primarily for use with the twenty-nine rune futhorc described in the Anglo-Saxon Rune Poem and many of the objects illustrated are based on Anglo-Saxon archeological finds. The thirtieth card represents Wyrd (fate/luck/chance). many people object strongly to the inclusion of this so-called blank rune on the grounds that is neither authentic or necessary. Despite my sympathies with this view I have included the Wyrd card for those who wish to use it. Those who object to its inclusion can dispose of it.

Rune Cards pg. 6

Rune Cards
Author: Tony Linsell, Artist: Brian Partridge
ISBN: 0-9516209-7-5
Publisher: Anglo-Saxon Books, 25 Malpas Drive, Pinner, Middlesex, HA5 1DQ England
Images and quoted text copyright Anglo-Saxon Books 1992


This page is Copyright 1997 Michele Jackson