Thomson-Leng Tarot deck interview

The Thomson-Leng Tarot and Madeline Montalban

Thomson Leng Tarot and Madeline Montalban

“If it were possible to collect, interpret and write down all the mysteries concealed behind the symbol-graph called the Tarot, we would be in possession of the true Book of Thoth, or Book of All Wisdom.”
~ Madeline Montalban

Madeline Montalban

Madeline Montalban was a 20th-century Astrologer, Tarotist, occultist, teacher and writer with who I have always felt a strange connection – almost as if we are somehow related. While referring to herself as ‘Pagan,’ she is reported to have gone ballistic when someone called her a witch.

Her faith was Luciferian and she refers to Lucifer as the Angel Lumiel in her writings. She saw Lumiel as a benevolent force that helps humanity evolve. Her magick, like mine, was based on working with the seven Archangelic rulers of the Planets, as well as Lumiel and a few other Archangels.

Madeline Montalban was born with the name Madeline Sylvia Royals on 8 January 1910 in Blackpool and she died on 11 January 1982 from lung cancer. You can read more about her fascinating life HERE.

Madeline Montalban made a name for herself by appearing regularly in Prediction Magazine, where she wrote articles on various occult topics. Her Tarot articles were often illustrated with images of cards from the Thomson-Leng Tarot:

Article in Prediction Magazine by Madeline Montalban illustrated with The Emperor from the Thomson-Leng Tarot
Prediction Magazine, April 1961

The Thomson-Leng Tarot

I can’t remember exactly when I first learned about the 1935 Thomson-Leng Tarot deck but I do recall reading about it on the Aeclectic Tarot site and feeling the strongest pull toward a deck I had ever felt. I knew I had to have this deck, even before being aware of the connection with Ms. Montalban. It turned out I had to wait for nearly ten years before it popped up at an affordable enough price in an eBay auction.

Nowadays, you can also buy facsimile copies of the Thomson-Leng but they sell for more than I ended up paying in the eBay auction! When the deck I arrived, I nervously counted all the cards – It was complete and I felt so lucky!

As you can see below the front of the box is quite torn and tatty but the LWB, the cards themselves and the extra card are all in mint condition.

Thomson-Leng Tarot box

In the eBay listing, the seller used the name on the side of the box rather than calling the deck the Thomson-Leng, which is probably why I managed to pick it up for the price of eating out in London.

The cards are small, 9 x 6 cm and this is what the backs look like with the deck fanned…

Thomson-Leng Tarot card backs

And below you can see the Thomson-Leng ‘extra’ card…

Thomson-Leng Tarot extra card

While I haven’t been including the extra card in readings, I can totally see this being done and may well experiment with it myself. Who cares if you’re not meant to, right?

I’ve had this deck for a couple of years now but haven’t gotten around to doing a deck interview with it yet. I’ve felt almost felt as if I respect this deck too much to muster up the courage to chat with it… but things are changing. I’m owning my magician’s hat these days and I don’t see why we shouldn’t be able to meet as equals, so here it goes…

Thomson-Leng Tarot Deck Interview

Thomson-Leng Tarot deck interview

1. Describe yourself in three words or less – 8 of Swords

TLT: Under-stimulated, mentally agile

Me: I should apologise. I have kept you tucked in your drawer for too long!

TLT: Apology accepted

2. How would your best friend describe you using only three words? – The Chariot

TLT: Succesful and on point. (Mind you that was back in the day. My friend doesn’t really move with the times.)

Me: Well, I’m sure your bestie is right!

3. What gift do you bring? – Knight of Cups

TLT: True love. Don’t be afraid – Embrace it and let’s have some fun together!

Me: I want too! I’ve definitely be afraid to bond and work with you but the love is there for sure!

4. What do you expect in return? – The Great Priest (trad. The Hierophant)

TLT: Learn from teachers of the past. Remember that you stand on the shoulders of giants.

Me: Thank you for the reminder. I do want to learn and carry the tradition forward.

5. How can you help me serve? – The Sun

TLT: I can help you serve better because our connection energises and inspires you to shine your own light brightly in the world.


6. Is there anything else you would like to tell me about yourself? – 7 of Cups

TLT: Actually, no. I like to keep a bit of mystery. There are some things you simply are not ready to know about me…

Me: OK, I accept that. It’s not like I have a choice. Besides, I think it will keep our relationship more exciting. Thank you so much for letting me interview you!

TLT: You’re welcome.

Reading about Madeline Montalban Connection

Reading about Madeline Montalban Connection with the Thomson-Leng Tarot

I wanted to finish this post with the little reading I did for myself with the Thomson-Leng Tarot to try to figure out why I feel such a strong connection with Madeline Montalban – besides both of us being Capricorns and preferring to write articles over books.

I’m a bit blown away by the cards above. I feel as if they are saying, ‘I am guiding you from the other side of the veil and we are part of the same soul family.’

Incidentally, I found out recently that Madeline Montalban taught a system of correspondences almost identical to what that I have been using for years now. It’s spooky in all the right ways!


Comments 4

  1. What an interesting woman. I’d love to read some of her work on the angels! It’s funny how different decks affect us – this one doesn’t call to me in the slightest – good thing given how rare it is 😀

    1. Post

      She lived very close to the Atlantis bookshop apparently, and was a regular visitor. I’m so glad I’ve had a chance to visit there thanks to the UK Tarot Conference and connect the dots a bit. David Goddard has written a book that is largely based on her teachings, with a few modifications from other traditions. It’s called ‘Sacred Magic of the Angels’ – I’m currently reading it myself and really enjoying it. There are some minor errors in the first edition though, which I understand have been corrected in a second edition that supposedly has a blue cover. Good to know I won’t have to compete with you for a back-up copy should I ever have the opportunity to bid at another eBay auction! 😀

  2. I’m going out on a limb here but you and she are probably soul kin from previous lives. The deck looks like it’s in very good condition for being so old. I find it very interesting she completed a whole cycle. (Jan 8- Jan 11). I have a theory that people who are completing or close to completing their soul journey through our third dimensional existence die around their birthday. (this is completely something I made up so if it sounds crazy.. I apologize).

    1. Post

      Thanks for the confirmation, Tara – That’s the limb I was out on too 🙂 I have never heard of that theory but that is so interesting… My mind instantly goes to David Bowie who was also born on 8 of Jan and passed away on the 10th. You’re my kind of crazy haha! xoxo

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *