Minor Arcana

The Suit of Man


Man; 1, HP Lovecraft

The first Card in this entire study of the Minor Arcana is HP Lovecraft; with this being the person credited with the “creation” of our religious study; and in that, the contemporary genesis of this God system as a religious belief. Lovecraft is depicted here with his head carved out of stone, the founder of our belief is set in history. His statement is solid here, it cannot be eroded by reason nor time. It stands here as a singular statement in a desert which is otherwise empty and devoid of life, with Lovecrafts statement as statute. Three Bats fly around his head as a statement as to his character as a writer, as the desert which is shown in this Card can be seen to represent the place in which The Necronomicon was written, in a time before Lovecraft gave it to modern literature and to magick.

 

 

Man; 2, Randolph Carter

In the traditional Tarot, this Card can be seen as representing success in terms of business. The interpretation of this in the Lovecraft Deck is totally different though, as success to the R’Lyeh is attained in terms of a spiritual nature; Worship being at all times more important than physical status. So, being representative of success, this Card is the Dreamworld Traveller. Randolph Carter stares outward from within the Card; he is as sane and respected as any other man. But behind the image of the dreamer is depicted the strange and eccentric land of Dream. Above Randolph Carter is depicted the Silver Key, which symbolizes entry to dream. The Randolph Carter Card links us with these dreams, portraying the dreamer and the Key which will lead us into the further dimensions of the mind.

 

 

Man; 3, Inspector LeGrasse

Inspector Legrasse represents a man of strength and moral integrity; somebody who stands strong due to his understanding and Worship of the Gods. In this we see someone who has achieved due to this understanding, as opposed to someone who has become a victim due to the dabbling in the occult, as is too often seen in our system of Worship. His understanding of the occult and the religious R’Lyeh is depicted with a statue of Cthulhu behind him, as he holds a Tome of religious knowledge under his left arm. The foreign planet that is depicted behind him in this Card represents an occult understanding of Astral dimensions further than our own, and the Astral nature of magick.

 

 

 

Man; 4, Charles Dexter Ward

Moving away from usual interpretations, this Card can be seen, in terms of the Lovecraftian Tarot system, in terms relative to release from Psychiatric Hospital and mental recovery. This does not have to be seen as literal, however, and is usually interpreted not to be. Charles Dexter Ward is, despite this point of recovery, evil, and this is more likely to be the reason for his detention than the mental illness of which he may have recovered from now. The asylum that is his prison is the same; it always will be. Its locked doors and windows remain silent to the rest of the World, and that which is behind closed doors is indicated with this Card.

 



Man; 5, Erich Zann

In the classical Tarot, this Card represents conflict and opposing issues. It is represented in the Lovecraft Deck in the issue of Erich Zann as a musician who is his life honoured our Mythos in his insanity. In his madness Erich Zann is beautiful, bizarre, and his life is chaotic. And so the Five in the Suit of Man depicts what is beautiful in insanity. The musician stands upright in his eccentric suite, his violin and even more eccentric hair. The window to his left depicts the stars, whilst the window on his right depicts the madness of a World he tries to inspire.

 


Man; 6, Herbert West

This Card, portrayed in the HP Lovecraft Tarot, is evil. The Six in the Suit of Man is one of victory, as with every other deck, although here it is defined that victory is assumed through the pursuit of evil. The portrayal carried with this Card is grotesque and, in the tradition of Lovecraftian horror, quite macabre. The story here is that a dismembered head lays on a tray, ready to be “reanimated” by a young and naive Herbert West. What I interpret this as meaning, would be that whatever evil is portrayed here, the use of evil can repair the situation, and is therefore to be followed without question. This Card is strongly representative of issues of medical ethics, where they are relevant, and the dark side and misuse of the occult. It represents those who regard evil as some warped idea of virtue.


Man; 7, Captain Obed Marsh

Obed Marsh, being one of the Esoteric Order of Dagon, is a part of the religion of the sea. He is portrayed here as an old sailor, as somebody who has experience behind him in the struggle of the elements. He is the sort of person to know about the sea, and in turn the actuality of the creatures such as the Deep Ones. A strangely inhuman creature stares from the sky in this Card. It displays the human characteristics of a God, although his ears and features are strangely pointed. Obed still stares from this Card, his eyes somehow uncaring and lost.

 


Man; 8, Wizard Noah Whateley

Still using our reference to the Tarot, in classical reference the Eight defines “the sky [as] a specific feature of this card, a journey through the air” (The Tarot Workbook, Neville Drury). In the Lovecraft Deck, this depiction of air is defined further to represent higher dimensions, and our interaction with them. Here Wizard Noah Whateley stands outside of our human definition of reality; He casts spells to summon and control Elemental spirits. Here he is depicted as commanding an entity of unknown chaos, as being insane, magickal and daemonic. In doing this he is confident and entirely in control. The Eight of the Suit of Man can be defined, therefore, as being the complete magickal control of planes as the Elemental forces and the occult.

 


Man; 9, Wilbur Whateley

Wilbur Whateley was a very solitary person, in a lifetime of scientific research he was known by few, and his work not widely acknowledged. Therefore the Nine of this Suit can be read as defining any issue of which little is known, or as a conclusion that will turn out to tell us little. The story of Wilbur Whateley is that of a scientist who became consumed in his work; his death was in terms of his turning into the creature he studied. His death was a mystery, and this Card may be representative of outcomes which end in a question?


 

 

Man; 10, Wizard Edward Hutchinson

A Card representing religious knowledge, and a proper understanding of the occult. Edward Hutchinson is depicted in this statement, as a mild mannered genius who had dedicated his life to the Worship of Mythos entities. It therefore represents strength in this aspect, that whilst our religion is dangerous, its proper study has rewards. He is portrayed here as intelligent and studious, as he examines a statue of some sort of entity of the Mythos with genuine fascination. Behind Wizard Edward Hutchinson is portrayed an elaborate occult seal, here representing a sound foundation of, the “dangerous issue of the Beyond”. Esoteric knowledge is defined with this Card.


Man; 11, Dr Henry Armitage

Dr Henry Armitage is, on an equation with other Decks, to be seen as brilliant and as a genius in the study of the Necronomicon Mythos occult. At the same time however, in this Deck Dr Armitage is a recluse. Pulling this Card in a Reading represents a statement of genius, but this applies only to the individual for whom the reading is for. In this Dr Armitage is fairly minor compared to the greater forces depicted elsewhere in this Tarot. It can also represent a backlog of work to be done, or a future journey involving the study of the Mythos occult.

 


Man; 12, Crawford Tillinghast

Daydreams and romantic ideas that result in nothing; Crawford Tillinghast is unique in the Lovecraft Deck. Card Twelve represents our flights of fantasy and ideas whilst in mental states of utopia. Card Twelve in Lovecraftian terms, is representative of little more than ideas, and ideas of genius that come usually after smoking a pipe. Crawford Tillinghast is depicted in this Card as an old man, crazy with the ideas of Mythos Gods and astral confusion. At the same time he has an air of determination. You could meet this man in an Asylum, and it is his ideas that define this definition here as relevant to the Tarot.


Man; 13, Harley Warren

This Card of the Tarot follows Card Twelve of the Suit of Man, with a literary figure with little direct involvement with the Occult Mythos of Cthulhu. Yet, Harley Warren represents situations of learning in terms of the Necronomicon religious system. This can relate to our system of learning, occult or otherwise. In the graphical depiction, this Card shows some sort of tentacle of something from beyond passing his face. Harley Warren was a person who once had no belief in the occult. He now stands surprised and slightly horrified, as the realizations of his actions end with surprise at his previous sceptical unbelief.


Man; 14, Keziah Mason

Here we discover the Witches of the days of the Witch Trials of ancient England, and the woman of ‘The Dreams of the Witch House’. Keziah Mason is, on the first level, a perfectly ‘normal’ individual, and not the person you would associate with Witchcraft. However, in secrecy she is the Coven mistress who commands forces, practices black magick, and worships the entities of our religious Mythos. This is depicted as such, as Keziah is drawn holding a Grimoir of magick and a Griffon in her hand, that being an earthly manifestation, known by the Witches as being the only creature that is able to read human tongue.