Gertrude Moakley’s Problem-Solving Spread
On This Day
Moakley suggests the female Pope (High Priestess) card is based on a distant relative of the Visconti family. Elected Popess by a small group of Guillemites, the Inquisition burned her at the stake in autumn of 1300.
Gertrude Moakley was born this day in 1905. Moakley researched and wrote about Renaissance tarot while working as a librarian at the New York Public Library. She was the first scholar to suggest that tarot trumps are based on Renaissance parades, where each float “trumps” the next. The trumps represented easily understood allegories. These allegories were translated into a deck of cards as a playable game for both nobles and the general public.
Summation of Spread
The Justice card relates to problem-solving skills. Her upward-pointing sword seeks clarity, while the balancing scales represent the weighing of information. Notice she does not wear a blindfold, as she is keenly aware of the situation surrounding any issue.
Gertrude Moakley set out to solve tarot’s biggest questions: where, how, and what is tarot? This spread uses the library detective for inspiration to help us resolve any issue or any problem.
Cast Your Cards
The cards are cast in a straight line to ease your flow of information.
1. What is my intended outcome?
2. What helps me gather information?
3. What is the insight I require?
4. Who inspires me?
5. What do I already know?
6. Should I rest, letting this incubate?
7. Once I achieve my goal, how do I develop it?