Petit Etteilla: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

In my previous post, I shared how the Petit Etteilla, said to be the original Lenormand deck, came into my life.

And since then, I’ve been thinking about the experience with a bigger picture sensibility, contemplating the nature of my work with Petit Etteilla.

So, I thought to put that question to the cards (as I’m known to do), asking, What’s the nature of my work to be with Petit Etteilla?”

The Reading

I drew a Line of 5, reading the cards from right-to-left: 7 of Hearts, 10 of Clubs, 8 of Clubs, Ace of Hearts, and 9 of Clubs reversed (↓).

Each card has a forename (top line of text) and a surname (line of text beneath top line), and from what I understand (according to my notes), you choose either the forename or the surname as one part of the overall message for the line.

Looking for the words that seem to best fit the context and question, here’s what I chose:

  • 7 of Hearts: thoughts (la pensée)
  • 10 of Clubs: the future (l’avenir)
  • 8 of Clubs: art (art)
  • Ace of Hearts: Mars, which can also mean the person struggling/making efforts (Mars)
  • 9 of Clubs ↓: a gift (un present)

Stringing the words together, the line reads, “Thoughts about the future of the art, the person will be making efforts with a gift.”

So, the Petit Etteilla is validating the space I’m currently in, regarding my bigger picture, down the line thinking with the opening words in the line (thoughts about the future of the art), as well as giving me encouraging guidance in the second half of the line (the person making efforts with a gift).

And, I couldn’t help notice how cheeky the Petit Etteilla was in referencing itself as both art and a gift.

Modern Twist on a Classic

Taking a moment to look at the line more in the way I read a full deck of playing cards, I noticed a few things:

The focus card, 8 of Clubs is the work card, meaning the work you do; here, in this position, “work” is the focus of the reading (and I actually used the word in my question).

Along with the 8 of Clubs, both the 9 and 10 of Clubs appear in the line, making the suit of Clubs the ruling majority, again emphasizing work and business, but also effort and making progress.

In addition to those associations, Clubs can also refer to teaching and learning, and I’m presently learning the Petit Etteilla—learning to “work” the system.

The secondary suit is Hearts (7 of Hearts and Ace of Hearts being the remaining cards in the line), speaking about my relationship with Petit Etteilla.

The 7 of Hearts can refer to a pleasant surprise, and the 10 of Clubs is a card of a journey; these cards validate the way Petit Etteilla came into my life.

The Ace of Hearts is the home card, and with the 8 of Clubs also meaning conversations, this pair talks about my having conversations with the Petit Etteilla at home, and by doing so, I begin to feel more “at home” with the deck system.

And the 9 of Clubs is a card of good luck, suggesting that progress—through effort—will be made. The 9 of Clubs can also mean a gentle force urging you on to accomplishment, that fate is taking a gentle hand and nudging you in the right direction.

And those aspects of the 9 of Clubs fit with the larger context my question was framed in.

Either way you look at it, the Petit Etteilla and I have some serious work to do.

About James Himm

James Himm Mitchell, the Dreamer and Visionary of LifePlan Coaching & Consulting, LLC, works as an intuitive life coach, with a focus on personal growth and development. His specialties are Dream Decoding, Oracles (Tarot, playing cards, and Lenormand), and Energy Medicine (Reiki), and he uses those modalities coaching individuals to create the tools and develop the strategies that transform their lives.
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4 Responses to Petit Etteilla: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

  1. La Diseuse says:

    This is wonderful James!! I love the cards you got and the way you read them. Good luck on your journey 🙂

    • James Himm says:

      Thanks, Ruth! I have to say that I was pleased with the cards that turned up too. And I’m sure that I’ll be learning from you and Bjorn as part of my journey. 😉

  2. Olynxa says:

    I understand you are learning this system. What is your source of information? I just purchased the Petit Etteilla deck from Eric Bower through “The Game Crafter.” Besides his video link, is there any other resource you might be willing or able to share?? I really would appreciate any help, any leads at all.
    Thank you kindly.

    • James Himm says:

      Hi, Olynxa,
      I’m excited to hear that you’re studying the Petit Etteilla. I don’t have Eric’s deck, but I have heard that the video he provides is very helpful.
      What I did was follow the notes I’d been given when I was gifted the deck. I also got a private lesson with Björn Meuris, a gentleman regarded as an expert in traditional cartomancy (Petit Etteilla being one form of it). Here’s the link, so you can check it out:
      In the end, what has really been helpful to me is working with the cards on a regular basis; experience is truly the best teacher. 😀

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