Tarot vs Lenormand

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There are so many tools to connect with and explore when it comes to divination and spirituality. By working with decks of cards, you can enhance your connection with your intuition and receive guidance for your journey in life. However, if you are new to it all, you may be confused about the different types of cards out there!

This Tarot vs. Lenormand guide will explain what these two decks are all about. Whether you are a Tarot reader wanting to explore a new divination tool or a beginner looking for the right craft, we have you covered! So, let’s dive in.

Find the best beginner deck for you with our guide: Best Tarot Decks for Beginners: How To Get Started in Tarot

Key Takeaways

  • Tarot and Lenormand are both used for divination and guidance.
  • Tarot decks have 78 cards, whereas Lenormand decks have 36 cards.
  • Tarot cards are broken down into Major Arcana and Minor Arcana, with the Minor Arcana cards divided into suits.
  • Tarot cards have reversed meanings, whereas Lenormand cards have one distinct meaning.
  • Tarot cards rely on our intuition and imagination, whereas Lenormand cards rely on concrete meanings and logic.
  • Lenormand cards represent external factors, whereas Tarot cards represent internal factors, such as feelings and spiritual awareness.
  • Lenormand cards provide us with practical advice, whereas Tarot cards allow us to develop our spiritual awareness and intuition.

What are Tarot Cards?


Tarot cards are used for self-reflection and fortune-telling, allowing you to gain guidance and understanding of your journey in life. First made for card games back in the 14th century, Tarot has been around for a while! The Tarot cards we use today are usually based on the traditional Rider-Waite deck that was created in 1909.

Traditional Tarot decks are comprised of 78 cards, which are broken down into 22 Major Arcana and 56 Minor Arcana cards. The Minor Arcana cards are further broken down into four suits: Wands, Swords, Cups, and Pentacles. These suits reflect areas of life and connect with the four elements.

  • Cups: Emotions, Inution, and Relationships (Water)
  • Pentacles: Work, Material Goods, and Finances (Earth)
  • Swords: Logic, Mental Work, and Decisions (Air)
  • Wands: Energy, Ambition, and Passion (Fire)

By working with Tarot spreads, these 78 cards allow you to tap into your intuition and explore your spiritual side. Tarot relies on your gut instincts and feelings because of the symbolism depicted on each card. We can explore our connection with each card to gain guidance and help us make important decisions in life.

What are Lenormand Cards?

Marie Anne Lenormand
Marie Anne Lenormand

Lenormand cards date back to the 1800s and are named after Marie Anne Lenormand, a French fortune-teller and cartomancer. Lenormand decks consist of 36 cards, each with a specific meaning and keyword. These cards are usually linked to nouns and adjectives. For example, the Tree Lenormand card links to the noun growth and the adjective healthy.

The cards in the Lenormand deck have clear meanings. It is a pretty straightforward deck to work with, providing day-to-day guidance. There is a practical nature to this kind of deck. It shows us what is happening and how, allowing us to gain clarity on our situation.

Tarot vs. Lenormand: Are There Any Similarities?

Now we know what Tarot and Lenormand cards are; we can examine the similarities and differences to determine what type of deck is right for you! So, are there similarities between these two divination tools?

Well, both are used for fortune-telling and guidance. With both decks, you ask questions or advice, then pull a few cards. Then, we look for patterns and connections within the cards to provide insight and understanding.

A few cards are in both the traditional Tarot deck and the traditional Lenormand deck. We have the Sun, the Star, and the Moon in both decks. The meanings of both are similar. The Sun reveals success and optimism in both decks, whereas the Star reflects hope and creativity. So, if you are a Tarot reader, you have a place to start with Lenormand!

However, it must be noted that the Tower has different meanings in the two decks. In Tarot, the Tower represents upheaval, changes, and revelations. In Lenormand decks, the Tower is all about authority and ego.

The Main Differences Between Tarot and Lenormand

tarot vs lenormand

Despite Tarot and Lenormand having a few basic similarities, there are some main differences between these two decks of cards that you need to know before diving into the world of cartomancy! Knowing the Tarot vs. Lenormand key differences allows you to pick the best divination tool to help you. Plus, if you are a Tarot reader like me, these differences will help you know what to expect with Lenormand.

Suits vs. No Suits

Firstly, there is a significant difference between the amount of cards in each deck and how they are broken down into their sections. Lenormand decks have 36 cards, which is pretty accessible if you feel daunted about learning the meanings of the 78 Tarot cards!

Tarot decks are broken down into four suits: Wands, Swords, Cups, and Pentacles, alongside the 22 Major Arcana cards. The Major Arcana cards usually reflect big life changes and lessons you are learning. Conversely, the Minor Arcana usually provides day-to-day guidance and reflects smaller life changes and decisions.

Now, the four Minor Arcana suits are pretty important and contain a lot of symbolism. Each suit holds unique energy and connection to your life. For example, when a card in the Suit of Pentacles crops up, we know that work and finances are key in our lives right now.

Tarot cards have suits, whereas Lenomard cards don’t have suits.

Reversals vs. No Reversals

One huge difference when reading Tarot vs. Lenormand cards is reversals. Lenormand cards have no reversed meanings, with each card having one distinct message. However, reversals are quite significant in Tarot readings. When reversed, Tarot cards usually turn the upright meaning on its head. For example, receiving an upright Sun Tarot card reveals optimism and joy. But, when reversed, the Sun reflects pessimism and a lack of enthusiasm.

Many newbie Tarot readers feel confused about reversals. If you are, you may prefer working with Lenormand cards to begin with. Yet, reversals in Tarot are pretty intuitive! Most of the time, you take the card’s upright meaning and look at the antonyms of the keywords.

Tarot cards have reversed meanings, whereas Lenormand cards have one distinct meaning.

Logic vs. Intuition

Tarot And Lenormand reversed

Tarot cards rely on your intuition and imagination. Yes, all cards hold specific energy, but it is up to us to explore this energy and how it impacts our lives. On the other hand, reading with Lenormand is pretty logical and obvious. These cards give you a quick and concise answer to your questions.

When exploring Tarot, the symbolism and imagery on each card unlock deeper understanding. The rich detail in the cards allows us to work with our intuition to guide us forward. In contrast, Lenormand relies more on keywords. The images on the card reflect the keywords, and there are no hidden meanings within the artwork.

Tarot cards rely on our intuition, whereas Lenormand cards rely on concrete meanings.

Practicality vs. Spirituality

Because of the differences in how we work with these two types of cartomancy decks, there is a difference in how they impact our lives. Tarot cards provide us with spiritual guidance and understanding, allowing us to explore our connection with the unseen. The cards reveal ways to develop our spiritual side and move forward on our soul’s mission.

Tarot also allows us to reflect on where we are in life and our current external and internal influences. Tarot cards have a psychological element, as we can use them to explore our emotions and feelings. By working with our intuition and Tarot, we are able to understand our emotional situation and what we need to do to better our lives.

Lenormand is a much more practical tool. These cards have little spiritual guidance within them. Instead, they tell you what is happening around you and how you need to deal with it! These cards are straightforward. For example, receiving the Man Lenormand card represents a man in your life. The Kings of Tarot, on the other hand, can represent people, influences, or energy. Sometimes, it takes time to really understand what the cards you receive in Tarot represent.

Lenormand cards represent the external, whereas Tarot cards represent the internal.

Tarot vs. Lenormand: How do You Read Lenormand Cards?

How Do You Read Lenormand Cards

Because Lenormand is a practical tool and Tarot a spiritual one, there are differences in how we read and understand the cards.

When it comes to Tarot, there are loads of different spreads and ways to approach the practice. You may wish to ask a question and pull one card, or you may want to explore complex spreads, such as the Celtic Cross spread. You can also design your own spread to gain a clear understanding of your situation and feelings.

Then, when we receive the cards in our spread, we examine the symbolism and meaning to patch it all together. Sometimes, this isn’t obvious, and we need to take time to work with our intuition to gain guidance. Tarot reading allows us to dive deep into the hidden meanings and really explore our subconsciousness.

Conversely, Lenormand cards are usually read in pairs or strings. They are read as a sentence, combining the different words and meanings to get information.  When reading in pairs, the first card is the noun, and the second is the adjective.

So, perhaps you get the Garden card and the Book card. Putting them together means a social event will lead you to knowledge and understanding.

Lenormand gives you a solid and practical answer and is read in this way. There are no hidden meanings with the cards – what you see is what you get!

Tarot vs. Lenormand: Which to Pick?

If you are new to the whole cartomancy thing, I hope this guide has helped you understand the key differences between the Tarot and Lenormand. They both have their pros and cons, so let’s look at them to find out which practice is best for you!

Tarot Pros

  • Provides spiritual growth and understanding.
  • Allows you to reflect on your emotions.
  • Each card holds deep meaning and symbolism.
  • It’s more popular than Lenormand, so there are loads of tools out there to explore.
  • It is broken up into Major Arcana and Minor Arcana suits, reflecting different aspects of life.
  • Used for divination.
  • Provides a deep analysis of your situation.
  • Helps you develop your intuition.
  • A range of spreads to explore.

Tarot Cons

  • Sometimes difficult to understand.
  • There are more cards in a Tarot deck than in a Lenormand deck, so there are more meanings to learn.
  • Cards have a variety of meanings that can cause confusion.
  • Doesn’t provide specific answers and practical solutions.

Lenormand Pros

  • Provides practical advice.
  • Each card has a simple meaning and keyword.
  • Helps you gain clarity.
  • Straightforward to read and understand.
  • There are no reversals to learn.
  • There are only 36 cards to learn in a Lenormand deck.
  • The cards reflect external and concrete energy.

Lenormand Cons

  • Does not provide spiritual and emotional guidance.
  • The simplicity of the cards can mean there is a lack of deep exploration and guidance.
  • Does not help us expand our intuition.
  • There is a lack of complex spreads for Lenormand cards.


Question: What is Lenormand Used For?

Answer: Lenormand is used to gain clarity and understanding in life. Each card provides you with practical information you can work through to understand external influences affecting you right now.

Question: What’s a Lenormand Reading?

Answer: A Lenormand reading looks at the keywords of each card and strings them together like a sentence. Every card is associated with a noun and an adjective, and we put them together in readings.

Question: What is the Difference Between Lenormand and Tarot?

Answer: Lenormand cards are used to gain practical solutions and information regarding external influences in your life. Conversely, Tarot explores your subconscious, intuition, and spiritual understanding. Tarot dives deeper into your spiritual and emotional life to guide you.

Tarot vs. Lenormand: Which Will You Explore?

These two wonderful tools allow us to gain clarity in life and move forward on our journey. They both have their own incredible history, and each type provides us with so much guidance and understanding.

Which deck will you explore?

Find more deck recommendations below:

The Modern Witch Tarot Deck Review and Guide

Nicolas Conver Tarot de Marseille by Artisan Tarot Review and Guide

Cats Rule the Earth Tarot Deck Review and Guide

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