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baba-prague  baba-prague is offline
Join Date: 24 Nov 2002
Location: Prague, wonderful Prague, Czech Republic
Posts: 7,626

I discovered an odd thing about this card recently when I bought a copy of Marion Crawford's "Witch of Prague". It's a very over the top example of late Victorian Gothic writing, all centred around a very beautiful, but frighteningly powerful, young witch. Not a terribly well-written book, but one of those "must reads" from the Prague point of view.

One interesting thing about this book is that the author is very specific about descriptions of places (she gives a lot of real street names), and the witch's home seems to be the house from which we took the image of the girl sleeping on the skull. It made me think again that this girl is a strange contradiction - is she innocent or guilty? I've always wondered if she is a simple child or someone who has actually killed the person whose skull her head is almost pillowed on. The image fits very well with the story in the book - the witch is murderous but capable of great love. She turns out also to be a bit childlike, and does have a major change of heart at one point which turns her from tormentor to victim. Perhaps that's why Marion Crawford set it in that house?

I like this image because it's so much less emphatic than the RWS one (the RWS Ten of Swords is not one of my favourites from that deck - always seems slightly silly to me). Everything is in question. Who and what is the girl? Why the skull, what does it mean? Will the swords fall? I almost imagine that the church bells in the tower behind her will suddenly ring out, and everything will change. I like the feeling of capturing a split second.

I hate to say it, but there is a small touch of "Kill Bill" somewhere in this card (not that the film was out when we did the deck of course LOL)
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