Tarot pack designed by Burgess, based on his knowledge of The Tarot of the Bohemians by 'Papus'.

Scope and Content

Hand-drawn by Burgess

Administrative / Biographical History

Burgess was introduced to Tarot cards by T. S. Eliot's The Waste Land, which he first read in his early teens. In the early 1950s, while living in Adderbury, Oxfordshire, Burgess gave Tarot readings at a village fete, wearing a false beard and billing himself as 'Professor Sosostris, famous clairvoyant'. Tarot cards also play a crucial part in a short story of the 1960s "Chance Would Be a Fine Thing", in which two older women, Mrs Mills and Mrs Copley, resort to cartomancy as a means of cheating on the football pools.

Access Information


Available to researchers in consultation with the Archivist due to the condition of the item.

Related Material

The Tarot of the Bohemians by 'Papus' forms part of the library collection at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation.