[ tar-oh, ta-roh ]
/ ˈtær oʊ, tæˈroʊ /


any of a set of 22 playing cards bearing allegorical representations, used for fortunetelling and as trump cards in tarok.

Origin of tarot

1590–1600; back formation from taros (plural) < Middle French < Italian tarocchi, plural of tarocco
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tarot

British Dictionary definitions for tarot


/ (ˈtærəʊ) /


one of a special pack of cards, now used mainly for fortune-telling, consisting of 78 cards (4 suits of 14 cards each (the minor arcana), and 22 other cards (the major arcana))
a card in a tarot pack with distinctive symbolic design, such as the Wheel of Fortune


relating to tarot cards

Word Origin for tarot

C16: from French, from Old Italian tarocco, of unknown origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for tarot



1590s, from French tarot (16c.), from Old Italian tarocchi (plural), of unknown origin, perhaps from Arabic taraha "reject." The deck first used in Italy 14c., as playing cards as well as for fortune-telling. The tarots, strictly speaking, are the 22 figured cards added to the 56-card suits pack.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper