A Guide on how to read a Grand Tableau with a focus on the Man and Woman cards
The Lenormand Oracle was created to be read with the Grand Tableau.
While it might seem intimidating at first glance, once you dive in and get your feet wet, you will discover that reading a Grand Tableau is no more difficult than reading a 3 card spread.
When it comes to reading the Man and Woman cards, you gain a detailed overview of the querent's emotional, physical, mental and spiritual life.
I use the 9×4 Grand Tableau layout in the following examples. However, the same techniques apply to an 8×4+4.
How to Read a Grand Tableau: Where Did the Queren'ts Card Fall?
Using the Woman card as the querent's card:
In the example above, we see that the Woman card fell in the center of the spread.
What does this tell us?
- The cards to the Woman's left represent events in her past. The further away they are from her, the longer ago they happened and thus, the less of an influence they have.
- The cards to the Woman's right represent her future. The closer they are to her, the sooner they will happen and the greater of an influence they have.
- The cards above and below the Woman represent her present.
- The cards in the rows above the Woman are things that she does not have control/influence over. The further away they are, the less control/influence she has.
- The cards in the rows below the Woman are things that she has control/influence over. The closer they are, the more control/influence she has.
- The cards above the Woman and in the same column as her (i.e., her present) often represent things that are on the querent's mind.
How to Read a Grand Tableau if the Man or Woman Card Falls at the End of the Row
Using the same spread as an example, we see that the Man card fell in the last column of the first row.
How do you read the Grand Tableau in this instance?
- We know what the Man's past and present are, but his future is unknown.
- Since the Man fell at the end of the row, he is going to experience a big change in his life soon. When the change occurs, the future will be revealed.
- The Man fell in the top row so we know he is in full control of things.
- The Man is in the house of the Bouquet, adding to his enjoyment of how things are unfolding.
- We can use other techniques to find out more about the changes occurring, such as Knighting and Mirroring.
How to Read a Grand Tableau if the Man or Woman Card is the Last Card
Using a different spread, we see that the Woman card fell as the very last card in the Grand Tableau.
- Like in the previous example, we know what the Woman's past and present are, but her future is unknown.
- Also like in the previous example, the Woman is going to experience a big change in her life soon. When the change occurs, the future will be revealed.
- The Woman fell in the bottom row so we know that she doesn't have control over what is happening.
- The Woman is in the house of the Cross, telling us that this is a difficult time for her. She might feel burdened, depressed, tested, or drained.
- Additional techniques (such as knighting, distance and mirroring) can be used to find out more about what the Woman is experiencing.
You read a Grand Tableau similarly, if the Man or Woman cards falls at the beginning of a row, we know the future and present, but not the past. The querent is at the beginning of a new phase in his/her life. How much control he/she has over things is similarly determined by the cards, if any, located above and below the Man/Woman card.
Next Step in Reading a Grand Tableau: What Cards Surround the Querent's Card?
You can think of this as reading a 3×3 spread with the Man/Woman card in the center. However, the Grand Tableau can take a 3×3 reading to the next level.
What do the cards around the querent tell us?
- They describe the querent.
- They indicate situations, events and/or people affecting the querent (positively or negatively).
This probably sounds confusing, but it's actually an example of the layers involved in reading a Grand Tableau. On the one hand, the cards surrounding the Man or Woman card are describing the querent (such as the Mountain indicating she may be cold and distant), but they also show details about her life (again the Mountain pointing to problems she's recently overcome).
How to Read Cards Diagonal from the Querent's Card in a Grand Tableau
I often read cards diagonal from the querent's card as cause and effect. What's to the left is the cause. What's to the right is the effect.
With the above example, there is the Sun (cause) and the Crossroad (effect). We can read this as the querent experiences success which leads her to a decision.
If the Man or Woman card falls in the last column of the spread, we don't know what the effect will be. Likewise, if the Man or Woman card falls in the first column of the spread, we don't know what the cause was.
It's also possible to read the diagonals simply as diagonals. For example, in this spread we have the diagonal combinations of Moon-Sun-Woman-Ring and Clover-Crossroad-Woman-Anchor.
I hope this helps you to understand how to read a Grand Tableau, particularly the Man and Woman cards.