Some say the Tarot is sexist, and when one looks at the court cards, it’s hard not to agree. The court cards consist of the Pages (masculine), the Knights (masculine), the Queens (feminine), and the Kings (masculine). Personally, I like to envision the Pages as children, the Queens as women, and the Kings as men. Then, I look to the meaning of the knights and interpret them as behaviors, not people. But, each of us has to learn our own meanings for the cards, so this is only one suggestion.
Kings — Kings are active and outgoing, and they want to make an impression on the world through their forceful personalities.
The King of Wands combines the Fire energy of the Wands with the active outward focus of a King. The King of Wands is usually a very enthusiastic, creative, and exciting man. Sometimes the Wands are seen as sexual energy, and when this card comes up in a reading about relationships, the King of Wands could represent a man with a strong sexual attraction to the questioner. When the King of Wands appears reversed in a reading, he can represent a man who is only interested in sexual relationships.
The King of Cups has the sensitivity of the Water signs. He is wise with a deep understanding of the world, and he is usually a very compassionate man. Many will look to him for guidance, and he is always a good listener. But, this King has a tendency to use diplomacy rather than force when dealing with difficult situations. When the King of Cups comes up in a reading in response to a question about a relationship, one can know that the man truly loves his partner. But, when he appears reversed in a reading, he can represent a fickle man who cannot commit to his partner.
The King of Swords represents intelligence. Swords parallel the Air signs in astrology, which always have to do with the mind and higher thinking. He uses reason and logic and analyzes his problems. He had a tendency to bring clarity to chaos, and he’s often an elegant speaker. The King of Swords has strong ethics and encourages others to do the same. In a reading, the King of Swords usually represents an intelligent man, except when he is reversed. Usually, when the King of Swords is reversed, he is a controlling and sometimes abusive male.
The King of Pentacles combines his active, outward focus with the practical energy of the Earth signs. He is usually financially successful, and he handles tasks competently. He is reliable, dependable, and responsible, and he rarely fails his friends. In a reading, the King of Pentacles usually has a fairly even temperament, and often he represents a man with an average to large body type. He could be called financially comfortable, but when he is reversed, he can represent a man who squanders his money.
Queens — Queens are upbeat and lively, but they do not express their personality as an outward directed force. They set the tone without imposing it.
The Queen of Wands still carries her Fire energy, but it has a more inward focus. She is usually a wholehearted and attractive woman, who is energetic and self-assured. She’s often the most popular in her class with a warm smile and an easy going manner. In a reading, the Queen of Wands usually represents the hostess, and she is the woman who puts on a party that no one will forget. But, I’ve personally found that when the Queen of Wands comes up in a reading as a reversed card, she represents the sexually promiscuous woman, and perhaps the woman who is fooling around with the questioner’s man.
The Queen of Cups has a sweet, loving, and sensitive nature that is included with the Water signs of astrology. She is usually kind to everyone and rarely loses her temper. She trusts her intuition but can be moody, especially when reversed. The Queen of Cups can be moved by beauty and tragedy, and her love embraces everyone and everything. In a reading, the Queen of Cups can represent a woman who is truly in love with someone, and when reversed she can show us an emotionally unstable woman.
The Queen of Swords has the intelligence of the Air signs combined with the inward focus of the Queens. Communication is her forte, and she will always tell you exactly how it is. She admires honesty and is committed to being truthful. She has a great sense of humor and always has a witty comeback. In a reading, the Queen of Swords represents an intelligent woman, of course, but when reversed she can be a real bitch!
The Queen of Pentacles can be a down-to-earth, matter-of-fact kind of woman like the Earth signs of the zodiac. Her pleasure is to care for others, making sure they are happy and secure. One often sees many children, plants, and pets in her home, and she tries to avoid really elaborate plans. The Queen of Pentacles can represent a woman who is financially comfortable, but often she’s just comfortable with life in general. But, when the Queen of Wands appears reversed in a reading, she can represent a woman who spends more than she earns.
Knights — Knights can be extremists, and they express their qualities to the maximum. These excesses can be positive or negative, including excessive caution and excessive gluttony.
The Knight of Wands is full of energy and life, and he’s never afraid to try something new. He can sometimes represent a journey or even just progress. He can be charming but superficial, daring yet foolhardy, and even passionate and hot-tempered. This card means to travel and success in a reading, but when in reverse he can represent running in circles.
The Knight of Cups is a poet and a lover of all things romantic. He is sensitive yet temperamental, romantic but overly emotional, introspective yet introverted. He can herald an emotional time like new or renewed love or other sweet things. He can also represent a message or a conversation. When he shows up reversed in a reading, he can represent a need to look below the surface for hidden meanings or problems, and sometimes even bad news.
The Knight of Swords lives by logic and reason. His judgment is sure and free of emotions, but he is not a master of diplomacy and sometimes rude. In a reading, the Knight of Swords may be forecasting unexpected emergencies or perhaps a rollercoaster of drama. Sometimes he brings truth to light. Also, because his character is displaying so much action, it’s likely that his predictions will manifest soon or with a surprise. When he appears reversed, it could signify some kind of impulsive action, or perhaps the situation will only be over in a flash.
The Knight of Pentacles is like a dog with a bone. Once he bites down, he won’t let go. In fact, he is the only Knight that is standing still and not moving. He has a lot of stamina and dedication, but he can also represent depression. He can represent practical and steady grown, especially financial, or boring routine chores. When in reverse the Knight of Pentacles can forecast stagnation or materialist goals.
Pages — Each Page shows a happy child holding the symbol of his suit, and they often represent a youthful look at life. A Page can also foretell of a child or children in general.
The Page of Wands wants to encourage you to be creative, enthusiastic, confident, and courageous. His ideas are greater than his experience, but he will overcome any shortfall with enthusiasm. In a reading, he can often represent good news and positive negotiations. An opportunity may come up for the questioner to feed and excite their talents. When the Page of Wands appears in reverse, he can represent an unfaithful friend or gossip.
The Page of Cups has similar characteristics to Cupid in the fact that he can foretell opportunities for love. He has a fish in his cup, which symbolizes that dreams and emotions have taken form. When he comes up in a reading he represents good times and good company. The Page of Cups can forecast that an emotional opportunity, like new love or great joy, is possible. When in reverse, he can show us someone with scattered or impractical interests or a fear of commitment.
The Page of Swords represents insight and help from others. Sometimes he foretells upcoming challenges, and other times he represents the profits from hard work. He encourages us to embrace problems and grow because of them. Sometimes he can represent contracts and documents regarding property and career. In reverse, he can be a crafty, deceitful person or an imposter.
The Page of Pentacles is the messenger of opportunity and prosperity. Wealth, abundance, security, and achievement are his gifts. He reveals progress and adventure and new beginnings, especially in the area of finances. But our Page of Pentacles may be too much of an optimist, so be sure to pay attention to the details and double-check agreements.
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