Tarot Cards:
History & Meaning

How the tarot cards came to be

 

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There are many myths surrounding the origins and the history of the Tarot. Some of these theories suggest that the Tarot Cards have been invented as early as ancient times, in Egypt, China or India (they are even told to have been brought by gypsies, from India).

One of the earliest mentions of the existence of tarot cards comes from Ancient Egypt. In order to preserve his work on foretelling the future, Thot, the Egyptian god of writing and the occult arts, had 22 bars of gold engraved and sent to his people, telling them that it was a game. Only a selected few knew the real purpose of the bars. This is how his knowledge lived on, with only a few trusted people knowing the true value of the cards – the people who would not use its power for their own benefit.

However, the oldest set of tarot cards that still exists dates back to the early 15th century. The cards were created sometime between the years 1430 and 1450, in northern Italy, by the painter Bonifacio Bembo. They were called “Cards of Triumph”, and they were ordered by Tarot Visconti, the duke of Milan.

In the 15th century, the cards were still being painted by hand, so they were difficult to produce. When the new printing techniques started to be used on a larger scale, the cards became more widely spread. In 1540, a book explaining a simple way to interpret the tarot cards appeared, and in 1765, Giacomo Casanova wrote in his diary about a Russian lover of his who was using a deck of cards to foretell the future.

The Meaning of the Tarot Cards

 

The Tarot cards are just a recipient, a vessel for the subtle energies that the Universe is sending us. A famous philosopher has once said that every answer is included in its question, and that a precise and well-put question will bring you clear solutions. If you get a Tarot reading done for you, you can ask a question, or even just think about that question. You’ll be surprised to see how the cards can even answer a question that was never even spoken out loud.

A deck of tarot cards typically holds 78 cards. The first 22 cards are the Major Arcana and they can reveal deeper, more spiritual things. They can symbolize the big lessons that we need to learn, the important changes that we will have to face and the true evolution of the spirit. The remaining 56 cards are the Minor Arcana and they mostly speak about the day-to-day life of the person who is getting his reading done.

The Tarot Cards Interpretation is a difficult task. There are many different spreads (layouts) which can be used for a reading. The Celtic Cross is one of the most popular ones, but there are also the Tree of Life, the Romany spread, the Five Cards spread. The three cards spread that we use on this website for the reading is one that speaks of the past (first card), the present (the card in the middle) and the future (the third card).

You will find below a brief interpretation of the tarot cards, with explanations for each of the 22 cards of the Major Arcana.

How to read the Tarot Cards:

  • 1. The Fool

    the fool The Fool is the first card in the deck and it symbolizes curiosity, spontaneity and recklessness. The Fool represents someone gullible, naive and childish.

    It can reveal a desire for rebirth, for a new beginning, but the Fool also likes to provoke change without a specific purpose and with no criteria. Everything depends on chance, as it doesn’t dominate its environment, it works on impulse. The Fool brings renewal, a shift of some sort and the energy of a fresh start.

    The Fool can be innocent, immature and idealistic.

  • 2. The Magician

    The Magician The Magician symbolizes deep knowledge and total mastery and comprehension of the world around. It shows the type of intelligence that is both creative and practical, courage and the way to success. It represents the strength and skills needed to overcome bad luck and disease, because the mind is in control of the body.

    This card stands for the judge, lawyer, priest, politician or doctor. It can also stand for new ideas and for finding ways of verbalizing them. But what should be kept in mind is the fact that the Magician can also prove to be a Trickster.

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  • 3. The Priestess

    The Priestess The Priestess is the card that represents extrasensory perception, empathy and intuitive knowledge. It symbolizes patience, stability and conciliation, modesty and well thought out decisions. The Priestess stands for the legendary feminine inner intuition and embodies the perfect woman for any man.

    The High Priestess does not represent decision-making, but she rather holds the decision at bay, while you have time to carefully think it through, weigh the advantages and the disadvantages and listen to your inner-voice.

  • 4. The Empress

    The Empress The Empress is the embodiment of femininity. She is a mistress and a mother, a housemaid and a scholar, at the same time. She symbolizes comprehension, intelligence, education, insight, good influence and charm. She also stands for fertility and good-heartedness.

    The Empress is the ultimate creator, and this could be in relation with many things – creation of life, of romance, of art or of new business ideas.

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  • 5. The Emperor

    The Emperor The Emperor symbolizes creative wisdom and leadership. He represents authority figures – a father, a boss, an alpha male. He has authority, power, integrity, stability, and he offers a sense of protection. He looks for stable and enduring relationships. He has great self-confidence and a positive, constructive attitude.

    He is direct, enthusiastic, full of energy, but in the worst of circumstances, he can also be a tyrant – impatient, demanding and controlling.

  • 6. The Hierophant

    The Hierophant The Hierophant (or High Priest) is a spiritual teacher, who strives to create peace and harmony in the midst of crisis. He symbolizes consolation, help, forgiveness, guidance, close relatives, experience, curiosity, change, adjustment, chance, freedom, imagination and humor, magnetism, pleasure and serenity.

    The Hierophant works for the good of the community, and so it is not a card that favors individuality. It is about shared feelings and beliefs, but it can also be stubborn and intolerant.

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  • 7. The Lovers

    The LoversThe Lovers card is the expression of opposites attracting each-other. It stands for union, marriage and love. It symbolizes the communication between people, family values and social responsibility, compromise, beauty, harmony, elegance, home, family, fertility, balanced emotions and peace.

    This card can equally mean choice and hesitation in choosing.

  • 8. The Chariot

    The Chariot The Chariot represents a road, a path to our inner metamorphosis and weighing the possible consequences of change. It shows a successful outcome, when facing new obstacles. It symbolizes triumph, progress, ambition, spiritual and intellectual enrichment, reflection, wisdom and analysis.

    This card also speaks of being in control, as the driver is in charge of the horses pulling the chariot. In the context of the entire deck of cards, it follows naturally from the choices shown by the Lovers card.

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  • 9. Justice

    Justice The Justice tarot card is synonymous with the deepest balance, it symbolizes the power to serve people as well as divinity. Justice teaches you to weigh what is good and what is bad and it gives you the power to overcome karma. It represents financial, emotional, mental or physical stability, justice, fairness, integrity, law, power, wealth, strength, power, prestige, respect, trust, authority and discipline.

    It is important to remember that this card does not symbolize punishment, right and wrong, but rather adjustment and an unending quest for balance.

  • 10. The Hermit

    The HermitThe Hermit stands for the search for self-fulfillment, the inner conflict and the changes that occur in one’s conscience. This is a card that produces its own light, which illuminates the others. It supports the power, the figure of authority, and it is a symbol of immortality. It represents caution, chastity, generosity, abundance, inspiration, compassion, talent, popularity and fame, all which is perfect and ideal.

    It is a card of introspection, and it suggests the desire for peace and solitude, so you can think, organize and gain a better knowledge of who you truly are.

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  • 11. The Wheel of Fortune

    The Wheel of FortuneThis card symbolizes a positive change, luck, success, opportunity. The Wheel of Fortune is a spontaneous, creative and optimistic card. It also stands for the rise and fall of fortunes and it transmits the message that what goes around comes around.

    It is mostly a positive card, indicating abundance, happiness, elevation, a change that happens and that brings with it great joy.

  • 12. Strength

    Strength The Strength card represents a miracle that saves someone or solves a problem that seemed impossible to solve. It symbolizes the inner-strength that you need in order to control your personality, but also vitality, desire, determination, intelligence, courage and unexpected success.

    This card stands for higher feelings, for hot, roaring energy and enthusiasm and what we can experience if we tame and control our wild passions.

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  • 13. The Hanged Man

    The Hanged Man The Hanged Man represents confinement, the impossibility to advance, waiting, and meditation in order to find a way to overcome an obstacle. He sees the world upside down, imprisoned in his own body.

    This card also symbolizes laziness, lack of work and of interest for all that surrounds him, and even platonic love. It is not a card about life and death, but rather one that speaks about suspension and timelessness.

  • 14. Death

    Death This card does not represent death in its physical sense, but rather inner transformation, making decisions that will result in broken links, breaking old relationships. It shows an ending – of an era, of a connection, of a job, of a bad situation. However, this ending may be followed by a new beginning.

    Death is also about transformation and about the way that we deal with endings – we need time so we can make peace with the fact that something we were used to is no longer part of our lives.

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  • 15. Temperance

    Temperance This card symbolizes the world beyond, that of angels and the unknown, healing, saving, and the patience of an angel. Temperance is also the card of space and time travel. It represents someone who wants to help those who suffer, without expecting anything in return.

    It can be a warning to temper your behavior, but also a reminder that opposites that may seem irreconcilable at first may not be so incompatible, after all.

  • 16. The Devil

    The Devil The Devil represents an illusion, a lie, he wants to sell us something, and he needs to constantly reassert himself as a person. It stands for material energy and masculinity, the domination of body over soul, of instinct over mind. It also symbolizes passion, seduction, temptation, obsession and magnetism.

    It represents a strong desire to dominate others and success on a professional level. It can indicate temptation and addiction, but also the importance of being honest with yourself about your desires, your pleasures, what makes you feel powerful and what gives you power. Too much restraint can hold you back and prevent you from achieving your goals.

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  • 17. The Tower

    The TowerThis card suggests that everything that we try to hold on to is destroyed, and the sense of safety and security that you had is irrevocably shaken. The Tower represents sudden changes that happen without giving you a choice.

    But this is about false structures, institutions and beliefs that are coming down suddenly and violently – it is a war between the structures of lies and the lightning flash of truth. It symbolizes a revelation that will shake you up.

  • 18. The Star

    The Star The Star represents humility and truth, but also fertility and prosperity. The landscape evokes harmony, the Garden of Eden. In order to be worthy to receive the energies of the Stars (gift of water and life) one should reduce himself to "nothing" and kneel.

    The Star also symbolizes generosity, pregnancy, hope, charm, beauty, sensitivity, and protection. It can be an indication that dreams and aspirations will come true, and it transmits a sense of wellbeing and confidence. While it does not predict any immediate or powerful change, it predicts hope, healing, and unexpected help.

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  • 19. The Moon

    The MoonThe Moon refers to the world of emotions. Only when you manage to control your emotions and your attraction to material things, a higher intuition may appear. This card is associated with imagination and with the past, with a maternal figure and her home, but also with clairvoyance. It symbolizes reflection, intuition, dreams and pregnancy, illusions, madness, genius and poetry.

    It can speak of a time of emotional and mental trial, but also of a time of torment for a couple, with emotional ups and downs.

  • 20. The Sun

    The Sun The Sun symbolizes brotherhood, two people representing our outer personality and our inner self, and that come together as one. It also stands for communication between human beings, friends, happiness, the thought of embarking on an enjoyable project, of helping others, a happy marriage, partnership, success, pleasure and harmony.

    The Sun also represents glory, simple pleasures and truths, success, science and math, beautifully constructed music, carefully reasoned philosophy.

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  • 21. Judgment

    Judgment The Judgment card symbolizes a new life, good news, healing, resurrection, a birth, family. It also refers to prayer, communicating with the celestial world and a transcendental state of consciousness.

    This card advises us to face all that is unresolved in our past – things we’ve refused to forgive, bad habits that we haven’t given up yet, sins that we’ve committed and that we still feel guilty about. It is about finally letting go and moving on.

    The Fool can be innocent, immature and idealistic.

  • 22. The World

    The World This card represents an accomplishment, a success that is absolute in every aspect. Other people put themselves in our service, so they can help us. The universe makes its contribution, too. It is a door to a world where everything is possible.

    If you would like to try a three-card tarot reading and see what the Tarot Cards have to say about you, you can test our gift and get our advice by going to the Psychic Readings section of the website. Here, you can draw three tarot cards, ask us your question, and you will receive the answer by e-mail.

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If you would like to try a three-card tarot reading and see what the Tarot Cards have to say about you, you can test our gift and get our advice by going to the Psychic Readings section of the website. Here, you can draw three tarot cards, ask us your question, and you will receive the answer by e-mail.

If you would like a more in-depth clairvoyant reading, please go to the Phone Readings section of the website, or call the following numbers:

0905 801 1634
Caller cost: 1.55 per minute (VAT included), plus your phone company's access charge. Callers must be 18 years old or over and have the bill payers permission. All calls are recorded All details of the calls will appear in the phone bill. Helpdesk Number: 0203 4990358. Tarot reading service offered by Pub Story SRL.

 

Kephra

 
 
     
 

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