Tarot Card Meanings of the Minor Arcana

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Tarot Cards come in a variety of styles, artwork to depict a modality or ancient belief systems. Even with all of these differences, the basic Tarot Card Meanings pretty much remain the same as it was laid out back in 1910 with the first real published deck by Rider Waite. Which still remains the most widely used Tarot Deck.  Its simple but elegant artwork, easy to read names and numbers, and it’s deck size play into its popularity.

Within the Tarot Deck are two groupings of cards: The Major Arcana or Trump Cards and The Minor Arcana. Most people focus on the Major Arcana because  they are power cards. But the Minor arcana has its importance as well. Even if the influences 

are subtle and not as strong as the Major Arcana.  There is more to learn from the Minor Arcana because it is 52 cards compared to the Major Arcana of 22.  The thing to bear in mind as you study these meanings is that they are all pretty much saying the same thing.  Grasp the idea of what the card means, then as you do your reading you can find the word or words that best suit your question.  Always look for a positive reinforcement of the one being read. They should have a feeling of being supported divinely by the words you choose of the card they draw. 

Minor Arcana  

The Minor Arcana is divided into 4 Latin (Italian) suits; similar to standard playing cards.

For the sake of simplicity, we will look at the basic meaning of the Minor Arcana as though they were read “Face-Up”.

There is also a ‘Reverse’ or ‘Inverse’ meaning as well. This would be if the card is drawn facing upside-down.  There are lots of Tarot Readings that are done ignoring this potential. Seasoned Readers will use both. There are those that have the mind-set that an upside down card is either an evil or negative meaning.  This isn’t so. It means a different perspective of the way things are or may go if not recognized. Tarot Reading should always have a positive outcome. To stress a negative prediction or a catastrophic event would be misreading the cards.  This is what Gypsies did (and still do) they are charlatans; fake readers; ones who prey on fear to ensure you come back to hear “the rest of the story”. 

The Suit of Wands / Batons / Clubs / Staves 

Element is Fire 


Creativity and will (Actions)

Astrological signs of Aries, Leo, Sagittarius

Wands are connected to imagination, inspiration, action and free will.

Ace of Wands– inspiration, passion, creativity.

Two of Wands– Preparation, choices, delays.

Three of Wands– Originality, accountability, opportunity.

Four of Wands– Community, domestic well-being, a rendezvous. A job well done.

Five of Wands– Arguments, differences, stress, rivalry, conflict.

Six of Wands– Conquest, accomplishment. Community acknowledgment.

Seven of Wands– Standing your ground, encounter, stick-to-itiveness.

Eight of Wands– Modification, organizing, inspiration, travel.

Nine of Wands– Bravery, willpower, resilience.

Ten of Wands– Responsibilities, tension, hard times.

Page of Wands– Voyager, potential, free agent, message coming.

Knight of Wands– Lust, passion, entrepreneur, dispersed energy.

Queen of Wands– Warmth, effervescence, sexual eagerness.

King of Wands– Front-runner, visionary, role model, narcissistic.

The Suit of Cups /Chalices /Hearts

Element of Water       


Emotions and Feelings – Love

Astrological Signs of Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces

Cups are linked to emotions, and relationships with others as well as yourself.

Ace of Cups – Irresistible, romantic, divine love, new relationship, and compassion.

Two of Cups – Attraction, love, pledge of commitment.

Three of Cups – Relationship, having fun, community and celebration time.

Four of Cups – meditation, contemplation, introspective.

Five of Cups – A loss, upset, disappointment, grief, regret, hurt, and an emotional challenge.

Six of Cups – Recollections of the past. Lineage, childhood, children and grandchildren.

Seven of Cups – Imagination, choices to make.

Eight of Cups – Parting places, leaving home. Emotional decision.

Nine of Cups – Emotional sanctuary. Well-being, fulfillment, happiness.

Ten of Cups – Family, synchronicity, self-actualization, peacetime, love.

Page of Cups – Discoverer of feelings, creative, message arriving from overseas.

Knight of Cups – A secret admirer. A Lover. Bisexuality.

Queen of Cups – Instinctive, compassionate woman, comrade in arms.

King of Cups – Sociable, tender man. Emotionally caring.

The Suit of Swords /Spades

Element of Air  

Nobility and military 

Reason /Thoughts

Astrological Signs of Gemini, Libra, Aquarius

Swords are connected to intelligence and communication.

Ace of Swords – Clarity, choice made, perception, the truth revealed.

Two of Swords – Wavering, not admitting truth, terrified of facing reality.

Three of Swords – Denial, upsetting words, painful awareness.

Four of Swords – Withdrawal, taking a break, contemplation.

Five of Swords – Struggle, tension, mental contest, intimidation.

Six of Swords – Change, salvage, move on, travel.

Seven of Swords – Craftiness, regaining lost thing, mental deception, unfaithfulness.

Eight of Swords– Self-imprisonment, seclusion, loneliness.

Nine of Swords – Worry, despair, hallucinations, obsessive negative thoughts.

Ten of Swords – Defeat, finish, demise. End of one cycle and beginning the next.

Page of Swords – Cerebral, fidgety, experimenting. Messenger /message arriving soon.

Knight of Swords – Perceptive, critical, impulsive, dogmatic. Supports the underdog.

Queen of Swords – Insightful, fast thinker, pursuer of truth. Tells it just like it is.

King of Swords – Commanding, intellectually influential, honest, straight forward.

The Suit of Coins / Pentacles / Disks / Rings / Diamonds  

Element of Earth


Material body or possessions / Material Success

Pentacles are associated to the material world, labor, well-being and money issues.

Ace of Pentacles – A gift, manifestation, new home, a project. Wealth.

Two of Pentacles – Good at making ends meet. Harmonizing time with resources.

Three of Pentacles – Teamwork, cooperation, assembling resources and concepts.

Four of Pentacles – Constancy, sanctuary, seclusion, holding on to possessions.

Five of Pentacles – Physical loss, poverty, deficiency, financial or material trial.

Six of Pentacles – Open-handedness, giving /receiving sustenance, contribution of possessions.

Seven of Pentacles – Underlying dissatisfaction, doing OK. Pondering missed opportunities.

Eight of Pentacles – Instruction, training, change of career, focusing on occupation.

Nine of Pentacles – Freedom, happy in own skin. Self-reliance, gratitude.

Ten of Pentacles – Family, prosperity, occupational development.

Page of Pentacles – Pupil, inquisitiveness, attention. A Messenger or message arriving by mail.

Knight of Pentacles – Exemplary employee, trustworthy, dependable, a quiet man but deep.

Queen of Pentacles – Reassuring, real world, competent woman. Motherhood, career woman.

King of Pentacles – Businessman or woman, generous, honored, self-taught, self-made.

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