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Court Cards & Astrology - Help Please!

Thread originally posted on the Aeclectic Tarot Forum on 30 Oct 2001, and now archived in the Forum Library.



witchywoman  30 Oct 2001 
Hi, I'm quite new to this forum so I hope this topic hasn't recently been covered. I read using the Mythic Tarot and the accompanying book links the Knights, Queens and Kings to Astrological signs. ie. the wands are the fire signs, the Knights mutable signs etc.

I find that this works very well for me personally. I'm very interested to see how other people feel about the link between the court cards and sun signs. Are there other decks that make this link also?

Look forward to hearing your thoughts.
ww 


Thirteen  30 Oct 2001 
Hey, WW. I can tell you that it works out very well indeed...with qualification :) There's no problem saying that Pentacles are Earth signs. The tricky part comes when deciding which is which Earth sign. Is it King/Capricorn, Queen/Taurus, Knight/Virgo? Sounds good but sometimes....actually, all too often, the creator of the deck has made up their own minds about which court card is which sign. And if you examine the pictures, you find that they tell you, maybe. So, look closely and you find a Bull in the background behind the King's throne.

No problem right? Wrong. You say, okay, Kings are fixed signs then, right? 'Cause Taurus is a fixed sign. But then you go to the Cups, look at the King of Cups and...fish symbols. Pisces. So, well, the creator of the deck isn't going to be nice and consistent and make all the Knights mutable, all the Kings fixed, instead he's going to mix and match. Okay, you'll deal but....

No clear symbolism on the Queen of Cups! As this guy's mixing and matching, you now need to know. I mean, clearly, the Queen's aren't all fixed signs, right? So you read the book and the description of the Queen of Cups in this deck is of a Scorpio--spot on. Um...so Queens are the Fixed sign and Kings are mutable, except in the pentacles where the King is fixed...how about Wands...uh-oh. What's that Ram symbol doing with the King of Wands? That's Cardinal. And you read the description of the knight and he sounds like the Leo, so this time *HE'S* fixed.....oh, dear.

Forgive me, this is one of those little pet peeves of mine. It's really only a problem if you have more than one deck and switch between them like I do. The creators of the decks have figured out the astrological connection to court cards, and not only don't they all agree as to which court card is which sign, but they're a little lax about (1) consistency--like making all queens in the deck fixed signs, for example, which would make remembering their signs easier (I sometimes feel deck designers are saying to me, "I'm an ARTIST! I follow my inspiritation, you silly reader! How dare you ask that I and my deck be consistent! You know nothing of the deeper psychic meanings here!"), (2) if they're not consistent, making sure all cards *hint* at which sign they are (like making sure the Queen of Pentacles is surrounded by a field of wheat so we know she's Virgo).

Ah, the trial and tribulations of being a tarot reader. Anyway, the upshot of it is that Astrology is perhaps the best way to read the court cards, and it *would* be the easiest way too if it wasn't for the darn creators of the deck deciding for you which court card was which sign ;) 


witchywoman  30 Oct 2001 
Thirteen,
I have been using the Mythic deck now for about 5 years and it's the only deck I have. I guess I have been VERY lucky because the authors have been totally consisent and have matched all cardinal signs to Kings, all fixed signs to Queens, and all Mutable signs to Knights - even providing a very thorough and logical explanation of why they have done this. They have also made it clear on the cards and the mythological characters related to each card also supports this. I guess it helps that the deck was co-authored by Liz Greene, an Astrologer. I've never realised just how much of an issue this could be.

I have recently considered getting a new deck to 'expand' my understanding of the tarot. However your insights have added to my growing concern that this just may end up confusing me enormously. It's funny because the more I look around at other decks, the more I realise how much I love my Mythic deck.

Now I've looked around though it is almost inevitable that I'll start collecting different decks, but I don't imagine I'll stop reading with my original deck.

Thanks so much for the insight. I'm very interested in Astrology and am looking forward to hearing what others have to say about this as well.

ww 


Malachite  30 Oct 2001 
One way of looking at it is to work out the elemental strengths of each of the signs..
thus Pisces would be the king of water, (forgive my memory in not having other examples..i'll get back to this...)
However, this is still disputable, so i guess just go with whatever makes you feel comfortable... 


DeLani  27 Dec 2001 
What I have read is that the court cards don't correspond with astrological signs, they correspond with elements. The classical correspondences are:
Kings=fire
Queens=water
Knights=air
Pages=earth.
However, I don't think this really works well - the charecteristics of the elements don't seem to fit the court card. So I've adapted it, using the Crowley court card system:
Queens=earth - stable, grounded; mastery and reliability.
Knights=fire - fast, movement, full of energy
Princesses=water - changeable, intuitive, playful.
Princes=air - new beginnings, communications, studies.
Anyway, this is just my take on it. Let me know if anyone else has another way of corresponding them.
Blessings,
DeLani 


Pollux  17 Jan 2002 
Quote:
Malachite (31 Oct, 2001 06:19):
One way of looking at it is to work out the elemental strengths of each of the signs..
thus Pisces would be the king of water, (forgive my memory in not having other examples..i'll get back to this...)
However, this is still disputable, so i guess just go with whatever makes you feel comfortable...

I see your point Malachite, and agree with you.
Another example can be
Aries/PageW?
Libra/PageS?
Virgo/QueenP?
Cancer/Queen?

P.S. I only noticed it, but I tend to associate Pages to Cardinals ??? seems weird! Anyhow, we'd need another Sign (that doesn't exist!) to fullfil this MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE.
Pages-???????
Knights-Mutable
Queens-Fixed
Kings-Cardinal
??? :o ??? :o ??? :o ??? 


blumoon  27 Jan 2002 
thirteen i can definately agree with! i was tearing my hair out not so long ago about that

pollux you mentioned the pages, i decided to make my own version of which is what, and left the pages out, i just use knights/queens/kings...to each their own :-)

p.s i hope this makes sense i am writing this post in the early hours... 


Thirteen  27 Jan 2002 
Quote:
blumoon (28 Jan, 2002 01:01):
thirteen i can definately agree with! i was tearing my hair out not so long ago about that

pollux you mentioned the pages, i decided to make my own version of which is what, and left the pages out, i just use knights/queens/kings...to each their own :-)

p.s i hope this makes sense i am writing this post in the early hours...


Makes perfect sense to me!

Pollux--the Pages are the "raw essence" of the sign and so have no astological equalivant. Consider them the water of the water signs, the earth of the earth signs, that kind of thing. The essence before it develops into a particular sign, like water into a Pisces or earth into a Taurus.

If that makes any sense. Also as pages often signify kids, they're easier to identify in a reading. You do a reading, you get three queens, the person might know three women. So the astrological signs help indicate who's who. But they often won't have more than one or two kids involved in their life. So a page of wands is that rambunctious energetic, fiery kid. No need to clarify by way of astrological sign. 


Pollux  29 Jan 2002 
this was enlightening thanks!
Thirteen you are a Pool of Radiance! 


silvereye  01 Feb 2002 
Has anyone here read Sylvia Abraham's book How to Read Tarot?
I think there's a part refering to the astrology and court cards. 


Moongold  13 Jul 2003 
Wands

    Queen Wands: Aries
    King/Prince Wands: Leo
    Knight Wands: Sagittarius
    Page/Princess of Wands: beginning of Spring


Cups
    Queen Cups: Cancer
    King Cups: Scorpio
    Knight Cups: Pisces
    Page/Princess of Cuos: Beginning of Summer


Swords

    Queen Swords: Libra
    King Swords: Aquarius
    Knight Swords: Gemini
    Page/Princess of Swords: Beginning of Autumn


Pentacles

    Queen Pentacles: Sagittarius
    King Pentacles: Taurus
    Knight Pentacles: Gemini
    Page/Princess of Pentacles: Beginning of Winter


Burger & Fieberg also give unique attributions to the pips.

This book, by the way, is published by Sterling 1995 NY. It is worth having a look at because it has lots of spreads, and some goodies at the back i.e the astrological attibutions of every tarot card. 


Baby Owl  13 Jul 2003 
Quote:
Originally posted by Thirteen
Ah, the trial and tribulations of being a tarot reader. Anyway, the upshot of it is that Astrology is perhaps the best way to read the court cards, and it *would* be the easiest way too if it wasn't for the darn creators of the deck deciding for you which court card was which sign ;)


Just chiming in with an "Amen" here. I guess it gives readers a good reason to use just one deck, but I don't want to! Crowley gets even more complex than some. For example: "The Knight of Wands...rules from the 21st degree of Scorpio to the 20th degree of Sagittarius." (from Book of Thoth). Egads!

Baby Owl 


Rusty Neon  13 Jul 2003 
Quote:
Originally posted by Moongold
Burger & Fieberg also give unique attributions to the pips.
[/b]


If you're speaking about that book's astrological attributions to the pips (e.g., 2 of Wands = Mars in Aires), they are drawn from the Order of the Golden Dawn's materials. 


Moongold  13 Jul 2003 
Quote:
Originally posted by Rusty Neon
If you're speaking about that book's astrological attributions to the pips (e.g., 2 of Wands = Mars in Aires), they are drawn from the Order of the Golden Dawn's materials.


Yes, but it is still a useful overview. They also point out the differences in the Thoth attributions.

Another interesting link is http://www.llewellynjournal.com/article/387

In fact, people will enjoy browsing this entire site. 


The Court Cards & Astrology - Help Please! thread was originally posted on 30 Oct 2001 in the Using Tarot Cards board, and is now archived in the Forum Library. Read the active threads in Using Tarot Cards, or read more archived threads.

 


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