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Mary El Tarot - The Empress

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Mary El Tarot - The Empress


There is definitely a change in the theme of the cards here. The Empress has a human face.

http://www.mary-el.com/03.html

Continuing with the theme that each card has an element of the next, the Empress wears the alchemical King's red rose around her neck. This and the apples are red in a card surrounded by the full bloom of summer green.

Red and green are complementary colours. In art, red is a strong colour to be used with care or overwhelm a work. The red and green are in full complementary balance.

Harvest is in the collection of apples (Eve's apple?) and the child that she carries on her back.

I find the child carrier - the wrap is interesting. The pattern repeating looks like the sun contained in a house. A single red line sits on the left of the disk. I am sure there is something symbolic there....

The Empress wears a wedding ring!
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Yes, I looked at this one and thought to myself that it almost didn't fit. Is the message so subtle or am I missing something? All the other cards so far have been highly evocative, energetic and symbolic. This one breaks the mould.

Finally something has been born, there is no pretence in this image, no drama or crowns and finery, it hints at the world tree or tree of life, the biblical Eve and the apples, a time of simplicity when this Empress really did rule all she surveyed and she does seem to be looking over the land to her right.

The interesting pattern on the baby carrier makes me think of grain storage huts in Africa.

The Ankh on the babies forehead suggests that s/he is the key of life or fruit. Again a connection to the apples which have been widely understood in folk law to be the source of eternal life. Once and at the same time, the knowledge of our mortality is linked to the fact that through our children we and our knowledge live on.

The Empress herself seems to have a circle on her forehead but I can only see half of it so it is impossible to say for sure. The cyclic nature of life perhaps???
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I almost missed this one! I was about to post an Empress thread myself. Good thing I double checked.

I don't have a lot to add, other than to note that unlike many decks where the Empress is pregnant and thus speaks more of potential, this one has already given birth. She is the fullness of fertility.

This is really such a simple image, not layered in mystery like the preceding cards. Even the figure is drawn simply. I noticed that her dress is stylized, pared down to basic lines -- her right sleeve merged with the body of the gown, the "kangaroo pouch" of apples sketched out with the most basic lines. There is no elaborate drapery here to distract from the simple purity of the message.
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I'm still waiting on my deck, so I'm just going off the images online.

At the risk of pointing out what may be obvious, this Empress seems passive, natural and mother earth-y. All things are going just as they should. The harvest is coming in, the baby is sleeping peacefully. There seems to be a connectedness about the card that the Empress and the colors of her environment convey.
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The good mother. I don't care for the ankh on the baby's head, but the rose is a nice touch. Very elegant. I'd be happy for anyone to draw this card for the maternal aspects of the Empress.
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This card feels very peaceful, and calming, maybe it is the overall green colouring of the card, which speaks of the bounty and nuturing aspects of the earth mother.

The apples in her pouch allow her to provide food, abundance and nourishment to whomever asks or needs them, just like the earth provides food and sustenance for all who live on it. Apples are an interesting choice, normally the Empress has sheafs of wheat/grain. Apples can symbolise knowledge a la the story of Adam and Eve, and are also associated with love, health (an apple a day keeps the doctor away!) and even immortality (in Norse myth the God/esses eat Innana's golden apples to stay immortal).

She has a wedding ring on her finger, so I assume the baby is not a bastard lol. Who is she married to? The Emporor? The Earth? Father Sky? Is that who she is looking for?

What are people's thoughts as to what the Red Rose represents? It's a traditional thing to receive from a lover (like on valentines day), or does it represent like in traditional RWS meanings the physical/manifest world?

The ankh on the babies forehead is interesting, it's the symbol for eternal life, and makes me think about how we live on in through our children, and our childrens children etc, which is a form of eternal life I guess! Is the part of the symbol we see on her forehead maybe the venus symbol which is also the symbol for a female? That would fit nicely with the Empress

I also like how she is carrying the baby out of the dark woods into the sunshine. Kind of how a child comes from the dark of the womb into the bright light of the world
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Very vivid interpretation... Love it! You have a knack for bringing the symbolism down to earth, so to speak...
I think the rose is the Emperor's rose. Traditional emperors and empresses have red and white roses.... The way this is portrayed is to suggest the child is his and she is his wife.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bat Chicken View Post
Very vivid interpretation... Love it! You have a knack for bringing the symbolism down to earth, so to speak...
I think the rose is the Emperor's rose. Traditional emperors and empresses have red and white roses.... The way this is portrayed is to suggest the child is his and she is his wife.
Ahh thank you I did not know that, thank makes perfect sense then! A nice, happy marriage of the earth and civilisation. How man can live happily and in balance with nature that is productive and beneficial to all
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bat Chicken View Post
Very vivid interpretation... Love it! You have a knack for bringing the symbolism down to earth, so to speak...
I think the rose is the Emperor's rose. Traditional emperors and empresses have red and white roses.... The way this is portrayed is to suggest the child is his and she is his wife.
Maybe so. Consistent with this idea, notice the ring on the Emperor's fourth finger: it contains a red stone (Emperor) and green stone (Empress). As others have pointed out, these stones may have other meanings as well, but I found this association interesting. Also, the Emperor's eyes are green--connection to the green of the Empress?
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