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Thirteen  Thirteen is offline
The Thirteenth Moon
Join Date: 17 Sep 2001
Location: Pluto
Posts: 8,760

Originally Posted by swimming in tarot
*Unless* we are saluting the uniform and the crown, and the royal arms behind (yes, only royalty has the right to display a crown over the arms)
Didn't know that! Cool!
--and justifying our own questionable acts in the name of "orders" from a King who isn't even there! Mindless patriotism, jingoism, xenophobia, etc. etc. It's not the King's belligerence. It's ours.
Well, we've made such patriotism our king, then, haven't we? I mean, we can mock the idea of bowing to a king who is only a suit of armor, but think of how much worship we put into symbols. People will kneel before a cross, salute a flag (even make sure it doesn't touch the ground, fold it carefully, and get angry if it's burned for any reason but to retire it from service!). We pay homage to a statues of great and famous men and collect as sacred items they wore or used.

I might, in my world, be skeptical of thinking that any "thing" still has the residue of power from past owner or the power people believe it has...but in the BG deck we have to take it more literally, don't we. Yes, that may be an empty suit of armor. But if it is, you can bet it was worn by that "might-is-right king" who made an impression on allies and enemies alike.

And you can bet that if it is believed that it still holds his essence, his power, his curse, his ghost...well, it probably does. In some other deck, it might indeed be "us" and nothing more. In this deck, I won't bet on that! At the very least, that armor is haunted.

And yes, I think it's no accident that the Pentacles and Swords are matched up here. They seem to yin-yang pairs at least so far as the Kings/Queens are concerned. I still can't get over how very much like the image of Mary M. (in the Queen/Pents picture) the Queen of Swords is, down to the book. And I agree entirely that the King/Swords is very like the King/Pents, a symbol King still ruling and terrorizing from the grave.

Both offer very interesting commentary on what a "King" is--what rules us and commands us, what we bow to and fear, obey and honor: intimidating power (swords), and intimidating riches (Pents). They don't even have to still be alive for us to continue fearing, honoring and obeying them.
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