Deirdre of the Sorrows - 4 - The Emperor


Well, this card is sometimes one that can cause some head scratching. How do you differentiate between the Emperor and one of the Kings? After all, they are all associated with being a ruler or leader in some way. In this respect, they are often similarly portrayed. In this deck, I believe we do not see any indications that he represents any one suit in particular and in this respect, he is independent in thought and deed. His position in relation to other cards can certainly indicate a proactive energy, but that is hinted at quite subtly in this card. He appears to be quite elderly, and his furrowed brow may show he has at times had to give serious or intense thought to a situation.

Our Emperor in the Deirdre of the Sorrows is seen as a prominent figure indeed. He exudes a sense of power, but it seems he does not have to demonstrate it in order to be shown respect. His throne appears to be of stone or other hard material. Therefore there is a sense he is ‘hardened’ to the realities of life, and would scorn the idea of having softer trimmings by way of cushions etc . Certainly a character to have on your side when you want a no-nonsense approach to a situation. You just know he will not let emotion get in the way of reasoned or objective thinking. Imagine you have approached him for some guidance on a given situation. What is he about to tell you? What is it about the Emperor that makes you sit up and take notice of his presence?

Additional insight from the creator of the deck, Deirdre:

Your question regarding the Emperor as to whether he is higher than a King or of similar power and authority. A King rules a Kingdom which could be a region or a country. An Emperor rules more than one Region or country which could contain several Kings therefore he is much more powerful and when he makes an appearance in a spread his position tells you that he had the power and the influence to grant your desires. Alternatively, the querent could be the person in a position of authority or will soon be offered more responsibility and a greatly enhanced salary.