The Gothic Tarot by Vargo - King of Wands


A skeleton with black wings sits on a throne made of stone. He wears a crown on his head. He holds a wand in his right hand. The throne stands on the fourth step. His eyes are red.

Even though his flesh is long gone, he looks imposing and fiery on his throne, with a smile that reminds me of the wicked smile of the jester on the Five Of Swords. He's not someone you want to mess with.


The slouching pose of this king makes him look at ease, his power is beyond yours or mine to challenge, and he looks content on his throne.

Can you imagine the sound of bones settling on a stone throne? Gives me the shivers.

His red eyes betray the fact that although he may appear "dead" he's actually quite kickin. Perhaps, in divination, this is a person or situation that may appear to have reached it's completion point, but has not lost it's "fire".


Vargo's cards were based on earlier works, you can see some of them on his website. This card is called Death.


King of Wands

At the top of yet another four step dais, we have a throne. This one is carved from stone and has a winged gargoyle head on the high back. Seated in this uncomfortable chair is the King of Wands. He seems to be a skeletal angel, his wand gripped in his right hand and a three pointed crown on his head. The eyes gleam red and his still feathered wings are out in an active position. He rests in a position that shows he is very confident in his abilities and control.

I don’t have to wonder if he is comfortable or not on that stone throne. He feels neither the discomfort nor the coldness of the rock. Although he is not adorned with any finery other than a crown, I am sure he is more than an animated skeleton. What I see is an angel who was corrupted by power. He wanted this authority over the piece of mortal realm he now controls. He took the steps necessary and paid the prices exacted upon him to achieve this position. When a being retains their mind and powers long after death, it is usually through a very dark ritual in which the final sacrifice is your very life. The result is what you see before you; an undead being who still retains most of what power and mental faculties they had in life, in addition to the powers of the undead. The term for this being would be called a lich, although this would be the first I have heard of an angel lich. The very existence of such a creature shows how capable he is, even respected and possibly feared by the brood of vampires. What a powerful ally they have.


First thought : that guy was so power hungry that he decided to have it even after death! Maybe he founded a way to keep the fire of life into this form.

Thinking of this : maybe people didn't wanted to have another leader than that particuliar leader, so they continue to honor him. Like the ancestor cult in many places.

I wonder if this card means that there is still a fire even in decay and death ?


The winged head on the the high back of the throne looks a lot like the head from the Two of Wands to me. Seems like this King has gone beyond the barrier that the two crossed Wands put up from the Two of Wands and claimed his throne... Barrier = death?


The evil transformation made the angel a lich. He is obviously very dedicated to study the field of Necromancy, and so intelligent, (it is purportedly the hardest of magical arts) he could make himself into a lich. To live as an undead thing so his life may go on forever. Something very few Necromancers can achieve. He is that who can command an army of lesser undeads to strike fear into the stoutest hearts.

He sits on an old uncomfortable stone throne. Uncomfortable, because it is stone. Old, as it is hoped by the makers when they have long passed that the kings that will inherit a place on the throne will never sit comfortably on it. This is so the kings may happily reliquish their seats when their time came.

That is not to be the case here, through. For this king is a lich king. Made completely of skeleton, it has let go of mortal feelings as well as comforts of the flesh. He will sit on the throne forever, a nightmarish dream of his people.