This suit has to do with deep emotions as well as family, friends, and lovers. These cards often represent people well-known to the questioner.
Ace – A kiss; A new romance; Feeling lonely. Pulling the Ace of Hearts in a reading means that likely a new lover has entered the picture, or at the very least a formerly bland relationship has taken on new life. Generally it’s a positive card, but next to something like a Two of Spades it can mean a period of separation and loneliness.
Two – Lovers; Coupling; The sex card. This is the card that inspires knowing smiles and lecherous grins. Simply put, it’s about sex. Not so simply put, it can also be about and deeply emotionally intimate connection with someone else, including a family member (try not to mix those two meanings together…*shudder*). So if you pulled it with say the King or Queen of Clubs, it likely means a family relationship, while a lay next to any Jack might mean a delightful tryst.
Three – A wish granted; A full cup. The Three of Hearts means that something deeply longed for is about to appear. This isn’t quite the fulfillment found with the Ten of Diamonds or the Ten of Hearts, but it does generally mean at least one thing will go right.
Four – A trunk or travel case; A lock. Like with other fours, this card shows a relative stagnation. However, in the case of the Four of Hearts, that could also mean incubation or preparation. The image of a hope chest or a steamer trunk fits this card, with all their promised potential for excitement, romance, marriage, and just life in general. However, getting mired down in preparation can lead to a life of lock-down, where everything is being kept just so, and never given the opportunity for use.
Five – A chapel; Fertility; A bed. The Five of Hearts shows the healthy development of a romance, leading to family and (potentially) marriage. Paired with something like the Queen of Diamonds, it almost certainly means a wedding of some kind. Paired with a Jack of Hearts, be prepared for a new member of the family in nine months. Paired with a Nine of Clubs, however, this card could just mean someone needs a good night’s sleep.
Six – A dog; Loyalty and stamina; Long-term relationships. If the questioner gets the Six of Hearts in a reading, he or she can expect to be in it for the long haul, whatever “it” may be. It could be a family situation, a romance, or even—if paired with something like the Two of Spades—a lengthy divorce. However, the upside to this card is its dog imagery. Paired with a lover card like the Two of Hearts, it indicates a sincere and faithful mate, one who loves unconditionally and who will always be there.
Seven – Hate; Fear. This card shows a love that has grown too strong and become hate, or possibly fear and terror of another person. If the reader sees this card with something like the Five or Nine of Spades, it’s a sign that the relationship will end in violence and help should be sought immediately. Alternatively, with something like the Ace of Clubs, this may indicate self-loathing which needs to be overcome. It’s also possible that the Seven of Hearts will act as a warning in a reading, alerting the subject to the presence of an enemy.
Eight – Flirtation; Pillow talk. While the Two of Hearts is all about doing it, this card is all about talking about doing it. The Eight of Hearts shows that giddy, fun stage of flirtation and wooing that so often appears early in the relationship. It can also mean a sweet, tender intimacy and connecting with a partner on an emotional as well as physical level.
Nine – A little house/cottage; A new life. When a client pulls this card, it usually has to do with the establishment of a new family or a new home. Paired with something like the Four of Hearts or Five of Clubs, it may mean saving for a new house, or possibly moving away. If aces show up, however, pay attention to them, as they may indicate a sudden shift in life circumstances which leads to a new life that the client doesn’t actually want.
Ten – A happy family; A fire. With the Ten of Hearts, everything about one’s emotional and personal life seems to be falling into place. Romances go well, family relationships are strong, and everything’s good. Think of being gathered around a nice warm fire with friends and family, enjoying a perfect summer evening. Be aware, however, that as with all fires, this one can burn. Paired with an Ace of Spaces, be prepared for an upheaval in happiness.
Jack – A baby; A cradle; A young boy. This card is one that makes plenty of clients nervous, and some extremely happy. Because of its strong associations with a newborn child, the Jack of Hearts often tells of a pregnancy, especially when matched to something like the Five of Hearts. This card can also have to do with calm and peace, though, even indicating a period of self-pampering in a way. In some cases, the card simply refers to a boy or young man in the client’s life.
Queen – The client; Soulmate. Remember how I said the King and Queen of Hearts were unusual? That’s because they are used to represent the actual client in a reading. If a reader has a female client, she is represented by the Queen of Hearts. If the reader’s client is male, this card represents that perfect, ideal lover or soulmate. One of these two cards, at least, will always show up in every extended reading (more on that when we talk about layouts). The presence of both indicates a preexisting marriage or a deep and abiding love.
King – The client; Soulmate. Just like the Queen of Hearts, this card can represent either a male client or a soulmate. I know some people will ask about homosexual couples, and I will say that despite the gender pairings implied by the card faces, the meaning “soulmate” still applies to gay couples. Since there aren’t two Kings of Hearts in a deck, a gay man will see his ideal mate represented as a Queen of Hearts. The reverse is true if a gay woman sees a King of Hearts in her reading—she can expect to meet the girl of her dreams.
These are the cards of woe, suffering, and fighting. Consider them warnings or signs of trouble that may yet be avoided.
Ace – Death; Sudden change. This card is paralleled by the Death card in the tarot deck. And like its counterpart, it doesn’t necessarily mean physical death, but instead a sudden transformation or an ending. Much of this card’s meaning depends upon what it’s next to. If it is with a Six of Clubs, it might mean that a business venture will come to an abrupt termination. With Threes from Diamonds and/or Hearts, the client can stop expecting others to give them anything…they are on their own. This card can also indicate deep isolation, and in some cases might even mean a period of contemplation, but again, it depends on context.
Two – A duel; A separation. The Two of Spades means that someone is itching for a fight, and there’s a good chance they’ll get one. Paired with cards like the Two or Nine of Hearts, a romantic separation is imminent. If it sits next to a person card, like a jack, king, or queen, it’s likely there will be a falling out with that person soon.
Three – A battle; Setbacks and obstacles. Unlike the obstacles presented by the Three of Clubs, the roadblocks that come out of this card are not about developing oneself and overcoming difficult trials. Instead, this card is about fighting through the hardest parts and living to see another day. Metaphorically, the Three of Spades might indicate a bitter falling out with one’s parents (if next to a King or Queen of clubs) or a difficult economic situation at one’s job (with a Six of Diamonds or Clubs).
Four – The Four Horsemen; A mire. Seeing a four in any suit indicates feeling a little stuck, but seeing a Four of Spades means being immobilized. It can also presage illness, poverty, violence, or even death. It means that if the subject doesn’t make some changes—difficult as they may be to make—there could be some dire consequences. However, there are positive ways to see this card. If it is followed, for example, by the Five and Jack of Hearts, it may mean that someone who’s been trying to get pregnant will soon be able to, though it won’t be easy. Overall, though, consider this a definite “warning” card.
Five – Illness; A corpse. This suit is just full of jolly things, isn’t it? The Five of Spades indicates sickness, disease, pain, etc. It can also mean that there’s something that needs to be buried, like a hatchet between the client and someone he/she is feuding with. Paired with cards like the other Fives or the Ten of Clubs, it generally means that the client will beat the illness or deal with the skeletons in his/her closet. With a Nine or Ten of Spades, however, things get worse.
Six – A devil; Temptation; Bad decisions. If the Queen of Clubs is the angel on your shoulder, the Six of Spades is on the other side with red pajamas and a pitchfork. The nice thing about this card is that any temptations it brings up can be recognized and dealt with. But sometimes it’s fun to give into temptation, too, so pay attention to the other cards. If you see lots of red cards around this card, it may mean a little harmless vice. With a Two of Hearts and a Five of Spades, however, it may mean that a sexual relationship is becoming destructive.
Seven – Tears; Blood; War. I’ve already mentioned that the tears implied by the Seven of Spades can be tears of sorrow or tears of joy, depending on context. This card may also be a warning that violence is not far away, or that something deep down inside the subject is affected by the overall reading. But the sevens always carry a twist. While the sevens of the other suits tend to have some potent negativity, the Seven of Spades can have a very good side. It can imply a great deal of strength, mastery of a situation, or even coming victory and glory. Caution is always best, though. If this card lands with the Ace, Five, Nine, or Ten of Spades, heads will roll.
Eight – An argument; Shouting. Communication is important, but how a person communicates is also vital. Pulling the Eight of Spades means that the client is not making him/herself clear and likely finds him/herself constantly embattled and unable to resolve the problems in his/her life. It can also mean long-standing arguments with those close to the client. If it were with a Queen of Clubs and a Five of Hearts, it could be a mother-in-law, for example.
Nine – A funeral; A coffin; A ghost. The Nine of Spades looks like a funeral procession as scene from above, with pallbearers carrying a black coffin (at least that’s one way to see it). This could indicate some kind of grieving process, the need for ritual and order to restore balance, or just a need to put an end to things. In some cases, this card may mean that someone or something from the past is still haunting the subject (it may even indicate a literal haunting). Matched with something like the Jack of Clubs or Jack of Hearts, it might mean an old friend or an old flame of some kind.
Ten – A cemetery; A ruined church. This card shows the aftermath of woe and trouble, and in that way it’s actually not all that bad. It shows that the worst is over, and that all that’s left is to pick up the pieces and move on. It can also be a peaceful card, a return to calm and quiet, or even to innocence in a way. Paired with a card like the Six of Clubs, it might mean a lapse in faith and a need to reevaluate one’s beliefs about something.
Jack – A rebel; Bad news; A backstabber. The Jack of Spades is a bad boy/girl, someone not to be trusted but who likely is very seductive and enticing. With a card like the Six of Spades beside it, it might mean the kind of lover who is no good, but incredibly desirable. With a Two or Eight of Diamonds, it means that gossip and slander are spreading about the client, and steps should be taken to staunch it. The Jack of Spades can also simply mean bad news is on the horizon, so be prepared for it.
Queen – A cruel mother; A seductress; Jealousy; A female rival. With this particular queen, watch out! She’s intensely powerful and knows how to use that power to get what she wants. She is trying to take something from the subject, be it a lover, money, or happiness in general. However, this card can also be a warning that the subject is becoming too jealous for no reason, which is almost an opposite reading in a way. So again context is important. Paired with a Six of Spades or an Eight of Hearts, it’s likely this woman is trying to wreck a relationship. Paired with a Six of Hearts, though, it probably means that the subject is needlessly jealous.
King – A criminal; An executioner; Wrath; A male rival. The King of Spades is powerful, too, and just as viscous as his queen. He is not the just judge found in the clubs, but an executioner ready to exact a penalty for any wrongdoings. He will take what is rightfully the client’s if he can, or attack when the client is the weakest. If this card appears, the client should attempt to make amends for any transgressions, and turn to friends or family for support in case hard times lie ahead.
I know, another long post, but that covers all the individual cards. I’ll be covering how to actually perform a reading with playing cards in the near future, so stay tuned (or subscribed, maybe?)!
Thanks for reading!