By S. L. MacGregor Mathers
To prepare the pack for Fortune-telling, write at the top of each card its number and signification when in its proper position, and at the bottom its meaning when reversed. To facilitate this, and to assist in reading them I here append a list of the cards with the meanings, which, I think, will be found to answer all practical purposes R. means Reversed.
1. The Juggler.Will, Will-Power, Dexterity; R. Will applied to evil ends, Weakness of Will, Cunning, Knavishness.
2. The High Priestess. Science, Wisdom, Knowledge, Education; R. Conceit, Ignorance, Unskillfulness, Superficial Knowledge.
3. The Empress. Action, Plan, Undertaking Movement in a matter, Initiative; R. Inaction, Frittering away of power, Want of Concentration Vacillation.
4. The Emperor. Realization, Effect, Development; R. Stoppage, Check, Immature, Unripe.
5. The Hierophant or Pope. Mercy, Beneficence Kindness, Goodness; R. Over-kindness, weakness, Foolish exercise of generosity.
6. The Lovers. Wise Dispositions, Proof, Trials Surmounted; R. Unwise Plans, Failure when put to the test.
7. The Chariot. Triumph, Victory, Overcoming obstacles; R. Overthrown, Conquered by Obstacles at the last moment.
8. Themis, or Justice. Equilibrium, Balance, Justice; R. Bigotry, Want of Balance, Abuse of Justice, Over-severity, Inequality, Bias.
9. The Hermit. Prudence, Caution, Deliberation; R. Over-prudence, Timorousness, Fear.
10. The Wheel of Fortune. Good Fortune, Success, Unexpected Luck; R. Ill-Fortune, Failure, Unexpected Ill-Luck.
11. Strength, or Fortitude. Power, Might, Force, Strength, Fortitude; R. Abuse of Power, Overbearingness, Want of Fortitude.
12. The Hanged Man. Self-sacrifice, Sacrifice, Devotion, Bound; R. Selfishness, Unbound, Partial sacrifice.
13. Death. Death, Change, Transformation, Alteration for the worse; R. Death just escaped, Partial change, Alteration for the better.
14. Temperance. Combination, Conformation, Uniting; R. Ill-advised combinations, Disunion, Clashing interests, &c.
15. The Devil. Fatality for Good; R. Fatality for Evil.
16. The Lightning-struck Tower. Ruin, Disruption, Over-throw, Loss, Bankruptcy; R. These in a more or less partial degree.
17. The Star. Hope, Expectation, Bright promises; R. Hopes not fulfilled, Expectations disappointed or fulfilled in a minor degree.
18. The Moon. Twilight, Deception, Error; R. Fluctuation, slight Deceptions, Trifling Mistakes.
19. The Sun. Happiness, Content, Joy; R. These in a minor degree.
20. The Last Judgment. Renewal, Result, Determination of a Matter; R. Postponement of Result, Delay, Matter re-opened later.
0. The Foolish Man. Folly, Expiation, Wavering; R. Hesitation, Instability, Trouble arising herefrom.
21. The Universe. Completion, Good Reward; R. Evil Reward, or Recompense.
22. King of Scepters. Man living in the country, Country Gentleman, Knowledge, Education; R. A naturally good but severe man, Counsel, Advice, Deliberation.
23. Queen of Scepters. Woman living in the country, Lady of the Manor, Love of Money, Avarice, Usury; R. A good a virtuous Woman, but strict and economical, Obstacles, Resistance, Opposition.
24. Knight of Scepters. Departure, Separation, Disunion; R. Rupture, Discord, Quarrel.
25. Knave of Scepters. A Good Stranger, Good News, Pleasure, Satisfaction; R. Ill News, Displeasure, Chagrin, Worry.
26. Ten of Scepters. Confidence, Security, Honor, Good Faith; R. Treachery, Subterfuge, Duplicity, Bar.
27. Nine of Scepters. Order, Discipline, Good Arrangement, Disposition; R. Obstacles, Crosses, Delay, Displeasure.
28. Eight of Scepters. Understanding, Observation, Direction; R. Quarrels, Intestine disputes, Discord.
29. Seven of Scepters. Success, Gain, Advantage, Profit, Victory; R. Indecision, Doubt, Hesitation, Embarrassment, Anxiety.
30. Six of Scepters. Attempt, Hope, Desire, Wish, Expectation; R. Infidelity, Treachery, Disloyalty, Perfidy.
31. Five of Scepters. Gold, Opulence, Gain, Heritage, Riches, Fortune, Money; R. Legal proceedings, Judgment, Law, Lawyer, Tribunal.
32. Four of Scepters. Society, Union, Association, Concord, Harmony; R. Prosperity, Success, Happiness, Advantage.
33. Three of Scepters. Enterprise, Undertaking, Commerce, Trade, Negotiation; R. Hope, Desire, Attempt, Wish.
34. Deuce of Scepters. Riches, Fortune, Opulence, Magnificence, Grandeur; R. Surprise, Astonishment, Event, Extraordinary Occurrence.
35. Ace of Scepters. Birth, Commencement, Beginning, Origin, Source; R. Persecution, Pursuits Violence, Vexation, Cruelty, Tyranny.
36. King of Cups. A fair Man, Goodness, Kindness, Liberality, Generosity; R. A Man of good position, but shifty in his Dealings, Distrust, Doubt, Suspicion.
37. Queen of Cups. A fair Woman, Success, Happiness, Advantage, Pleasure; R. A Woman in good position, but intermeddling, and to be distrusted; Success, but with some attendant trouble.
38. Knight of Cups. Arrival, Approach, Advance; R. Duplicity, Abuse of Confidence, Fraud, Cunning.
39. Knave of Cups. A fair Youth, Confidence, Probity, Discretion, Integrity; R. A Flatterer, Deception, Artifice.
40. Ten of Cups. The Town wherein one resides, Honor, Consideration, Esteem, Virtue, Glory, Reputation; R. Combat, Strife, Opposition, Differences, Dispute.
41. Nine of Cups. Victory, Advantage, Success, Triumph, Difficulties surmounted; R. Faults, Errors, Mistakes, Imperfections.
42. Eight of Cups. A fair Girl, Friendship, Attachment, Tenderness; R. Gaiety, Feasting, Joy, Pleasure.
43. Seven of Cups. Idea, Sentiment, Reflection, Project; R. Plan, Design, Resolution, Decision.
44. Six of Cups. The Past, passed by, Faded, Vanished, Disappeared; R. The Future, that which is to come, Shortly, Soon.
45. Five of Cups. Union, Junction, Marriage, Inheritance; R. Arrival, Return, News, Surprise, False projects.
46. Four of Cups. Ennui, Displeasure, Discontent, Dissatisfaction; R. New Acquaintance, Conjecture, Sign, Presentiment.
47. Three of Cups. Success, Triumph, Victory, Favorable issue; R. Expedition of business, Quickness, Celerity, Vigilance.
48. Deuce of Cups. Love, Attachment, Friendship, Sincerity, Affection; R. Crossed desires, Obstacles, Opposition, Hindrance.
49. Ace of Cups. Feasting, Banquet, Good Cheer; R. Change, Novelty, Metamorphosis, Inconstancy.
50. King of Swords. A Lawyer, a Man of Law, Power, Command, Superiority, Authority; R. A Wicked Man, Chagrin, Worry, Grief, Fear, Disturbance.
51. Queen of Swords. Widowhood, Loss, Privation, Absence, Separation; R. A Bad Woman, ill-tempered and bigoted, Riches and Discord, Abundance together with Worry, Joy with Grief.
52. Knight of Swords. A Soldier, a man whose profession is arms, Skillfulness, Capacity, Address, Promptitude; R. A conceited fool, Ingenuousness, Simplicity.
53. Knave of Swords. A Spy, Overlooking, Authority; R. That which is unforeseen, Vigilance, Support.
54. Ten of Swords. Tears, Affliction, Grief, Sorrow; R. Passing Success, Momentary Advantage.
55. Nine of Swords. An Ecclesiastic, a Priest, Conscience. Probity, Good Faith, Integrity; R. Wise distrust, Suspicion, Fear, Doubt, Shady character.
56. Eight of Swords. Sickness, Calumny, Criticism, Blame; R. Treachery in the Past, Event, Accident, Remarkable Incident.
57. Seven of Swords. Hope, Confidence, Desire, Attempt, Wish; R. Wise Advice, Good Counsel, Wisdom, Prudence, Circumspection.
58. Six of Swords. Envoy, Messenger, Voyage, Travel; R. Declaration, Love proposed, Revelation, Surprise.
59. Five of Swords. Mourning, Sadness, Affliction; R. Losses Trouble (same signification, whether reversed or not.)
60. Four of Swords. Solitude, Retreat, Abandonment, Solitary, Hermit; R. Economy, Precaution, Regulation of Expenditure.
61. Three of Swords. A Nun, Separation, Removal, Rupture, Quarrel; R. Error, Confusion, Misrule, Disorder.
62. Deuce of Swords. Friendship, Valor, Firmness, Courage; R. False Friends, Treachery, Lies.
63. Ace of Swords. Triumph, Fecundity, Fertility, Prosperity; R. Embarrassment, Foolish and Hopeless Love, Obstacle, Hindrance.
64. King of Pentacles. A dark Man, Victory, Bravery, Courage, Success; R. An old and vicious Man, a Dangerous Man, Doubt, Fear, Peril, Danger.
65. Queen of Pentacles. A dark Woman, a generous Woman, Liberality, Greatness of Soul, Generosity; R. Certain Evil, a suspicious Woman, a Woman justly regarded with Suspicion, Doubt, Mistrust.
66. Knight of Pentacles. A useful Man, Trustworthy, Wisdom, Economy, Order, Regulation; R. A brave Man, but out of Employment, Idle, Unemployed, Negligent.
67. Knave of Pentacles. A dark Youth, Economy, Order, Rule, Management; R. Prodigality, Profusion, Waste, Dissipation.
68. Ten of Pentacles. House, Dwelling, Habitation, Family; R. Gambling, Dissipation, Robbery, Loss.
69. Nine of Pentacles. Discretion, Circumspection, Prudence, Discernment; R. Deceit, Bad faith, Artifices, Deception.
70. Eight of Pentacles. A dark Girl, Beauty, Candor, Chastity, Innocence, Modesty; R. Flattery, Usury, Hypocrisy, Shifty.
71. Seven of Pentacles. Money, Finance, Treasure, Gain, Profit; R. Disturbance, Worry, Anxiety, Melancholy.
72. Six of Pentacles. Presents, Gifts, Gratification: R. Ambition, Desire, Passion, Aim, Longing.
73. Five of Pentacles. Lover or Mistress, Love, Sweetness, Affection, Pure and Chaste Love; R. Disgraceful Love, Imprudence, License, Profligacy.
74. Four of Pentacles. Pleasure, Gaiety, Enjoyment, Satisfaction; R. Obstacles, Hindrances.
75. Three of Pentacles. Nobility, Elevation, Dignity, Rank, Power; R. Children, Sons, Daughters, Youths, Commencement.
76. Deuce of Pentacles. Embarrassment, Worry, Difficulties; R. Letter, Missive, Epistle, Message.
77. Ace of Pentacles. Perfect Contentment, Felicity, Prosperity, Triumph; R. Purse of Gold, Money, Gain, Help, Profit, Riches.
The following additional remarks may be serviceable to the to the inexperienced Cartomancer. They are chiefly taken from Etteilla.
24. Knight of Scepters. This card is not to be read singly; it means the Departure of the card which follows it. R. Again, notice the card which follows it; if a Woman, Quarrel with a Woman; if Money, then Loss of Money, &c.
25. Knave of Scepters. R. Notice between what cards the News falls, which will show whence it comes, and of what nature it is.
34. Deuce of Scepters. R. If the cards fall 49 R., 34 R., you will be surprised by a change. If 47, 49 R., 34 R., it will be happy; but the reverse if they fall 54, 49 R., 34 R.
38. The Knight of Cups. This shows the arrival of the card which follows it, as 38, 54, the arrival of affliction or grief; 38, 39, the visit of a fair young man, etc.
43. Seven of Cups. Explains the card which follows; thus, 43,
30, 33, The idea of attempting some undertaking. This will again be modified by the following cards.
44. Six of Cups. Shows either that what precedes it is past, has occurred already; or if R., what is going to happen.
46. Four of Cups. The following cards might show what the displeasure or anxiety was about; the preceding cards, whence it originated.
51. Queen of Swords. This is not necessarily to be taken by itself; it may signify that the person symbolized by the cards near it has just lost, or is likely soon to lose, wife or husband. In some instances it may merely signify that if two people are married, the one will die some time before the other, but not necessarily that the event will occur immediately.
53. Knave of Swords. R. If 72, 53 R. An unexpected present. If 53 R., 54, unexpected grief, etc.
55. Nine of Swords. R. The card following will show whom or what to distrust, &c..
56. Eight of Swords. R. Shows Treachery or Deceit in the past, and will be explained by the neighboring cards.
57. Seven of Swords. R. The cards which come next will show whether it will be good to follow the advice given or not. Also, the preceding cards will show from whom, and why, the advice comes.
60. Four of Swords. R. The cards near will show whether it is health or money that requires care.
61. Three of Swords. R. May show simply that something is lost, or mislaid for a time.
62. Deuce of Swords. R. If confirmed by the other cards may simply mean that the friends are not of much use to the inquirer in the matter under consideration.
65. Queen of Pentacles. R. (If this card does not signify any particular person). If 65 R., 31 R., It is not said that there will be a Lawsuit. If 31 R., 65 R., If you gain your case you wont be much the better for it.
67. Knave of Pentacles. R. Consult the following cards to see in what the person is prodigal. If 67 R., 57 R., it may simply mean that the person is too fond of giving advice, intermeddles too much with other peoples business.
71. Seven of Pentacles. R. The next card will show the reason of the anxiety, and so on.
73. Five of Pentacles. Shows simply that there is some one whom the person loves.
The Court-Cards, and especially the Kings and Queens, may be taken to represent persons; in this case their additional meaning should not be read. The Swords represent very dark people; Pentacles, those not so dark; Cups, rather fair people; Wands or Scepters, those much fairer, and so on. Many Wands together might signify feasting, many Cups lovemaking, Swords quarrelling and trouble, Coins or Pentacles money.
Where the mode of reading the cards requires that the person consulting should be represented, he should take one of the Kings to represent himself, according to his complexion. If a lady consults the cards, let her take one of the Queens; if she be rather fair, the Queen of Cups; if she be very fair, the Queen of Wands or Scepters. If the inquirer be quite a youth or a boy, let him take one of the Knights; if a very young girl, let her take the Knave, etc. Etteillas plan was to take two of the Keys for Significators, that answering to the Pope for a man, that answering to the High Priestess for a woman; but I do not think this is so well. The worst of Etteillas system is that he so completely destroys the meanings of the Keys in his attempted rearrangement of them, as to make them practically useless for higher occult purposes.
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