A Tarot Card Primer – “Cheat Sheet”

   Posted by: Scrivener   in Tarot

One of our Second-Degree students, Danika Yawn, submitted the Tarot “cheat sheet” that follows this paragraph to our wytcheboard forums. I dressed it up a bit but the work is all hers.

There are 78 cards in Tarot. The Tarot is divided in two groups, the Major Arcana and the Minor Arcana. The Major Arcana contains 22 cards numbered with Roman numerals 0-22. The Minor Arcana is further divided into four groups, Wands, Cups, Swords, and Pentacles, and they are also sort of divided. Each group contains cards numbered 1-10, as well as a page, a knight, a queen, and a king. The following is a cheat sheet from the back of The Easy Tarot Handbook by Josephine Ellershaw.

Major Arcana

0     The Fool: Unexpected opportunity. major choice.
I     The Magician: You have the ability you need to succeed. Mastery.
II     The High Priestess: Intuition. secrets to be revealed. unexplored potential.
III     The Empress: Nurturing to full potential. marriage. motherhood.
IV     The Emperor: Ambition. authority. financial stability. achievement.
V     The Hierophant: Traditional values. a wise person provides guidance.
VI     The Lovers: Love relationship. perhaps love choices.
VII     The Chariot: Triumph over difficulties. strength of will needed.
VIII     Strength: Gentleness wither inner strength and courage.
IX     The Hermit: Withdrawal for contemplation. inner wisdom.
X     The Wheel of Fortune: Change of fortune. a new cycle commencing. progress.
XI     Justice: Fairness. the need for a balance mind. legal matters.
XII     The Hanged Man: Understanding. Different perspective. Self-sacrifice.
XIII     Death: Major change. Transformation.
XIV     Temperance: Patience. Moderation. Compromise. Balance. healing.
XV     The Devil: Manipulation. Overindulgence. self-enslavement.
XVI     The Tower: Destruction of something built on false beliefs.
XVII     The Star: Hope. Healing. Optimism. Better times ahead.
XVIII     The Moon: Uncertainty. Illusion. Fluctuating emotions. Unseen depth.
XIX     The Sun: Success. happiness. good health. Happy marriage.
XX     Judgement: Renewal. Revival. Reward for past efforts. Karma.
XXI     The World: Triumph and achievement. success and happiness.

Minor Arcana


Ace of Wands: New venture or way of life. Pregnancy or birth.
Two of Wands: Initial accomplishment. Possible partnership.
Three of Wands: Completion of first stage of project. Progress.
Four of Wands: Stability. Holidays. Marriage plans.
Five of Wands: Conflict. Quarrelling. competition.
Six of Wands: Success. Achievement. promotions.
Seven of Wands: Defending position. overcoming obstacles.
Eight of Wands: Fast progress after delays. travel.
Nine of Wands: Perseverance. pull reserves together for final push.
Ten of Wands: Feeling overburdened. weary. Determination required.


Ace of Cups: New relationship. New start that brings happiness for all at home.
Two of Cups: Important union. Balance in a relationship. reconciliation.
Three of Cups: Happiness and achievement. Wedding/family celebrations.
Four of Cups: Boredom and discontent.
Five of Cups: Feelings of disappointment letdown or betrayal. Regrets.
Six of Cups: Happiness from the past. Old friends. an old love revived.
Seven of Cups: Feeling overwhelmed with choices. one must be made. Imagination.
Eight of Cups: Abandoning a path. Disillusionment. emotionally unfulfilled.
Nine of Cups: The “wish” card. Emotional and material fulfilment.
Ten of Cups: Committed and contented love. Marriage. Happy home life.


Ace of Swords: Triumph over adversity. Inner strength and mental clarity.
Two of Swords: Stalemate.
Three of Swords: Quarrelling. Misery through separation.
Four of Swords: Rest and recovery following strain.
Five of Swords: Deceit. hidden agenda. unfair dealings.
Six of Swords: Harmony after strain. Long journey over water.
Seven of Swords: Diplomacy not aggression. Situation not going as anticipated.
Eight of Swords: Feeling restricted by fear. Being withdrawn.
Nine of Swords: Sense of anxiety and despair. Feelings of oppression.
Ten of Swords: Disappointment. End of cycle. Failed plans.


Ace of Pentacles: Start of successful venture. Important document. Gift.
Two of Pentacles: Maintaining balance with more than one area of life.
Three of Pentacles: Success through effort. Gains and recognition.
Four of Pentacles: Overly cautious fear of loss. Material focus. miserly.
Five of Pentacles: Temporary hardship. Guard against loss.
Six of Pentacles: Successful gains. Sharing. Gift.
Seven of Pentacles: Work and patience rewarded. Good news financially.
Eight of Pentacles: New job. moneymaking venture from existing talent.
Nine of Pentacles: Financial Success and material security.
Ten of Pentacles: Financial and family stability. Property. Inheritance.

The Court Cards


Page of Wands: Good news work related. Active cheerful child.
Page of Cups: Happy news emotional nature. Sensitive creative child.
Page of Swords: Delayed/Disappointing news. Minor problems with a child.
Page of Pentacles: Good news financially. Academic methodical child.


Knight of Wands: Change of home or long journey. Energetic young man.
Knight of Cups: Love proposals. Romantic idealistic young man.
Knight of Swords: Swift movement. Chaotic. Quick minded serious young man.
Knight of Pentacles: Eventual positive outcome. Reliable young man.


Queen of Wands: Warm cheerful woman. always very busy.
Queen of Cups: Kind thoughtful sensitive woman with caring nature.
Queen of Swords: Perceptive lady. Efficient no-nonsense type.
Queen of Pentacles: Woman of worth. capable and practical.


King of Wands: Entrepreneurial dynamic man who can be rash.
King of Cups: Warm thoughtful man in the caring or creative professions.
King of Swords: Man in uniform connected to law government etc.
King of Pentacles: Successful man who works with finance/ figures.

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