The Arcanum of the Empress in the Tarot of Marseille

The Tarot of Marseille offers a range of portraits through the characters and atmosphere depicted in the cards that make up its deck. The 22 major arcana portray different traits of human character and express timeless values. In this article, we will look into the card of the Empress to try to solve its mystery…

Presentation of the Empress card

Just like her companion, the Emperor, the Empress’ eyes are riveted on her golden scepter. She holds it in her left hand in an unassertive way. In her right hand, the Empress clasps an escutcheon against her, one that is also golden. Sitting on her throne, full-face,  she is depicted with all the symbols of power:

  • The scepter
  • The escutcheon
  • The crown
  • The throne

The upper part of her body is donned in blue, which contrasts with the red that covers the lower part of her body, from her knees to her feet.


Unlike the Papess, the Empress should not be considered to be the absolute representation of femininity. Indeed, you should rather see in her a kind of woman, more specifically a real and human woman with her share of shortcomings and influence.

In this sense, her posture shows she is clearly anchored in reality and that she is assured. This is a woman of power.

What does the Empress Arcanum mean?

The Empress,  just like the Papess, has a thirst for knowledge. But this desire to know is more oriented towards the objective understanding of things. Curious and open-minded, the Empress is ready to exchange and debate. This tarot of Marseille arcanum is the reflection of some kind of intellectual liveliness, inspired by her own experience but also that of others.

This card therefore refers to a flexible intellectual authority with relational skills.

Positive aspects of this major Tarot arcanum

  • Openness
  • Flexibility
  • Conception
  • Communication & Exchange
  • Synthesis
  • Intellectual curiosity
  • Learning

Negative aspects of this tarot card

  • Insensitivity
  • Coldness
  • Dissipation
  • Manipulation
  • Deception
  • Superficiality

Author: Igor Leroy

In parallel to my psychology studies, I developed a fascination for the symbolic dimension of tarot reading. I was lucky enough to be trained by a famous reader, and I gained a solid expertise in the world of tarot, and more generally in the various supports for divination. Today, it allows me to quickly decipher the messages hidden within the arcana, and within other clairvoyance tools as well. I have been writing articles on 7-astrostreet for several months now, in order to share my passion with a large audience.

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