The Papess card in the Tarot of Marseille

The Tarot of Marseille is more than a simple deck. This genuine divination tool invites us to go on an initiatory and fascinating journey through its cards. Each one of them unveils secrets about the future, about the world but also, and most of all, about ourselves. Among the most well-known major arcana can be found The Papess. What does this card mean? What does it promise? Let me suggest to you to decipher it step by step so as to try to find an interpretation.

How to describe the Papess card?

Against the backdrop, what seems to resemble tapestry or a flag can be noticed. Sitting in front of it, the Papess holds an open book laid on her knees. She dons a red dress and a long blue cape. There is also a yellow cross on her chest. With a tiara covering her head, this character takes on a universal dimension since the three levels of the tiara refer to body, spirit and soul.


The book the Papess is holding in her hands is flesh-colored. Would it be the book of Humanity? The book holding the experiences of humankind? What is striking is that she does not read this book; she does even not look at it. Would she know what it holds? Would Knowledge already be hers? The Papess would therefore be depicted as an experienced woman, one who knows life’s secrets.

Meaning of the Papess arcanum

Shrouded in mystery, the arcanum #2 of the Tarot of Marseille represents inner knowledge, introspection but also universal knowledge. The Papess card bears the stamp of secrecy. Furthermore, some also see it as a symbol of gestation.

The strengths linked to this major arcanum

  • Wisdom
  • Intelligence
  • Secrecy
  • Intuition
  • Perseverance
  • Discretion
  • Intensity

Negative aspects of this tarot card

  • Inaction
  • Idleness
  • Solitude
  • Illusion
  • Concealment
  • Duplicity

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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