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The Emperor

by The 78th Fool

Card Meaning
Artistic Media
Artist's Bio


The Emperor sits before high mountains bathed in orange light. His throne is our planet and his orb above his outstretched hand contains the symbol of Aries. About his forehead is a crown of golden laurel leaves and above him are two eagles. He is naked and transparent. Looking into him you see a city of illuminated towers ≠ all the bright lights of a city.


The overall colouring of the card corresponds to its element of fire. There is aridness here, unlike with the Empress yet the mountains themselves represent strength and structure. The Eagles symbolise divine authority whilst the symbol of Aries represents both aggression and the new life of spring. The planetary throne shows us that the Emperor is an over arching principle of creation. The fact that he is transparent and seems to contain a city within himself shows that his ability to control, shape, organise and construct comes naturally from within. It shows us also that civilisation is very much a part of the Emperorís spirit.

Card Meaning

The Emperor represents the principle of masculinity, not just in the human realm but also within the fabric of creation. He represents order, structure and control. Whereas the Empress is the power of creativity and fertility, the Emperor represents the ability to take formless matter and give it shape, organisation and structure. When he appears in a reading, he signifies control and orderly rule. On a practical level, he represents the laws and structure of society, be they good or evil.

Artistic Media

Adobe Photoshop

Artist's Bio

The 78th Fool discovered the Tarot at the age of 13 through a James Bond movie. He works as a professional artist/illustrator in the UK. He has authored and illustrated the Butler Tarot and the Son Tarot. He has also illustrated the Quantum Tarot, authored by Kay Stopforth.

Go back to the project index, read the traditional card meaning, or get a free automated reading with this deck.

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