Tarot Card Meanings

The Emperor is the great father wielding his authority and order on the physical plane. Spiritually, he represents the soul that has been cleansed through self-restraint.

In a Tarot reading, the Emperor card is the personification of true will power. He has experienced the hardships of life and, ultimately, has been set free through this wisdom. The Emperor is the companion to The Empress. Although both represent creation, The Emperor signifies creation of the will, which does not dwell in the realm of feeling and emotion.

His associated number is four, which represents solid foundations, organization, reason and manifestation. In a Tarot card reading, The Emperor depicts authority and power over the tangible, physical plane of existence. He regulates the world and provides a system of laws that all men are expected to abide by. He is the leader, both trustworthy and rational. The Emperor projects his wisdom onto man expecting him to behave in a manner that incorporates control and restraint.

One of the negative Tarot card meanings associated with the Emperor is his lack of sensitivity. He can at times be harsh and rigid. For women, this means that the Emperor can represent the dominating father, which forever shadows the woman’s sense of self. She may find herself constantly looking for a man to structure her life and give her identity. For men, the Emperor can be the over-achieving father, leaving some feeling as though they can never live up to their father’s standards.

Upright Emperor Tarot Card Meanings In A Tarot Reading

In a tarot reading, an upright Emperor card represents leadership and logical thinking. The Emperor suggests that the projects you have embarked on have solid foundations and will prove to be successful. You are respected in your community and others may come to you for advice. Your drive for success needs to be appropriately focused. You may get a job promotion based on your leadership skills and ability to put things in order.

The Emperor also can represent that you may be coming into your own. This can occur within your career or within the spiritual realm. This is the time to structure your environment. Pay attention to details and be willing to reorganize if necessary. A mentor may come into your life. The Emperor can indicate a challenge in your place of employment or with your social status. You may find yourself battling for a higher position. There may be a rival or authority figure that will challenge you.

In a relationship reading, the Emperor card can indicate that one partner is dominating the other. Perhaps, one partner is playing mom or dad to the other.


  • Control
  • Status
  • Organization
  • Intellectual enterprises
  • Rational thinking
  • Security
  • Leadership


Reversed Emperor Tarot Card Meanings In A Tarot Reading

In a tarot reading, the Emperor reversed may indicate that there is a refusal to grow up. You may find it difficult to take responsibility and you may want to run away. Potentially there could be a situation that affects your self-confidence. You may be over thinking things. Generally the Emperor reversed indicates that projects will be halted. Progress may be difficult at this time. It’s time to look at your behavior. Are you attempting to control things too much? Are you seeking too much power? Are you overly attached to your parents? The Emperor reversed indicates dependency on others. When this plays out in a relationship reading, there often are issues of co-dependency. 4444 meaning


  • Utilizing too much force
  • Refusal to grow up
  • Over intellectualizing
  • Co-dependency
  • Lack of ambition or direction


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