Yes, there are those avid tarot people who will argue that human beings are very complex and usually our personalities will touch on more than one court card. Maybe, but I'm still skeptical about this. There are just some personality traits that are so prominent in some people they might as well walk around with the card tattooed to their forehead.
What personality traits do you think will show up for you, and is the card listed for you (if you recognize yourself) an accurate depiction of YOUR personality? Come on, be honest, even if it's just with yourself. Every card has positive and negative attributes, and it's going to be interesting to see how they all add up.
Source: The following personality profiles listed in the four links below are found at my blog Magickal Connections, and are taken from my book, "Tarot: A Witch's Journey".
First ~ the personalities, and this includes their positive aspects:
The Majesty of the Kings
The Mystery of the Queens
The Energy of the Knights
Pages ~ The Messengers
The personality types found in the descriptions at the links above are excellent and right on the mark for a general over-all look at an individual and how they tick, and you really should take the time to read them before you read the descriptions below.
It was in my next tarot book, "Tarot for Grownups", that I take a very hard look at these personalities with the rose-colored glasses off and a glaring spotlight on the darker side (Tarot for GROWNUPS, remember, there's a reason for the title). It might seem a bit harsh and cynical, but this is an unvarnished look at the raw and naked personality of each Court Card. Brace yourself:
Kings: Exposing the Male Persona
King of Pentacles…This guy is all about money and control, and he has a real talent and knack for using the two together to rigidly control and manipulate other people’s lives in an utterly ruthless calculating way. And if he’s really- really- good at it, he’ll find a way to carry this tradition on long after he’s dead and buried. He might make a good mob boss, but he has this penchant about following the rules and obeying laws, at least most of the time, as long as he can make sure that he’ll get his way in the end. He is cold-hearted, cruel, calculating, blood-thirsty, and highly sexual. He wants what he wants when he wants it, whatever it is. The King of pentacles sees the world as either black or white. Translated, this means that you are either with him or against him. This skewered view of the world and relationships often makes him appear paranoid, and if you don’t share his skewered view of the world, you will never gain access to his sacred inner sanctum.
King of Swords…This character’s biggest enemies are his mouth and his ego, and they tend to run together- on and on and on and on. He doesn’t know when to shut up, and this is because he’s too busy ‘enlightening’ the rest of the world, all of whom are much less intelligent than yours truly. His opinions are not set in stone, they’re set in gold, and he expects the rest of the world to embrace them with open-mouthed awe-struck enthusiasm. This guy is loud and in your face. The one weird quirk here is that you’d think he might be crude, but no, this King runs in the other direction. He tends to be overly prudish, to the point of some pretty kinky extremes. Let’s just say he might have ‘issues’.
King of Wands…This King is also about control, but this King is also a coward, a coward and a bully. He’ll control those around him in whining, backstabbing, petty, hurtful ways. He lives in a world of his own reality. Tell him how you honestly feel about any issue, including him, and he’ll deny it. Tell him that the sky is blue, and he’ll argue the subject. He will have one thing that he worships to the point of obsession. He will adore his obsession. He will collect it, look at it, sort it, hide it; he will take it out from time to time to revel in it. This obsession, whatever it is, will take precedence over the feelings of those close to him, or the well being of family. This guy is also ruthlessly rigid and conservative in his behavior, generally closely tied to a religious belief system, usually whatever he was raised in and is familiar with. He tends to take his religious fanaticism to extremes. He’s the guy who will screw his wife but only on Sundays and usually with the lights off.
King of Cups…This character is smooth, really smooth, he can tell you anything in a way that will make you believe it. He’ll also screw anything he can get his hands on with nary a qualm of conscience to the act. He is the epitome of hedonism. He will indulge in not only sex, but food and drink, and anything else he has a penchant for. This guy also tends to be lazy, so you won’t find him with a long list of impressive accomplishments. His main goal in life is to ‘eat, drink, and be merry’, and he excels at all three. He may seem laid back and easy going, but if you cross him, you will discover that he’s childish and tends to be passive aggressive. If you’ve pissed him off, you may not know it until you find a very expensive pair of your shoes planted upside down in the garden.
Queens: The Bitch in Us All
Queen of Pentacles…Oh, my gawds. This woman is all mouth, and it’s usually wide open with opinions and judgments rolling through like a dam that’s burst. Ignoring her won’t do any good, she’ll keep asking the same personal obnoxious questions over and over. The fact that you’re trying to ignore her bad behavior will never occur to her. If you think she likes you, you’d better think again, after you’ve heard what she’s had to say behind your back. This gal tends to be very vain, and in her younger years she may very well have been quite attractive. She doesn’t want anyone to forget this. She also tends to be very promiscuous in early life and probably screwed half her high school class, or half the married men in town.
Queen of Swords…This Queen is the classical ‘Bitch’, with a capitol B. She’s got a tongue in her mouth that could cut the strongest most stalwart man in half. She is cold, calculating, unfortunately intelligent enough to put together great ‘get even’ schemes, and ruthless enough to pull them off without batting an eye. This character is as cold as the iceberg that sunk the Titanic, and she’s usually frigid. This Queen thinks very highly of herself and will most likely remain single, or at least remain single until later in life. This is because, when you’re damn near perfect, it’s difficult to find anyone who’s worthy of your presence.
Queen of Wands…If this Queen can’t control it, whether it be people or circumstances, she will bend it, twist it, torture it, or beat it into submission until she can. Her gift is the ability to give anyone she disapproves of the cold shoulder, and she’s marvelously talented at this. She can ignore someone she views as an adversary, and this includes anyone not willing to kiss her ass, to the point where they might begin wonder if they really are invisible. This is because all of her minions will follow suit, ignoring the black sheep right along with this Queen. If they don’t, they know they’ll wind up on her shit list, right along with the poor bastard who just happens to be her ‘Target of the Moment’.
Queen of Cups…This Queen’s biggest fear is that someone won’t like her. She will bend over backwards to appear as something different to each individual she associates with. If the person she’s talking to likes horses, she’ll be a horsewoman; if the person she’s talking to is a right-wing Christian conservative, her great-grandmother on her father’s side was Baptist. If the person she’s talking to likes seafood, so does she. Because of this crazy idea that she has to be all to everyone and that everyone must like her, she’s also a slut, not because she’s fantastically sexual and earthy, but because she’s afraid that if she says ‘no’, the guy will not like her, and he’ll never call again. So she screws him even though she may know better, and then wonders why he never calls again. In reality, she’s not looking for sex. She’s looking for love and approval. The Queen of Cups is the most pathetic of the Queens.
Knights: Wild Boys
Knight of Pentacles…This character is a younger version of the King of Pentacles. He’s immature yet, still learning how to be all cut-throat and cutting edge, taking in all the highs and lows of money matters and the art of manipulation. In the meantime, he gives the impression of being the solid, safe, silent type. This is because his young brain is quietly taking life in, honing the blade for future conquests, building the foundation of his dynasty, deciding whose going to ascend the ladder with him and who he’ll bury under the bottom rung. And if you think he’s the strong silent type, piss him off and watch the tantrum unfold. This Knight can pitch a fit like no other; he’s got foot stamping down to an art.
Knight of Swords…This card typifies the asshole, with a capitol A. His mouth runs on its own, with no thought or consideration to any pain or damage that his young tongue might cause along the way. He’s practicing for when he gets all grown up and knows everything about everything, and everyone will ask for his expert opinion. In the meantime, he’s putting a new definition to the word ‘obnoxious’, and he’s grooming himself for the position he feels life has in store for him. You can try to ignore him, but it won’t do much good. If you don’t give him the response he expects, he figures that you must not have heard him, and he’ll just repeat his sarcastic comment, only louder.
Knight of Wands…He looks like ‘the good boy’, standing quietly in the midst of life’s foray, chewing his fingernails, head lowered, eyes shifting back and forth to take in the scene, trying to decide who’d be the easiest target to control. Who would he be able to bluff and bully without revealing his own weaknesses? ‘Good boy’, my ass. This character has his life charted and planned out from day one, and anyone who comes into this life better fit to all the pegs and holes, or he’ll chop off whatever doesn’t, trying to ram everything and everyone into perfect order. He tends to be neurotic and self-righteous enough to make you vomit. He sees something wrong with everyone but himself.
Knight of Cups…This character is the reason chastity belts were invented. He sees every woman as a conquest and measures every woman he sees to his own yardstick of beauty, which can be pretty idealistic. At this stage of life, he might have some pretty big plans for his future, but don’t worry, nothing will actually materialize. He’ll use up all his energy to satisfy his physical needs; and considering that the seeds of laziness have already been planted, watered, and fertilized, big plans will come to naught. Besides, just when he’s conquered one woman, a prettier one will come along, and off he runs.
Pages: Youth is Wasted on the Young
Page of Pentacles…This guy is sullen, quiet, and moody; he’ll push boundaries to the limit and may find himself in a pack of trouble because of this bent. Just because he doesn’t say anything outwardly negative to you, don’t think he really likes you, he just knows how to keep disdain simmering low on the back burner. This Page also tends to be good-looking, and this fact contributes to his penchant for getting away with murder. We’re more likely to let a pretty boy off the hook. This character could go any which way in later life. Either he’ll straighten himself out and discover the wondrous world of the adult, embracing all the responsibilities that go along with it; or he’ll wind up living in a cardboard box in some back alley, swigging cheap wine for breakfast. It’s his call.
Page of Swords…This Page is a bitch in the making. He/she is a younger version of the King or Queen of swords. It’s already difficult carrying on a conversation with this Page, because everything is all about them; it’s the only topic they care to discuss. They’re conversation is blunt, verging on rude. Vanity is already at work here, and because of their youth and immaturity, it can actually get to the point of ridiculous. They have a skewered view of how attractive they really are, or how accomplished, how smart, etc. Even now, and very sadly, they are setting a solitary path for themselves by alienating people who may actually love them. They treat people like shit, and then act all puzzled when friends and acquaintances disappear.
Page of Wands…This Page tends to be nothing more than a milder version of the Page of Swords. Think of this character as a Valley Girl gone Goth. The mouth keeps running, and running, and running; unfortunately, the brain hasn’t caught up. They are only able to maintain successful relationships for a limited length of time, until the persona they are trying to portray evaporates and their real personality slips out…oops. There’s no getting around the fact that the Page of Wands has a mean streak. This Page has a very short attention span, and this unfortunately includes such things as an interest in pets and people. If you know a Page of Wands who has a dog or cat, the odds are they’re going to dump this critter off on you when their enthusiasm begins to wane. The one bright spot for this Page is a very strong work ethic and a dedication to their job. Where this comes from, go figure.
Page of Cups…This young Page is super sensitive, and it means that you might find yourself walking on eggshells in order not to offend the young Prince/Princess. However, if you do tick him/her off, you might want to stand back to watch the hissy fit and keep yourself safe from the fallout. With that said, this is still the most affable of all the Pages, with the most promise of being ‘normal’, whatever normal is. One of the biggest problems is that this character has a habit of setting unrealistic goals for her/himself and then practically killing themselves trying to live up to these idealistic endeavors. Nothing is ever good enough, big enough, expensive enough, fancy enough, or just plain ‘enough’. This Page develops strong ties to people and places, and you’ll find that the relationships/friendships that they cultivate early in life will last for decades.
[Photo: courtesy of Pinterest, artist ~ Dave McKean]