The Emperor Tarot Card Meanings

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The Emperor Tarot Card Description

Just like the Empress is the Mother of the tarot deck, the Emperor is the Father. So, therefore, the Emperor Tarot card represents a father figure out to protect the world.

This towering figure is quite domineering; he paints the picture of a patriarch controlling his community.

The Emperor Tarot meaning comes from the Major Arcana family. As such, the Emperor plays a central role in the events taking place in your life.

The Emperor Tarot description shows an authoritative man sitting on a stone throne. This is the Emperor.

His throne is adorned by the heads of 4 rams to indicate the Emperor’s connection to the planet Mars and the Aries constellation.

The Emperor holds an ankh in his right hand. This symbol originated in Egypt but has gained near worldwide acceptance as the symbol of life, fertility, and creativity.

In his left hand, the Emperor holds an orb representing the world. This shows that the Emperor’s influence is worldwide; he is the Father of all humans regardless of race, color, and creed.

The Emperor is in a red robe beneath an iron armor. The red robe shows the Emperor’s love for life.

He is passionate, dynamic, and powerful. The red robe shows this father figure is full of life energy.

The armor underneath the robe shows the Emperor is well-shielded from external threats. Furthermore, it indicates he is ready and willing to battle the challenges he encounters in life’s journey.

The Emperor wears a long, thick, white beard. This alludes to this man’s knowledge, wisdom, and experience.

The gold crown on the Emperor’s head points to his power and authority. He commands and gets respect from his subjects.

Behind the stone throne, in the background, is an insurmountable mountain range. The Emperor Tarot card meanings show the Emperor has solid backing as he controls his subjects.

Also, it shows that he is fixed in his ways. It would be a tall order to make this man change his mind over an issue.

The rivers flowing gently beneath the peaks of the ranges point to the softer side of the Emperor. The water in the streams indicates that the Emperor has emotions like all of us.

Despite his impenetrable exterior, the Emperor can love and receive love.

What is the Meaning of the Emperor Tarot Card?

This card shows a man on the throne, traditionally holding the world in one hand and a scepter in the other.

He is a ruler and thus possesses the traits of one; dominance, power, and authority.

This card represents traits associated with masculinity, which is why it’s referred to as the patriarch of the tarot.

The Emperor is a part of the Major Arcana, meaning that the events he is associated with are a significant life change to come, a catalyst for events that have passed, or the direct influence of what the person being read is experiencing.

Major Arcana cards are the heavy hitters in tarot and should always be heeded, especially one as domineering as The Emperor.

When this card appears in your reading, it’s important to decide if he represents the one being read or another person in their life.

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Have you been appointed to a new position at work? Is there someone in your life who has assumed a mentoring role, much like a father?

Whatever the case, The Emperor tarot card meanings show this is a good sign. There is or will be a power shift, which could be a good or bad omen depending on the nature of your reading.

the-emperorThe Upright Emperor Meaning

Depending on its place in the reading and surrounding cards, this card can signify various things in its upright position.

The Emperor in a past position often signifies an event in which an authoritative figure played a significant role.

This will directly influence the subject of the reading’s current dilemma.

In a present position, it is interpreted as the person being read has come into a position of authority or responsibility or is currently under the influence of an authority figure.

If The Emperor is signifying the person being read, this could mean they have come into a leadership position or assumed a position of authority in their romantic or personal relationships.

Being a shoulder to lean on and the advice giver in a relationship is great when warranted, but deciding if this role is healthy for all involved parties is important.

The Emperor in the future position is a strong sign that the person being read will ultimately be in charge. Moreover, it indicates they will soon be the sole decision maker.

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The Symbolism of Upright Emperor Tarot Card

The Emperor Tarot card appears when you need to gain more control of your life. For example, the Emperor upright card indicates organization, authority, and control.

Pulling this card lends weight to your reading. You may need a father figure to mentor you on some aspects of life.

Alternatively, the Emperor upright card urges you to reach out to someone that needs support. This person could benefit from your advice and mentorship.

The Emperor card tarot symbolism shows a firm but fair leader. This is one person who doesn’t entertain nonsense.

He pushes his subjects to be the best they could possibly be in this life. It is his happiness when everyone under his care projects the best image of themselves.

In a reading about your personal life, the Emperor suggests the need to be your own boss. Drawing this card in a reading reminds you of your many gifts and talents.

You have everything you need to exude your power. You can be kind to those who look up to you with a firm but fair hand.

The upright tarot card shows you were born to lead. Considering your desire to serve truthfully and honestly, this should work well for you.

At the same time, you are down to earth. As a result, people will love and respect you for your firmness and appreciate your kindness and generosity.

Encountering the Emperor in a reading prepares you for a significant event ahead. Being from the Major Arcana family, the Emperor oversees all the major, life-changing events you go through.

Work and the Emperor

If you’ve been working towards a promotion, The Emperor shows that your hard work will pay off. This card strongly indicates that you will get what you’ve worked for.

If you haven’t been working towards a promotion or a pay raise, The Emperor is also a good omen for new opportunities.

You’ll soon reap the benefits if you’ve been putting in long hours.

Upright Emperor and Your Career

Regarding your career, an upright Emperor signifies reward following the work of your hands. The tarot readings involving the Emperor urge you to use an organized approach in your work.

Concentrate on the critical assignments; don’t allow anything to derail you from your purpose.

Drawing this card in a work-related reading tells you to be persistent, effective, and efficient.

You’ll get the results you desire through discipline and hard work.

The Emperor encourages you to think outside the box. For example, if you have been working hard with little to show for it, you can try new methodologies.

Seek help from a more experienced colleague. Get a mentor to guide you on the dos and don’ts of your industry.

Love and the Emperor

For new relationships, The Emperor is a good sign. He denotes stability and security.

This relationship may be set for the long haul, as long as both parties keep to their responsibilities towards each other and the roles they play within the relationship.

The Emperor could signify that one person in the relationship has more power than the other. This isn’t necessarily negative.

In some relationships, one person may have more monetary responsibility, whereas the other has more responsibility for home and family.

It’s important for the person being read to determine if this situation works for them.

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Upright Emperor and Love

Behind the stone throne in the Emperor Tarot card description is a range of mountains. Below these ranges are streams of clear fresh water.

This shows that the Emperor, though tough on the exterior, feels some emotions. Pulling an upright Emperor card in a reading indicates positive growth in your love life.

The Emperor love meaning shows that your love relationship will thrive if you infuse logic, discipline, and common sense into it.

The upright Emperor shows a conservative type of love connection. This tarot reading urges you to handle your relationship well so it doesn’t become too stifling.

Treat your partner with the love, kindness, and consideration you’d like them to extend to you. Most importantly, involve them in the decision-making process in the relationship.

The Emperor and Finances

The Emperor is reassuring that your financial future will have stability.

If you are considering making another big financial decision, now is the time.

Just make sure you stay on top of any paperwork that needs signing or phone calls that need to be made.

Upright Emperor and Your Finances

The upright Emperor signifies discipline in money matters. Drawing the card calls on you to be responsible in your spending habits.

This will resonate well with you if you have been cash-strapped of late. Likely, your priorities are warped, so you keep surviving from one paycheck to the next.

You will likely pull this card when you are in a financial rut. The Emperor wants you to take charge of your finances, especially the spending bit.

Learn to be more of a saver than a spender.

Balance your accounts neatly to understand where most of your money goes. Then, work with a budget, as this will help you plug financial leaks.

The Meaning of the Emperor in Health

If you’ve been having health issues or worrying about falling ill, this is a good sign.

The Emperor says that your health will be fine.

Depending on the cards around it, he could also tell you to take time to de-stress if you’re under a lot of pressure.

Upright Emperor and Your Health

You’re pushing yourself too much for your own good. The upright Emperor health reading asks you to be gentler with yourself.

Punishing exercise regimes will do more harm than good. Instead, you should eliminate all activities that force your body to act outside its normal settings.

Eat well, have enough moderate exercise, and get lots of sleep.

The upright Emperor Tarot card also calls on you to take your health seriously. Therefore, if you have any medical issues, have them promptly attended to by a competent medical practitioner.

Upright Emperor and Your Spirituality

In a spirituality reading session, drawing the upright tarot shows a power struggle between your material and spiritual needs.

You are attracted to power, control, fame, and accolades. Sometimes, you pay too much attention to these that you forget to tend to your soul.

This cannot be allowed to continue if you hope to live a happy, fulfilling life. Therefore, an upright Emperor Tarot reading urges you to rectify this state of affairs before things run out of control.

The Emperor in Reversed Position

The Emperor, in a reversed position, spells trouble. This could be the person being read or someone they know abusing their position of power.

In some instances, The Emperor reversed is a sign that standing up to authority is a good idea, but make sure to pay attention to surrounding cards in the rest of a spread to determine the consequences of this action.

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The Symbolism of Reversed Emperor Tarot Card

In the reversed position, the Emperor Tarot denotes an abuse of power and authority. This reading may be about you or someone close to you.

Drawing a reversed Emperor could mean your partner (or someone else’s partner) is possessive and likely to turn abusive.

It could also mean you come across as a harsh father figure. Alternatively, you have a father figure in your social life who overreaches their authority.

Pulling the reversed Emperor could also mean bullying at the workplace or an institution of learning.

Likely, a superior at work gives you a hard time; you find it challenging to deliver on your mandate. This card exposes this state of affairs so you can act and put everything as it should be.

The reversed Emperor card also points to shacking responsibility. Either you or someone close to you is not doing what they are meant to do to keep your community thriving.

Take this as a warning that unless all involved take their responsibilities seriously, things will move from bad to worse.

Reversed Emperor and Your Career

Your work will start to decline unless you become more disciplined. For starters, put on integrity. This card calls on you to handle your clients, customers, and suppliers honestly and sincerely.

Embrace ethical practices to build your company’s reputation in the local community.

Additionally, this card indicates that failure and loss will stem from your bureaucratic and rigid business practices.

You should be more creative, innovative, and market-driven to achieve your business goals and dreams.

Create friendly and easy-to-execute processes.

In a worst-case scenario, the reversed Emperor indicates you work in fear. Likely, one of your bosses is a tyrant who rules the organization with an iron fist.

If you are not happy with your current work arrangements, don’t be afraid to explore. Then, you can be sure you’ll find something better for you to do.

Reversed Emperor and Your Finances

The reversed Emperor underscores the importance of being disciplined in financial matters.

Drawing this card in a money reading predicts your finances will spiral out of control unless you properly deal with the situation.

Basically, this means you must learn to save more and spend less. The reversed Emperor shows you the dangers of failing to live within your means.

Getting an expert to guide you on money matters would be a wise idea. This person will help you balance the discrepancy between your spending and saving habits.

They will also help you identify the best investment opportunities based on your income and desires.

Reversed Emperor and Your Health

The reversed Emperor in a health rigid asks you to be more relaxed. But, unfortunately, you are too tense, probably because you are anxious about some goals.

Don’t punish your body by being too rigid. If your plans don’t pan out as you had projected, take it in your stride.

This card reminds you that we win at some and lose at others. It is the way of life. The important thing is how you proceed after a failure.

Do you allow failure to define you, or do you get up and have another go?

Reversed Emperor and Your Spirituality

The reversed Emperor in a spirituality reading indicates your desire to seek alternative spiritual solutions.

Probably, you feel that your spiritual pursuits do not work for you. Is this the case, or do you need to be a little more patient?

Either way, be watchful as you seek redress to your spiritual thirst. But, take care not to fall into the hands of malicious hypocrites.

The Emperor Combinations

The Emperor has the strongest tie Temperance. When these two show up combined, they show self-control and willpower.

Appearing with The Devil strongly indicates that someone in your life is abusing their power over you and that you are headed for a crisis if you don’t address the problem.

In combination with the Four of Cups, The Emperor is too closed-minded, and it’s advised that you try and examine the situation from a different angle.


The Emperor is a picture of masculine power. He is the father figure that gives direction to his subjects.

He creates and hands out rules, imparts knowledge, gives structures, and dispenses justice.

Seeing the Emperor in a reading encourages you to get a grip on your life. You move your life forward only through discipline, hard work, and resilience.

If you want to uncover what has been encoded in your destiny when you were born, you can grab a free, personalized numerology report here.

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