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Tarot Using Regular Modern Playing Cards · 2:11am May 29th, 2017

Tarot Using Regular Modern Playing Cards

I've always thought that learning about divination techniques was interesting (from a historical perspective). I don't necessarily believe that they really tell the future or anything. But I do think they are neat to learn about, especially in the context they were traditionally used.

The tarot first known as trionfi and later as tarocchi, tarock, and others) is a pack of playing cards, used from the mid-15th century in various parts of Europe to play games such as Italian tarocchini and French tarot.

In the late 18th century, it began to be used for divination in the form of tarotology/ cartomancy.

Like common playing cards, the tarot has four suits (which vary by region: French suits in Northern Europe, Latin suits in Southern Europe, and German suits in Central Europe). Each suit has 14 cards, ten cards numbering from one (or Ace) to ten and four face cards (King, Queen, Knight, and Jack/Knave). In addition, the tarot has a separate 21-card trump suit and a single card known as the Fool. Depending on the game, the Fool may act as the top trump or may be played to avoid following suit.

Tarot cards are used throughout much of Europe to play card games. In English-speaking countries, where these games are not played, tarot cards are used primarily for divinatory purposes. The Trump cards and the Fool are sometimes called "the major arcana" while the ten pip and four court cards in each suit are called minor arcana.

Tarot started as a card game. The cards were then used to tell fortunes.

Later on, people took the modern deck of cards (with the suits of hearts, spades, diamonds, and clubs) and also started using it as a form of divination.

There have been many variations on how to read modern playing cards. This is just one of many versions that I personally like.

Modern Playing Card Tarot:

What follows is a (very) general guide to interpreting regular playing cards. You may still use reverse interpretation on regular playing cards if you mark the deck on the "top".


Ace: Has to do with one's home or environment. Could represent a visit or a change of address.
King: Represents an influential man, someone who has the power or ability to do something good for the querent.
Queen: A trusted woman. Someone knowledgeable and faithful. One who always plays fair.
Jack: A good friend to the querent, someone close, a cousin or confidant, someone they have known since childhood or for a long time.
10: A good card: means good luck, can counteract bad cards around it.
9: Harmony. Often called the Wish Card. If surrounded by bad cards, these can represent obstacles that need to be dealt with in order to get the fulfillment of the wish.
8: An event, a celebration, a party/bash..etc. Some sort of ceremony that is already in the works...or is being planned.
7: A card of disappointment. Usually indicates a partner or other person failing to keep their promises. If this card comes up when dealing with some sort of plan, expect that the other person will back out.
6: Warning card. Someone may try to take advantage of the querent. Also..the querent is being too generous to somebody and not getting anything in return. They are being used.
5: Indecisiveness: The querent's inability to make up his/her mind on a subject. A tendency to make and break plans with others.
4: The bachelor or old maid card. This card represent someone who is too fussy in their selection of a partner. Someone who, by their picky nature, is destined to remain alone.
3: An unwise decision, made in haste and without proper background information.
2: Success, often beyond the querent's expectations. If bad cards surround...there may be delays in reaching the goal.


Ace: Indicates wealth, fame...having many friends or acquaintances. Feeling well-known and being able to receive certain perks due to good looks or social status.
King: Represents a very good friend. A lifelong companion, someone who can be trusted and counted on during times of need and sorrow.
Queen: Represents a wife or girlfriend in long term relationship for a man. For a woman, represents a sister or good friend, someone who shares a lot of knowledge about the querent.
Jack: Represents a good friend, one who uses a lot of flattery, but only to make the other person feel better. Someone who is good at cheering the querent up.
10: A card of happiness and good fortune. Can also represent a long and fun-filled journey.
9: Trouble: Represents arguments with good friends. A loss of a relationship, a dispute that will remain unresolved.
8: A sense of desperation. An urgent need for money.
7: A card of good luck, if other favorable cards are around. Success if there is not interference from the opposite sex.
6: A partnership card. Success based on mutual goals and friendship.
5: A marriage card, or the beginning of a long standing alliance.
4: A danger card, showing misfortune or failure. Supposed friends getting in the way, or turning against the querent.
3: A sign of a second marriage or even a third. Or an engagement with someone, then a marriage with another, after a friendly separation.
2: Bad luck. Being let down by those around. Opposition from friends and family. Do not count on others.


Ace: An important message. A letter or package/gift arriving, the contents of which are very important.
King: A bitter rival, a dangerous competitor, for women it can mean an abusive man or a deceitful lover.
Queen: A flirtatious woman, one who will interfere in plans. Gossipy, very attractive to males...able to get away with things and interfere in situations.
Jack: A bringer of bad news. A selfish person. Not dangerous to male querents, but problems for a female one.
10: Money. Money being the driving force of a journey or partnership. Greed.
9: Adventure: A move in the hopes of advancement.
8: Country life, travel and marriage late in life. The querent's life is too hectic at the moment...a need to settle down and get away...but being unable to do so at the present time.
7: Bad luck on an enterprise or idea. A man who is unreliable, a gambler or drinker.
6: An early marriage, but an unhappy one...and one not destined to last. A second marriage would also be unhappy.
5: Prosperity, long enduring friendship. Pride in family. Success with children.
4: Quarrels: Forgotten or neglected friends and family. Situations that have been brewing and now come to a head.
3: A card of disputes and quarrels. Lawsuits, legal actions. A sign of separation or divorce.
2: A serious love affair, resulting in a marriage or interfering with one depending on surrounding cards.


Ace: Bad news, loss of someone close, possible death to someone near, or an illness, miscarriage, etc.
King: A man who will cause problems in marriage or relationships. One who will get in the middle, divide and conquer...and then destroy.
Queen: A cruel woman, one who interferes. For women, a betrayal by a good friend. For men, a woman who will use them for their own gain.
Jack: A person who hangs around and gets in the way. Not a bad person, but a lazy person. One who will get in the way of progress. Takes and takes, but does not give back anything.
10: A very unlucky card. If near a good card, it can cancel it out. If found with bad cards, makes them twice as bad.
9: The worst card of all: Illness, loss of money, or misery. Even among the best of cards. Defeat, lack of success.
8: False friends, traitors, someone who will betray. Most of the trouble can be avoided if caught early on. Examine all relationships closely.
7: Sorrow and quarrels. Avoid arguments with friends. Let them "win" for now.
6: Much planning but little result. Hard work, without much profit. Discouragements.
5: Success in business or love, after much time and hard work.
4: Minor misfortune: A short illness, a temporary setback.
3: Unhappiness: Misfortune in love or marriage. A loss of pride and hope. Do not dwell, move on in life.
2: A complete and forced change. Sudden change of location, relationship or a death. Bound to make a big difference in the coming months.


HEARTS: Emotional, symbols of pain and suffering.
CLUBS: Friends, relationships.
DIAMONDS: Difficulties, money problems.
SPADES: Warnings.

The Joker: The Joker is the equivalent to the Fool in the tarot and, as such, it means unlimited potential, taking a big risk but having trust that all will be well. It would be a good idea to mark this card to indicate a 'right way up' or a 'wrong way up', so that it can show the reverse meanings of folly and foolishness.


Source One: http://www.talisman.net/tarot/regcard.html
Source Two: https://exemplore.com/fortune-divination/How-to-Read-Tarot-with-Playing-Cards
Source Three: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarot

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Comments ( 13 )

Wow! Thank you! I've always wanted to know, but unfortunately it's been complicated. Thx for explaining it!

4550452 You are very welcome. Keep in mind that this technique uses a regular modern playing deck. There is a different set of rules if you use a traditional tarot deck. I will make a journal entry on how to do so later on.

I'm impressed with what's behind the cards. This could make some ideas for a story.

4550622 I am glad that it is something that could inspire you. :)

Wow. Now that's interesting. Thanks Lyra

4557046 You are very welcome. I am glad that it is something that you found to be interesting. :)

And thank you once again for telling this to us. I’m surprised that someone made a modern card version of tarot cards

4561873 Well they have modern tarot decks that you can buy at book stores or online.

But the cards I am talking about here are just standard playing cards, you know, like what you play poker with.

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