Many people ask me the reason the Rider-Waite and other medieval decks depict Pages instead of Princesses. One reason given, is that the Page is an androgynous figure, thus represents either a male or female. The truth is, the older decks, were created by oath bound occultist of Mystery lodges that were not allowed to tell the general public the mysteries of the arcane. The Princesses are a doorway to rule over the Divine Creative's expression as Elementals
on earth. The Princesses held in their hands the Power of the Seed
over their various elements on earth. They represent Thrones of Authority on Earth granted by the Union of the Divine Mother and Father. The Princess of Swords has rule over all consciousness on earth.
In the Tarot, the Ace of Swords, represents the Root of the Element of
Air which is also representative of the Seed of Consciousness. When
lacking the Will that is Spirit, consciousness behaves like Air, which
blows which ever way of the common current. In nature, Air lacks the
concentrated will of Fire to unite with water and it lacks a
corresponding passion to unite with its twin, earth. Air has no
self-generated impulse, and is totally dependent on the heat of the
moment. But when set in motion by its Father-Fire and its Mother-Water,
it magnifies their power into something horrific, such as tornadoes or
hurricanes, or the Princess of Swords.
Wind in this state, is
comparable to Divine Consciousness, as all embracing, all penetrating, all
wandering and all consuming.
The Status of Air, as compared to
the other Elements of alchemical origin, would seem minor but in
reality, Air is the first Element to follow Spirit. Spirit is of the
Element- Fire, that begins with the Logos (Word/vibration of the Divine Creative). Air is also
attributed to Mercury and most properly, the Breath of Life. Then there
is the Hebrew statement," Achath Ruach Elohim Chiim (777) which means,"
One is the Spirit (not air) of the Gods of the Living". In this case Air
is the the medium that carries the Spirit of "the gods of the living"
which is called Prana in Sanskrit, thus we can see the empowerment
of yoga breathing exercises. But most of all, we can see that as Spirit, which comes from the Greek root word, Spiro (meaning Breath) that we, through the Princess (777), are granted "gods of the living" status. She is the "Throne" upon which the Elohim sit. She is the Imagination in our "heads". Besides, it is obvious that we have though the power of our imagination, dominion over the earth and all the elements. It is also obvious that we are being ignorant of our responsibility over the living things; an ignorance we will regret as the winds blow harder and the Seas rise higher.
When thrown during a reading, the
Ace of Swords is an Invoked force for good or evil. It represents the
whirling force and strength through trouble. It can be the Sword of
Wrath upholding Divine Authority and thus an affirmation of justice in
the querent's life. It is the whirling force in the hands of the Princess of Swords who sits upon the Throne of Air and has Dominion over Image-making on earth. Thus, our consciousness and imagination must become lovers , and together, they give birth to the Princess in us as the authority of the "gods of the living".
This is another reason why the patriarchal societies of the past used Pages instead of Princesses. For it would seem effeminate to see ones conscious masculine self, who is to be (by self decree of "might is right") dominant over female, as a subject to the "Princess" inside. She however, is there as the Imagination, which rules our consciousness and emotions. She, being a "womb with a view", is not a Page but the "ruler over form" on the earth thus enthroned in the Authority of The Great Mother, the feminine of the Divine Creative. She is our "inner goddess".
THE THOTH PRINCESS OF SWORDS, represents the earthly
part of Air. She is the fixation of the Volatile.
She represents the
influence of Heaven on Earth and brings about the materialization of
There is some suggestion of the Valkyrie, in this card but She
also represents Diana (Goddess of the Moon and the hunt) and characteristics of Minerva (Goddess of Wisdom). To some extent,
she represents the anger of the gods, and wears a helm of serpent
crest, that symbolizes the serpent-haired Medusa. (look up the Myth of Medusa on the Internet), who as imagination, can turn men's rational ego into motionless stone.
The heavens and clouds
whirl about angrily, while she is stabbing downward with her sword. In
the back ground is a profaned altar, whose fire is gone out due to lack
of attention (which is true of our societies) which seems to anger this Valkyrie.
are the "throne of Spirit", the Princess of Swords has the option of
"throwing everything overboard" and/or "blowing everything sky high."
The Character of this personality Archetype, is stern, and revengeful.
Her logic is destructive, as she is both firm and aggressive. She also
shows great practical wisdom in material things. Being adroit at
controversy,when affairs are controversial in nature, she shows great
cleverness and dexterity in the practical management of these affairs.
The Rider-Waite Tarot Deck holds to the oath bound medieval model, and thus is rather mundane in its depiction. A rather effeminate page is shown "swishing" his/her sword about in a cloudy sky. The Element of Air represents consciousness and the clouds represent emotions or Moods. Thus, the Rider-Waite card concentrates on the Mood fighter characteristics of this card.
the Page or Princess of Swords is thrown during a reading, it may represent:
- A young woman
with brown hair and blue eyes who shows great wisdom, strength,
acuteness, subtleness in material things, She is graceful and has great
- The querent's moods are out of bounds and clouding mental clarity.
- Defensiveness. This person is being defensive even to the point of being aggressive in defense.
- Stability of mind, as the querent has stabilized that which is volatile in the mind by recognizing the truth within.
- Is taking risks in life style and communication.
- Is able to cut through cloudy thoughts to get at the truth of a matter.
- Is experiencing the urge to action both impulsive and rash. This is a time of activity and starting new projects.
If ill dignified,
- She is both frivolous and cunning.
- Often she becomes incoherent as all her talents tend to combine forming a
species of low cunning. This produces a kind of mental slowness and
her mind becomes the prey of constant anxiety, crushed by every kind of
responsibility, especially in family affairs.
- She is either a mood
fighter or defensive to the point of rash decisions.
Thank you for your interest and comments. May you live long and prosper.