The Empress

III: The Empress

fertility productivity ripeness nurturing

A matriarchal goddess, a beautiful earthy woman - experience of being part of nature and rooted in natural life, the appreciation of the senses and the simple pleasures of daily existence. Without this Great Mother within us, we can bring nothing to fruition, here is patience and gentleness to wait until the time is ripe for action. She governs the orderly rules of the seasons and the laws of the cosmic, she gives birth of new life, is initiative and has an eye for details. She is a caring and protecting wife and virgin, accepting the responsibility of own feelings, she has strength which nourishes and sustains. There is sweetness, passionate love and a playful erotic invitation to dance.
Inverse: Stagnation of the spirit, apathy, mourning mother, which crush all possibility of change, full of bitterness and resentment because life requires change and separation and endings must occur.



  • Nurturing yourself and others.
  • Bearing fruit.
  • Celebrating your body.
  • Bearing (literal or figurative) children.
  • Reveling in luxury.
  • Mothering those around you in positive ways.
  • Enjoying your sexuality.
  • Getting things done.
  • Shadow

    • Overindulging.
    • Being greedy.
    • Smothering someone with attention.
    • Debilitating someone by being overprotective.
    • Inhibiting productivity by obsessing on productivity.
    • Being overcome by addictive behavior.
    • Symbolism


      The familiar planetary symbol for Venus often appears in illustrations for Trump 3, stressing the Empress's association with domesticity, motherhood, and female sexuality. What course of action might these themes suggest?

      The scepter and crown

      The Empress's scepter (a symbol of authority) is topped by a cross and an orb, a sign of earthly dominion. In RWS-influenced images, the Empress wears a diadem of 12 stars, suggesting her dominion over the circle of the year. What do you have dominion over?

      The cushioned throne

      Unlike the rigid stone throne of the Emperor, the Empress is often depicted on a cushioned throne, emphasizing themes of luxury. How might themes of comfort or indulgence impact your situation?


      A universal sign for fertility is pregnancy; in many decks, the Empress is pregnant, emphasizing themes of fertility and productivity. In your situation, what outcome struggles to be born?

      The rushing stream

      Unlike the vast, still, reflective body of water often shown behind the Priestess, the Empress is often seen near a rushing stream or waterfall. Is it time to put your intuition into motion?

      The Empress' Advice


      • Without going overboard, revel in your sensuality.
      • Take care you don't produce more than you intended; the moment is pregnant with possibility.
      • Be lavish with demonstrations of affection.
      • Watch for what a friend or partner needs, and then supply it in abundance.


      • Now is the time to get things done.
      • Wrap up projects.
      • Ask for resources.
      • Meet deadlines.
      • Move ahead.
      • During this time of growth and expansion, be sure you have the skills and training you need.
      • In the meantime, don't mistake a headlong rush for focused, verifiable progress.


      • Women are the figurative and literal door to this world.
      • This moment, too, can be a door for you - a threshold you cross into a new awareness.
      • Watch for physical ways to express your spiritual insights.
      • Reconnect with nurturing, feminine images of divinity, including nature.

      Personal Growth

      • Your attitudes toward women (and your insights into your own feminine qualities) are likely rooted in early experiences.
      • How can you emulate the best female role models you've encountered?
      • How can you transcend female influences that harm or hold you back?

      Fortune Telling

      • Pregnancy is in the cards.
      • An opportunity to be involved in luxurious sexuality is coming.
      • Beware a tendency toward addiction.


      • Within seven and one-half months.

      Questions to ask

      • What would a concerned and capable mother do?
      • What can I do that would emphasize growth?
      • How can I celebrate my own sensuality and sexuality?

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      Major Arcana

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      Parts of this page's description of the The Empress tarot card are taken from "A Guide to Tarot Card Meanings" by Mark McElroy.