The Emperor Tarot Card Meanings

Generally, an Emperor is the ruler of the whole empire which includes several kingdoms and has a higher rank in comparison to the king

the emperor tarot card


The Emperor is the 4th Major Arcana card among all the other 22 Major Arcana cards. On this card, a stoic rule is seen sitting on the large stone throne, adorned with the four rams’ heads, which symbolizes his connection with the Aries or planet Mars. The ruler is seen wearing a red-coloured robe, which symbolizes his power, authority, passion, energy, and strength. Under the red robe, he is wearing a suit of armour, specifying that he is protected from any threat and vulnerability. In his right hand, he holds an ankh, which symbolizes life as per the Egyptian culture. In his left hand, he holds an orb, representing the world over which he rules. Some also assume that the Emperor holds an orange-coloured fruit in his left hand, which symbolizes that despite his strong side, the Emperor has an emotional side too, which he usually hides from the world. He has a long white-coloured beard, symbolizing his experience with the hardships of life. On his head, he wears a golden-coloured crown, symbolizing that he is at the topmost authority, who rules his empire. It also symbolizes an old man with great powers and authority. Behind him, the barren mountains signify his greater ambitions, desires to achieve his goals and his leadership qualities. Below the mountains, there is a river, which signifies that despite his strong rough nature, he has an emotional side too. It takes a lot of effort to gain his trust to open his emotional side.


  • Power and Authority
  • Stability
  • Logical and Practical
  • Older Man
  • Fatherhood
  • Father-Figure
  • Control
  • Establishment

General Meaning

In general, this card symbolizes authority, powers, control, organization, and fatherhood. As a person, it symbolizes a strong strategic thinker, who is mature enough to take the correct and logical decisions in life. He is a powerful, wealthy, and strong man, who is rigid and stubborn by nature. The children of the emperor may struggle a lot because of the high expectations of the emperor from them. He has rational thinking, who usually gives the logical advice. With the hardships of life, he has gained a lot of experience and wants others to follow his advice. It also signifies that the right time has come in your life, to be emotionally strong, to be stable and act strongly to make your dreams come true.

Upright Position

the emperor-upright position

If ‘The Emperor’ appears in your spread, it usually signifies a male-figure, an old one, who is a powerful leader, possessing control over the others. Status, powers, and authority are important for him. He is an emotionally strong person who hardly expresses his emotional side or his secrets to anyone. He is a keen observer, who considers each fact, to make any decision. The experiences of life have made him so smart that it’s difficult to fool him. He has a clear vision of what exactly he wants in his life and works hard to make his dreams come true. If it’s not related to any person, then this card signifies that it’s high time to be strong. You have to think logically and practically to make any decision in your life. Stop showing your emotional side to anyone, as people will only try to take advantage of that. Be patient, consider each fact before making any decision. You are a born leader and the right time has arrived to make your law and rules by applying your principles and guidelines.

Reversed Position

the emperor-reversed position

The reversed card has several meanings, depending upon its placement