The tarot deck is divided into two parts:
The major arcana – made up of the main 22 recognizable cards.
The minor arcana – made up of four suites. (These suites are the the suites of cups, wands, swords, and pentacles. Each suite contains 14 cards.)
Obviously there are many, many more cards within the minor arcana than in the major arcana, but today we are only focusing on 14 of those cards or one entire suite. This suite is known as the suite of pentacles.
If you haven’t learned about the minor arcana as a whole, please refer to my post here before you continue on.
Differences and Similarities:
The suite of pentacles will have a total of 14 cards, which is: the ace of pentacles, the two of pentacles, the three of pentacles, the four of pentacles, the five of pentacles, the six of pentacles, the seven of pentacles, the eight of pentacles, the nine of pentacles, the ten of pentacles, the page of pentacles, the knight of pentacles, the queen of pentacles, and the king of pentacles.
The page, knight, queen, and king are all known as the court cards. One through ten, however, will take on a similar meaning as the other three one-tens in the other suites; because all of the numbers will carry a quality that is alike. It is the suites that will set them apart from the numbers and other court cards. On the other hand, all of the sword cards will have a similar quality and it will be the numbers that set them apart instead. You can look at it either or both ways.
The Suite of Pentacles are all about: money, jobs, the physical body, health, possessions, spending, earning, physical sensation, hard work, labor, property, running a business, saving, tangible items, material goods, hygiene, appearance, physical vitality, etc.
Why Do Pentacles Mean These Things?
To understand the answer to this question, we must understand the symbolism.
In the last three blogs, I explained how the suite of swords correlate to the element air and the thought process and speaking; while the suite of wands correlate to the element fire and courses of action and passion; and lastly, the suite of cups correlate to the element water and emotions or feeling. Pentacles, however, are related to the element earth and everything that is made of matter.
With our bodies, we work hard to earn money. Sometimes, we are fortunate enough to do jobs that require less physical labor. Either way, our bodies are either toned and worn or less fit, but without that wear and tear from hands-on work. Whatever job we perform, we generally do it because it earns us money and money is what we need to survive in our world. Without it, we struggle to make ends meet.
It is money, aka pentacles, that provide us with food, shelter, water, clothing, and everything necessary to stay alive. Cheaper quality food sometimes leads to unhealthy bodies. Lower income homes can put us at a higher risk of danger of harsh weather and loss of materials that we previously thought had kept us safe. Unfortunately, loss of those tangible goods are sometimes what it takes to humble us – grounding us to the earth in gratitude for the little we have left.
Pentacles are all the things you can hold in your hands. Pentacles are what you can see, taste, touch, smell, and hear. It’s everything we spend our money on; even on things we take for granted and or things we don’t need. Pentacles are our physical bodies, our health, and our work ethic. They are made up of materials and everything that exists in our physical world that will eventually turn to waste.
Pentacles = The Physical World = Earth
Pentacles Card Meanings:
Ace of Pentacles: New financial opportunity, new physical routine, going shopping, etc.
Two of Pentacles: Juggling priorities, working two jobs, easily overcoming setbacks, etc.
Three of Pentacles: working with a team, creative profit, collaborating, learning a new skill, etc.
Four of Pentacles: Attachment to materials, not willing to share wealth, possessions over people, etc.
Five of Pentacles: Job loss/conflict, financial crisis, illness or physical distress, extreme debt, etc.
Six of Pentacles: Giving to charity, spreading prosperity, working for a good cause, etc.
Seven of Pentacles: investing time or money toward goals paying off, being evaluated, etc.
Eight of Pentacles: Dedication to dreams, serious focus toward the pay off, seeing big picture, etc.
Nine of Pentacles: Beginning to see pay off of investments, comfort in security and prosperity, etc.
Ten of Pentacles: Long-term success, having built a solid foundation for life and family etc.
Page of Pentacles: Learning the value of money and working toward achieving dreams, etc.
Knight of Pentacles: Responsible even through challenges, but feels somehow inferior, etc.
Queen of Pentacles: Sensible, mature, and practical with money, enjoys home life, giving, etc.
King of Pentacles: Prefers saving, is successful and mature, enterprising to abundance, etc.
-From Within the Labyrinth,