Nine of Swords – Tarot Love Relationship Outcome & Reversed


Nine of Swords - Tarot Love Relationship Outcome & Reversed

Nine of Swords – Love and Relationship Outcome

The Nine of Swords in a Tarot reading indicates that the person has given up on relationships and may as well become a monk or that they have found religion with which they bring religious dogma.

In the reversed position you have good reason to be suspicious of the person you are concerned about as they may be a shady character.

Nine of Swords – As a Person, Outcome and Feelings

Dogma, dogmatism, ecclesiastic spirit, scholastic mind, creed, rite, ritual, ceremonial. The persons representing these. Hard judgment, orthodoxy, rigid attitude of mind, ascetism. Intolerance, inquisition. The ‘fear of God’ may well be turned into hatred of mankind. In weak cases there may be swearing, atheism, agnosticism, shyness, miscarriage, shame, false evidence given, error of judgment. In strong cases the mind is scrupulous, conscientious, and in strict accord with time and fashion. A. E. Thierens, [1930]

Nine of Swords

Pictorial Key to the Tarot – Rider-Waite-Smith
By A.E. Waite (1911), tarot card illustrations by Pamela Colman Smith (1911)


One seated on her couch in lamentation, with the swords over her. She is as one who knows no sorrow which is like unto hers. It is a card of utter desolation.

Meanings Nine of Swords in a Reading

Death, failure, miscarriage, delay, deception,disappointment, despair.

Nine of Swords – Reversed

Imprisonment, suspicion, doubt, reasonable fear, shame.

Additional Divinatory Meanings
An ecclesiastic, a priest; generally, a card of bad omen.

Additional Meanings – Reversed
Good ground for suspicion against a doubtful person.

The Tarot

By S. L. MacGregor Mathers, c 1888

Nine of Swords

Divinatory Meanings
Nine of Swords – An Ecclesiastic, a Priest, Conscience. Probity, Good Faith, Integrity.

Divinatory Meanings – Reversed
Wise distrust, Suspicion, Fear, Doubt, Shady character.

General Book of the Tarot

By A. E. Thierens, [1930]

Nine of Swords

A bachelor, priest, clergyman, hermit; monastic order, monastery, church; religion or cult; devotion, rite, ritual, ceremony. Another version says: “Death, failure, miscarriage, delay, deception, disappointment, despair.” (Waite) Reversed: Justified doubt, fear or mistrust, scruple, shame, imprisonment; timidity, pudor.

On the house of Sagittarius, the Ninth, the element of Earth must of course relate to the earthy side of religion, i.e. the material expressions of it, to the more heavy, earthy, materialistic mind and its ideas about religion, ethics, etc. It is not very flattering for priesthood in general, perhaps, that from this sort of condition have come so many of those who call themselves ecclesiastics, but still it is natural, because the ‘ecclesia,’ which has been built upon the rock (Petrus = Capricorn,) is served by the teachers or inspirers of it, to be found in the preceding house. In lay language this means: the expression of religion, of ideals and ideas, descending into matter, taking material shape and culminating in the church or monastery, which, however, come under the tenth house, and into dogma and creed under the ninth. Under the latter’s influence are the representatives of dogma and creed, viz. priest, officiant, monastic or monk. It is fairly sure, that from the essence of this card arises inquisition and every sort of intolerance, religious intolerance above all, because the materialistic mind thinks itself in possession of the only expression of Truth, and condemns every other. So this card nay also indicate all sorts of hard judgment, rigid attitudes of mind, orthodoxy. For this indeed is the meaning of materialism in religion and ethics. When the material expression of truth and ideals is at its height, it reaches the value of rite and ritual or religious ceremony, which at its best stands in relation to dogmatism as the jewel to simple stones or dry sand.

The Oracle of the Tarot – Exoteric Tarot

By Paul Foster Case (1933)

Nine of Swords
The crescent on the ankh refers to the Qabalistic attribution of the number 9 to the Sphere of the Moon.

Time period
The second decanate of Gemini, under the rulership of Venus, from May 31st to June 9th.

Faithfulness, obedience, unselfishness, patience; fortunate news about legal affairs or partnerships, especially if the outcome has been delayed or in doubt; aid or gain through relatives, short journeys, or writings, but not until the Querant has passed through a period of more or less uncertainty and worry; ultimate good fortune resulting from a series of events which present unfavorable appearances at first.

Despair, cruelty, unfaithfulness; want, loss, misery; bad outcome of legal affairs, disagreements with relatives, unfortunate journeys.


Further reading

More information on the Nine of Swords Tarot card.