Four of Cups Tarot Card

The Tarot Suit of Cups

The Tarot Suit of Cups is associated with the suit of Hearts in standard playing cards.

The cups depicted on tarot cards are usually, but not necessarily, in the style of ceremonial cups, chalices, or goblets. There are meanings associated with each of the suits in a tarot deck, as well as the more specific interpretations associated with each individual card and the yet more precise meanings of particular cards in particular locations within spreads.

The suit of cups is associated with the element of water. It is also associated with the season of autumn (or 'fall' in U.S. English), and with the direction West.

Cups concern emotions, love, romance, the wide range of emotions, mastery of emotions and feelings, and 'gut reactions' that call upon our intuitive as opposed to intellectual abilities and development.

The 'Fours' in the tarot deck are cards that begin to define a situation and set relevant boundaries. These incorporate order and structure, though not repression of expression or self-discovery.

In the case of the 4 of Cups the boundaries are of a mental or emotional nature and concern self-examination of how and why we feel the way we do, and what, exactly, we hope to achieve. Some popular decks such as the Rider-Waite and Robin Wood decks, illustrate a lone figure in a contemplative pose on the 4 of Cups tarot card. However, other decks, for example, the Elemental Tarot illustrate completely different symbolism, indicating e.g. claustrophobia and uncertainty, perhaps about feelings concerning the question or subject of the reading.

The 4 of Cups Tarot Card might appear as a suggestion that the querent dedicate the necessary time to identifying and resolving his or her conflicting emotions about the issue before trying to resolve it. Perhaps the real issue has not yet become clear and it is important that it be fully recognised and understood before progress can be made.


Keywords and phrases for some of the possible interpretations of the 4 of Cups Tarot Card include:

  • Contemplation
  • Introspection
  • Rejection of gifts offered
  • Search for understanding
  • Self-awareness
  • Solitude
  • World-weariness.

Robin Wood Tarot Deck Celtic Tarot - Tarot Cards and Book Radiant Rider-Waite Tarot Deck The Gilded Tarot (Book and Tarot Deck Set) Angel Tarot Cards

What about the Four of Cups Reversed ?

Some interpretations of the meaning of the 4 of Cups reversed include:

  • Time to get moving rather than wallow in self-pity
  • There may be opportunities available just waiting to be noticed and pursued
  • Reluctance to express one's true feelings

Tarot Articles:

Tarot Card Games - for, against and examples

Learning to Read Tarot Cards

20 Steps to reading Tarot Cards

Why use Free Printable Tarot Cards?

List of Tarot Card Meanings

Origins of the Tarot Nouveau - or 'French Tarot'

Learning Tarot

Uses of Tarot Cards

If you don't set aside time to meditate and be still, is it not all the more difficult for awareness of the Angelic Realm to reach you ?

Although care has been taken when compiling this page, the information contained might not be completely up to date. Accuracy cannot be guaranteed. This material is copyright. See terms of use.

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