The Cups class cards (the same class in Tarot) deal with the emotional level of consciousness and are associated with love, feelings, relationships and connections.
These cards are associated with the element of water. In many images of these cards you will see bodies of water, or liquid within the cups themselves. Water is fluid, agile and ‘in flow' but it's also very powerful and formative. It can be soft and gentle, like waves lapping against the sandy shore, or it can be powerful and even forceful, like a raging river.
The element of water is symbolic of fluidity, feelings and emotions, intuition, relationships, healing, and cleansing. It is a feminine element and reflects the subtle power that often resides within women. It is receptive, adaptable,purifying and flowing.
Each of the Court cards are represented by Monks, a type of warrior that embodies the ebb and flow of water in their movements.
The King of Cups is an old Monk, standing in a focused pose wearing a blue tunic with a faded cup – a symbol of his authority and status. In his upraised hand he holds a metal rod with two cups attached, representing emotion,power and control. He doesn’t look at his cups, his focus is inward instead; perhaps he has already mastered his emotional self and doesn’t need to concentrate as hard on this facet of himself. The King of Cups stands upon a stable dock, but then we see a turbulent see. Behind him on his right, a whale jumps out of the ocean, while on the left, a ship sails steadily despite the waves. These images show that this King stays calm and balanced, even in turbulent conditions, and has learned how to stay open to his emotions and unconscious impulses, without being overwhelmed by them. He keeps power and control while balancing his feelings.
King of Cups
Emotionally balanced, compassionate, diplomatic.
The Queen of Cups is a beautiful, introspective woman who sits on a throne at the edge of the sea. In one hand she holds a Cup, and stares into the distance. showing that the Queen’s thoughts and feelings come from her subconscious mind and the depths of her soul. She sits upon a stone throne decorated with images of a sea-nymph, fish, and a scallop shell backing. The sea and fish are symbols of the unconscious mind, and water represents emotion, spirit and perception. A cloudless, bright-blue sky and placid water of the sea surround her. Her feet do not touch the water; they rest above colorful pebbles on the shore. It is as if she is connected to her emotions (as represented by the water), but not overwhelmed by them.
Queen of Cups
Compassionate, caring, emotionally stable, intuitive, in flow.
In the Knight of Cups, a knight rides on a camel and holds out a golden cup as if he bears a message from the heart. Over his camel he sits upon a blanket covered with images of fish, the symbol of water, consciousness and creativity. His hat and shoes are winged, a symbol of an active and creative imagination and an appreciation for beautiful things. Unlike the Knight of Staves or the Knight of Blades, the mount in the Knight of Cups is not charging forward but instead moves slowly and gracefully, giving an air of calmness and peace. The camel represents power, energy and drive.
Knight of Cups
Creativity, romance, charm, imagination, beauty.
The Page of Cups is a Monk wearing a bluecape with a Cup sewn on it, and a red neck scarf. She stands on a rock on the shore, with the wavy sea behind her. Surprisingly, a dolphin is jumping in the air, pointed towards the Monk. The dolphin and the sea behind her represent the element of water and all things to do with creativity, intuition, feelings and emotions. The unexpected appearance of the dolphin signifies that creative inspiration often comes out of the blue and only when you are open to it.
Page of Cups
Creative opportunities, intuitive messages, curiosity, possibility.
Ten of Cups
On the Ten of Cups, a loving couple stands together, arms intertwined as they enjoy a fulfilling life. They look towards a church on the hill and a beautiful rainbow in the sky promising a happy future. These two have true, everlasting love and have everything they could ever wish for – and they share this bond with the people around them. The people who have come together to help save Questeros, all from different walks of life. The church symbolizes stability and comfort, while the grassy hills signify fertility and the river marks the flow of emotion. The rainbow signals the end of difficult times and is a sign from the Divine that everything will be okay. The idyllic scene is one of true emotional fulfillment and Divine love.
Divine love, blissful relationships, harmony, alignment.
In the Nine of Cups, a man sits on a wooden bench. He is comfortable with this simple furniture, and with his surroundings. His arms are crossed, and he has a smile on his face, expressing contentment and satisfaction. Behind him is a curved structure draped in blue material, with nine golden cups arranged in an arch. The cups represent emotional fulfillment after you carry out your deepest desires.
Nine of Cups
Contentment, satisfaction, gratitude, wish come true.
In the Eight of Cups, the Druid walks away from the eight cups standing in the foreground. The cups are arranged in such a way that it looks like one is missing, a sign that emotional fulfilment and wholeness is lacking. The man has turned his back on these cups with a sense of loss and disappointment and shuffles towards his refuge in the mountains. A nearby river symbolises his turbulent emotions, and the mountains represent the awareness that this will not be an easy journey (though it will be necessary for true long-term happiness). The moon in the night’s sky illuminates the path ahead – the man is leaving in the dead of night hoping to go unnoticed, suggesting that there may be a level of escape or avoidance in this card.
Eight of Cups
Disappointment, abandonment, withdrawal, escapism.
In the Seven of Cups, a Monk stands before seven cups filled with various gifts. Some cups bear desirable gifts such as a daimond and a wreath of victory. But others hold gifts that are not gifts at all; instead, they are curses, such as the snake or dragon. The clouds and the cups symbolise the man’s wishes and dreams, and the different gifts inside suggest that you need to be careful what you wish for as not everything is as it seems. Choices need to be made, but in doing so, you must go beyond illusion and allure, and instead focus on what’s right for you.
Seven of Cups
Opportunities, choices, wishful thinking, illusion.
In the Six of Cups, a young Ero the Goblin leans down and passes a cup filled with flowers to a young girl. The girl looks up to the goblin with love and respect as he offers the flowers to her. She does not fear his green skin or different appearance, she accepts him for what he is. Love, harmony and co-operation – all key elements of the Six of Cups – shine through this gentle act. The young child also represents childhood memories. In the background, an older man walks away in the distance, as if to say you no longer need to worry about adult issues; just enjoy the moment of being young, innocent and free again. Ero and the child appear to be standing in the courtyard of a large home, symbolising comfort, safety and security. In the foreground stand four more cups filled with flowers, and a fifth cup sits on a tree stump behind the girl.
Six of Cups
Revisiting the past, childhood memories, innocence, joy.
The Five of Cups shows the Necromancer in a long black cloak looking down on three cups that have been knocked over – symbolic of his disappointments and failures. Behind him stand two cups representing new opportunities and potential, but because he is so fixed on his losses (the over-turned cups), he misses the opportunities available to him In the background, a bridge crosses a large, flowing river and leads to the security of the castle or home on the opposite side of the riverbank – if only he can move on from the over-turned cups. The bridge is a message to 'build a bridge and get over it!'.
Five of Cups
Regret, failure, disappointment, pessimism.
The Four of Cups shows Ero the goblin sitting under a tree with his arms crossed, deep in contemplation and meditation. He is so engrossed in his thoughts that he does not seem to notice a fairy offering him a cup. Another three cups stand at his feet, but again, he doesn’t seem to notice or care about these new opportunities either.
Ero is focused, content, and ready to continue his journey after this moment of inner peace.
Four of Cups
Meditation, contemplation, apathy, reevaluation.
In the Three of Cups, three fairies are gathered with each other in a circle, raising their cups high in the air in a toast of joy and celebration. They look to one another with appreciation, honor and respect, and are bound by their emotional connection and friendship. There is a sense of lifting each other up and celebrating each fairies unique contribution to the group. The ground is layered with flowers and blueberries, and large pumpkins are around them, symbolizing the celebration of an abundant harvest and the goodness in life.
Three of Cups
Celebration, friendship, creativity, collaborations.
The Two of Cups shows the elven Ranger and the human Assassin, exchanging cups and pledging their love for one another. Between them, in the background, a symbol of Caduceus of Hermes stands – a winged staff with two snakes wrapped around it – the ancient symbol of commerce, trade, and exchange. Above the couple is a statue of a lion embedded in a bridge, signifying passion and fire energy and suggesting that there may be a lot of fiery, sexual energy between these two people.
Two of Cups
Negative thoughts, self-imposed restriction, imprisonment, victim mentality
Unified love, partnership, mutual attraction
The One of Cups shows a chalice overflowing with five (being edited) streams of water. The cup represents the vessel of your subconscious mind; the five streams are your five senses and the abundant emotion and intuition flowing from within you. The hand holding the cup is sliding out of the clouds, a symbol of your awareness of spiritual energy and influence. Below the hand is a vast sea covered with lotus blossoms, signifying the awakening of the human spirit. A hummingbird descends towards the cup – a symbol of Divine love flowing through the subconscious mind to conscious awareness.
One of Cups
Love, new relationships, compassion, creativity.