Inverted Ten of Swords


Inverted Ten of SwordsWhile most traditional interpretations of this inverted card are hopeful, the image still shows, at the very least, discomfort.

Do you see this card as a bed of nails? You may feel like you are on pins and needles. Have you chosen lie down on this bed of nails? Do you believe you are scarred for life after a trauma or illness? Are you waiting for an illness or situation to return? Are you waiting for a relapse?

When you receive this card, look at where you have been. Compare it to where you are now and where you see yourself in the future. Believe the pen is mightier than the sword and journal about it. Trust your inner wisdom to speak truth to you. You have endured something that tried to destroy you. Do you need to live there? Do you need to go back? Write about it and live your life accordingly.


The Ten of Swords adds despair to surrounding cards.

Major Arcana

Lovers: If any cards from the suit of Swords come after the Lovers, it indicates the end of a relationship.

Minor Arcana

Five of Cups (Hearts): When the Ten of Swords is combined with the Five of Cups (Hearts in other decks), it indicates a lengthy depression. It might be wise to contact someone to help guide you through this period.

The Suit — Swords

The sword cuts and dissects. Swords represents the element of air. They are intellect. They are double-sided, which allows them to both damage and heal. The images in the suit might be alarming to some, but they are not simply aggressive. Yes, we can use blades to inflict pain, but we also use them to carve, shave, and trim.

Number — 10

Ten is a number of completion, harvest, and the end of a cycle.

The Inversion

There is nothing to fear with an inversion. Mary K. Greer explains in her book, The Complete Book of Tarot Reversals, that an inverted card may be interpreted in one or more of these twelve ways:

  1. Blocked or Resisted
  2. Projected
  3. Delayed, Difficult, Unavailable
  4. Inner, Unconscious, Private
  5. New or Dark Moon (if you are reading cards from a round deck)
  6. Breaking Through, Overturning, Refusing, Changing Direction
  7. The Opposite of the Upright Meaning, or Lacking
  8. Excessively
  9. Misused or Misdirected
  10. The Upright Meaning Backward
  11. A Rectification or Cure
  12. Magical, Unconventional, or Humorous

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