When you look at the interactions (see below), it is clear the Death card is about endings, negations, and cancellations. There are instances of it foretelling the end of a life, but much of the time it is simply about stopping. This might be an abrupt ending or the final change after something peters out. It is not necessarily loss. An end can be a relief. It can feel like pruning back what no longer serves the situation.
This card is reminding you that something is ending, or has already. That thing has the potential to nourish the soil and fertilize new seeds. We always carry bits of our pasts with us, either consciously or unconsciously. These small deaths make room for and enrich life. You may feel like mourning or rejoicing. Mark this time in your life. Thank what came before it. It taught you. What you feel now is the doorway between what was and what will be. Touch it as you walk through.
In a spread, Death can interact with many of the Major Arcana. It cancels some cards and signifies the end of something with others.
Magician: In the Celtic Cross spread, if the the Magician (Cobbler in other decks) and Death are opposite each other in the fifth and tenth positions, an event will be canceled. In any spread, when the two cards are next to each other, they cancel each other out.
Empress: When the Empress is inverted in combination with Death, the two cards cancel each other out.
Lovers: If Death comes after the Lovers, a marriage or romance will end.
Strength: If Death comes before Strength, there will be an abrupt ending. If Death comes after Strength, it indicates a serious, but not fatal illness.
Hanged Man: When Death is combined with the Hanged Man, it suggests a major sacrifice or regret following the end of something.
Tower: If Death comes with the Tower, it indicates a crisis. If the Tower is inverted this crisis will be narrowly avoided.
Moon: If Death comes after the Moon, it suggests slander will cause some sort of loss.
Sun: If Death comes after the Sun, there will be a triumph through something ending.
World: If Death is in the same spread as the World, in any position, it suggests the fall of a national leader or a world epidemic.
The Major Arcana
The twenty-two cards of the Major Arcana tend to hold the big lessons. These cards carry powerful messages. If you are reading a spread of cards, watch for the Major Arcana. If your spread contains more than 30% Major Arcana, you are in the midst of something big, or beyond your control. If most of the cards in the spread are from the Major Arcana, you might be trying to exert too much control. You might have trouble expressing your feelings, or you might be near your breaking point. A spread without any Major Arcana cards could indicate you are hiding from the truth of the issue, or are in some deep distress. If this is the case, it is important to find someone you can trust to guide you through this period of time. In a spread, focus most of your attention on the Major Arcana. The other cards will be useful for clarifying the situation.
Number — 13 which resolves to 4
Four is a number of order, foundation, and stability.