Roses show up on these Tarot cards:
- The Two of Cups
- The Three of Pentacles
- The Queen of Pentacles
- The King of Pentacles
- The Nine of Swords
- The Two of Wands
- The Fool
- The Magician
- The Hierophant
Scroll down to see each card
Roses are a well-known symbol appearing on eleven individual cards on the well-known Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot artwork.
The symbols don't necesariliy show up in all, non-Rider Waite decks, but many newer Tarot decks often use variations of the same famous iconography.
Here's What roses symbolize in Tarot
Roses are some of the most common symbols in the iconic Rider-Waite Tarot deck. What can sometimes be confusing about interpreting roses different varieties of roses depicted on different cards.
Roses are some of the most common symbols in the iconic Rider-Waite Tarot deck
Each of these different varieties and colors carries a distinct meaning.
Most of the roses on Minor Arcana cards are basic red roses. These red roses represent potent masculinity, courage and passion. When red roses are mixed with white lily flowers (which represent feminine energy), the mixture symbolizes a synergy of powerful energies.
Iconic 5-petaled roses by contrast, have a different historic meaning and are associated with both the Rosicrucians and Freemasons.
Here Are the 11 Tarot Cards Where Roses Appear
The Two of Cups
The Three of Pentacles
NOTE: On the 3 of Pentacles Tarot card, the 5-petaled rose with carved cross is a reference to the iconic rose of early Freemasonry and of the Rosicrucian order from the 1600's. This type of rose represents the strength of the spirit above all other Earthly forces.
The Queen of Pentacles
NOTE: The traditional red roses in the Queen of Pentacles Tarot card are interesting because both the queen and the Suit of Pentacles are typically associated with the female gender. The presence of red roses, which are a sign of masculinity, suggests that there are traditional masculine energies at work here as well.
The King of Pentacles
The Nine of Swords
NOTE: The roses depicted on the quilt in the Nine of Swords Tarot card serve to communicate the gender of the sleepless figure, and give us a hint that the nightmares which keep him awake are the stuff of courage, conflict and male energies.
The Two of Wands
NOTE: The roses shown in the Two of Wands card are shown on a family-crest together with white lilies. This combination of male and female energies together with a noble crest, suggest a potent mix of hereditary power and birthright.
NOTE: The white rose held by the Fool is a symbol of purity and innocence. Interestingly, it is also a mirror of the white rose which appears on the Death card. This mirroring between the Fool and Death reminds us that the cliff edge, and the young man's potential doom, potentiall await him.
NOTE: The roses on the Magician card are mixed with white lilies, suggesting a potent alchemic mixture of male and female energies. Like everything on the Magician card, the message is mixture. All suits are represented here. Both Heaven and Earth are also referenced — and both genders are represented with both roses and lilies present.
NOTE: The roses which appear on the vestments of the clergyman on the left in the Hierophant card are a mirroring of the lillies worn by the monk to his right. This symbolic separation of purity from passion, and male from female, while kneeling before the Hierophant, implies a structure and control of traditional gender roles..
NOTE: In the Strength card, a beautiful female wears a garland of red roses. Roses in general terms suggest male energies, but in this case the roses are worn by an extremely feminine figure. This duality helps to accentuate the confidence and strength exhibited effortlessly by the woman in white.
NOTE: The white rose in the Death card is a subject of endless debate among Tarot scholars. The generally accepted explanation is that it indicates purity and transformation — while also referencing the 17th century five-petaled rose of the Rosicrucian order. The five-petaled rose signifies the transcendance of spirit over the physical world.
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Other Common Tarot Symbols
- Alchemy Symbols
- Boats and Ships
- Coats of Arms
- Fruits and Vegetables
- Green Fields
- Grey skies
- Hand Tools
- Infinity Symbols
- Manor Houses
- Pathways and Roads
- Ploughed Fields
- Pools of Water
- Rivers and Streams
- Turbulent Water
- Uneven Ground
- Yod Symbols
- The Divine Hand
- The Red Feather