- Number: IV
- Folk Name(s): The King
All tarot cards appears differs between decks, the uniqueness of the deck reflecting on the cards.
The Emperor sits on a ram-adorned throne, a symbol of Mars. He holds an Ankh scepter in his right hand, and a globe, symbol of domination, in his left. The Emperor sits atop a stark, barren mountain, a sign of "sterility of regulation, and unyielding power." He symbolizes the top of the secular hierarchy, the ultimate male ego. The Emperor is the absolute ruler of the world.
The Emperor symbolizes the desire to rule over one's surroundings, and its appearance in a reading often suggests that the subject needs to accept that some things may not be controllable, and others may not benefit from being controlled.
As with all Tarot cards, multiple meanings are possible. Where the Empress is the Feminine principle, the Emperor is the Masculine. Most individuals will relate to this card in the same way they relate to their own father.