The Minor Arcana

The Four Suits of the Tarot

the minor arcana tarot cards artwork by vanessa hylande

The Minor Arcana of the Tarot is comprised of four suits: Cups, Swords, Wands, and Pentacles. Each suit represents an element and has a specific astrological association. The Cups suit represents the element of water, the Swords suit represents air, the Wands suit represents fire, and the Pentacles suit represents earth. The Minor Arcana cards often provide specific details and insights into a situation or question in a tarot reading, while the Major Arcana cards offer more overarching themes and messages.

The Cups suit is associated with emotions, love, and intuition. Cups cards often indicate matters related to relationships, creativity, and spirituality. In astrology, Cups are associated with the water signs: Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces. When Cups cards appear in a reading, they often suggest the need for emotional healing, the importance of compassion and empathy, and the exploration of inner feelings.

The Swords suit represents the intellect, communication, and truth. Swords cards often indicate matters related to conflict, decision-making, and mental clarity. In astrology, Swords are associated with the air signs: Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius. When Swords cards appear in a reading, they often suggest the need for clear communication, the importance of logic and reason, and the need to face and resolve conflicts.

The Wands suit represents creativity, passion, and inspiration. Wands cards often indicate matters related to career, personal growth, and taking action towards goals. In astrology, Wands are associated with the fire signs: Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius. When Wands cards appear in a reading, they often suggest the need to be proactive, take risks, and embrace one’s passions.

The Pentacles suit represents material possessions, finances, and practicality. Pentacles cards often indicate matters related to career, money, and the physical world. In astrology, Pentacles are associated with the earth signs: Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn. When Pentacles cards appear in a reading, they often suggest the need for practicality, hard work, and financial stability.

Overall, the Minor Arcana cards provide a detailed and nuanced perspective on a situation or question in a tarot reading. By understanding the symbolism and associations of each suit, tarot readers can gain deeper insights into the messages and guidance of the cards.


The Cups of the Minor Arcana represent the element of Water – your emotions. Therefore, this suit is associated with love, feelings and all of the emotions we feel.

Astrologically, the suit of Cups corresponds to the water signs of the zodiac – Pisces, Cancer, Scorpio. Cups are related to the heart chakra.


Pentacles represent the element of earth – abundance in the physical world. These cards can indicate money and wealth, but also other kinds of abundance.

The Earth element pertains to things in our physical world that bring us a sense of physical safety and wellbeing. Therefore, the suit of Pentacles corresponds to the Earth signs of the zodiac – Taurus, Capricorn, Virgo. Pentacles are related to the root chakra.


The Suit of Swords correspond to the mind, the Air element. This element rules thoughts, ideas, communication, and decisions.

Therefore, Swords are often associated with news and also states of being where our thinking is influencing us, such as anxiety or over analyzing things. The Swords are associated with the air signs of the zodiac – Libra, Aquarius and Gemini. Swords are related to the throat chakra.


The Wands represent the Fire element – the element of passion in all forms. This can be passion of a romantic nature, but also applies to action, initiative and inspiration.

Therefore, the Fire element indicates motivation and drive to do or accomplish something, and is related to the fire signs of the zodiac – Aries, Leo, Saggitarius. Wands are related to the solar plexus and sacral chakras.