The Hierophant Tarot Card Meanings & Combinations
V The Hierophant Correspondences:
Astrology: Associated with Taurus
Keywords & phrases:
Tradition and convention, conformity, conservative, institutions.
Hierophant Tarot Card Meanings
Traditionally this card was known as The Pope (Le Pape.) The English Oxford dictionary defines hierophant as, “A person, especially a priest, who interprets sacred mysteries or esoteric principles,” which broadens the brushstroke slightly. (I’m always asked about the name.) Whichever title, the image is usually consistent to the appearance of a religious leader.
The Hierophant Tarot card indicates following a conventional path and the traditional values of our culture or society. It can also represent the traditional family unit, or marriage, particularly when appearing with other marriage cards.
This is a card of conforming to certain standards and an accepted set of structures, principles, and expectations; it’s usually conservative in nature. ‘The Establishment,’ large institutions or organisations that have set systems or ways of doing things that are not easily open to change are often indicated by this card: the church, educational establishments, government, charities, hospitals, even large corporations.
The Hierophant may also suggest a wise teacher or mentor, someone we hold in high regard that can provide guidance and knowledge. With the Hierophant we follow the path and work within the rules, tow the line, and do what is expected from us within guiding morals and principles.
If reversed or badly aspected it may show feeling restricted by structure or a dogmatic approach, lacking moral fibre or principles, unorthodox behaviour or rejecting conformity, losing faith, or corrupt officials.
Similar or supporting cards: The wisdom of The Hermit, sometimes the structure of The Emperor. Marriage and family cards would strengthen that association.
Opposing or contradictory cards: The Fool (free spirit and adventurous) The Hanging Man (thinking outside the box, unconventional) The Devil (excess, not following moral codes).
Hierophant Tarot Card Combinations:
When appearing together with other marriage cards it would strengthen the association, such as: Ten of Cups, The Lovers, Two of Cups, Four of Wands, Three of Cups, The Empress. The Ten of Pentacles, Ace of Pentacles (sometimes Justice), may also be included as supportive for what they represent, (but not in isolation). There are quite a lot of different combinations that can indicate marriage but the ordering or flow of the cards is usually the important factor, when reading in a simple line from left to right.
Four of Wands > The Hierophant > Three of Cups: Church wedding, or religious ceremony of marriage, (see above for other cards supporting marriage).
Eight of Pentacles > The Hermit > The Hierophant: Place of study, knowledge and wisdom, University or education establishment.
> Temperance > Four of Swords: May indicate hospital.
> Ten of Pentacles: Traditional home and family unit, in reverse order may feel duty bound to do the right thing for family obligations.
> King of Queen of Pentacles >: (before or after) bank manager or official
> King or Queen of Swords >: (before or after) Government official
> Emperor > Justice: These three together (in any combination) indicate a situation dealing with higher authorities, government, law of the land, etc.
You'll find more information to help you in Easy Tarot: Learn to Read the Cards Once and For All! book and card set.
Available from bookshops, Llewellyn, Amazon.com, & UK.
Material provided here is in addition and complementary to the kit. Copyrighted material displayed with permission of Llewellyn. Please see my notes regarding combinations and reversals on the main index page.