The Jack of Spades (JS) is a skillful, clever young man. In some of the older cartomancy meanings herepresents an unsettled, erratic, emotionally inconsistent young man; or simply the thoughts of the Queen or King of Spades. Although Jacks can represent young people of either sex, the Jack of Spades is most often read as a young male.
In coloring, the Suit of Spades is considered the darkest of the deck, and represents people with dark brown to black hair, and dark brown eyes.
Traditional meanings associated with the Jack of Spades:
A dark-haired, dark-complected youth
A youth from a foreign country
A youth in uniform; soldier or cadet
Skillful, clever youth
An intellectual youth; math whiz
Young leader; knows how to take charge
A youth in trouble
A gang leader
Juvenile delinquent; the bad kid at school
Cold and calculating youth
Gossiping, spying youth
Inconsistent, erratic, emotionally immature youth
Emotionally controlled and detached
Of course the meaning you choose for this card will depend on the surrounding cards as well as a good dose of your own intuition.
Some combinations with the JS:
JH/JS: The querent’s son or brother or boyfriend is in the military or is a rookie police officer.
Two Jacks: Quarrel or court case pending (especially with 5D)
Three Jacks: Boys night out
Four Jacks: Boys school, boy scouts, organization consisting of all young men
Modern Meanings for the Jack of Spades:
In modern Cartomancy, the Jack of Spades can represent watching and surveillance, in all of its many forms. This is based on the card’s traditional meaning as The Spiteful Spy.
Today’s article was inspired by a comment that was left by a reader of the blog. The reader’s question is both insightful and multi-layered. Because my answer is rather long winded, I decided to respond in a blog post rather than in the comment section. Here is the reader’s question:
You once said somewhere that readings go out to few months, what if I have a “will I ever” type of question such as will I ever have a family/see my ex bf again, can the cards go out that far? Also, if the cards are close to each other & of opposite sex but different suits, does that mean the connection is less significant? For example, I often draw out my ex bf (KD) next to QC in a future position. I’m assuming she’s the new gf. Sometimes, she comes out as the outcome or the middle card when I ask will I ever see him again. Even though QC could represent a friend, I am assuming here she is my rival not helping me. And in outcome position, I read this that he will choose her over me, even though they are not of the same suit. If you could, I’d appreciate to hear your perspective.
This brings up an interesting subject regarding fate vs free will in Cartomancy. Based on my own experiences, both in life and through card reading, I have come to believe that we are each born with a cosmic blueprint that can help us to navigate our lives. This spiritual road map is comprised of events that we are destined to experience. These events are what I speak of when I refer to fate.
Free will is the influence we can exert on these fateful events— how we choose to respond to the challenges, how we attempt to avoid the pitfalls, and how we make use of the opportunities placed in our path. The cards can provide guidance to help us make the best of these karmic influences.
I do find that the cards tend to be more reliable when predicting short-term events that can be influenced by free will. For this reason I set the intention when I read that a card spread will cover 3 to 6 months on average, and 8 months to a year on the outside. Beyond that time frame there are so many factors— actions and events and decisions— that may influence a future event. The cards tend to read the potential for a long-term event to occur based on the current energies only. A future action could change the course of events leading to an alternate potential outcome. This may result in less reliable accuracy in a long-range card reading.
On the other hand, the cards can be very reliable when predicting long-term events that are destined to be— or not to be. These tend to be major life experiences based on our soul contract with the universal energies. Despite the long time frame, the cards can show us how best to navigate these challenges— or blessings, and make the most of the lessons contained in these fateful events.
So questions such as “will I ever marry?” or “will I ever have children?” tend to deal with destiny, and can often be answered reliably even with an unrestricted outside time frame. Sometimes the cards will provide suggestions to help facilitate a desired outcome. For example, a pregnancy may only be possible with medical intervention, and the cards would highlight this fact in answer to the question of future children.
Regarding your readings on a possible reconciliation with your ex-boyfriend, it is difficult to make clear judgements without knowing all of the cards influencing these readings. The cards I look for to confirm a reconciliation are the 4 of Hearts (reunion) and/or the 7 of Hearts (second chances). Also the 6 of Hearts (karma) is an important card in relationship readings because it can show a past-life or karmic connection. Another important card to look for is the 9 of Spades (fate) which can also represent karma, and events that are destined to happen. The 9 of Clubs can confirm the correct spiritual path.
Based on your feedback, and assuming that you are generally represented by a different Queen in your readings, I would tend to agree with your assessment that the Queen of Clubs represents a current or future girlfriend. The fact that she appears in key positions in your spreads suggests to me that she is an impediment to a reconciliation.
I do read significance in the fact that she appears repeatedly as a Club. Whereas the Queen of Hearts would suggest commitment, the Queen of Clubs suggests more of a social relationship such as dating. Also, the Queen of Clubs could possibly represent social relationships in general with women. In other words, casual dating. Again, it is hard to say for sure based on the information you provided. The other thing to note is that the cards falling between your Ex and the Queen will provide a insight into the dynamics of their relationship.
If this situation were part of a reading for a client, I would suggest asking the cards how you might facilitate a reconciliation with your ex. The cards should provide good suggestions if the reconciliation is possible. Otherwise the reading will clearly show that the reconnection is not destined to be.
It is my sincere hope that you find my comments helpful, and that fate will bring the fulfillment of your desire.
I thought it might be helpful to take another look at my thought process for evaluating the court cards in a cartomancy reading. I have already posted several articles on how to read the face cards when they don’t represent people, but what about when they do?
Almost every question is influenced by one or more people other than the querent. In fact, I find that nine times out of ten the appearance of a face card in a reading will represent a specific person who is somehow involved in the situation.
I did not always interpret the interactions of the people in a reading based on the directions of the court cards in the spread. But over the last 10 years, I have found this practice to be strikingly accurate in determining the subtle dynamics of the players in any given situation.
The following relationship reading provides a nice example of how multiple face cards that represent real people can be highly revealing in a card spread.
The querent is a 24 year old woman who is in a long-term relationship. She is worried because her man has begun to act distant and casual. She asks if he has lost interest in her.
I immediately register the three black cards which suggest that the answer is “probably no.” The specific card meanings should tell me why. Then I note that three of the five cards in the spread are face cards. In order to understand the specific message in the cards, I need to determine who is who in the reading.
My eye is drawn at once to the King of Hearts situated in the important center position of the spread. He is a man who is loved. I instantly identify him as the querent’s boyfriend because he is the primary focus of the inquiry.
So who are represented by the two Jacks? How do two young men play into this picture? Like the Pages in Tarot, the mustachioed Jacks are gender fluid. They can sometimes represent young females (particularly when they are powerless in a situation), and in the context of this reading it makes more sense that they do.
This idea immediate suggests to me that one of them is likely the querent. But which? And more importantly who is the second woman? The 3 of Spades suggests deceit and a possible love triangle… best try to get clarification from the querent.
“I see another woman around your guy, ” I say.
The querent responds, “Oh, yeah. That’s probably his wife.”
Ah huh! I neglect to mention how this piece of information might have been helpful to know up front. Anyway, now the cards begin to make sense to me.
The Jack of Spades is often a rival in love readings, but who plays the rival? The wife is a rival for the affections of the querent’s lover, but the querent is also rival to the wife’s marriage.
Let’s take a look at the other jack, the Jack of Diamonds. The suit suggests a financial influence– someone who is tied financially to the King of Hearts. The 3 of Spades reveals deception around her. My impression is that the Jack of Diamonds represents the wife.
As I already mentioned, the focus of the reading is the man’s interests, so it also makes perfect sense to me that he would see the querent as a rival to re-establishing a connection with his wife (the wife falls directly next to him in his future).
Now that we have determined who is who in the reading, it is easy to see the dynamics of the situation. The 7 of Spades falling between the querent and her man shows a reversal in their relationship. The cards confirm the querent’s sense that the romance is cooling down.
The 7 of Spades is also the Card of addiction and dependence. This card falls between the querent and her man indicating an unhealthy codependent relationship between them. Notice the direction that the King faces. Despite trying to re-establish a connection with his wife, he is looking back toward the querent and his codependent connection with her. She stares longingly back at him.
So what to tell the querent? I prefer to give the unfavorable news first because once the querent hears what she hopes to hear, she is unlikely to register anything else I say.
I warn the querent that the relationship with this man is unhealthy– never mind the fact that he’s married! She admits that they are bound together by a sexual addiction from which neither can break free.
I suggest that she seek counseling to help her detach from this difficult situation. I also recommend the outstanding books by Melody Beattie that deal with breaking the bonds of codependency.
Now to answer the specific question… I advise the querent that the cards confirm this man is attempting to pull away in order to salvage his marriage which is in deep trouble. The 3 of Spades shows problems and deceptions in the future.
The wife looks away from the 3 of Spades. Her focus is on the man. She is either ignorant of the deceptions, or she chooses to ignore the marital problems.
Whatever the case, the man is motivated by financial concerns, and the wife is motivated by her love for her husband.
Despite these motivations, the cards confirm that the man is unable to break free from the affair with the querent. The simple answer is: no, he has not lost interest in her.
Oddly, the news lifts the querent’s mood considerably.
The 7 of Spades in Modern Cartomancy can warn of a challenging situation. It is not a card we hope to see, particularly in a love reading. Generally the 7 of Spades represents a setback or a reversal of fortune, and in relationship readings it invariably shows a cooling off of affections.
For example, the 4 of Hearts with the 7 of Spades would show a marriage or partnership on the rocks. There is a cooling of affections, and one or both parties feel frustrated and unfulfilled. This combination can also suggest that the partner drinks too much.
The 7 is Spades is the “drinking” card. It can denote imbibing alcohol or partaking of any kind of intoxicating substance including both prescription medications and illegal drugs. The combination 7 of Spades and Ace of Spades (the mind) can show intoxication. If the 4 of Spades is nearby, it can denote a hangover.
When surrounded by positive or neutral cards, the 7 of Spades can refer to social drinking or recreational drug use. With cards indicating a party or social interaction, the 7 of Spades will usually indicate that liquor will be a part of the celebration. The combination 7 of Spades with the 3 of Hearts can denote a cocktail party.
When the 7 of Spades falls between two Face Cards it shows the two people going out for drinks. If the 7 of Spades appears surrounded by multiple Face Cards, it shows a night out on the town with a group of people. A predominance of Clubs would indicate celebrating with co-workers. A predominance of hearts would show a night out with friends.
When falling with cards from the Club suit, denoting career or profession, the 7 of Spades can describe someone who works as a bartender, a barback, or a cocktail server. If the 2 of Diamonds is nearby, it would indicate that they work in a restaurant where liquor is also served.
The 7 of Spades is also the Card of addiction. Alcoholism or drug addiction is commonly represented by the combination 7 of Spades and 9 of Spades. The 9 of Spades shows something harmful (although this combination can also indicate that your prescription medication is causing you harm). If the 5 of Spades is nearby, it will show that others (family members, friends, etc.) can be hurt as well by the substance abuse.
The 7 of Spades is also a “water” card, but usually only in a negative sense.* It can predict anything from a faucet drip to a leaky pipe to an inconvenient rainstorm.
If you’re looking to purchase a home, and the cards show the 7 of Spades near the Ace of Hearts along with a money card, you can be sure that you’ll find a problem with the plumbing that will be costly to repair.
The absence of a big money card may simply indicate that the water heater needs replacement, especially if the 7 of Hearts is also present.
With Diamonds, the 7 of Spades will show financial setbacks. The surrounding cards will usually indicate the cause. If the 3 of Spades (loss) is nearby with a money card, it would show a gambling or trading losses.
In a general sense, the 7 of Spades is a card of stagnation and frustration.
When this card begins a line of cards, it indicates a long delay before the events outlined by the following cards can play out.
When the 7 of Spades ends a line of cards, it can show a lack of progress, or a stalled situation. It will usually indicate that events will not play out as you hoped.
When it appears in the middle of a line of cards, the 7 of Spades indicates that the preceding cards are blocked, and the following cards are delayed. If the subsequent cards are positive, the situation will require patience and perseverance to achieve the predicted outcome.
Whenever and wherever it appears, the 7 of Spades is rarely a welcomed sight. You can bet that patience and perseverance will be required to overcome a difficult period of setbacks and frustrations.
* The card that represents water in a positive sense, such as swimming or boating, is the 10 of Clubs.
I was asked to post an example reading where the answer based on the ratio of red to black cards contradicts the answer based on card meanings. This can happen when the querent has the power and ability to influence the situation. The cards have taught me that we all come into this life with a blueprint of our destiny, but along the way we have the freewill to influence how we fulfill that cosmic contract. The following reading illustrates this idea nicely.
The reading is for Marcella, a high school senior who has applied to a prestigious college across the country where she hopes to continue her education. The school in question is her primary choice, and she is anxious about getting accepted. Marcella asks, “Will I be accepted to the College?”
My first impression is of the predominance of black cards in the spread, immediately suggesting that acceptance is unlikely. I quickly peruse the cards to determine why. The 10 of Spades shows insecurity and fear. I also take note of the self-sabotaging Queen of Spades in the center of the spread. I see the queen as Marcella, and determine that it is her own fears creating a block in the situation. What does Marcella fear?
If we keep in mind that the main columns holding the reading together are the first, middle and final cards (1, 3, and 5), the source of the fear becomes clear. The 9 of Clubs reflects the fear indicated by the 10 of Spades, and the nine represents travel and movement and distance. Marcella has never been away on her own for any length of time, and the thought of leaving home makes her feel uncomfortable and insecure. This trio of cards will usually provide a concise answer to the question. With the 9 of Clubs as the outcome card, the reading suggests to me that if Marcellla can overcome the block (10 of Spades) by resolving her fears, there is potential for her to move forward (9 of Clubs) with her desire to attend the College.
This outcome is confirmed for me by the red cards in the spread. I always look for the cards to reflect the theme of the reading. The King of Diamonds is one of the cards that represents school and education for me, so I know that the cards are tuned into my question. So I take the King to represent the College, and the King reflects the 5 of Hearts which is an offer or opportunity. This five is one of the best cards in the deck because it can denote a dream come true. Unless it is accompanied by very unfavorable cards, it almost always gives a yes answer in a spread. In this case, surrounded by Spades, I read it as a strong maybe.
It looks to me that despite the predominance of black cards, there is excellent potential for Marcella to be offered a position by the school. This is one of those freewill situations that will depend on whether Marcella can resolve her fears. Otherwise she runs the risk of self-sabotaging this opportunity. Often when two red cards and three black show up in a spread, it will suggest that the querent has some power over the situation to affect the final outcome. That seems to be the case with this situation. The cards can indicate the current trends and probable outcome, but only Marcella can create her own future.
This reading was originally posted as an exercise on my Facebook page, Art of Cartomancy. Check out the post for additional insights into these cards. Most of the participants agree with my final answer, but also offer varied perspectives that are equally valid based on the card meanings and combinations.
"Going to the fortune teller's was just as good as going to the opera, and the cost scarcely a trifle more - ergo, I will disguise myself and go again, one of these days, when other amusements fail." - Mark Twain, Letter to Orion Clemens, February 6, 1861