The court of The Crux Tarot is much different visually than a traditional deck. However, they can be interpreted in both a modern and traditional fashion. The Crux abandons all imagery of people, all reference to gender, and all hierarchy in its court. No queens or kings, only elements.

In place of traditional titles, the elements rule the cards. This puts the emphasis on the intersection of different elemental energies, instead of gender roles and hierarchy. This makes every court card more inclusive, and equally valued. A Page can be seen as inherently less skilled or powerful than a King, but all elements are on equal footing.

Some readers associate Knights with fire and Kings with air, while others associate them with the opposite element. Using an elemental court with no reference to its traditional counterpart allows the cards to not conflict with your personal perspective on the traditional court.

These cards are not titled, so call them whatever you wish. However if you are used to the traditional gendered system, I would encourage you to explore the elemental system presented here.

Interpreting the court

The court of The Crux Tarot acts as a bridge between the powerful, almost unreal archetypes of the major arcana, and the mundane and physical minor arcana. Because of this there is no hierarchy, simply comparison of energies.

The court types are named after their elements: Mountains (earth), Flames (fire), Waves (water), and Winds (air). These categories represent the larger than life presence of elements, manifesting as forces beyond our control. The suits in comparison represent what is within our control, what can be held and manipulated.

This opens up the door for many interpretations of the cards. The court elements can represent goals, callings, expectations, intentions, and ideals. The suits can represent offerings, tasks, expressions, commitments, and reactions.

Think of the elements as us reflected in the universe, and the suits as the universe reflected in us. Elements are more likely to be ineffable and subjective, while the suit is more likely to be objective and quantifiable.

These cards can be read like their personified traditional counterparts, but even in that case they are without gender. If personified, the element represents the broader, archetypal energy of the entity, while the suit represents their actions, presence, or role in the context of the reading.


mountain inverted.png

Mountain cards are ruled by earth (passive/rigid), and are closest to a traditional Page.

Coins represent physical things, worth, the body, the past, ancestry, and grounding. Slow moving and stable, they are a testament to slow and steady ideology, but can act as barriers or road blocks.


flame inverted.png

Flame cards are ruled by fire (active/fluid), and are closest to a traditional Knight.

Flames represent passion, education, inspiration, movement, risk-taking, and exploring. The Flames are hot and unpredictable, meaning they can cause serious damage if not handled properly. But they are also the spark of existence, the drive to live, discover, and expand. 


wave inverted.png

Wave cards are ruled by water (passive/fluid), and are closest to a traditional Queen.

Waves represent emotions, dreams, ideals, holding space, and the creative mind. Waves can be calm and slow, rhythmic and entrancing, but they can also be powerful and disrupting, pulling us down too deep.


wind inverted.png

Wind cards are ruled by air (active/rigid), and are closest to a traditional King.

They represent thought, planning, logic, endings, and structure. Winds can carry you high up into the air, offering a new point of view and refuge from the terrain below. But they can also leave you feeling isolated or fearing a fall.