Death Tarot Card Meanings 2017-12-29T11:56:33+00:00
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death tarot card meanings

Death: Endings

Death Tarot Card
Meanings and Keywords:

Death tarot card meanings in traditional tarot stem from its connection to both Astrology and Numerology. Death tarot card can mean:


Endings and new beginnings.

Completing a chapter in your life.

Putting the past behind you.

Dealing with what scares you.

Regeneration after a transition.

Seeing the truth of a situation.

Creating a whole new life for yourself.


Abuse and addictions.

Blocked grief

Unable to move on. 

Symbolism in Death tarot card

The corpse in black armor riding a white horse symbolises the image in revelation. The king,a bishop, a woman, and a child all succumb him, none is immune. The skeleton symbolises the reaper which represents death. Death symbolises endings in all it’s forms. The black banner decorated with the Mystic Rose symbolises Mary. Mary represents being the instruments of God’s earthly incarnations of energy. Rebirth and renewal of all kinds are therefore indicated. The bishop represents faith in the face of death. The maiden symbolises grief and release of sorrow at times of endings. The rising sun represents a new beginning, a new day. The pillars in front of the sun symbolise character gained in the process of rebirth. The river is the River Styx which symbolises the boundary between Earth and the Underworld. The boat symbolises the souls that cross over. Death is the number 13 which is a number of moons in a year, symbolises cycles, endings, and beginnings. Death is ruled by Scorpio in the Zodiac.

Death tarot card and Astrology

Death is ruled by Scorpio. Scorpio is ruled by Pluto. Pluto is the planet of transformation, rebirth, and regeneration . Pluto’s energies are very intense and can hit you like a ton of brick. it can change your whole life, until the phase ends, where you might find that you have a whole new set of ideas and goals. Pluto can seem destructive, but when well aspected is aiding transformation necessary for our soul growth and helping us see the truth. When poorly aspected it can denote power abuse, addiction, violence and unexpected events we are not equipt to handle well.

Death tarot card meanings upright

Death in a general reading

Death tarot card represents transformation, endings, and new beginnings. When Death tarot card shows up it tells you that things will not be the same again. You have outgrown a part of yourself, and it’s time to embrace the new. A transformation is taking place, you are growing and changing with the circumstances you find yourself in. Death can represent new people, new places, new work, new belief systems being born into your life. Death shows up in a reading to tell you that you can safely let a part of yourself go. You are like a flame, constantly changing, never remaining exactly the same from day-to-day, throughout your life. Old habits and patterns might have to be shaken off so that you can be reborn again as a new and improved you. You are probably not even noticing how much you are changing, and then one day it catches up with you, and you make the necessary steps towards creating a whole new life for yourself.

Death in a love reading

In a love reading, Death tarot card often shows up when the Seeker has lost their identity within the relationship. Maybe they entered into the relationship too soon and are now having second thoughts. If the Seeker is single Death tarot card can mean they will soon be in a relationship.

Death in a career reading

In a career reading Death tarot card means careers in the police or military. Death also shows up when the Seeker is about to change their careers. 

Death as feelings

Death indicates feelings that have been buried only to be reawakened. These feelings could have been buried very deep and they can overwhelm the seeker. The Seeker most likely are dealing with childhood issues when Death tarot card speaks of feelings. The seeker could feel the need to break free from their routine and try something completely new.

If you are asking about what someone feels about you, Death means the person is most likely not opening up emotionally at this stage. They most likely need to get something off their heart before they can open up.

Learn what Death tarot card means in the Grand Tableau. 

Personality types in Death tarot card

Death tarot card denotes someone who is going through a great transformation and has experienced their share of loss and endings. They need to release the past, let go and let God. This is someone who needs to surrender what is beyond their control. They might feel drawn towards everything dark and dangerous with deep urges to survive, reproduce and have power and control. Sometimes there are issues with money and owing money to others, as well as gaining an inheritance of some kind. There are hidden grief in Death people who are waiting to be released so that a new dawn can emerge. They never forget if someone has hurt them and is often dreaming of revenge and payback.

death tarot card meanings

Death: Endings

Death tarot card meanings reversed

Death tarot card reversed indicates that something that should have come to a blessed end for some reason persists. ‘Not death’ is not a desired thing as it is not living either. For some reason, the person is holding on. Blocked grief is often a factor. The seeker might be unable to face the pain of loss. They remain in the tunnel, and rebirth is prevented from happening. At worse, this card indicates mockery of someone’s death. There might be a lack of care, support, and sympathy for those left grieving. Sometimes this card shows up reversed when the seeker has cheated death.

Personality types in reversed Death tarot card

Death tarot card reversed is someone who is dealing with credit problems, such as mounting bills, debts, and tax problems. This is someone who might even be heading for bankruptcies. Death reversed speaks of someone who should have entered into a transitional stage and come out the other end. Instead, there was no transformation and therefore no renewal. The person is instead stuck in a limbo state where not much is going on. They need to embrace a new way of life and a new existence. They might wish to change and long for transformation, but are struggling with deep safety and survival issues. This is someone who might be consumed by fears of both living and dying, this might be someone suicidal. Death reversed indicates someone who is lost in despair and trauma.

Death tarot card combinations

Some important tarot card combinations including Death:

Death + The Magician: Skill shortage.

Death + The Chariot: Settling down.

Death + Justice: Taxes. Others resources.

Death + The World: A completion. Graduation.

Death + Ace of wands: Lack of support.

Death + Five of wands: End of conflict.

Death + Nine of wands: End of struggle.

Death + Ten of wands: A new routine.

Death + Ace of cups: Lack of motivation.

Death + Two of cups: End of friendship.

Death + Six of cups: Your childhood.

Death + King of cups: Possessive.

Death + Ace of swords: Changing your mind.

Death + Three of swords: End of sadness.

Death + Four of swords: Needing lifestyle change.

Death + King of swords: the tax man. A business man.

Death + Three of pentacles: End in work. New work.

Death + Five of pentacles: End in money troubles.

Death + Nine of pentacles: End of an investment. End of luxury.

Death + Ten of pentacles: An inheritance.

Death tarot card meanings summary

Death tarot card shows up when there is an ending occurring in your life. A new opportunity is representing itself. Death tarot card can also signify your childhood. Sometimes Death represents a fear or fearing the inevitable. Death says there really is no death, just endings, and re-birth.

Learn what Death tarot card means as a final card in a love reading. 


  1. Eva February 9, 2017 at 4:54 pm

    Dear Inger,

    I moved in with my boyfriend a week ago.(After seven month)
    Both of us lived alone and/or with our parents for a long time, despite the fact that we are not so young. Both of us are difficult person with difficult personality, spiritual sensitivity, and a lot of pain and injury. (In fact, I’m hypersensitive, and it makes everything hard…) It wasn’t a romantic decision, it was a possibility, and we started. We love each other, just a bit difficult to show his emotions…

    I asked may cards:
    1. What can I do to make our relationship happy, and succesfull:
    Death reversed
    2. How does my boyfriend feel about the moving in:
    The Magician reversed and King of swords (it doesn’t seem to promising to me :/ )
    3. What does he expect from me to behave:
    The High Priestess
    4. What should I do to make him a bit relaxed, a bit more proactive, to make him more brave about me, sexuality, etc.:
    Knight of Wands reversed
    5. How can I make him happy in this relationship?
    Three of swords reversed
    6: How can I make me happy in this relationship?
    The Judgement reversed

    Thank you very much for your help!

    Blessings: Eva

  2. Inger Bråthen February 11, 2017 at 3:03 pm

    Hi, Eva. With your reversed cards they are telling both you and your boyfriend that your union has a lot of potentials, you just have to slow things down, take a step back, and take a deep breath, and incorporate the energy of the card before the reversed card. For example, in card position 1: what can I do to make our relationship happy and successful: death reversed. The card before is Hanged man. Which mean you must focus only on what matters. Priorities what is truly important to you in life, and put the people you love front and centre. Practise meditation as this will help with your hyper-sensitivity. The way you communicate to your boyfriend is extremely important. Communicate kindness and compassion, and he will be a different person. He will be able to give so much more of himself to you. He feels excited about you, but he is afraid to show it as he get the Magician reversed. King of swords mean he is serious about you. He expect you to be able to read him, thus he does not always communicate clearly as he thinks he already has. He wants you to be able to read his mind as he knows you are very intuitive person (high priestess). Knight of wands reversed means if you step into the energy of Page of wands and show him how passionate you feel about him. This will make him feel much better about himself. How to make him happy in this relationship: Three of swords reversed. Help him to trust you. Deep down he expects you to leave him, and therefore he can’t relax properly to enjoy this relationship. How to make yourself happy in the relationship: Judgement reversed. That means you need to stop being so hard on yourself and avoid comparing yourself to others. You are your own unique person who are in your own unique relationship, and your path is your path, your relationship is your business, and no one else. Give yourself permission to be happy! 🙂
    Love, Ingie.

  3. Eva February 11, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    Dear Ingie,
    Thank you so much for your kind and detailed interpretaiton.
    It means a lot to me, and It makes me much more peaceful and hopeful. 🙂 (As always, when I read You )

    Love and thanks, Eva

  4. Steven brighouse February 21, 2017 at 4:46 am

    Hi. Yesterday was dealt the 2 of cups card . Today was dealt the death card. My partner and I have been together 8 months and living together for around 5 months. We love each other and have a great relationship but have been having small troubles now and then . She has told me to leave now and we are apart at the moment . Wondering what the cards will be meaning.of know the two of clubs is a great card and so is death bit together are they so goodon’t. Your help would be very much appreciated .thankyou steve

  5. Inger Bråthen February 21, 2017 at 8:45 am

    The Death card can mean an ending that was meant to be. The cards indicate this woman might not be your highest and best soulmate, and you will know find that your life will start flowing in a new and more harmonious direction.

  6. M March 15, 2017 at 7:19 am

    Can you tell me what ten of swords, page of cups, death, four of cups and the fool mean together please? Question was can me and my ex resolve our issues. When I reshuffled and asked if we would get back together and pulled one card I got the empress. Totally confused!

  7. Inger Bråthen March 15, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    Hi, M. I feel like you will have to work on your trust issues for this relationship to be able to work, and also I feel like you need to be in a set routine together, as it seems like your lives are now going in different directions.

  8. Wynter May 29, 2017 at 5:31 am

    what lies between you reading please help?
    The world, death, and Justice

  9. JL June 8, 2017 at 9:04 pm

    Hi there,

    What would u interpret for reverse death, clarified by 9 of wands and 9 of wands clarified by 4 of pentacles for accepting a new job offer?

  10. Inger Bråthen June 11, 2017 at 6:16 am

    Hi. I feel this job could be good for your finances, however, 9 of wands denotes there could be a lot of pressure in this job. Death reversed is asking you if this job is truly what you desire? It can be a stepping stone to something else you want more. 9 of wands also means whatever they throw at you in this job you will be able to handle. 4 of pentacles speaks of opportunity to earn a lot of money.

  11. Kay June 24, 2017 at 2:07 am

    Hi Inger,
    I have a question about receiving the death card with lovers as the clarifier. The question was how will X react if I cut communication with him. I understand that death is transformation or big change. What I didn’t understand is if the change/transformation this person would have is positive or negative, thus pulling lovers as the clarifier. However, I am equally stumped. Is it a realization of love (thus the transformation) ? Or more like an, “Ok, this love is over.” ?
    For the record, there are feelings of attraction involved but no relationship other than friends and occasional flirtation.

    Thanks, as always.

  12. Inger Bråthen June 24, 2017 at 10:07 am

    Death card with lovers can mean you have a strong attraction, but I feel there are some differences in your personality and this could be a very painful relationship for you.

  13. Kay June 24, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    Yes, to both attraction and pain. Wish I knew what to do. 🙂

  14. Inger Bråthen June 25, 2017 at 9:35 pm

    I recommend you manifest a relationship that brings you happiness.

  15. Jenn August 9, 2017 at 8:43 pm

    Hi Inger,

    In a yes and no question: “Is the relationship over?” I received a three of swords followed by the death card. I would greatly appreciate your interpretation. Thank you!

  16. Inger Bråthen August 11, 2017 at 5:45 am

    This can mean the relationship is over.

  17. Rinku August 17, 2017 at 11:39 am

    Hello Inger.

    I’ve been stuck in a hopeless situation for quite some time now and things only seem to be getting worse as I see myself stuck in here for the rest of my life. All aspects of my life – career, finance, love life, family, my beliefs are slipping out of my hand.

    Recently I took a tarot reading wondering what is happening and if it will even get better and what should I do to make it better and these three cards showed up.
    – Death
    – Seven of Swords
    – Page of Wands
    Can you please help interpret them for me?

  18. Inger Bråthen August 17, 2017 at 3:29 pm

    Hi, Rinku. Things will most definitely improve. Things have been confusing and you are now finding your feet again. I feel everything in your life will improve once you commit to a routine that you will stick by. This will improve your finances and I feel also bring you a secure relationship.

  19. Rinku August 19, 2017 at 4:39 pm

    Thanks for your help Inger. It gives me hope.

  20. Lana August 21, 2017 at 9:15 pm

    Hello Inger,
    I asked tarot if my “…” (I just don’t know how to call him as he left and since I didn’t heard from him that idiot, he just left angry) will come back to me soon.
    The cut shows the chariot
    He’s state of mind shows the magician and the death (I got scared 🙂 I decided to recover the death and the temperance shows up.
    And as a final card to answer my question I got the judgement.

    When I asked if there is still love between us (a week before) I got the hierophant for the cut.
    The magician for me, the judgement for him and the world for both of us.

    And before that, for the same question will he come back to me?
    Cut= the lover
    For me the judgement, for him the lover and for us the temperance

    The judgement shows often and the temperance are always there when I’m asking about him…
    Can you help me with all this please, It is a mess in my head
    Thanks a lot

  21. Inger Bråthen August 22, 2017 at 7:50 am

    Hi, I feel you can recover this relationship. Judgement often shows up when we are resurrecting something such as a relationship.

  22. Lana August 22, 2017 at 9:14 am

    Thank you Inger for your time.
    Can you explain me the combination of the magician and death/ covered by temperance for his state of mind, please. I don’t understand that.
    Many thanks

  23. Lana August 22, 2017 at 10:18 am

    Thank you very much for your time Inger.
    Could you please explain to me the correlation between the magician and the death/ covered by temperance for his state of mind I can’t understand that.
    One more question, when I asked the tarot if he will come back, I was thinking about time so I asked if soon? I read somewhere that the chariot speaks of something happening fast as well as the judgement..
    As I had the chariot as a bottom card, and the judgement as a final card, I was wondering if that was some kind of answer…
    How do you see that?
    Thank you.

  24. Inger Bråthen August 22, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    This card combination can mean he thinks a lot about things that happened in this childhood.

  25. Inger Bråthen August 23, 2017 at 4:03 pm

    Hi. This person could be dealing with a lot of self-doubts, and he has not yet found himself and is unsure what he wants.

  26. Mary August 30, 2017 at 6:14 am


    What does death, king of wands and two of swords mean. Single. Interested in a friend.

  27. Inger Bråthen September 2, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    Hi. Death often shows up in a love reading when singlehood is almost over. King of wands denotes a charismatic guy who will make your life exciting and fun.

  28. Eldar September 27, 2017 at 8:42 am

    Hi, can you help me with the combination of King of cups, Death, ten of wands? I tried to reconciled with a long-lost close friend, but she said she cannot even remember me. I dont know how she really feel then I got that Tarot reading.

  29. Inger Bråthen October 1, 2017 at 1:03 pm

    I would just walk away from her because this person would just be hard work and nothing good would come out of it.

  30. Genie October 28, 2017 at 5:59 am

    I’ve been doing a daily general tarot reading to help learn cards. Today’s main card was Death and the supporting cards were Queen of Pentacles, The Fool, and Queen of Wands. I’m having a difficult time finding what those combinations might mean. With the queens, I’m drawing a blank and have tried looking up on other resources and haven’t found anything. I would think that it’s meaning the end of the carefree days (Death and The Fool). I would love to hear your input on the combinations. Thank you! 🙂

  31. Inger Bråthen November 1, 2017 at 10:43 am

    Hi. Queens are almost always about trusting and more importantly trusting the life you are living and trusting in your path. Death and Fool are similar in the sense that they speak of a new beginning. The Fool speaks of ultimate trust in a new path and the Queens support this. The new path you are on are very close to your heart and your life purpose.

  32. Danielle November 13, 2017 at 2:31 am

    My card of the day was the 5 of pentacles(R). I pulled the transformation card(death) as a clarifier from my goddess tarot deck. Any thoughts on the meaning?

    Current life. I’m going through a rough patch in my long term relationship of 6 years, but we are trying to work on things and we just went through financial troubles/going through, but my business is getting busier for the holidays.

  33. Tonya November 13, 2017 at 12:17 pm

    I pulled three cards for this week: death was in the middle and to the left was eight of cups, to the right of death was nine of swords.
    I’ve been thinking of the many things this could mean, but felt I should consult with you.
    Inger, thank you in advance for your clarification.

  34. Inger Bråthen November 14, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    This week will be best used keeping a cool head and not to be pulled into emotional minefields. Both Death and Nine of swords speak of the past returning in some way and to be at peace with what has been. There is new enthusiasm coming now and I feel the wheel will turn in your favour.

  35. Inger Bråthen November 14, 2017 at 6:25 pm

    Hi. I feel you will focus more on the future. The death card often shows up when the Seeker is thinking a lot about the past and I feel there has been a lot of heartache in your life. However, I feel there is a new future that is much brighter. All you need now is confidence. You need positive self-talk and you need to work on the trust within the relationship.

  36. Rachella June 3, 2018 at 5:43 pm

    Dear Inger, how do you see lovers plus reversed death? I was asking if somebody I haven’t seen or spoken to in a long time is thinking of me sometimes. Thank you.

  37. Emma June 5, 2018 at 8:10 am

    Hi, I did a relationship reading for me and my partner we have been together 14 years now but was a bit confuesed how they fit together.

    1. Devil
    2. 3 of cups

    3. Death
    4. Ace of swords
    5. Ace of wands

    6. 9 of cups

    Any clues? thanks,

  38. Ingie from TW June 7, 2018 at 8:09 am

    Yes, this person is most likely still thinking about you.

  39. Ingie from TW June 7, 2018 at 8:35 am

    What spread did you use?

  40. Emma June 8, 2018 at 3:23 pm

    Hi, I used the rider white. We’re still together but we have had a really hard time of late, I suspected he was cheating last year, he says he’s not but its still been playing on my mind.
    I love this man dearly im hoping this is showing a new start in our relationship? or he will maybe breaking up with me? Im totally confused..
    Thanks Emma x

  41. Ingie from TW June 10, 2018 at 7:49 am

    Hi, Emma. When you ask him if he was cheating a reliable denial sounds like this: I did not cheat or I didn’t cheat. If he instead gives you a sermon or says I would never cheat, or I never cheat or similar, it is not a reliable denial. Death can mean this relationship will be going through a major shift. Death can mean he wants more space (not the same as breaking up). 🙂

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