What does the ten of swords tarot card mean?

Main image for Ten of Swords

The ten of swords is part of the Minor Arcana deck of tarot cards and is part of the Swords suit.

Keywords: Endings, rock bottom, sorrow, failure


Unfortunately, the Ten of Swords is one of the most grim cards to draw from the Tarot deck. It is a card of failure and painful loss. Often, this loss comes in the form of a terrible betrayal from somebody you considered a solid friend or ally and who you thought you could trust. This betrayal causes a great deal of hurt and sorrow and will take a long time to recover from. You may feel powerless as you feel like your world is crashing down around you, while you can do nothing to stop it. Unfortunately at this time you simply have to take the hit, and then when the worst is over, figure out how to rebuild. The one positive is that you will learn a great deal from this experience and when you have healed, you will be stronger than ever and capable of moving on and turning your life around for the better.

Reverse Keywords: Perseverance, rebuilding, recovery

Reverse Meaning
The Ten of Swords upright is a card of grim defeat and sorrow. In reverse, this card indicates that this period is over, but you’re having trouble with moving on and letting go. If this period was because of a romantic relationship ending, you may be having trouble letting your ex go. You may even still be seeing them, though you know you shouldn’t be. Or if you have unfortunately lost a loved one, you may be struggling to cope with the grief and aren’t sure how to live without them. You are still carrying around the heavy feelings of loss and sorrow, and this is having a negative impact on your life. This card is a message that it is finally time to let go. As hard as it may be, it’s time to accept that life moves on and that you must move with it. Give yourself permission to let go and be happy once again.

Other Minor Arcana Cards (in the Swords suit)