The Emperor embodies the tendency to rule or control in order to ensure that everything is in balance. He is the father figure who possesses all the archetypal qualities of a leader—he is stern, commanding, and protecting.

To keep peace and stability, The Emperor imposes rules, regulations, and a hierarchy of authority led by him. In being so defensive and rigid, the leader risks becoming too inflexible which can result in a complete halt in progress. 


The name of the gladiolus comes from the Latin word gladius, meaning “sword,” which also inspired the term “gladiator” and all subsequent film adaptations. The symbolism of the sword has been attributed throughout history to masculine fertility, strength, and integrity, as many a man’s honor has been traditionally upheld by sword fight. In Africa, the gladiolus plant is known for its healing properties and used in traditional medicine for treating intestinal issues and restoring regularity to the digestive and excretory cycles of the body. However, some parts of the plant can be poisonous and irritating if mishandled. This flower is a representation of a strong, powerful, and honorable male leader whose strength can both protect and destroy.

The Emperor Tarot Card Meaning