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Druidcraft Study Group- Prince of Cups

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jota23  jota23 is offline
Join Date: 10 Jan 2005
Location: Utah, USA
Posts: 20

Perhaps he is homesick. He's just started his endeavour and suvived his first battle or two and wishes to go home, but knows he must continue on his lonely quest. He could be taking a moment to wish all he knew farewell before treading father from home than he has ever been. Leaving my home not knowing when or if I will ever return would put that lonely, longing look on my face as well.
Top   #11
WalesWoman's Avatar
WalesWoman  WalesWoman is offline
Join Date: 22 Nov 2003
Location: the Pacific Far East United State of Alaska
Posts: 11,136

What I find striking about this Knight is his helmet and dress, Roman in style and they did leave Briton to fend for it's own when things went from bad to worse in Rome. So that could be that lack of committment. But he looks more Celt than Roman, so it could be he "captured" that helmet in battle, or just picked it up because it was conveniently laying there and he wasn't prepared. So ill prepared could be another message.

I also noticed that he was the only Knight not to have anything on his feet, but figured that he is more vulnerable, less protected, nothing comes between him and his emotions. The bawd in me, "knock his socks off", when things get quite wild and way above expectations and /or great sex.

Well and since I'm being bawd, the whole shape of the trees, water, and sky look very much like the vaginal opening. A very large one since he and his horse are inside and it's like he's trying to use the cup to shed some light on the subject and see where he's going. Actually he is in reflected light, and it's not from the sunset, there is light in front of him or all we'd see is the light coming from behind him and he would be very dark and hard to distinguish.

I wonder of the colors are chakkra's too, the green for heart at the base of this, red for the root, orange for passion, etc.

With the moon being in it's last phase before the new moon, I wonder if he is about to leave his in completeness and passiveness behind, to actually DO something? Will he take the next step?
Top   #12
Pipistrelle's Avatar
Pipistrelle  Pipistrelle is offline
Join Date: 23 Sep 2004
Location: Cambridgeshire, England
Posts: 962

Hello everyone...

There have been some wonderful insights on this card here. Looking at it just now, I'm taken with how young the Prince is. Although his jaw is set in a determined fashion, and his arms look quite strong, just look at his legs - they seem to be the legs of someone not long out of boyhood. It's the smooth knees I think

This is a beautiful image. Unusually, I think, it evokes a sense of stillness - the water on the lake is still, the horse is standing, not moving. Knights are usually depicted in motion, taking action. However, this stillness seems to suit the dreamy quality of the Prince of Cups.

This prince is quite an enigma. Who or what is he raising his cup to? Why is he out by the lake so late at night? Is he leaving, beginning his journey, or returning home after completing it? The fact that we can't answer these questions points to a deepness of meaning, that what this card is expressing is under the surface. Still waters run deep, etc. etc.

His expression is also a mystery. Sometimes he looks sad. Sometimes he looks tired but quietly proud. At the moment, to me, he looks like he is expressing dignified sorrow - like a soldier marking the falling of comrades. Perhaps he is holding his cup to salute their spirits.

I didn't expect to write so much! That's what I mean about this deck being so deep. I've never got so much from the court cards before. I haven't read the description of this card in the companion book yet but I'll try to later today.

This is fun!

Top   #13
Little Baron  Little Baron is offline
Join Date: 18 Aug 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 9,963
Little Baron 

This is a very calm card, not unlike his sister, mother and father of the courts.

The first thing I noticed is how he is not wearing any shoes. On some cards, characters are bare-foot and connected with the earth, but here, obviously, he is elevated as he sits on his horse - therefore, maybe in touch with his dreams and not so much, with reality. I noticed that every other male in the courts wears shoes - only the women (apart from the Queen of Wands, who we already discussed has a masculine stance) have no shoes, which makes me link this guy to the feminine sensitive sides - to the feminine moon that shines behind him and the High Priestess. Physically, he seems strong - has powerful arms and strong thighs, but I think the cup illustrates strength through his heart. He doesn't win battles by charging in, fists first. He contemplates issues and deals with matters sentitively. He looks a little troubled - maybe taking a lot of the unhappiness of the world and others inside. He doesn't jump the crest of a wave like the Wands Prince, he isn't a bull-at-a-gate like the Sword Prince . He holds his cup up and tries to 'work' with an enemy - hoping too, that they can find it in their heart to resolve matters. I feel he, like his sister, have learnt this way from their parents - all are calm and mediative. His horse is a trusty and loyal friend. Like the other princes, the horse seem to be part of him. The Wand prince's horse jumps with eagerness, as he rides it. The Swords prince's horse is amoured and ready to attack, as he is. This one is quiet and reserved.

Just a few opening ideas that are probably all pretty obvious, but may get the ball rolling.
Top   #14
Little Baron  Little Baron is offline
Join Date: 18 Aug 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 9,963
Little Baron 

For some reason, when I first opened this thread, the only post that came up was the first one so I thought that nobody had responded to it.

So ... I just wrote about what I saw, thinking mine was the first one in the thread ... so apologies if I have repeated what everyone else has said. I am going to go back and read the other many replies here now.
Top   #15
Laurelin's Avatar
Laurelin  Laurelin is offline
Join Date: 07 Mar 2006
Location: AZ, USA
Posts: 17

Little Buddah, I don't think you repeated anything. You made some similar observations, but you added your own insight. I loved your post.

I too got the "still waters" impression from this card. I seem to be looking at a different story than the general consensus, though.... let me explain what I see.

This prince is dissheveled. He and his horse look emotionally exhausted. He is pondering, like his little sister, but he seems more reverent and solemn where she is appreciative and taking everything in. I set them side by side and couldn't help noticing the similarity of the scenery. The tree, its position, its prominence in the card... but she seemed to be a part of it while he is just keeping company with it.

The sleeve of his right arm is torn. His left is pristine. I believe his left hand would be his shield hand, no? The cloak on his right side is also torn at the bottom edge. He is physically unharmed, but he looks like he has survived quite an ordeal to me. He holds his cup in the left hand... why? Is it because he is holding up an offering with his non-combat hand, or has he perhaps injured the other? Or, perhaps he is keeping his more adept hand to tend his horse's reins. (Maybe he's a lefty... I somehow doubt it, though.) It is earlier in the year than it was in his sister's card. You can only just see the leaves begin to turn amber at the edges. Summer is ending, but we haven't yet reached the mid-autumn. It feels like Lughnasadh. The sun is beginning to lose strength and the dark half of the year is upon us now.

Lughnasadh is a harvest festival, so it seems strange to see this young man off on his own, but grain and sustenance is not all we reap. I feel like this heartstrong young man has come from battle. He doesn't seem like the kind who much cared for war, him being (like the rest of his family) driven more by his gentle heart than his passion for renoun. He is come from the fray and must now reflect on what he has reaped. It is hard to make sense of war and death. Especially as one is leaving the impetuousness of youth behind in favor of adulthood and maturity. He needs some time alone, away from the festivities of the holiday, to reflect on his turmoil. As he is physically unscathed, perhaps he donned his battle clothes (excepting his shoes) in rememberance and to help him reflect. He faces into the wind, offering the cup to honor the light that is passing and nurture the hope of its return next season.

His horse has been through everything he has been through. A friend of mine who keeps horses once told me "the horse is like a people amplifier. Whatever its rider feels, it soaks in and magnifies. If you're insecure or frightened, the horse feels that and behaves accordingly." His horse experienced war. The last time he bore his rider in this way (in these clothes), it was an exhausting and turbulant ordeal. His master is solemn. It is beginning to get cold, and they are not prepared for another battle. The Prince's emotion about the day and the past has clouded his judgement, and he's dwelling on his sorrow. He tries to leave the war behind, but he cannot forget. The blood is washed away, but the pain is never forgotten. He must find a way to reconcile it, but he is so wrapped up in his emotions that he must muster his strength in order to move forward. He is focusing too narrowly on his current ordeal and does not see the bigger picture. The sun wanes, but it will wax once again.

Perhaps he should consult his sister and try to regain some of that old tranquility as he transforms into adulthood. He is the most stationary of our "moving" Princes, and that suggests to me that he is at risk for being too still, missing the forest for the trees.

Or maybe it's because I'm having a rough day that I see the turmoil in this card more clearly. I just get the sense that he has forgotten his hope as well as his steed.


Edit: Okay, having regrouped and restarted my brain, I'm now seeing some different things in this card. Yes, yesterday was a bad day... I saw what I needed to see in the Prince. The message is the same only it's not so harsh today. He is deeply emotional. He keenly feels the hurt and turmoil of those around him. I still believe that it is Lughnasadh, and that he is making his own offering to the harvest. He has not yet turned inward to examine like his little sister, but he is feeling the approaching winter and extending hopes for the best. He is rather more dignified and stately than I first noticed, but his clothes are haphazard. He spends more time on the intent and emotional side of things than the practical.

He would prefer to rely on negotiations and communicative solutions than war. I now believe that his clothes might be torn through years of inattention. The garb of war isn't polished. He doesn't intend to make a statement of imposition and strength in battle. He is a hopeless romantic. He wears no shoes because he has no intention of dismounting his beloved horse to take part in hand to hand combat. "Things" are not important to this prince, people are. He's all heart. When people hurt, so does he. I see him also as someone succeptible to winter depression. His empathic nature means he'll soak up the emotions of anyone around who is struggling or uncomfortable. As winter is a trying time of bitter weather, it seems to me that he would be deeply affected by that. I see summer as his heyday, and in this card, summer is coming to a close. Perhaps that is why he's tired. He has spent a lot of energy enjoying the summer and accomplishing some of his favorite tasks, and now he has to prepare himself for the more indoor life of autumn and winter and hope that the harvest yielded enough to keep the people comfortable.

--Laurelin (Take Two)
Top   #16
Arania's Avatar
Arania  Arania is offline
Join Date: 07 Jan 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 865

To me, the prince is someone rebelling against what his parents, his position as hair to the throne has in store for him. I get this little movie in my head of him jumping on the horse after hearing what his dad has in store for him - a marriage? - without even putting a saddle on. Then he goes on a while chase through the forest and fields, to escape his fate - but of course it does not work. he tears his clothey, loses his footwear and tires the horse and himself out - but now he's come to a river he cannot cross, and finally accepts his responsibility, learns to control his emotions. It is a new beginning for him, but without giving up what he believes in.
Top   #17
geministar's Avatar
geministar  geministar is offline
Join Date: 28 Apr 2006
Location: Queensland, Australia
Posts: 1,027

I love the horse in this card, he seems very placid and I love his flowing wavy mane.

Since the prince is barefoot I feel he must be out on a late sunset stroll with his horse. He is saluting something. I feel like he is saying goodbye and this is why he looks very sad.

The card is very romantic to me though because of the sky and the water. I love the colours in the sky.
Top   #18
dryadintheelm's Avatar
dryadintheelm  dryadintheelm is offline
Join Date: 13 Apr 2015
Location: United States
Posts: 72

I pulled this card today and first I saw his feet, and I felt dewy grass beneath my toes. I saw the moon and the setting sun, and I heard laughter in the distance, the end of along day playing at the lake. I saw the gold of his horse, his hair, his skin, his cup, the setting sun. I heard the gentle breeze in the trees that rippled their hair. I saw the quest for the grail and the quest for love. I saw lovers sitting hand in hand by the lake, smiling at each other and laughing quietly while families played near, happy but worn out from a day of play. I saw lovers at the fair in the evening, feeding each other cotton candy as they walked by the boardwalk games. I then saw how sad the horse was, and I smelled the stagnant water. I felt the long journey ahead, wading slowly through the mire, because the dreams and hopes will move us forward, but we get tired and it becomes hard to lift our feet.

Reminded me that water is not only love, but also depression. Also, he has no saddle, just a silk blanket. Very sensual.
Top   #19



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