Justice = 8 and Strength = 11 ???


hey guys,

i have an ancestral path tarot deck and while i was going through this online resource page for tarot cards i saw that the numbering on my deck was different from the rider-waite deck. the justice card was numbered 8 and strength 11, aside from that everything seems to be okay and i love the deck ^_^ , do you think it affects in anyway how you read the deck? is it just an errata on this deck or is there some sort of alternate numbering where in all you do is switch the strength and justice card? LoL ^_^


I seem to recall (foggily) that the Rider Waite people changed the numbering of the original deck so that Justice and Strength would be 11 and 8. I think that was in my "Mastering the Tarot" by Eden Gray. Or maybe "The Mystical Tarot" by Guilley.

Rhiannon :)


i think you'll find that the position of justice and strength is a controversy that you'll see varies from deck to deck. i believe that most decks use strength as 8 and justice as 11. the switch doesn't really throw me b/c i don't use numerology heavily to read the cards. the meanings are still the same no matter what the position is. however, numerology plays an imp role in some parts of the tarot and that's when it makes a big difference. for example, when figuring up soul and personality cards as in mary k. greer's book "tarot for yourself". if you rely on numerology to guide you thru a reading it would also make a difference. if it doesn't bother you in your readings, don't worry about it. just be aware that this does switch around and it could make a diff in whether you can read decks this is switched if you get too comfortable w/ justice being 8 and strength being 11.

another thing that can throw you is that some decks switch swords/air and wands/fire to swords/fire and wands/air. that throws me once since i use the elements to guide me thru meanings. the celtic dragon and shapeshifter both by dj conway switch 8 & 11 and fire/air. i've been reading swords as air and wands as fire for so many years that i couldn't make the adjustment. consequently i couldn't read the conway decks and traded them.

i'm not really sure why justice and strength are switched. does anyone know if it has anything to do w/ 11 being one of the master numbers? i'm not that great w/ numerology.


The first decks produced have Strength at 8, as far as I am aware the rider-waite deck was the first to swap the cards and have strength at 11. I think the reasoning had something to do with connecting the tarot with the cabbalistic tree of life, but I don't know exactly what.

As for its impact on reading the cards, my feeling is that a deck to be used as it is, its the meaning attached to the card and not its position within the deck that is important.



In the older classical decks like Marseilles,
or Visconti, Justice was 8 and Strength 11.

The Order of the Golden Dawn changed the oder
because they gave the cards astrological
attributions. Since Leo (Strength) comes
before Libra (Justice) astrologically they
changed the order. The Waite deck was the
first published deck that I know of to do this.

Since it became such a popular deck many others use this order.