Tarot of Prague Café Club - VII The Chariot

Bean Feasa

I'm always in favour of a bit of role-reversal and am delighted to see a female charioteer holding the reins - no wait she doesn't even have to hold them, they seem to be just loosely-wedged under the book on her knee. So it's intellectual (the book) and magical/spiritual (the wand with the glowing eye in her other hand) power she uses to drive onward and upward. The fact that the Chariot's flying over the rather autumnal-looking streets gives this card an exhilarating feel. There's sense of rushing wind too, the clouds look like they're being blown about. You get the message that it's best not to get in this lady's way. The Charioteer has a look of intense focus and concentration on her face, and you just know that while she'll most likely get where she wants to go, she may well drive herself and/or others way too hard in the process. The card illustrates very well the complex nature of power and success - there's ease and uplift, but also hints of the danger and damage that come with the territory of highflying.
The traditional black and white horses are replaced by black and white eagles who look a bit restless and could be about to challenge the woman's leadership. But you sense that they're not really going to cause her any problems. This Charioteer is able for anything.


This is "our" card in many ways. You can actually see our flat in the background (we were really pleased to discover that it's traditional to put the artist/s' signature into this card - well, this is our "signature").

There is another much more interesting fact about the card that I may have talked about before. When Raymond Johnson interviewed us for "Prague Post" he mentioned that he was very glad to see Libuse's mother included. I have to say we didn't know what he was talking about. In fact, legend has it that Libuse's mother (who was an elf) still drives her chariot across the sky (at just this place) and crashes it into the hill - where it disappears in a burst of fire. She does this to protest - in spectacular fashion - the fact that the Czech Celts abandoned the old religion and took up with new-fangled Christianity.

Completely without knowing what we were doing, we managed to depict all this - and with some accuracy. The thing that perhaps makes it even odder is that in the original, a figure of Christ was also in the back of the Chariot, but we removed him as it made little sense in the context of this card (plus we tended to avoid imagery that was explicitly attached to any one religion). So there is Libuse's mother, all on her own, making her protest across the skys above Prague Castle. I will never know how the lady got herself into the deck, but I am SO glad she managed it!

ps - Libuse, for those who are wondering, was the legendary Celtic founder of Prague. A magician and seer, she was also half-elf.

Bean Feasa

Wow, Karen, thanks for telling that story. Isn't that uncanny? It's like they say, life is stranger than fiction sometimes. It adds a whole new dimension to the card. I haven't got the card in front of me now, but if I remember right, the Charioteer does have rather elfin features, not in the sense of being petite, but her face is a bit pointy - I think so anyway; I'll have to have another look this evening.
I didn't know anything about a Celt founding Prague - what a nice idea!! Rather good, we celts, aren't we, hehe!?! :)


Bean Feasa said:
I didn't know anything about a Celt founding Prague - what a nice idea!! Rather good, we celts, aren't we, hehe!?! :)

Iti s really fashionable here to emphasise the Celtic connection. I mean, I think really the people here are Slavs, but if they want to claim Celtic descendency, who am I to say? Do you know Irish dancing is BIG here? Strange but true.

It's certainly also true that the first tribes who settled here were Celts. From what one can read between the lines of the Libuse story they were a matriarchal society. It's the women who were the magicians and leaders. Interesting eh?


I like the way this card depicts Libuse and her Chariot riding through the air. It gives it a sort of mythical quality, but there is no fantasy about this card. Its all about mastery, control and reality. Steering your life in the right direction. Achievement and success. Notice that she doesn't look where she is going, she doesn't need to. She knows that as long as she controls the eagles and keeps her eye on the goal she will achieve success.

there's ease and uplift, but also hints of the danger and damage that come with the territory of highflying
I really like this description Bean Feasa - uplift, highflying, danger - excellent

"Onwards!! Let us achieve what we set out to do!" You can almost hear her barking this order. The two eagles (which symbolise mastery) look a little defiant. One looks up, the other looks back. It is crucial that they pull together which means the charioteer has quite a task on her hands. If they should decide to go in opposite directions she would be in big trouble. Its a long way to fall. Concentration, control and calmness, together with a focus on the goal, will bring success. Victory is possible as long as they all work together.

I love the tree in this card. I know that sounds daft, but it is growing against all odds, right in the middle of the city. It is a grand example of maturity, experience and mastery.

I love the story about Libuse.

J :)


Bean Feasa
Pronounced 'Banfassa' - it means 'woman of knowing'. Nothing at all to do with beans! :)

Ok! Thanks. I couldn't help wondering whenever I saw your username. :D I like that; Banfassa, and I like the pronunciation.


Bean Feasa

Hi TL2,
Thanks - I'm glad you like it. It's a term in Irish that would have been used to describe the village wise-woman/healer/psychic whatever. A strictly aspirational term for me at the moment ... but hopefully I'm learnin' :)


This card is one of the first ones I saw when I discovered this deck, and I remember thinking that it was such a unique interpretation of The Chariot. You can really feel the energy, the movement of this card....the fact that she is flying through the air, not bound by gravity, gives one a feeling of weightlessness and freedom just looking at it.

I also love that this woman has such a calm, controlled demeanor; she knows where she is going, and is confident that these eagles are going to follow her command and lead her to her destination. She holds a wand in her right hand, which symbolizes that she has the spiritual and mental clarity, the vision that she needs to manifest her own destiny. In other words, nothing can hold her back.

:) Luna


It is a very original chariot card. The chariot up in the air with two eagle pulling it. The little cloud under the chariot makes me think of a famous manga that my boyfriend read. The main character of that manga use one cloud for some travelling. The eagles are not mistreated.

I like that card. It is refreshing to see a nice chariot card


There is something about this card that makes me laugh, initially, she is so single-minded. But then it seems really implacable, the possibility of blind power that treads over everything uncaringly, and it becomes a very somber, even scary card in some way. Power corrupts?