Eight of Swords

Tarot Card Meaning
Eight of Swords


The Eight of Swords symbolizes a feeling of being trapped or restricted, often by your own thoughts or circumstances that seem beyond your control. This card reflects a situation where you feel powerless, uncertain, and unable to see a clear path forward. It encourages you to reevaluate your perceptions and beliefs to find a way out of your constraints.

Key Symbolisms

  • The Blindfolded Figure: Represents lack of clarity or inability to see the situation accurately.
  • The Encircling Swords: Symbolize perceived barriers and mental constraints that surround and seemingly imprison the figure.
  • The Water Underfoot: Indicates emotional undercurrents that influence the feeling of entrapment.

Upright Meaning

Drawing the Eight of Swords suggests that you may feel trapped by your current circumstances, believing that you have limited options. However, this card encourages you to look inward and question the reality of these constraints. Often, the limitations are self-imposed, and a change in perspective or mindset can free you. Seek clarity and be open to solutions that you may not have considered.

Reversed Meaning

When reversed, the Eight of Swords indicates a release from restriction and the overcoming of fears that have held you back. It signifies a newfound freedom and the ability to move forward with greater confidence. This position encourages you to continue breaking down barriers, whether they are real or imagined, and to reclaim your power.


The Eight of Swords is often associated with Jupiter in Gemini, highlighting the conflict between expansive thought (Jupiter) and the sometimes scattered or dual nature of Gemini. This astrological pairing emphasizes the need to balance expansive ideas with clear thinking to overcome perceived limitations.


The number 8 in tarot generally represents power dynamics, control, and material concerns. In the context of the Eight of Swords, it highlights the psychological aspects of power and control, particularly how self-limiting thoughts can dominate and restrict one's actions.


  • Challenge your perceptions and the reality of the barriers you face.
  • Seek mental clarity through meditation, counseling, or introspective practices.
  • Consider alternative viewpoints or approaches to your situation.
  • Actively work towards mental freedom and breaking away from self-imposed limitations.

Yes/No Meaning

  • Upright: In a Yes/No reading, the upright Eight of Swords generally suggests a "No," indicating that feelings of restriction, confusion, or being trapped may hinder progress. It advises focusing on finding ways to free yourself from limiting beliefs and external constraints before moving forward.
  • Reversed: When reversed, the Eight of Swords suggests a "Yes," indicating that breaking free from restrictions, gaining clarity, and overcoming obstacles will lead to positive outcomes. It supports actions that involve taking control of your situation and freeing yourself from limiting circumstances.