Five of Swords

Five of Swords

Keywords for the Five of Swords Tarot Card

  • War, violence, bullies
  • Victory through deceit, poor sportsmanship
  • Betrayal, loss, defeat
  • Failed relationships


The Five of Swords shows someone (you?) spoiling for a fight. You’re in the war zone and this conflict can’t be avoided.


Unfortunately, this conflict is likely to be unequal, unfair, or abusive. You do have a choice, though. You can fight this unfair fight or you can learn from the situation, grow, and move on.


Of course, the better option is to learn from this situation. Fighting this battle will likely end in defeat. Even if you do somehow come out on top, the victory will be hollow and you’ll lose much more than you hoped to gain.


Traditionally, this card shows a mean-looking man holding three swords, with two at his feet. He’s looking over his shoulder at two defeated men walking away. There’s something about his face that makes this guy look like a jerk. In this deck, we use the symbolism of the blue jay which are notorious for being aggressive bullies and the squirrel who is at least twice his size to show this in an unequal fight.


The jerk might be someone in your life, or it might be YOU. If you find yourself playing the role of the bully, stop. There is a deeper fear or desire driving you. Deal with that deeper issue instead of taking your pain out on the people around you.


Keywords for the Five of Swords Reversed

  • A fair fight
  • Peace after a violent act
  • Moving past resentments
  • The lies come out



  • The original was painted on 11x14 high quality 140lb watercolor paper with Turner watercolor paints.
  • Signature is hidden in the painting. 
  • Your original painting will come with a certificate of authenticity and a backing board, wrapped in plastic.
  • The painting is vertically oriented.


High quality reproductions are also available in 11x14 and 8x10 or 5x7 (with slight cropping) on an excellent quality linen paper which will retain it's true colors for many years.