Arcana: The Lovers

Reversed as with many dualistic cards, the symbolism can be a parallel, or even supporting.

The Lovers, 6th card of the House of Peasants (aka The Lower Court). The Lovers much like The Scythe is a poorly understood card. Though literal interpretations are easy, and often valid, this is a card also of deep attachment, friendship, and transcendent empathy. It can further represent obsession, and what is injurious in our desires.

Reversed one easily finds jealousy, shame, or a loss of trust. More clearly though this can harken to rivalry, and a jostling for position. Yet may also signify letting go, moving on, releasing our grudges, or a reversal of roles. As in ones lowest day the kindness shown is returned, and cruelty imparted avenged. This card can be as the reaper a sign of reaping what is sown.

Depicted here in fairly traditional form are Layfet and Damun. Younger of Osyir’s two rebel daughters, and the lover she took from among the Tethes tribe. It is notable though that per tradition all clear sign of gender for either figure is obscured. Hair worn long as a man of Tethes would have. Still one could determine that Layfet with her Osyrean skin, and red hair is the upper left figure, and Damun the man in the lower right. Such distinction however is rarely, if ever, used in traditional interpretation, and many cards depict far less identifiable persons.

One might mistake this card as a victim of Clarion modesty, but the truth is hidden in plain sight. “Onthu Jezel Volled,” is ancient Lycian for “Fully Yourself Reveal.” Thus we see instead a mockery of Clarion shame, in a thin veneer of false modesty, extolling the Sylvian virtue, “offer the last of oneself, hidden from the world.”


Commentary: I had originally added a more lackluster banner in an attempt to mitigate prudish discomfort.  Then was encouraged my darling wife (who was a big help cleaning up other details) that the censorship was quite unnecessary.  However by then I had already become quite attached to the lore description of why the banner was really there.  Also that I needed a few more cards that would use the motif started with the Sword.  So she helped me make the banner work.  Love her so much.

This card makes me very happy for other reasons that would be spoiler adjacent.  Sufficed to say I see an echo of these historical figures in our future.

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