Three of Swords – Tarot card meaning

Three of Swords - Rider Waite Minor Arcana - Swords

The Three of Swords is the third Swords card. The Three of Swords is a hard hitting card, as the illustration suggests. The Three of Swords is especially strong when dawn for any emotional or passionate subjects.

Generally, the Three of Swords represents loss, depression, separation and grief. Take not when you see the Three of Swords show in any reading.#

At a glance

The Three of Swords is a tarot card that is part of the Minor Arcana suite of swords. It is a symbol of heartbreak, betrayal, and emotional pain.

In a tarot reading, the Three of Swords can indicate that the querent is experiencing emotional pain or suffering. The image of the three swords piercing a heart suggests a feeling of being hurt or betrayed. It can also indicate a sense of loss or separation.

The Three of Swords can also represent a need to come to terms with difficult emotions or experiences. It can indicate a need to confront and process feelings of heartbreak, betrayal, or loss in order to move forward.

In terms of relationships, the Three of Swords can indicate a sense of betrayal or the end of a relationship. It can also suggest a need to confront difficult emotions or issues in order to move forward.

In a more negative context, the Three of Swords can represent a tendency towards self-pity or a refusal to move on from past pain. It can also indicate a tendency towards dwelling on negative emotions or experiences.

Overall, the Three of Swords is a difficult and painful card that represents the challenges of dealing with emotional pain and heartbreak. It can indicate a need to confront and process difficult emotions in order to move forward.

Card meanings


The Three of Swords can represent a recent breakup, and how this is affecting you now. You are very likely not over the worst when it comes to recovery. Expect things to come in waves. Sometimes the pain can just be too much. If this is the case, try to find somebody who can help you, whether this is a friend or a professional therapist.

The Three of Swords can also represent a childhood of loss. Perhaps a parent, friend or other loved one died or left when you were younger. Events like this resonate throughout our lives and change how we act, think and feel about certain people and subjects. It may be a good dies to put some time into hwy you possess certain views and prejudices.


The Three of Swords that you are struggling. Emotionally, you may not be able to face the day when you wake up. You need to find a way out. Sometimes all the advice in the world will not help you cope. You need to escape, things just aren’t going well and they may not improve in the short term.

Grief hits us all in different ways. When a loved one dies or leaves us, it will affect us all differently. You need to mourn in your own way. There is no time limit or goal to reach, just gradually try to improve your mental state.


The Three of Swords is a warning for the future. The path you are on will not bring you joy or happiness. It would be best to find other paths forward, rather than continue on your current trajectory. This will all depend on the purpose of your spread.

The Three of Swords in the future position can also represent dealing with loss. We can only feel like we prepare for the loss of a loved one. When it happens, it is best to let nature take it’s course, and act as you feel.

Work, careers and education

Things likely aren’t gong well when you draw the Three of Swords. It’s likely that, work or education, this isn’t the correct path for you, and you should look for a way to change. There might be a sudden shift in your career which prompts the need for a change.

The Three of Swords may show that work can leave you feeling defeated; perhaps you are feeling out of your depth. There is always a way out of things, but if you are feeling trapped due to responsibilities, then you may have to rise above these obstacles.

Love and Relationships

The Three of Swords is a bad card to draw regarding relationships, just look at that illustration, there isn’t a positive thing about it. If you are in a relationship, then you should brace for bad news upon seeing the Three of Swords. Think about all the things that could go wrong, the worst case scenario, and plan for it. How are you going to react?

The near future may be a tough period for you, just remember to take care of yourself. This doesn’t specifically mean that your relationship isn’t coming to an end, but there are trying times ahead. A relationship can withstand a lot if you want it to.


The Three of Wands is likely bad news when it comes to finances and wealth in general. At it’s worst, you could lose something you treasure very much. The worst part is that what happens to you might not even be your fault at all.

You may have to cut down to the essentials in order to make ends meet. Even though this is just temporary, it can be tough. Don’t let it get on top of you.

Health and well-being

The Three of Swords can represent your mental state; as the rest of the card suggests, things may be at a complete low right now. Taking care of yourself should be a priority. You can work on other things when you feel well enough to.

As the general theme of the Three of Swords suggests, a breakup in a relationship or the loss of a loved one can affect us deeply. There is no need to pretend you are feeling better than you actually are. Let your emotions come and go, and deal with things naturally.

Other associations

Element: Air

As a Yes or No question: No


Grief, loss, separation, agony, despair