As a reminder, the suit of wands is driven by masculine energy and usually represents willpower, change, and an impulse to create and make something new. Scholars and academics have connected the suit of wands to the classical element of fire, and most of the cards from that suit embody the symbolic attributes of this element, one way or another.
Knight of Wands: Traditional meanings
The active element of the four court cards in the suit of wands, the Knight of Wands embodies a person of contradictions, constantly torn between a desire for discipline and willpower, and a deep longing for constant freshness and new adventures inherited from the fiery aspect of the suit of Wands.
Like the Chariot major arcana, the Knight of Wands embodies a person or situation that is constantly in motion, and when reversed the painful contradictions between the opposite side of his personality create a lot of tension and division, both within and without.
Upright: Young adult man, dark hair, friendly, methodical and headstrong but full of wanderlust and hidden curiosity.
Reversed: Bipolar temper, easily frustrated, and easy to anger.
Upright Knight of Wands
The Knight of Wands is an adult man wearing heavy armor on a horse and holding a staff in his right hand. He is riding from the right side to the left side.
He does not seem to stand on a battlefield, and on the Rider Waite Smith version of this minor arcana, you can see three pyramids in the distance.
The horse he is riding seems to be quite wild and energetic, in stark contrast with the rather relaxed and upright position of its rider. This specific contrast is one of the most important elements of the Knight of Wands card and is essential to fully understand what it means in a tarot prediction.
In the suit of Wands, and as the Page of Wands ignited the spark of creativity and ideas, the Knight of Wands is the active element that will shape that spark and mold it into something tangible and real. The contrast between the wild behavior of the horse and the cool demeanor of the rider is meant to embody the sharp determination and discipline required to turn imagination and creativity into something usable.
The Knight of Wands understands that some discipline is required in order to shape the wild aspect of fire into something concrete, even if this need for discipline can sometimes conflict with their inner nature.
The horse on the Knight of Wands channels the energy of the Fire element to riding swiftly. The combination of that speed with the sharp focus of the Knight could echo the kind of altered state of consciousness that can be seen among racing car drivers.
Reversed Knight of Wands
When the Knight of Wands appears reversed in a tarot card reading, the obvious lack of synergy between the knight and his mount is enhanced and the meaning of the card embodies the various problems that can likely ensue from such a situation.
The contrast between the nervous haste of the horse and the cool discipline of the rider can create a feeling of frustration that can easily spread outward. In a reading, this reversed card could embody the kind of impatience you can get when you feel out of pace with the world around you when things are moving either too fast or too slow for you.
Knight of Wands and love
The Knight of Wands usually represents a young adult with a very friendly and open character, but often seemed frustrated with the world around him. He represents someone always on the move, who has a hard time standing still. There is always something new to see, something new to do, and while there is an obvious method and preparedness to any adventure, this is someone who cannot really deal with real-world routine.
The Knight of Wands is also a good candidate for the Querent card if he is a young adult with dark hair and a curious and restless nature.