TEN OF COINS you will die

Placement: The Minor Arcana

Description: At the gates of a castle, two youths talk amongst themselves in front of an older man who sits looking bored (the Coins suit, after all, the most boring of the Minor Arcana) on an elaborate throne. One of those younger adults has her back to the older man. Two dogs try to get his attention. A child tries to get the dogs’ attentions by pulling on one of their tails. They don’t care. The old man has treats and if they stare at him long enough, they might be declared “good doggies” and fed said treats. However, these are the dogs from The Moon card. These are not good doggies. They are doggies who run out into the night and howl and play with lobsters (the lobster is absent here) and keep everyone awake. No wonder the elderly man appears tired.

That is the Ten of Coins as it appears in the modern classic Rider-Waite-Smith deck. There are other variants. In the Sola-Busca version featured above, a dog squats at the side of a coffin filled with coins. A child steals one of the coins.


Right side up:

Inheritance. Handing responsibilities and rewards to others, whether they deserve it or not. It has been a long journey for you, or if not long then at least a difficult journey, and if not difficult, then at least exhausting from all those nights you lay awake due to howling dogs. You have many stories to tell. No one listens anymore. By now, they’ve memorised the stories of your past and occupy themselves with questions about your future. Specifically, they plan for the day you move out of the castle and downsize to a single-occupant basement condo made of pine.



Upside down:

You will be robbed blind. Robbers go for the eyes first, thus the expression. You were asking for it, though, by being wealthy in public, and by wearing your platinum eyes. Eyedentity theft, as it were. They may steal your teeth as well. Those are ivory, and if you skipped flossing you may have some gold in there as well.


Classic Ten of Coins deaths:

  • McGuffin of a cosy mystery plot
  • Tontine membership in a dark farce
  • Talked to death
  • Attacked by bad doggies, bad children, or well-hidden lobsters