3 of Pentacles

Alt names: Works, Work
Keywords: Expression, production, work, contribution
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Range of meanings

Light: Finishing a project. Setting and meeting standards. Performing according to specifications. Making something others value. Creating something new. Doing your part in a group project. Delivering exactly what others have asked for.

Shadow: Pandering to the tastes of others. Failing to deliver what you’ve promised. Not delivering your best work unless closely supervised. Ignoring or breaking agreements with those who have invested in you. Refusing to do your part. Failing to abide by a clearly-outlined agreement with yourself or others.

Questions to ask

  1. How well will your work hold up to critical review?
  2. How can I get more done?
  3. What’s expected of me? How large a role do I play in controlling those expectations?
  4. What’s been agreed to? How well has that agreement been followed?


Personal Growth: Integrity is a fragile thing; one broken promise or one unmet commitment can shatter it forever. If you are out of integrity with someone, it’s time to correct the situation by admitting fault and accepting consequences. If someone is out of integrity with you, you’ll have to decide what value you place on giving them a second chance.

Work: It’s time to review contracts and agreements. To what extent do you deliver an honest day’s work? To what extent is this fairly compensated? If you agreed to work for a certain price, you should fulfill that agreement, even if you underestimated the time and effort involved in a project. A formula for success: know what you need, ask for it up front, and deliver more than promised.

Relationships: What are the terms that govern your relationship? What have you agreed to do? What roles and responsibilities fall to your partner or friend? The health of any relationship is directly related to the effort both partners make to fulfill their obligations. If you haven’t discussed terms, do so.

Spirituality: In return for dedicated pursuit, a spiritual path should yield focus, fulfillment, and peace. To what extent is your own spiritual practice delivering the promised changes in mind, body, and prosperity? It may be time to evaluate what you’re giving … and receiving.

Fortune-Telling: A high-dollar contract is in your future. If you work hard, you’ll succeed.


Astrological: Capricorn

Planet: Mars

Fool's Journey: The main character achieves a result that no other characters have been able to attain.

The Number 3: Getting Results: expression, productivity, output.

Coins: One of the four suits of the tarot. Also sometimes called pentacles or diskc. Coins suggest health, wealth, practicality and physicality. Their domain extends beyond money and finance to all physical things, including the human body. Coins explore your attitude toward resources of all kinds: what you’ve been given, and what you do with it. In RWS-influenced decks, Coins are often called Pentacles. A pentacle’s design (with the upright star in the middle that represents the human body) reminds us that physical blessings, from possessions to our bodies, are to be used for higher purposes. In your own life, how often do you focus on 'the star in the coin'?

Reviewing Work: In RWS-inspired decks, officials or patrons review a craftsman’s labor in the 3 of Coins. It's ambiguous if the review is going well or not?

Teamwork: In RWS-inspired decks, the 3 of Coins shows an apprentice sharing his work with a priest and nobleman. This represents a coming together of different kinds of knowledge into an effective collaboration.

Content generously licensed from Mark McElroy via TarotTools.com.