Sailor in the Tarot deck

English translation: you have to read the first book

12:01 Apr 6, 2005
English to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Poetry & Literature
English term or phrase: Sailor in the Tarot deck
There is a sentence like this: that of the Sailor in the Tarot deck from which the man in black had dealt the gunslinger's own moaning future.

What "Sailor" means? What the sentence mean?

Thank you!

Macky
macky
Local time: 07:40
English translation:you have to read the first book
Explanation:
This is the reference to the final scene of the 1st book, "The Gunslinger". The storyline of the book is the Gunslinger's insistent chase for a mysterious Man-in-Black. At the end of the book Roland finds the Man in Black, and they talk about Roland's future and destiny. During the talk the Man in Black uses his magical Tarot deck for the divination and draw three cards, including `Sailor'.

The picture of the card is a sailor with an evil monkey sitting on his shoulder. This image signifies a dark half of a man and predicts that Roland is to meet a man who is under a curse of evil habit. Later in this 2nd book, "Drawing of the three", you will learn that it is a young man addicted to heroin.

Also, please note the play of words in the title of the 2nd book.
"Drawing" is a cardgame term, it means taking a card out of a deck.
In the book, Roland has to "draw" three persons from our world to his own world through some magical doors, and then to teach them, so that they also become gunslingers and help Roland in his quest.

So, Stephen King invented `Sailor' card. It's not a card of the traditional Tarot deck, but the world of Roland is a bit different from our own. Many things are the same, but many are very different.
The symbolism of the card is a dark half of a person. The drug addict is quite a nice guy, but he will have a hard time to give up with his habit -- in other words, to throw off his shoulder that dominating monkey.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 17 hrs 48 mins (2005-04-07 05:49:55 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Also, about Tarot itself. This is a special \"esoteric\" deck of cards whish is used for fortune-telling and mystical contemplation. There are many types of Tarot, with a different symbolism, but a typical deck consists of two types of cards -- so called Major and Minor Arcana.

Major Arcana are 22 cards which do not belong to any suit. They have their own, special names like `The World\', `Wheel of Fortune\', `Death\', `Lovers\', `Hanging Man\', `Fool\', etc.

Other 54 cards are close to usual playing cards (2, 3,... 10, then Page, Queen, Knight, King and Ace). The names of 4 suits are also different from usual playing-cards. In the most Tarot decks, suits are named Wands, Cups, Pentacles (Coins), and Swords.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 20 hrs 6 mins (2005-04-07 08:07:39 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

I;ve checked the text of the book once more and found that I confused \"The Sailor\" with \"The Prisoner\" -- sorry! The `Sailor\' cards refers to another key character of the book -- a boy by name Jake, while what I had described above is a card referencing to Eddie Dean. The third card (also invented by King, `Lady of Shadows\' is Detta Walker/Odetta Holmes (a woman with a split personality).

Here is the exact fragment from the 1st book, `The Gunslinger\'. The conversation of Roland and the magician (the man in black):

...
“I’m going to tell your future, Roland. Seven cards must be turned, one at a time, and placed in conjunction with the others. I’ve not done this for over three hundred years. And I suspect I’ve never read one quite like yours.” The mocking note was creeping in again, like a Kuvian night-soldier with a killing knife gripped in one hand. “You are the world’s last adventurer. The last crusader. How that must please you, Roland! Yet you have no idea how close you stand to the Tower now, how close in time. Worlds turn about your head.”
“Read my fortune then,” he said harshly.
The first card was turned.
“The Hanged Man,” the man in black said. The darkness had given him back his hood. “Yet here, in conjunction with nothing else, it signifies strength and not death. You, gunslinger, are the Hanged Man, plodding ever onward toward your goal over all the pits of Hades. You have already dropped one co-traveler into the pit, have you not?”
He turned the second card. “The Sailor. Note the clear brow, the hairless cheeks, the wounded eyes. He drowns, gunslinger, and no one throws out the line. The boy Jake.”
The gunslinger winced, said nothing.
The third card was turned. A baboon stood grinningly
astride a young man’s shoulder. The young man’s face was turned up, a grimace of stylized dread and horror on his features. Looking more closely, the gunslinger saw the ba boon held a whip.
“The Prisoner,” the man in black said. The fire cast uneasy, flickering shadows over the face of the ridden man, making it seem to move and writhe in wordless terror. The gunslinger flicked his eyes away.
“A trifle upsetting, isn’t he?” The man in black said, and seemed on the verge of sniggering.
He turned the fourth card. A woman with a shawl over her head sat spinning at a wheel. To the gunslinger’s dazed eyes, she appeared to be smiling craftily and sobbing at the same time.
“The Lady of Shadows,” the man in black remarked. “Does she look two-faced to you, gunslinger? She is. A veritable Janus.”
....

By the way, you may find and read the entire 1st book at the site:

http://www.fictionbook.ru/author/king_stephen/dark_tower_1_g...

It will be extremely important for you if you are to translate `Drawing of the Three\'.
Selected response from:

Kirill Semenov
Ukraine
Local time: 02:40
Grading comment
You're really helpful. Thank you!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
4 +4See explanation below...
Tony M
3 +3you have to read the first book
Kirill Semenov
3Three of Wands /Staves
msherms


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


8 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +4
sailor in the tarot deck
See explanation below...


Explanation:
The 'Tarot deck' is the deck or set of cards used for playing the game 'tarot', and also (in modified form) for fortune telling.

One of the cards bears the picture of a sailor; there are also symbolic representations of Death, the Devil, etc., and these are interpreted in various ways by the fortune-teller.

To 'deal the future' means 'to set out the cards that are going to be used to predict the person's future' --- if you believe in it, then this means that your future is being determined by what you are told...

Tony M
France
Local time: 01:40
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 256

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Jane Gabbutt
6 mins
  -> Thanks, Jane!

agree  DGK T-I
9 mins
  -> Thanks, Doc! Haven't seen so much of you lately...? :-)

agree  Kim Metzger: The sailor is Christopher Columbus? http://www.spiritone.com/~filipas/Masquerade/Reviews/columbu...
18 mins
  -> Thanks, Kim!

neutral  Kirill Semenov: `Sailor' card is not from a typical Tarot deck, believe me! This is a pure invention of Stephen King in this case. I think King played his allusions/postmodern games in this case ;-) + I've added more detailed explanations below.
1 hr
  -> Thanks, Kirill! Indeed, you're right, I just checked my pack, and there is a 'bateleur', not a 'batelier'; I wonder if there was any confusion there...?

agree  Can Altinbay: Nice explanation
3 hrs
  -> Thanks, Can! Though as Kirill has pointed out, I got my images muddled up as far as the actual picture card is concerned...
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
sailor in the tarot deck
Three of Wands /Staves


Explanation:
This just adds information to that stated above. I think the card in reference must be the 3 of Wands (or rods or staves as they are sometimes called). Ther person standing and looking out upon the horizon is sometimes referred to as a sailor or the Fisher King (Arthurian legend). He looks like a wealthy merchant and watches for his ships to return. The same figure appears in the 2 of wands card too - so it is difficult to know which he meant.

http://www.bewitchingways.com/tarot/wands/three.htm

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr 12 mins (2005-04-06 13:13:37 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

BTW- the figure is not Christopher Columbus----- the Tarot is actually older than him. The website sited above uses imagery based on Christopher Columbus. There are numerous forms of Tarot decks you can buy.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr 12 mins (2005-04-06 13:13:59 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

http://www.paranormality.com/tarot_three_of_wands.shtml

msherms
Local time: 01:40
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 4
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

17 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +3
sailor in the tarot deck
you have to read the first book


Explanation:
This is the reference to the final scene of the 1st book, "The Gunslinger". The storyline of the book is the Gunslinger's insistent chase for a mysterious Man-in-Black. At the end of the book Roland finds the Man in Black, and they talk about Roland's future and destiny. During the talk the Man in Black uses his magical Tarot deck for the divination and draw three cards, including `Sailor'.

The picture of the card is a sailor with an evil monkey sitting on his shoulder. This image signifies a dark half of a man and predicts that Roland is to meet a man who is under a curse of evil habit. Later in this 2nd book, "Drawing of the three", you will learn that it is a young man addicted to heroin.

Also, please note the play of words in the title of the 2nd book.
"Drawing" is a cardgame term, it means taking a card out of a deck.
In the book, Roland has to "draw" three persons from our world to his own world through some magical doors, and then to teach them, so that they also become gunslingers and help Roland in his quest.

So, Stephen King invented `Sailor' card. It's not a card of the traditional Tarot deck, but the world of Roland is a bit different from our own. Many things are the same, but many are very different.
The symbolism of the card is a dark half of a person. The drug addict is quite a nice guy, but he will have a hard time to give up with his habit -- in other words, to throw off his shoulder that dominating monkey.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 17 hrs 48 mins (2005-04-07 05:49:55 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Also, about Tarot itself. This is a special \"esoteric\" deck of cards whish is used for fortune-telling and mystical contemplation. There are many types of Tarot, with a different symbolism, but a typical deck consists of two types of cards -- so called Major and Minor Arcana.

Major Arcana are 22 cards which do not belong to any suit. They have their own, special names like `The World\', `Wheel of Fortune\', `Death\', `Lovers\', `Hanging Man\', `Fool\', etc.

Other 54 cards are close to usual playing cards (2, 3,... 10, then Page, Queen, Knight, King and Ace). The names of 4 suits are also different from usual playing-cards. In the most Tarot decks, suits are named Wands, Cups, Pentacles (Coins), and Swords.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 20 hrs 6 mins (2005-04-07 08:07:39 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

I;ve checked the text of the book once more and found that I confused \"The Sailor\" with \"The Prisoner\" -- sorry! The `Sailor\' cards refers to another key character of the book -- a boy by name Jake, while what I had described above is a card referencing to Eddie Dean. The third card (also invented by King, `Lady of Shadows\' is Detta Walker/Odetta Holmes (a woman with a split personality).

Here is the exact fragment from the 1st book, `The Gunslinger\'. The conversation of Roland and the magician (the man in black):

...
“I’m going to tell your future, Roland. Seven cards must be turned, one at a time, and placed in conjunction with the others. I’ve not done this for over three hundred years. And I suspect I’ve never read one quite like yours.” The mocking note was creeping in again, like a Kuvian night-soldier with a killing knife gripped in one hand. “You are the world’s last adventurer. The last crusader. How that must please you, Roland! Yet you have no idea how close you stand to the Tower now, how close in time. Worlds turn about your head.”
“Read my fortune then,” he said harshly.
The first card was turned.
“The Hanged Man,” the man in black said. The darkness had given him back his hood. “Yet here, in conjunction with nothing else, it signifies strength and not death. You, gunslinger, are the Hanged Man, plodding ever onward toward your goal over all the pits of Hades. You have already dropped one co-traveler into the pit, have you not?”
He turned the second card. “The Sailor. Note the clear brow, the hairless cheeks, the wounded eyes. He drowns, gunslinger, and no one throws out the line. The boy Jake.”
The gunslinger winced, said nothing.
The third card was turned. A baboon stood grinningly
astride a young man’s shoulder. The young man’s face was turned up, a grimace of stylized dread and horror on his features. Looking more closely, the gunslinger saw the ba boon held a whip.
“The Prisoner,” the man in black said. The fire cast uneasy, flickering shadows over the face of the ridden man, making it seem to move and writhe in wordless terror. The gunslinger flicked his eyes away.
“A trifle upsetting, isn’t he?” The man in black said, and seemed on the verge of sniggering.
He turned the fourth card. A woman with a shawl over her head sat spinning at a wheel. To the gunslinger’s dazed eyes, she appeared to be smiling craftily and sobbing at the same time.
“The Lady of Shadows,” the man in black remarked. “Does she look two-faced to you, gunslinger? She is. A veritable Janus.”
....

By the way, you may find and read the entire 1st book at the site:

http://www.fictionbook.ru/author/king_stephen/dark_tower_1_g...

It will be extremely important for you if you are to translate `Drawing of the Three\'.

Kirill Semenov
Ukraine
Local time: 02:40
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 118
Grading comment
You're really helpful. Thank you!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Tony M: Nice one, Kirill! Thanks a lot for that definitive, and fascinating, answer! Good job you know King, but shame Asker didn't tell us the source in the first place!
2 hrs
  -> I love King much and have read most of his books. And `The Dark Tower' is the best one and my favourite :)

agree  Robert Donahue (X)
17 hrs

agree  RHELLER: impressive :-)
20 hrs
  -> thank you :) Still my memory failed me and I mixed up two cards in my first attempt. I had to check the text first
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