14. Le Diable

The Devil from Tarocchino Arlecchino

About the Card

English Name(s)

The Devil


  • Grand Etteilla: Card Number 14
  • Tarot de Marseille: Trump XV

Image Description

A Harlequin with black and gold spread wings and a green tail holds a long striped pitchfork across his body. His mask has green horns and ears and a black spiral pattern on the cheeks. He sticks out a long red tongue as he looks up to the sky. He wears bows tied from striped snakes around his neck and on each shoe. Three colorful fires burn behind him and red flourishes fill the air. He wears a puffed-sleeve jacket with red, black, and green diamonds, black and gold diamonds-pattern puffed pans, and tall red and green socks.

Further Notes

One item to note in the Upright word list is the appearance of “genius.” Genius here does not mean intelligence. Rather, as in the phrase “genius of a place,” it refers to a powerful attendant spirit. I believe this is meant, not as an intelligent person, but rather in the sense of the “genius of a place,” a powerful attendant spirit.

On his Etteilla’s Trumps blog, Michael S. Howard suggested a connection to the Greek daemon (c.f. Roman genius), a guiding spirit who bridged the worlds of human and divine. This is reflected in the Julia Orsini handbook for the Grand Etteilla, which claims that the “Egyptians” who created the Book of Thoth had no concept of a Devil, but used the word in a complimentary way for man of great knowledge who through his studies gained the divine gift of passing between worlds. Arlecchino himself is such a being.

Click here to view the blog post.



Strength, human strength, extraordinary power, physical strength, virtues, violent impetus, momentum of genius, force of spirit, ravage, violence, vehemence, constraint, firmness, manual or physical labor.


Lightness, weakness, smallness, tenderness, weakening, dizziness, faint, despondency, depression, languor, collapse, sin, trespass, sacrilege.