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Fortune Telling by Cards, by P.R.S. Foli, [1915], at

p. 107


A Rhyming Divination


THERE are those to whom the more elaborate forms of fortune-telling by cards may seem a trifle wearisome, or possibly too intricate to be followed without a somewhat exhausting effort of attention. The method which we give in this chapter has the advantage of being at once simple, diverting, and varied.

As the rhyming significations concern both sexes, a great deal of fun can be provided where there is a party of young people, and who can tell whether the long arm of coincidence may not use this old-time practice to bring some loving pair together?

Take a new pack of cards, or at any rate one in which there are no tell-tale marks on the reverse sides, and spread them face downwards upon the table. Before any one draws a card, he or she is requested to close the eyes, place the right hand on the heart, and say, "Honi soit qui mal y pense." The card must then be drawn with the left hand, and its meaning will be read by the one who holds the key contained in the verses which we now give.


Ace. Since that this ace is now your lot,
You will wed one that's fierce and hot;
But if a woman does draw it,
She will wed one with wealth and wit.

Two. Hast thou not drawn the number two?
Thy spouse shall be both just and true.
But if a woman this now have,
Beware a sly and crafty knave!

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Three. You that have drawn the number three
Great honour will your fortune be;
But if a female draw the same,
She must beware of fickle shame.

Four. The man that draws the number four
Shall quite forsake his native shore;
But if the same a woman finds,
Both hand and heart in love she joins.

Five. He that draweth the number five,
Where he was born he best will thrive;
But if it's drawn by womankind,
Good luck abroad they sure will find.

Six. He that can catch the number six
Will have cunning and crafty tricks;
But if a woman draw the same,
Twill show that she is free from blame.

Seven. Since that the seven does appear,
Crosses thou hast great cause to fear;
Women, whene’er the same they draw,
Shall not fear crosses more than straw.

Eight. Hast thou then drawn the number eight?
Thou sure wilt be a rascal great;
Females that chance the same to take,
They never will the truth forsake.

Nine. Hast thou turn’d up the merry nine?
Then guineas will thy pocket line;
She that doth draw it to her hand
Will die for love or leave the land.

Ten. O brave! the ten, ’tis very well!
There's none in love shall thee excel.
Only the maid who draws the ten
May wed, but nobody knows when.

King. This noble king of diamonds shows
Thou long shalt live where pleasure flows!
But when a woman draws the king,
Sad, melancholy songs she'll sing.

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Queen. Now is the queen of diamonds fair,
She shows thou shalt some office share;
Oh, woman! if it fall to you,
Friends you will have not a few.

Knave. Is now the knave of diamonds come?
Be sure beware the martial drum;
Yet if a woman draw the knave,
She shall much better fortune have.


Ace. He that draws the ace of hearts
Shall surely be a man of parts;
And she that draws it, I profess,
Will have the gift of idleness.

Two. He who can draw the deuce shall be
Endowed with generosity;
But when a woman draws the card,
It doth betide her cruel hard.

Three. The man who gets hold of this trey
Always bound, always obey;
A woman that shall draw this sort
Will sure drink brandy by the quart.

Four. He that draws this four shall make
A faithful love for conscience’ sake;
But if it's drawn by womenkind,
They will prove false, and that you'll find.

Five. Note that this five of hearts declares
Thou shalt well manage great affairs;
But if it's drawn by fair women,
They sure will love all sorts of men.

Six. The six of hearts surely foretells
Thou shalt be where great honour dwells;
If it falls on the other side
It then betokens scorn and pride.

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Seven. Now this old seven, I'll maintain,
Shows that thou hast not loved in vain;
Thou shalt obtain the golden prize,
But, with the maids, ’tis otherwise.

Eight. Having drawn the number eight,
Shows thou’rt servile, born to wait;
But if a woman draw the same,
She'll mount upon the wings of fame.

Nine. By this long nine be well assured
The lovesick pains must be endured;
But the maid that draws this nine
Soon in wedlock hands shall join.

Ten. This ten it is a lucky cast,
For it doth show the worst is past;
But if the maids the same shall have,
Love will their tender hearts enslave.

King. By this card surely ’twill appear
Thou shalt live long in happy cheer;
And if a woman draw this card,
She shall likewise be high preferred.

Queen. Now by this card it is well known
Thou shalt enjoy still all thine own;
But women, if they draw the same,
Shall sure enjoy a happy name.

Knave. He that doth draw the knave of hearts
Betokens he hath knavish parts;
But if a woman draw the knave,
Of no man shall she be the slave.


Ace. Thon that dost draw the ace of spades
Shall be sore flouted by the maids;
And when it is a damsel's lot,
Both love and honour go to pot.

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Two. Always this deuce betokens strife,
And with a scolding, wicked wife;
But if a woman's lot it be,
Honour, great love, and dignity.

Three. Thou that art happy in this trey
Shalt surely wed a lady gay;
Whilst maids who now the same shall take,
Join marriage with a poor town rake.

Four. Now this same four betokens you
Shall lead a dissipated crew;
Maids that do draw the same shall meet
With certain joys always complete.

Five. The five of spades gives you to know
That you must through some troubles go;
But, if a woman, it foretells
Her virtue others’ far excels.

Six. The six foretells whene’er you wed
You'll find your expectations fled;
But if a maid the number own
She'll wed a man of high renown.

Seven. Now as the seven comes to hand,
It does entitle you to land;
But maids with this shall wed with those
That have no money, friends, or clothes.

Eight. This eight of spades foretells you shall
Wed a young maid fair, straight, and tall;
If to a maid the same shall come,
She weds the brother of Tom Thumb.

Nine. Now by this nine thou art foretold,
Thou shalt wed one deaf, lame, and old.
Females, when they draw this odd chance,
Shall of themselves to wealth advance.

Ten. ’Tis seen by this long ten of spades
That thou shalt follow many trades,
And thrive by none. But women, they
By this chance shall not work but play.

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King. By this brave king observe and note,
On golden streams you e’er shall float;
But women, by the self-same lot,
Shall long enjoy what they have got.

Queen. Here is the queen of spades, likewise
Thou soon shalt unto riches rise;
A woman by the same shall have
What her own heart doth sorely crave.

Knave. This is a knave, pray have a care
That you fall not into despair;
Women, who the same shall choose,
Shall prove great flats, but that's no news


Ace. He that doth draw the ace of clubs,
From his wife gets a thousand snubs;
But if maids do it obtain,
It means that they shall rule and reign.

Two. Note that this deuce doth signify
That thou a loyalist shalt die;
The damsels that the same shall take
Never will their good friends forsake.

Three. You that by chance this trey have draws
Shall on a worthless woman fawn.
A maiden that shall draw this trey
Shall be the lass that ne’er says nay.

Four. Now by this four we plainly see
Four children shall be born to thee;
And she that draws the same shall wed
Two wealthy husbands, both well-bred.

Five. Now by this five ’tis clear to see
Thy wife will but a slattern be.
This same five drawn by virgins, they
Shall all wed husbands kind and gay.

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Six. By this six thou’rt wed, we know,
To one that over thee will crow;
Maids that can draw the same shall be
Blest with good husbands, kind and free.

Seven. Thou that hast now the seven drawn
Shall put thy Sunday clothes in pawn;
Maids that draw the same shall wear
Jewels rich without compare.

Eight. By this club eight, tho’ Whig or Tory,
Thy life will prove a tragic story;
Ye maids that draw the same, are born
To hold both fools and fops in scorn.

Nine. By this brave nine, upon my life,
You soon shall wed a wealthy wife;
She that shall draw the same shall have
One that is both fool and knave.

Ten. Now for this number, half a score,
Shows that thou wilt be wretched poor;
Maids that can draw this number still
Shall have great joy and wealth at will.

King. Here comes the king of clubs, and shows
Thou hast some friends as well as foes;
Maids that do draw this court card shall
Have very few, or none at all.

Queen. If the queen of clubs thou hast,
Thou shalt be with great honour graced.
And women, if the same they find,
Will have things after their own mind.

Knave. See how the surly knave appears!
Pray take care of both your ears!
Women, whene’er the same they see,
Will be what oft they used to be.

Next: Chapter XVIII. The Tarots