Greek Coffee Cup Reading


Do you have the gift of being able to read the future in the coffee grounds? Want to find out and bring a little magic and fun into your life?

Fortune telling is something that we have all heard of and have encountered at some point in our lives.  Well, most of us anyway. The question is can anyone do it or do you have to be born with the gift? And, if so, how do you know you’ve got it?  Can we all unlock the secrets of the future? Or is this a talent that only a few can use? The answers to these two questions are yes and no.

Reading a coffee cup is like reading the Tarot cards, palm reading, or even crystal ball reading.  It all comes down to the reader’s intuition. Everyone has intuition… but only a few value it and therefore really cultivate and develop it. Some people don’t even believe in any of this. To them, if a prediction comes true, it is merely a coincidence.  The power of magic is not even in their vocabulary. Which for me, personally, is really sad. What is life without magic?!

How many times have you thought of someone really strongly and suddenly the phone rings and… BANG!… it’s them.  How many times have you felt uneasy about someone and find out later that something significant happened to them? Ever had a strong feeling that you should change your normal route, so you do, only to find out later that the route you hadn’t taken was the scene of an accident?  I’m sure you could come up with other examples of how your “other side” tried to guide you through your everyday life. Do you see such instances as mere coincidence? Do you choose to forget/overlook them, or do you sew them into your mind and soul?

People who believe they have a gift, believe in it and follow it.  Believing in your intuition is an essential requirement for a coffee cup reader.  A well-developed intuitive sense is what mediums, astrologers and coffee cup readers all have in common.  It is not enough to memorise the shapes and symbols and their traditional meanings, one must also be able to combine that knowledge with intuition to be able to provide a truly meaningful reading.

Having lived in Greece for many years and having a personal interest in coffee cup reading, astrology and even magic, it brought me into close contact with certain special people.  Greece is a country with a very ancient history, especially when it comes to belief in certain energies.

Reading the coffee cup is a centuries-old tradition in Greece so you would think that this strange method of fortune telling is Greek in origin.  Not so. Kafemandeia, as it is called in Greek, actually originated in China centuries ago and it was tea leaves that they read.  The Greek fortune teller (called a kafetzou) reads the grounds remaining at the bottom of a coffee cup.  It is believed that the coffee drinker’s emotional, mental and physical condition affects the shapes made by the coffee residue, forming symbols that reveal something about the person and show things that may happen, or not, in their future.

Most importantly, coffee cup reading must always and only be done in daylight without any artificial light to help.

Preparing the cup

No coffee cup will reveal its secrets unless the reader carefully prepares for the “reading”.  The reader must wash their hands and they should not be in mourning or any other deeply emotional psychological state which may colour the reading.

After calmly drinking their Greek style coffee with NO RUSH, the person who wishes to have their cup read prepares his/her cup for the reader as follows.  Leave one sip of liquid in the cup to help swirl the coffee grounds around. The person then passes their cup to the reader who turns the cup around clockwise a total of three times while simultaneously swirling the remaining coffee grounds up the sides of the cup, and even spilling a little over the top.  After twirling and swirling, the reader quickly flips the cup upside down, letting the excess grounds fall onto a napkin or the table, and resting the overturned cup on its saucer.

The reader then gently turns the cup upright again. By now, the inside of the cup will look very messy, with designs and shapes stuck to the sides and in the bottom of the cup.  During the reading, the reader should always hold the cup by the handle in their left hand, tilting it slightly. Before talking about what they see, the reader should chant the following:

“Angels of Heaven, Ladies of the Moon, Let the Fire burn all Evil.
Fire, water and earth, the end and the beginning, show the future to ones herewith [reader says their name]”

At this point, the reader tries to determine what the various shapes and symbols are and what they mean for the person.  They should focus on the most obvious shapes and symbols.

Shapes found on the tip of the coffee cup relate to the current situation.  Anything at the bottom of the cup is about wishes, pursuits and any well-hidden enemies!   Bear in mind that the cup is usually a short-term future telling method – for the next 6 months at most. However, if you come across a gifted, older and very experienced coffee cup reader, they may be able to read years into the future.

As I mentioned earlier, coffee cup reading is NOT only about looking at the symbols, lines, shapes.  For example, if you see a camel in the grounds, also look around the camel… in which direction is the camel looking?  What is it standing on? What is above the camel’s head? A really good intuitive interpretation takes practice.

Basics of interpretation

If, when the reader turns the coffee cup upright again, a big piece of the coffee grounds falls down on to the saucer, don’t panic!  This is considered to be a very good omen. It means that the person is achieving their goals and all troubles are leaving them.

They say that if the cup and saucer are firmly stuck together so they can both be lifted up by holding the cup alone, this is called a “Prophet’s cup”, meaning that the person need not proceed with the reading as all their wishes will come true!  Most people usually want to proceed with the reading though.

Saucer:  The symbols on the saucer generally talk about the person’s love and home life.

Bottom, Middle and Top parts of the cup:  Sometimes the coffee cup is divided into horizontal sections.  Some exceptions aside, generally shapes in the bottom of the cup are messages relating to the person’s past; the middle part represents current events; and the top and edges give hints of the future.  The reader usually sees clues about the person’s home, family, friends and jealousies in the bottom section of the cup.

Big shapes at the top of the cup:  If a shape is close to the top and also big, some argue that a big event will happen soon.

Lines:  The most important elements in coffee reading are the lines, which are separated in two categories:  horizontal at the rim of the cup and the parallel lines. Most important are the parallel. If they are straight and long, it means an easy life without too many complications.  If the lines are cut up into smaller lines, things get difficult. Wavy lines indicate ups and downs that require attention. The person’s life is on a wave – one minute they are up, up and away in their beautiful balloon, but before they can enjoy it… BAM!… they are right back down again.  That’s why it is important to have a back-up plan, even when things are going well.

Triangle:  Change is coming to the person’s life.

Y letter:  Good news; help coming from a friend.

Dots:  A group of black dots up to 5 or 10 means that the person might receive money soon.  Some also interpret these dots as a reference to travelling or a message. If a large group of dots are visible in most of the cup, this indicates that the plans of the person who drunk the coffee are not clear enough.

Around the handle of the cup:  Some readers think the area around the cup handle signifies the development of the person’s love life.

Right and left:  According to tradition, the left side from the cup handle starts from the present and moves towards the future on the right side of the cup handle.

Also, depending on the origin of the reader, he/she might read the patterns on the right side of the cup handle as good omens while patterns on the left side of the cup handle pertain to negative developments.

Symbols and their traditional meanings

Eye:  If it is an angry, dark looking eye, this clearly means jealousy, the evil eye. If it has a positive look, then it means someone is thinking of you, missing you.

House:  Relocation. The size and look of the shape give clues about the new dwelling.

Circle:  A circle with heaps of white area inside means accomplishment in life.

Tree:  Things are evolving and progressing the way the person wants them to be, although slowly.  It might mean profit and/or family happiness. A tree is considered to be one of the very good signs.

Gate or Door:  Opportunity, opening to a new era.

Crown:  In many cultures, a crown symbolises success and authority.

Ribbon or Tie:  Happy event, celebration.

Star:  One of the rare signs to see in a cup and means investment.

Key:  A key means a new house, relocation, financial success.

Sun or sun set:  Means power. A very good and unexpected development is occurring.

Bag:  Success, money.

Ear:  Someone who is quick to pick up news is listening to you.

Butterfly:  Unreliable and worrying friendship.

Bird:  News but good news.

Holding Hands:  Agreement

Anchor:  Attaining a high place, finding security in life.

Fish (any kind including Whale or Dolphin):  Very big achievement especially in their career.

Candle:  Opening the mind, wisdom and knowledge.

Knife:  Physical danger in the future.

Moon:  Love.

Letter:  Good news.

Ring:  Union, marriage.

Broken ring:  Separation.

Scissors:  Argument with loved ones.

Open the heart: Following the initial reading, the person who drunk the coffee places his/her right thumb at the inside bottom of the cup and twists clockwise slightly. This is to create new shapes in the cup so the reader can see the very personal emotions and thoughts of the person.

There isn’t a Greek family without at least ONE coffee cup reader! Whether it’s real or not, who knows – anything is possible!


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