Re: Sola-Busca riddles
Posted: 09 Sep 2014, 16:41
The story of Prince Fibbia (insecure as it is) indicates, that Lucca (Fibbia was from Lucca) had rather early some unusual playing cards (whatever they were in the case, that the whole story has some truth).mikeh wrote: Yes, there is a pattern, and it is not accidental. The question is, why is it a pattern? I say the pattern is caused by the difficulty of identifying the virtue cards and the "papi", due to its being an all-male sequence. These constitute most of the cards that are in the first 9 of the usual sequence, not counting the first two, as you say. That's most of it, and explains the correspondence between those cards in the SB and the missing cards of the Lucca deck. What remains to be explained is why those cards were distributed in the SB sequence the way they were. Whatever the explanation, I cannot imagine that Lucca had anything to do with it.
Emperor Charles IV and his very early connections to playing cards (insecure as these assumptions are based on the remarks of the researcher F. L. Hübsch) had two early visits in Lucca, once around 1333 and a second time during his visit to Italy 1368. Lucca got independence in 1369 and formed a democracy ...
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/LuccaVon den Truppen Ludwigs des Bayern besetzt, an den reichen Genuesen Gheradino Spinola verkauft, vom böhmischen König Johann besetzt, an die Rossi aus Parma verpfändet, von denen an Martino della Scala aus Verona abgetreten, an die Florentiner verkauft, an die Pisaner übergeben, nominell befreit von Kaiser Karl IV. und von seinem Vikar regiert, gelang es Lucca, seit 1369 zuerst als Demokratie, nach 1628 als patrizisch-aristokratische Oligarchie, seine Unabhängigkeit als Stadtrepublik neben Venedig und Genua zu behaupten.
Dokumentation from the Regesten
Activities as young man
In 1331 he [Charles * 1316 as young man] gained some experience of warfare in Italy with his father [John the Blind]. At the beginning of 1333, Charles went to Lucca (Tuscany) to consolidate his rule there. In an effort to defend the city, Charles founded the nearby fortress and the town of Montecarlo (Charles' Mountain).
Emperor coronation 5th of April in Rome 1355, journey in Italy since begin of October 1454 till mid of July 1355. More than the half time Charles spend "near Lucca".
Charles IV is only one day in Lucca, but much more time in Pisa (c. 114 days, 20km to Lucca) and Montecarlo (8 days; near Lucca) and Pietra Santa (17 days; about 20km to Pisa and to Lucca).
http://regesta-imperii.digitale-sammlun ... b1877_0782
Emperor journey to Italy 1368/69
Even if one can't read German, it's easy to see, that Lucca had been the most important location in Italy for this emperor visit. Charles used about 6 months from his 17 months in Italy for time in Lucca and had some more time connected to Lucca problems in Pisa.
If there was some playing card production in Bohemia in 1368, there's some probability, that the cards spread a little bit on the roads of the late emperor. A half year in Lucca 1368/69 should give some opportunity, that some nobles or higher officials in Lucca became acquainted to the game.
The games and deck types, which Johannes of Rheinfelden knew in 1377 (only 8-9 years later), might have been known already in 1368. One of the games is described as having 5x13-structure, and easily the 5th suit might have been dedicated as a trump suit ... whatever the painted objects might had been. And possibly such a game became known in Lucca
Lucca had been again an used place for emperor Sigismondo (son of Chales IV during his journey to Italy in 1431-1433.
Sigismund reached Milan at 22 November 1431.
Sigismund reached Lucca at 31 May 1432.
http://regesta-imperii.digitale-sammlun ... t1897_0220
Sigismund has last document at 4th of July 1432 in Lucca, arrives at Siena at 12th of June.
http://regesta-imperii.digitale-sammlun ... t1897_0222
So this had been only a stay a little longer than a month. Most time was spend in Siena (nearly 10 months). The emperor stayed in Italy a little less than 2 years.
Before emperor Heinrich VII, grandfather of Charles IV had spend mos f his short regency in Italy. Pisa was visited in February till April 1312 and again in March 1313. Pisa was allied with Henry in the following war. Henry died 24 August 1313 cause of malaria during a siege on Siena. His corpse was transported to Pisa, where he was buried. Possibly the following close relation of Charles IV to Lucca/Pisa depended on this earlier connection between Pisa and Henry VII.
We followed a longer time the idea to search for events, which might have triggered the invention Trionfi cards. Especially Phaeded suggested strongly the battle of Anghiari end of June 1440 as the deciding event. I personally thought often of the council Ferrara/Florence in 1438/39.
But there was also a war between Lucca/Florence, which might have initiated a first experiment. Giusto Giusti and his condottieri and Francesco Sforza participated at this longer. A peace was concluded at begin of 1438, with a small progress for the Florentine side. Sforza went then away and prepared for the wedding with Bianca Maria, who didn't come. The event looks far less dramatic or deciding than the battle of Anghiari or the council, but one doesn't know. Perhaps a first sort of "first Trionfi deck" was made then, perhaps inspired by a Lucca tradition, how to play with cards.
Actually one should take it as a serious possibility, especially in regard of the recent exploration of the Sola-Busca deck, which has a very surprising similarity to a game form, which was played more than 200 years later in Lucca.
With the first playing card note in Ferrara (1422) we have (possibly) a report about another 5x13 deck in Italy.
The somewhat strange deck of Lucca (69 cards with 4x14+13-structure), looks like a deck, which originally had 5x13 cards, but was later expanded by 4 queens.