Connections between the Este and Colleoni families (the shield is Bartolomeo Colleoni - 1400-1475)
Baptismal gift : 1492
Is this is right, then the motto was Colleoni's before being Isabelle's secret Motto. It could come from
a Latin translation of Lucian (of Samosata), "Life of Demonax" (Demonactis Vita), was made by Lapo da Castiglioncho (1405-1438) .
But he is not the first : After Guarini, the humanists of the XVth cen-tury enumerated by Forster are: Aurispa, Lapo, Birago da Castiglionchio, Filelfo, Accolti, Bartolommeo della Fonte, Poggio, Kinuccio da Castiglione,
See Note bas de page.
Or if I m wrong, can someone explain me this old post of Ross :
http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread.ph ... 552&page=6
Apparently John Shephard once argued that the card [with nec spe nec metu] was actually the World!
He also apparently found connections between the Este and Colleoni families (the shield is Bartolomeo Colleoni - 1400-1475).
"Shephard maintains that the pack from which these four cards come was a baptismal gift. The father of Isabella, Ercole d'Este, duke of Ferrara, was the uncle of Niccolò da Correggio, whose wife was Cassandra, daughter of the famous condottiero Bartolomeo Colleoni (1400-1476). In 1492, at the baptism of Isotta, daughter of Niccolò and Cassandra, the marquis Francesco II Gonzaga, husband of Isabella, held the baby in his arms at the baptismal font. Shephard believes that this occasion is the reason for which these cards were made."
(Dummett, Il Mondo e l'Angelo (1993), p. 60. (my translation))
Ross and Huck at time had this discussion :
The phrase "nec spe nec metu" occurs in a Latin translation of Lucian (of Samosata), "Life of Demonax" (Demonactis Vita), of which the earliest I can find was made by Lapo da Castiglioncho (he only lived 1405-1438).
"Interrogatus a quodam Demonax, quis nam suo iudicio faelicitatis Terminus haberetur, Dixit solum liberum esse faelicem. Illo dicente multos esse liberos, "At illum, inquit, puto qui nec timet aliquid nec sperat". "Qui istud, inquit, ille fieri potest? ut plurimum enim omnes istis servimus" .
"At vero, respondit Demonax, Si animadvertas hominum res invenies Vtique eas nec spe nec metu
- as far I remember - had been in Ferrara (council) in 1438
, possibly he died there (there was a plague in autumn). The young girls Isotta and Beatrice might have known him. Lucian is "funny" and perhaps Lapo was also funny.
Ross added a translation and asked a question...
Lucian, Life of Demonax,
“Asked for a definition of Happiness, he said that only the free was happy. 'Well,' said the questioner, 'there is no lack of free men.'--'I count no man free who is subject to hopes and fears.'--'You ask impossibilities; of these two we are all very much the slaves.' 'Once grasp the nature of human affairs,' said Demonax, 'and you will find that they justify neither hope nor fear, since both pain and pleasure are to have an end.'”
(trans. Fowler, 1905)
Who first translated Lucian into Latin?
This might suggest where both Bartolomeo Colleoni and Isabella d’Este got it.
(it might be in Gianolo’s footnote, but I can’t see that)
As far I know it, Lucian wasn't completely translated. Somehow he was detected around this time. Guarino made his texts known to Alberti, and Alberti translated two texts(I think, short after 1440. Further he wrote then in longer years his "Momus" (till 1450), reflecting a Lucian theme.
Lapo de Castiglioncho
The country house of Lapo's family, situated in the hills about ten miles east of Florence, is still called
Castiglionchio, though only one tower of the old villa is left. There is still a tradition that Petrarch visited this place in order to obtain from Lapo Senior some Latin texts.
But though Guarini was apparently the first man to translate and to bring back from the East Lucian's Calumny, and therefore the most important of the early humanists in connection with our particular study, he was by
no means the only humanist who made literary use of Lucian's Dialogue. Forster, in his two studies, 17 mentioned several others, whom I must now examine in order to establish two points; first: which among them by im-
portation or translation actually helped to diffuse Lucian's Dialogue On Calumny; secondly the date at which such
After Guarini, the humanists of the XVth cen-tury enumerated by Forster are: Aurispa, Lapo
, Birago da Castiglionchio, Filelfo, Accolti, Bartolom-meo della Fonte, Poggio, Kinuccio da Castiglione,
I will consider each of these very briefly, because we must remember that once an important text had become
known in a circle of fervent scholars such as the one that centered around the Studio Fiorentino, it was likely to
spread in an ever increasing number of copies and versions ; and secondly because, as we shall see, as the dates
of the versions subsequent to Guarini's advance toward the end of the Quattrocento, they lose in importance in
relation to our particular quest.
Lapo da Castiglionchio
should by no means be con-fused, as was apparently done by Forster, with a certain
Lapo or Lappo or Lampo (Lampugnino) Birago, nor with Lapo da Castiglionchio Senior. The latter, who died in
1391, was one of the very earliest Florentine humanists, and a friend of Petrarch, to whom he gave, in 1350, four
Orations of Cicero and the Instilutio Oratorio, of Quin-tilian. 21 This Lapo could not possibly have been ac-
quainted with Lucian's works, not even had they, as has been proved to be untrue, been imported by Guarini on
a trip taken to Constantinople with Chrysoloras' firstreturn East in 1397, that is to say, six years after Lapo's
The grandson, however, of this Lapo is the biblio-phile with whom we are concerned. He is Lapo da Cas-
tiglionchio Junior (1405-1438), who translated several of Lucian's writings, and among them the Dialogue On Cal-
umny. This was done, according to the dates given by Forster, possibly before 1435, and according to Luiso, be-
tween 1436 and 1438, the latter being the year of Lapo Junior's death. Luiso in establishing this date also notes
that this Lucianic opusculum had already been translated by Guarini. Lapo achieved, during the last years of
his life, a remarkable reputation for accuracy and elegance in translation. This fact, coupled with the growing
importance in which Lucian was held in the Quattrocento, explains the number of manuscript copies of Lapo's translation. Among these may doubtless be counted the copy examined by Forster himself from the Hamilton-Berlin codices.