This is the continuation of what I wrote at viewtopic.php?p=20726#p20726
Thanks, Phaeded. The only thing I have problems with is inferring the make-up an "ur-tarot" card (Love) from a card that is at least around 1460, plus a selected set of images showing bunches of lovers. There are also lots of images of Petrarch and Laura as a couple, often with a Cupid thrown in, with an arrow through Petrarch's heart or aimed at it. I would guess that the early Florentine was the popular tarot, not a set of hand-painted cards, so it might well be close to the Rosenwald,, a man kneeling in front of a woman. http://tarotwheel.net/history/the%20ind ... amore.html
, or what we see in the Budapest, for which see the same web-page.
And thanks for the illustration of Fortune and her Wheel, Ross. I assume that is an earlier version of you below her.
It occurs to me now that I don't have to wait until I have looked at the other regions to include other A orders besides that of Minchiate, because still the only positions available for the theologicals and Prudence in the A region are that of Minchiate. Otherwise, the only card that varies in position between the different A orders is the Chariot, sometimes before Fortune, sometimes after Fortune and sometimes after Love. See here Depaulis, "Early Italian lists of tarot trumps," The Playing Card
36:1 (2007), p. 43, at http://www.academia.edu/30193559/Early_ ... 7_p._39-50
. Here again is my order A1, which didn't have a cardinal virtue in each row:
A1: Minchiate in 16 using the Old Man
1 Angel, 5 Prudence, 9 Fortune, 13 Temperance,
2. World, 6 Hope, 10 Chariot, 14 Love
3. Charity, 7 Death, 11 Justice, 15 Emperor
4. Faith, 8 Old Man, 12 Fortitude, 16 Empress
As you can see, if Chariot and Fortune exchanged places, there would still be no virtue in the second row. If Chariot went after Love, as in Bologna, the result would be:
A4: Bologna in 16 using the Old Man and Minchiate placements of theologicals & Prudence
Coins: 1 Angel, 5 Prudence, 9 Fortune, 13 Chariot
Swords: 2. World, 6 Hope, 10 Justice 14 Love
Batons: 3. Charity, 7 Death, 11 Fortitude 15 Emperor
Cups: 4. Faith, 8 Old Man, 12 Temperance 16 Empress
Now we do have a virtue in every row. I did not expect this result! I still don't know what Temperance has to do with Faith, or Fortitude with Charity, except in a general way, but the other assignments make a kind of sense.
I will continue.
Another order for the CY cards is provided by the Beinecke Library's captions (https://brbl-dl.library.yale.edu/vufind ... t&type=tag
, click on cards to see captions), in the order it presents them. It is quite mysterious where these captions came from. The curator of the collection has affirmed repeatedly to me in emails, most recently in 2018, that they came with the cards when Yale acquired them, but he has no further information. It is true that we don't know if this set of captions goes back to the date of origin of the Cary-Yale, or even as far back as any of the known orders. It is at least something, and after I have presented it I will give a few reasons, admittedly not decisive, for thinking that this order is indeed original.
In this case we have definite rows and definite suits for each row, but we don’t know what cards are missing (C because this is Lombardy, included in Dummett's C region):
C1: Cary-Yale, from Beinecke captions 11 cards
Swords: Empress, Emperor, Love.
Batons: Fortitude, Faith, Hope.
Cups: Charity, Chariot, Death,
Coins: two unnamed cards, but they are first the World and then the Angel,
From the above, I can see three reasons, maybe four, for thinking that the Beinecke captions were part of the original conception of the game. One is that nobody between Marziano and Moakley (1966) ever mentioned associating triumphs with suits. Durrieu in 1895 and 1911, mentioned the 16 cards in 4 categories, but no suits (Durrieu 1911 is online, p. 376 at https://www.persee.fr/doc/minf_0398-360 ... _38_2_1596
). A cataloger would have had to have been highly original to have made suit assignments, and they are not known for that attribute. Another reason is in the cards themselves. As Huck has pointed out (http://a-tarot.eu/pdf/cy-jpg.jpg
, revising and illustrating his 2003 "It's a 5x16 deck" at http://trionfi.com/0/c/30
), certain details are analogous to the layout of the pieces on a chessboard. Queen and King form one pair in the center, and we see the Empress and Emperor in the first row above. On the ends are the rooks, which look like towers. Both the World card, with its female Fame, and the Judgment card, with Michael and Gabriel, in the bottom row, have towers. Next to the rooks are the knights, which look like horses. Both the Chariot, with its female rider, and the Death card, male-looking, have horses. What corresponds to the bishops is problematic. The Italian name for them translates as "standard bearer," which at least fits the suit-sign of Batons. But the correspondences work for 3 out of 4 rows.
A third reason has to do with the placement of the virtues. If we are seeing a 4x4 matrix with blanks that are not filled in, then at least there is room for a virtue in each row. Moreover, the association between Fortitude and Batons receives some confirmation from Ringhieri’s game and the Visconti funeral oration, if what is said there can be extended, as seems reasonable, from "columns" to Batons and Fortitude. In that case the assignments would be at least as old as the tradition, i.e. between 1402 and 1550.
Another odd thing is the order World-Angel. This is perfectly in accord with the Petrarchan order fame-eternity but still rather odd in a tarot with evident affinities to other Lombard decks, in which the order is always, except in Piscina, Angel-World. If original, it offers an easy explanation for Piscina's order. Also, given that the deck goes to some length to honor female equality, it may well be that the rule about the "papa" played last winning the trick may have existed in the Cary-Yale itself, with the two Imperials. I would also imagine that in the feminine suits (defined by Visconti insignia in the courts) the female knights and pages beat the male ones, and vice versa (in the suits with Sforza insignia)? These insignia are likely an embellishment for this one-off luxury deck; but that does not mean that the deck's composition was a one-off; he may have had them made, of varying quality, as gifts for condottiere and nobles, for example. I am not sure how strong an argument the unusual fact of the order World-Angel is, however, because some cataloger might have assumed that the Cary-Yale was really an early Minchiate of Lombard origin and not told anybody. But if so, why did the cataloger not include the names, from Minchiate or otherwise
In the Beinecke assignments, we already have Fortitude in Batons. Putting Justice in the Swords row fits the usual C order placement, after Love but before Fortitude and Chariot. Temperance, corresponding to Cups, would be in the third row, and in fact the usual C order places it precisely after Death. The remaining virtue, Prudence, will have to go in Coins, if there is to be one to each row. As for the remaining cards, Time and Fortune, one will go in the second row and one in the fourth. It seems to me more likely that Fortune would go in the second row than the fourth, since it is something that only affects souls before death. Also, no later order of triumphs puts it anywhere near the fourth row. If so, we get (Milan is in Dummett's C, p.401 of Game of Tarot
C2: Cary-Yale in 16 based on Beinecke captions
Swords: 1 Empress, 2 Emperor, 3 Love. 4 Justice
Batons: 5 Fortitude, 6 Fortune, 7 Faith, 8 Hope.
Cups: 9 Charity, 10 Chariot, 11 Death, 12 Temperance
Coins: 13 Prudence, 14 Time, 15 World, 16 Judgment
These placements assume that Fortune is indeed one of the missing cards and that it goes in the second row. I cannot think of any other card, except the Old Man that could possibly go in the second row, or anything other than a celestial or maybe the Vecchio in the fourth row. I am also assuming that the row Faith-Hope-Charity is not interrupted somewhere by Prudence, as in Minchiate, and, although it doesn't make any difference, that Prudence is next to Temperance, paralleling Fortitude next to Justice..
In this case the hierarchical order is not by columns, as in Marziano's case and the Minchiate-derived A orders, but by rows. To have the internal hierarachy go by columns would produce an order foreign to any later order of triumphs. But it will still be possible to play the game of virtue, as long as the triumphs are included in "following suit." There is a certain logic to the rows. Prudence, i.e. looking to the past to guide the future in the present, naturally goes with Time, including thinking of the fate of one’s soul after death. Temperance in food and drink can stave off death and leave what would have been spent on pleasure for Charity. Both it and Chastity (Chariot) help one to look beyond this world and so defeat the power of Death. Fortitude is needed to withstand Fortune and keep Hope and Faith alive. Justice is the virtue of rulers, and also governs the marriage contract signified by the couple’s handshake on the Love card.
We cannot leave out the Ferrara region, the only one to put Justice high in the order. Here the earliest list is in the Sermones de Ludo
order. How can it have one virtue in each of four rows. Strictly speaking, it will be impossible, because there is no Prudence card. But perhaps something else substituted for it. There are several rather vicious characters in the 22, such as the Hanged Man and the Devil, neither of whom should be allowed to triumph over anything in a game of virtue. Judging from Andrea's analysis of the Fool card, it, too is a vicious card, at least when placed low in the sequence, and the same for the Bagatto.
Another problem is that 21 or 22 doesn't divide evenly by 4. But that problem can be solved by excluding the Bagatto and the Fool from the four groups. So we get, using the same suit assignments to virtues as before (see Game of Tarot
, p. 400):
B1 Sermones order, Ferrara region
Cups: 2 Empress, 3 Emperor, 4 Popess, 5 Pope, 6 Temperance
Batons: 7 Love, 8 Fortitude, 9 Chariot, 10 Fortune, 11 Old Man,
Coins: 12 Hanged Man, 13 Death, Devil, 14 Tower, 15 Star
Swords: 16 Moon, 17 Sun, 18 Angel, 19 Justice, 20 World
Here Coins is assigned by a process of elimination. There is no Prudence there, but we might imagine that the Hanged Man substitutes for her, if we recall that Imperiali used that word in the reply to Lollio's Invective, going in reverse order between Death and Old Man (cited in Andrea Vitali's essay "The Hanged Man" at http://www.letarot.it/page.aspx?id=124
, with English translation):
Vien poi la Morte, et mena un’altra danza,
Et la prudenza, e la malitia atterra,
Et pareggia ciascuno alla bilanza.
Then comes Death, and brings another dance,
Prudence, and malice down here,
And makes everybody equal on the scales.
I assume that the "dance" is the gallows, and Prudence is on the part of the sovereign, reserving a shameful and miserable end for traitors. If so we have a cardinal virtue in every row. However to get to the cards of the Cary-Yale some cards still have to be removed, those clearly not in the Cary-Yale, and the theologicals added. It is easy to remove cards, but where should the theologicals go? Based on the Minchiate and Beinecke orders, I would say either after Death (as in Minchiate) or somewhere between Fortune and Death (as in the Beinecke). Below they are in the Minchiate placement:
B2, Sermones with theologicals, suits, and Time low
Cups: 1 Empress, 2 Emperor, 3 Temperance, 4 Love
Batons: 5 Fortitude, 6 Chariot, 7 Fortune, 8 Old Man,
Coins: 9 Hanged Man, 10 Death, 11Hope, 12 Faith,
Swords: 13 Charity, 14 Angel, 15 Justice, 16 World
If the theologicals were before Death, it would make no difference to the placement of the virtues. In a Beinecke-inspired order, there is one other variable, namely the placement of Time. It works in the second row, but what about in the fourth?
B3: with theologicals and Time high
Cups: 1 Empress, 2 Emperor, 3 Temperance, 4 Love
Batons: 5 Fortitude, 6 Chariot, 7 Fortune, 8 Hope,
Coins: 9 Faith, 10 Charity, 11 Hanged Man, 12 Death,
Swords: 13 Time, 14 Angel, 15 Justice, 16 World
Allegorically, Time as the Sun, as a symbol for God, could be associated with Swords as His Justice. However, Time as Old Man as Fortitude, ie. Endurance, is less of a stretch.
It might be wondered whether the game could be played if the order went by columns instead of rows. It is not necessary to construct the matrix. The 4x4 matrix will be the same as the above, but with virtues governing columns instead of rows. The answer is that we clearly cannot. In B2 there is no cardinal virtue in the last column and two in the third. In B3 there are three virtues in the third row and none in the second and fourth.
Allegorically the B lists differ from the Beinecke’s in that Cups governs the first row and Swords the last. Allegorically Cups as Temperance suits all four of the cards, urging moderation and self-control among rulers and lovers alike. In Swords it is easy to see how Justice dominates the Last Judgment and also the World, provided the latter is seen as “God the Father,” as the Sermones
tells us, rather than Fame.
An interesting feature of the B reconstruction (and even if the only reconstruction is of the Hanged Man) is that the suits are in the same order as they are for Marziano, if we grant Pratesi's subsitutions, i.e. the lowest is Cups = Pleasures, then Continences = Batons, then Coins = Riches, and most powerful Swords = Eagles (see again his "The earliest tarot pack known", online in trionfi.com). Moreover it is the same order of virtues, once Prudence is removed, as we see in all the A orders, taking them as part of the hierarchy of triumphs as opposed to their order in the rows. It is that of Plato in the Republic, with Temperance governing the appetites and the people, Fortitude the "spirited" part and the warriors, and Justice the whole, as determined by the rational part and the guardians.
Where Prudence should go, whether at the top or in third rank, is unclear from Plato. On the one hand, he presents it (as Wisdom) third, with Justice following as pertaining to the whole; on the other hand, it is the highest part of the soul, and that which determines what is just, so could arguably be highest. Cicero and Aquinas both made it highest. In Ferrara, as in Marziano, Prudence is in third position, with Justice high. In Bologna (see top of this post), it is in the top row, and otherwise follows Marziano precisely.
I conclude that B2, of Ferrara, is the closest to Marziano by one standard, and A4, Bologna, by almost two standards. Minchiate in another reduction, A2, will also work, although it is not as strong as the first two, as will that derived from the Beinecke order, C2, even less close. Yet the cards for these imagined decks are deduced from C1, the same deck as the somewhat reconstructed C2. I will try to make sense of this.
First, this conclusion is not about where the tarot was invented. It is only about what is closest to Marziano. For all we know, the subjects for the intermediary game, which I like to call the ludus virtutis
, were already in existence before the game of deified heroes, at least some of them, somewhere else, in a game or games whose order and rules are beyond speculation. Second, even if Ferrara and Bologna are the most promising, that does not mean that Ferrara or Bologna would have had that order before anyone else. It might have existed several places, including Milan, with Ferrara or Bologna as the only places that kept it. After all Marziano was in Milan and knew the preceding game best. Against this, there is the unsurveyed but known copy of his treatise to bear in mind.
For the Cary-Yale, Filippo then would have deliberately changed the order to suit his purposes. For example, he may have wanted to emphasize that rulers, including the ruling part of people's own souls, should associate themselves with Justice, and that Justice is what governs the marriage contract more than temperance: that is to say, what is important is that the two parties fulfill their obligations to each other and to God, at least to the best of their ability.
As for the Florentines, in that case they would have had the cards and the rules in an order such as A4, perhaps with a rule about the necessity of "following suit" with the associated triumphs. But they would have thought that it made more sense, and made for a more enjoyable game, to detach the hierarchy of triumphs from the suits altogether. They also decided that a game would be more popular if the theological virtues were removed and other cards added, including some vicious but fun ones like the Fool, the Bagatto, the Devil, and so on. This type of game, the ludus triumphorum
rather than the ludis virtutis
, would have proved vastly more popular and have quickly dominated the market. In the other centers, it would have been no problem to add cards, as most of the other cards were in much the same order everywhere. The only ones that weren't were the virtues.
The Florentines did not necessarily invent all these cards not in the Cary-Yale; five of them might have been invented in Ferrara or even Milan, which I will explain in a moment
If the Florentines were responsible for a major change in the game, they probably would have received the game from somewhere else (unless it was present already in a very small milieu, say one family), and that sometime late, because otherwise we would be hearing about the game long before 1440. There need not to have been a specific event triggering the change.
Dummett in 2004 (“Where do the virtues go?” The Playing Card
32:4 (2004), pp. 165-167, online at viewtopic.php?t=1073
) proposed that the reason the virtues, unlike the rest of the cards, were in such different places in the three main orders, was that the deck at an early stage had no virtue cards at all, and that when they were added people knew what they were but not where they went. I say in reply that surely they could have found out easily enough. It seems more likely that they were in different positions by design, in an earlier stage, and not of 18 triumphs but of 16, in which B2 is changed to Filippo's C2 in Milan and one serving greater commercial potential in Florence.
This is not to say, however, that there were not decks that removed the virtues. With suit cards associated with cardinal virtues, the rows for each suit are already defined by the associated virtue. In that case the rows would reduce to 12, with a Magician and Fool making 14, for 70 cards in all. This could explain the 70 card triumph decks of 1457 Ferrara and the "14 figures" of Ferrara 1-1-41 (at http://trionfi.com/0/f/x
; but see also Pratesi's 2012 suggestion of 4x13 + 22, at http://trionfi.com/trumps-trionfi-tarots
). Moreover, if we take Huck's suggestion that the PMB card usually thought of as Justice was really considered Fame (because of the young knight on a horse on top, where the subject went), they, too, follow the Ferrara assignments (see again viewtopic.php?t=1073
C3: Ferrara order without virtues = PMB "first artist" cards
Cups (Temperance): Empress, Emperor, Popess
Batons (Fortitude): Pope, Love, Chariot,
Coins (Prudence): Fortune, Old Man, Hanged Man,
Swords (Justice): Death, Fame, Angel
Such a game would not have lasted very long, given the new game out of Florence. But it does suggest that in order to have a 5x14 deck, whoever controlled the deck in Ferrara or Milan would have invented 5 new cards that persisted: Fool, Bagatella, Popess, Pope, and Hanged Man. There was also a new Fame (i.e. the modified Justice), but that did not persist. Then, when the virtues were put back in, they would have gone in their customary places, as in the Cary-Yale.
To sum up, I am hypothesizing that the game called ludus triumphorum
developed in incremental stages. The idea of trumps comes from Karnoffel, but it uses the regular deck. That there is a permanent trump suit begins with "VIII Imperadori", but still very attached to the regular suits, an extra two cards per suit that also form a hierarchy among themselves. A more complex notion is that of Marziano, where the extra cards per suit are in the nature of divine beings, yet sharing some affinity symbolically with four species of birds. In what I call the ludus virtutis
what changes is the subject-matter, now a game of virtue, but with the same rules as before. It is not a very popular game, but since it is played mostly in the courts, probably in a family context, or by just one or two families, nobody cares. Finally Florence develops the ludus triumphorum
in all its glory and popularity, starting in the late 1430s, to which it may have added cards up to around 1450. The other game goes extinct, and today all that remains is the different placements of the virtues in the three regions, of which the Bolognese and Ferrarese orders are the examples closest to Marziano, neither of which is the original form, whose cards are those of the Cary-Yale.