Re: Problems with positing the Papi in the ur-Tarot

#31
Phaeded wrote:
17 Dec 2019, 06:54

1438-9 is due to the Church Council. I don't subscribe to the theory myself, but as far a compelling event close in time to the earliest known tarot mention in 1440, it is at least plausible (versus the other nonsensical dates broached here).
No, that dating is NOT "due to the Church Council." Every single time I reiterate it, but it just doesn't get through.

The dating is due to an inference from the spread of all of the evidence from 1442 to the 1480s. In that spread, all over Italy, there is a data point at least every 3 to 5 years; that is, the biggest "gaps" in the record of the game of Triumphs are no more than 3 to 5 years. I reasoned that the same 40 year spread all over Italy BEFORE 1442 should produce at least some bit of evidence. If not, it was powerful evidence of absence. The absence of evidence before 1442 that could be tolerated would be 3 to 5 years (exclusive of 1442, since the date, 10 February, was early). Thus, 1441, 1440, 1439, 1438, 1437. From this inference, in 2007 I bet that, if any new evidence before 1442 were to be discovered - and none had since 1874, so I wasn't going to hold my breath - it would be within those five years, from 1437 to 1441 inclusive.

Of course, the completely unexpected happened and an earlier date was, in fact, discovered, in Giusto Giusti's diary. And it was exactly within the range I had predicted from the inference of the data.

Of course 3 to 5 years was just a vague average; in a post here on THF, I allowed for a few years further back, but felt that it would be increasingly astonishing as the years went toward the early 1430s. I think doubling it, to 10 years, would add the presumption that it was a local thing played by only a handful of people in Florence, and that some unknown event helped open it up. But why suspect that? I can't see a reason. 1437-1440 is good enough for the evidence, and therefore good enough for me.

This short note is just to explain, once again, that my dating is not in any way "due" to the Council of Florence in 1439. As easy as it might be to point to some topically relevant events, I refuse to be led by them. So 1437 - and 1438, when there was no Council in Florence - is still the bottom of my inferred range. No topical events, just inference from the data.
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Re: Problems with positing the Papi in the ur-Tarot

#32
Phaeded wrote,
There is no more compelling evidence than the CY and 1457 Ferrara record for the ur-tarot being based on a unit of 7 (2x7).
The 1457 decks are evidence, but not compelling evidence, as there were sometimes 48 cards per suit, i.e. 4x12 + 22. About 7x2. On my account the CY is 7 x2, too. But the Empress and the Emperor are a set of 2 besides, for 16 total.

Phaeded wrote,
1438-9 is due to the Church Council. I don't subscribe to the theory myself, but as far a compelling event close in time to the earliest known tarot mention in 1440, it is at least plausible (versus the other nonsensical dates broached here).
Thanks. For the Church Council to be relevant, there would have to be some reason for it to be relevant, which have yet to be stated. See my comments to Ross below.

Phaeded wrote,
And if the need for the number of court cards to match the trumps were so damn important for Visconti why did he put up with only four court cards but have 16 trumps in the Marziano? The "rule" that court cards match the number of trumps is a straw man's argument that certainly doesn't even apply to the final 22 trump format of tarot.
You aren't following what I am saying, Phaeded. It is not the number of court cards that is critical. It is the number of cards per suit, 16 (CY) and 14 (Florence). The ur-tarot for 14, the CY for 16. 16 cards per suit is evidence for 16 trumps. 14 cards per suit is evidence for 14 trumps. On both of our accounts, the number of trumps expanded after the CY. It's not a hard and fast rule, just a rule at the beginning, then discarded.

Phaeded wrote,
But out of curiosity, why do you insist on calling the "World" trump "Fama", when the only card that has an attribute of fama is the CY? No one would read any of the other 15th century "World" trumps as fama without knowing about the CY.
Pesellino has for the Triumph of Fame a lady holding out an orb. Apollonio's birth tray has a lady standing on a globe. The clouds indicate that it is Fama in the heavens that is meant, in the Charles VI and Catania, and also in the PMB, a New Jerusalem beyond this world. So the trumpets are unnecessary and misleading. It is immortal glory, not strictly Petrarchan; the latter pertains more to the Chariot card. The octagonal halo is also characteristic of Fama, although of course the virtues had them, too.
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Phaeded wrote
And you don't have to accept whatever you concocted above; again, for me this is the ur-tarot - 14 trumps:
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Your exposition of your theory, with the diagram and what you say about it, is nice, and I understand it better now. But there seem to be some things missing, if I look at the details.

Saturn: Temperance yes, but one reference to Semele turning to ashes does not make the sphere of Saturn about Death. And why Death as opposed to an Old Man? In the Seven Ages of Man, the last stage was decrepitude. It's just that there is a Death card in the CY, so it has to be the Death aspect of Saturn that is to be gleaned from those cantos. Temperance's connection with Death would be useful for explaining the CY's placement of Temperance with Death. But that doesn't go very far, since your ur-tarot is in Florence, where Temperance has no apparent relation to Death. It more obviously relates to Love.

Jupiter: Justice yes, but your reference for the Angel of Judgment is to a canto in the sphere of Mars, with no reference to the Angel of Judgment that I can see. It is just about the self-destruction of families and cities. Justice's connection with Judgment does not need Dante.

Mars: Fortitude yes, and a passing reference to the Wheel of Fortune, which no one would fix on unless they were looking for it; how is it a theme of these cantos? Again, Fortitude's connection with bad turns of the Wheel does not need Dante.

Sun: Prudence yes, but the chariot reference is brief, I think referring to Ezekiel's, and not a theme. Nor is prudent princes. It is mostly about saints.

Venus, Love, yes. And as you say, Charity marred.

Mercury: empires does seem to be a theme. The marred hope for justice is a theme. It would take some work to make that into a theological virtue, but I suppose so (hope for justice after death?)

Moon: an Empress is mentioned, but it is not a theme. Marred vows is the issue with her. Marred faith is another theme of this section, I suppose.

Just because the seven virtues are a theme in Dante, and also in the CY, that doesn't make Dante a theme of the CY.
Just because there are mentions of an empress, an emperor, a chariot, a wheel of fortune, destruction, and someone's death, among many other things in Dante, and those same things are in the CY, that doesn't make the CY about Dante either. There has to be some structural relationship in Dante that is reflected in the CY. Part of it is there (I grant you Emperor and Love, maybe Empress, in the right places in the order), but not enough.

Planetary spheres might suggest an order: Empress with Moon, Emperor with Mercury, Venus with Love. But then the virtues are supposed to be inserted, in an order that doesn't correspond to Dante's. Nor is it clear from Dante how they are to be inserted, How do you get from Dante to the A, B, and C orders, any of them, much less all? Your layout is more like the starting position of a chess game. So far, it's a set of associations that at most might be ok for connecting the cards to Dante once they have been selected, out of the many images in the cantos corresponding to each sphere, and ordered somehow, by other criteria. But those other criteria have yet to be articulated. Perhaps Dante will work, I'm not saying he doesn't. But the connections in Dante between planetary spheres and your ur-subjects,, to just those and not others, and to an order that leads to the orders we know. have not been explained. It seems to me that these issues cannot be dismissed.

Ross wrote,
I think doubling it, to 10 years, would add the presumption that it was a local thing played by only a handful of people in Florence, and that some unknown event helped open it up. But why suspect that? I can't see a reason. 1437-1440 is good enough for the evidence, and therefore good enough for me.
Well, the Church Council is one event. an event with lots of empty time; Anghieri is another. When important people start playing a game, or at least having expensive decks made to play it, it becomes noteworthy. before that it isn't. I can't think of anything comparable to the Church Council in the previous ten years in Florence, I mean that would have attracted prestigious secular or near-secular (i.e. clerics serving civic institutions) visitors. So for me the Church Council is quite relevant.

Another thing is that allegorical card games with trumps existed in the early 1420s in three particular cities: Marziano's game in Milan, probably "VIII Imperadori" in Ferrara and Florence. And probably Karnoffel in all three places (with its four trumps above the kings), although we don't hear about it because it didn't require a special deck. Then nothing for 20 years, then, all of a sudden, another game with trumps in the same three places. Surely that is reason to suspect that allegorical card games with trumps continued to exist in the same three places, successors to the ones in the 1420s and precursors to the ones in the 1440s. They just weren't noteworthy enough to survive in the record books.

Also, there is something that Huck has brought to our attention in years past (http://trionfi.com/0/p/12), that in some form it was a children's game, something for 9 and 11 year olds at least (http://trionfi.com/0/e/02/), and maybe 5 year olds (for when they got a little older, perhaps). It was something that girls played with their mothers and other women of the family, judging by the fresco program for the Sforza palace at Pavia. Children's games don't get noticed. Probably there were lots of card games for children, or children and their parents. The games that Johannes writes about, that Morelli writes about as suitable for children, as opposed to dice, also "VIII Imperadori", and Marziano's game, which I have trouble believing was for Filippo's own edification alone. In general, allegorical games tended to be for educational purposes, thus aimed at young people. Then around 1440 adults are interested in one game with allegorical cards in particular, adults who commission Trionfi illustrations, cassoni, birthtrays and triumph decks, all with similar imagery, also some adults who don't care at all about the allegories and get themselves arrested for playing it. That is reason enough to suspect a former children's game had developed, as one of its forms, with rules and a sufficient number of trumps that made it more attractive to adults, less about education and more about strategy, starting again in Florence.

There is another reason for suspicion, if more obscure, the patterns in the orders: virtue cards that have a quite consistent order within a region but vary radically, albeit according to a definite pattern among regions, that of increasing uniform distance between virtues (no cards between, one card between, two cards between, and the requirements of a certain type of matrix), once the five cards that don't vary at all are removed from consideration and the Hanged Man is returned to Prudence. This pattern, too, suggests an educational children's game, as I have indicated elsewhere (https://marzianotoludus.blogspot.com/), one that changed or expanded its character over time toward one more attractive to adults.

Note: a few hours after posting, I rewrote the section replying to Phaeded's chart, trying to make what I was trying to say clearer.

Re: Problems with positing the Papi in the ur-Tarot

#33
Ross G. R. Caldwell wrote:
18 Dec 2019, 10:12
Phaeded wrote:
17 Dec 2019, 06:54

1438-9 is due to the Church Council. I don't subscribe to the theory myself, but as far a compelling event close in time to the earliest known tarot mention in 1440, it is at least plausible (versus the other nonsensical dates broached here).
No, that dating is NOT "due to the Church Council." Every single time I reiterate it, but it just doesn't get through.
Ross,
Sorry for the lack of clarity there - Mike was asking me why I might accept that date, and for me, its the Church Council (and I don't subscribe to that theory); and yes, you've posited that date just as a range based on other evidence. You've been consistently clear on not basing your speculations about the ur-tarot in the context of the Council.

Phaeded

Re: Problems with positing the Papi in the ur-Tarot

#34
mikeh wrote:
21 Dec 2019, 00:51
Phaeded wrote,
But out of curiosity, why do you insist on calling the "World" trump "Fama", when the only card that has an attribute of fama is the CY? No one would read any of the other 15th century "World" trumps as fama without knowing about the CY.
Pesellino has for the Triumph of Fame a lady holding out an orb....
Why is an orb especially indicative of Fama, versus, say, a ruler (which her devotees below almost all want - rulership over a dominion)? Certainly not from Petrarch. And again, I'm still working on my forthcoming Prudence-World post, and yes, the orb is central to that argument.
Saturn: Temperance yes, but one reference to Semele turning to ashes does not make the sphere of Saturn about Death. And why Death as opposed to an Old Man? In the Seven Ages of Man, the last stage was decrepitude. It's just that there is a Death card in the CY, so it has to be the Death aspect of Saturn that is to be gleaned from those cantos. Temperance's connection with Death would be useful for explaining the CY's placement of Temperance with Death. But that doesn't go very far, since your ur-tarot is in Florence, where Temperance has no apparent relation to Death. It more obviously relates to Love.
Temperance was already related to Time (Saturn) in the previous century (see below). And Saturn could just be "old age", although the PMB "Hermit" has the same hourglass, he is depicted in a positive light in that deck (e.g., clothes the wealthy would wear = indicating the "Age of Gold"/Saturno Regno as derived from Virgil's Fourth Eclogue....who also happened to be Dante's guide). Astrologically speaking, Saturn was generally negative - slow, cold, old - and mythologically more often associated with the eating of children, thus death. And again, the seventh age of man necessarily implies death, which the six other ages do not. The Eremitanni image of the old man and woman associated with Saturn above are in the apse of a church where salvation was the central narrative and death the only certainty.
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(and I would hazard that this first depiction of Temperance with an hourglass was derived from Dante in terms of being located in Saturn's sphere, as Lorenzetti painted his famous fresco cycle in Sienna less than 20 years after Dante's death, but within the first wave of Dante's fame).


I'd also note from an old post of yours, that old people - Saturn's "children" - do indeed symbolize death, per your quote of Trapp's discussion of Vatican MSS Barb. Lat 3943 posted below along with the related image (so its Saturn-time himself in Dante that connote's death, not necessarily Semele or anyone's else's individual death noted in that sphere. Temperance is admittedly an odd pair with Saturn, but Date's schema called for a planetary assignment for each virtue, so it had to go somewhere - and there is no biblical or classical source for these pairings, so all Dante.

Trionfi codex executed in Lombardy and illustrated by the Master of the Vitae imperatorum, who was active in Milan during the 1430s and 1440s. No procession is depicted in the miniature at the head of this manuscript's Trionfo della Morte. In four unequal compartments it shows, to the left, the dead of all ages and conditions and, to the right, the aged and emaciated coming forward as if to embrace their death.... viewtopic.php?t=858&start=50

[color version from the Vatican's own webpage (Death's bow is not clear in the b/w scan); and note one of the old men is hunched over on a cane, exactly like Saturn in the Eremitanni fresco cycle and in the PMB "Time/Hermit"]:

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Barb. Lat 3943 170v Death.jpg
(156.58 KiB) Not downloaded yet

Not related to the current topic, but also note that this Lombard-based production is closest to the Milanese PMB's Death trump, also standing (not riding) and holding a bow, not a scythe (I did not previously recognize this local precedent for the otherwise unique tarot depiction of death in the PMB). https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... _Death.jpg

From that same "How Petrarch became famous" thread, Hurst added (reply #57): "It is also worth noting that in the late 15th century, when printed version of the Trionfi were very popular, they were almost always published with commentaries. These were extensive, often longer than the poems, and they tended to treat the poem as a kind of Ages of Man motif in which Everyman goes through these phases of life, which correspond to the apparent development of the poems in Petrarch's own life."

Just because the seven virtues are a theme in Dante, and also in the CY, that doesn't make Dante a theme of the CY....There has to be some structural relationship in Dante that is reflected in the CY. Part of it is there (I grant you Emperor and Love, maybe Empress, in the right places in the order), but not enough.

Sure, and show me another source that shows all those themes together. The structure is the virtues and Ptolemaic universe, and aside from the bible of which it is essentially an explication, nothing was better known by humanists and the lower classes alike than Dante's Commedia.

As for the Dummett-focused issue of order...order didn't pick the subjects. But which would come first - the virtue or exemplary theme (or the third category, planets, in the PMB) in a given sphere, assuming Dante as the source? Doesn't matter to me - the subjects are identifiable in the Paradiso and then "shuffled" into tarot. Read Piscina, for instance, again to see how random one can be when deciding why things have to be ordered or even interpreted a certain way (relevant here is Filelfo's complaint, "scholars of the gaming table"). A humanist picked the subjects, and within the card-playing milieu they were adapted into an order that made sense to them, regionally. E.g., why one city wanted "Angel"/Judgement higher over "World"/Prudence, and another city wanted that reversed is anyone's guess, and there is no way to ever know why.

Phaeded

Re: Problems with positing the Papi in the ur-Tarot

#36
Phaeded wrote
show me another source that shows all those themes together.The structure is the virtues and Ptolemaic universe,
I do not think that a source is needed for the seven virtues. They were well enough known already. But that the Ptolemaic universe model incorporates the Emperor and Empress is indeed of interest.

That the tarot sequence reflects the spheres of the Ptolemaic universe would be a "hidden" source, since it is not on the surface, as it is, for example, in the "Tarot of Mantegna." Perhaps that is not a problem, as long as there is a consistent, well known way of tying it to the non-virtue cards. Using Dante to tie that structure to the cards has its problems.

For the virtues, first, the order is different (I address the importance of that later in the post). Second, that the Moon relates to Faith, Mercury to Hope, and Venus to Charity is rather obscure (as opposed to Inconstancy, vainglory, and and lustfulness). Even if true, it needs some support in writings earlier than 1982 (or even 1900, the earliest citation in Ordiway's bibliography).

For the other subjects, as I say, the first three may work (Empress, Emperor, Love). But the Sun's chariot is in Dante not a theme in the cantos relating to that sphere. The only chariot mentioned, and that briefly, is that of Ezekiel. It takes other sources to make the connection between Sun and Chariot. The same is true for Mars and the Wheel. Here I don't even know what such a source would be. Jupiter's relationship to judgment is not clear in Dante's cantos relating to that sphere. Nor Saturn's to death, in those cantos. These all require other sources to justify a connection, if one can be made. It seems to me that the Wheel's connection to a planet is particularly problematic, unless it is to the Moon, which is in the wrong place in the order and is already taken.

If it is just the structure of the Paradiso, its sequence of spheres, that relates, then Dante is one source among several. In that case, after Moon the Empress, Mercury the Emperor, and Venus the Love, from Dante, comes Sun the Chariot,, as the vehicle moving it across the sky, Mars the Death, Jupiter the World-Ruler, if that is what the World card is about, a kind of cosmic Emperor, and Saturn the Angel of Judgment. What the relation of Jupiter is to the designs on the carda is problematic, as is the connection between Saturn and Judgment. In any case other sources besides Dante are needed to draw thematic connections between the planets and at least five cards (Chariot, Wheel, Death, World, Angel), It is then they plus the Ptolemaic view of the cosmos that result in the cards, and not just Dante.

Phaeded wrote
A humanist picked the subjects, and the card-players adapted it in a way that made sense to them, regionally.
That's like saying, of a sentence, that first we pick the words, and then put them into sentences. Subjects are picked because they have meaning in relation to one another and the whole. That seems to be going on later, so probably also earlier: not just one head of a hiearchy, for example, and not just one virtue. There are commonalities among subjects. In other words, at least one sentence comes first, perhaps more. Other people can change the sentence, add to it, subtract from it, but it doesn't just start as words, i.e. subjects in isolation from one another. In this case, moreover, there are many ways of arranging the words into meaningful sentences. As we find them, however, the orders are too similar among regions to have been done within each region independently. The orders do not have to have all derived from one region spreading its game to the others at one time, but at least some of it has to have been (such as 14 cards in Florence) and changes later have been developed in an interdependent manner, a kind of social contract, but a loose one - it is as if the producers in all three regions had said, we'll all use those subjects, more or less, in that order, more or less, illustrated in a more or less conventional way. That does not exclude one region from having the wherewithal to dictate to the others, more or less. It also does not exclude other regions' being able to contribute.
Why one city wanted "Angel"/Judgement higher over "World"/Prudence, and another city wanted that reversed is anyone's guess, and there is no way to ever know that.
We don't have to know. There are numerous small differences among the orders even in the same region. Exchanges between adjoining cards are so frequent that they can be ignored, as far as the ur-tarot is concerned. Of course theories as to why they happened the way they did are in order, but that is a separate question, What is needed, for an ur-tarot, is an account that accounts for the major commonalities and differences, such that further changes are at least plausible.

In the case of a change of the World card from second to last to last, it might have become interpreted as the eternal world itself, instead of the Fama of one's earthly deeds in that world.

As far as there being a "way to ever know that", if in each region there was a Marziano-like document giving the thinking of the designer of the cards for the deck in his city, then we could know the rationale, if it was full enough.

I want to retract something I said in an earlier post. I said that the ability to infer an earlier unknown order from a later known order, unless there are indications otherwise, is fundamental. In one sense it is, in that it is a basic way we infer the unknown from the known. But it is not axiomatic; it requires justification, too, in each particular case. That we can infer earlier from later is justified by the fact that the order within one region changes very little from the earliest reports we have to the later reports. From that we may infer that the same is true for the time we don't have reports. There is also our knowledge of the importance of card-order in the game that was played, which required an agreed upon order, and the fact that numbers were not written on the cards. This counts against changes in the order.

That is the type of argument that Ross uses to infer 22 special subjects from the beginning, In that case I don't think the principle is justifiable, because what needs to be explained is how the 22 subjects (actually 25, counting the theologicals) in their various orders (subjects necessarily come in an order) came to be from what preceded it. It seems to me that explanations are better or worse depending on how well they account for the results given the antecedent conditions, so that in some sense what happens is not arbitrary, there is a logic to it, but also the explanation itself is not arbitrary. troying the coherence of the whole. My matrices have a kind of necessity to them, non-arbitrariness, with regard to what they are trying to explain. Unfortunately I don't have any more clarity that that. Added: I find Deutsch's "hard to vary" criterion attractive (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Explanatory_power), which entails very specific details hard to alter without destroying the coherence of the whole. See chapter one of The Beginning of Infinity, which includes a critique of "a misconception known as Occam's Razor" (https://books.google.com/books?id=jZHan ... &q&f=false). How his arguments relate to explaining the creation of a game, as opposed to natural phenomena, isn't clear to me, unfortunately. Anyway, it's a breath of fresh air.

Note: this post is a Dec. 29 rewrite of the previous post, now deleted (since no one has commented on it).

Re: Problems with positing the Papi in the ur-Tarot

#37
mikeh wrote:
27 Dec 2019, 01:18
For the other subjects, as I say, the first three may work (Empress, Emperor, Love). But the Sun's chariot is in Dante not a theme in the cantos relating to that sphere. The only chariot mentioned, and that briefly, is that of Ezekiel. It takes other sources to make the connection between Sun and Chariot.
.

Seriously? The planets/seven ages of man was universal common knowledge and Dante is explicitly climbing through each planetary sphere - he just may not be explicit about describing the planets themselves as he is in instead in direct discourse with the exempli in each sphere. Dante didn't need to spell out the obvious and, again, his object was the ascent of the soul, not a description of the planets. One does not need to go hunting for an arcane source for the sun-as-chariot - that motif was everywhere. Here, the sun in chariot from the Angera (c. 1380) and Trinci (c. 1415) planet cycle frescoes, the latter tied to the seven ages of man, noted in nearby roundels:
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You might also note that the CY chariot features a woman holding out a jousting shield on which is a radiant sun. (with dove and Visconti motto):

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mikeh wrote:
27 Dec 2019, 01:18
The same is true for Mars and the Wheel. Here I don't even know what such a source would be.

Families rise and fall, often in connection with war - whether foreign or domestic/internecine, the latter often resulting in exile as with Dante himself. And Dante is of course the source, the relevant passage I gave you in my schematic, Par. XVI.82f, where Dante first uses the waning/waxing circuit of the moon as a more visible symbol to connote the changes of Fortune (specifically Florentine families), even though he is in the sphere of Mars:
E come 'l volger del ciel de la luna 82'And, as the turning of the lunar sphere covers

cuopre e discuopre i liti sanza posa, 83 and endlessly uncovers the edges of the shore,

così fa di Fiorenza la Fortuna: 84 thus does Fortune deal with Florence.

per che non dee parer mirabil cosa 85 'Then it should not seem strange or marvelous to you

ciò ch'io dirò de li alti Fiorentini 86 to hear me talk of noble Florentines,

onde è la fama nel tempo nascosa. 87 whose fame is buried in the depth of time.

Io vidi li Ughi e vidi i Catellini, 88 'I saw the Ughi, I saw the Catellini,

Filippi, Greci, Ormanni e Alberichi, 89 Filippi, Greci, Ormanni and Alberichi,

già nel calare, illustri cittadini; 90 illustrious citizens already in decline,...
https://etcweb.princeton.edu/cgi-bin/da ... Section.pl

Dante wraps up his recounting of Florentine families brought to nothing by the wheel of Fortune by singling out the family that caused the Black-White faction rift, the Buondelmonte (their palazzo, still standing, is just on the north side of the Ponte Vecchio, next to which an ancient statue of Mars stood, since washed into the Arno), that sent Dante into exile:
Buondelmonte, quanto mal fuggisti 140 O Buondelmonte, how ill-fated that you fled

le nozze süe per li altrui conforti! 141 those nuptials at another's urging!

Molti sarebber lieti, che son tristi, 142 'Many would be happy who now grieve

se Dio t'avesse conceduto ad Ema 143 if God had let the river Ema take you

la prima volta ch'a città venisti. 144 the first time that you came into our town.

Ma conveniesi, a quella pietra scema 145 'But it was destined that, to the shattered stone [statue of Mars]

che guarda 'l ponte, che Fiorenza fesse 146 that guards the bridge, Florence should offer

vittima ne la sua pace postrema. 147 a sacrificial victim in her final days of peace.

Thus Mars is interjected, both as a relevant topographical marker and as the malignant god of war, in Dante's local conception of the wheel of fortune. Here is an illustration from Villani's Nuova Cronica (c. 1348) precisely showing the Buondelmonte murder at the Ponte Vecchio and nearby statue of Mars:

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And just so we're clear that Villani's Mars is not solely mythological Mars, but could be astrological Mars as well, Pisano's relief of planetary Mars - also equestrian - from the Florentine Campanile: http://employees.oneonta.edu/farberas/a ... _marsm.jpg
mikeh wrote:
27 Dec 2019, 01:18
Jupiter's relationship to judgment is not clear in Dante's cantos relating to that sphere.
I errantly copied the Mars passage twice in my schematic - the correct Jupiter passage is Par. XVII.91f, where Dante enters Jupiter's sphere, where the exempli souls there literally spell out the theme of justice/judging:

"DILIGITE IUSTITIAM," primai 91 DILIGITE IUSTITIAM -- these letters,

fur verbo e nome di tutto 'l dipinto; 92 placed together, verb and noun, came first,

"QUI IUDICATIS TERRAM," fur sezzai. 93 QUI IUDICATIS TERRAM, last.

Poscia ne l'emme del vocabol quinto 94 Then they came to rest in the fifth word's M

rimasero ordinate; sì che Giove 95 so that this place in Jupiter was shining

pareva argento lì d'oro distinto. 96 as does silver overlaid with gold.
The emphasis on "M" is interpreted as either Mondo or Monarchia (the title of a separate work by Dante) , but either word would imply Imperial justice to be applied across Europe, unified under the Holy Roman Empire (Dante was quite anti-Papal in terms of secular power after his exile).

mikeh wrote:
27 Dec 2019, 01:18
Nor Saturn's to death, in those cantos.


I'm not going to repaste the image of "old age" walking towards death from above, the Petrarchan Trionfo della Morte by the Master of the Vitae imperatorum (active in Milan during the 1430s and 1440s, quite close to the production of the tarot decks in question) nor the Guariento fresco cycle showing the elderly infirm as the children of Saturn in Padua; if you can't see old age's obvious connection to death, I can't help you. Again, Dante's goal was neither to explain the Ptolemaic universe as an astrological tract nor the the related seven ages of man, but those relevant schemas were well known to all. I will note that Saturn represents a threshold in Dante's Paradiso - the Church Militant ends here, so is only in the first seven spheres , and the next three spheres belong to the Church Triumphant proper; the Church Militant being an exemplary "mirror" for those still living. So this threshold is a natural place to note the cessation of all earthly connections - just as the descent of the soul accrues the influences of the planets as it descends, so here in the ascent the soul is purged of those influences.

You began your objections with "I do not think that a source is needed for the seven virtues," which is a mischaracterization of my theory - the seven virtues are matched by seven Dantean-derived exempli or structural(planetary)/exemplary theme in the ur-tarot/CY. So again, show me a trump I have
identified as an exemplary theme of a virtue (albeit sometimes depicted by the iconography of the planetary sphere said virtue is assigned to) that is not in Dante? And yes, the planets are explicitly in Dante. And I will admit all of this is complicated by the fact that a later humanist and artist could have drawn from the three iconographies of virtues, planets and Dantean examples, but no other source ties those three together...and certainly no other source was more famous.

Phaeded

Re: Problems with positing the Papi in the ur-Tarot

#38
Phaeded wrote, in reply to my query about Jupiter and the Last Judgment card,
I errantly copied the Mars passage twice in my schematic - the correct Jupiter passage is Par. XVII.91f,
It is actually XVIII.91f. What is closest is Par. 104-110:
But lo! of those
Who call ‘Christ, Christ,’ there shall be many found, 105
In judgment, further off from Him by far,
Than such to whom His name was never known.
Christians like these the Æthiop shall condemn:
When that the two assemblages shall part;
One rich eternally, the other poor.
This is more a reflection on what is required for a favorable Last Judgment than the Judgment itself. And then he goes on to speak of other examples of God's judgment long before the Last Judgment. yes, justice and judgment is the main theme of this canto, and the Last Judgment is included. But how is the designer to choose which of the many examples of justice in this sphere to choose for his card? He has to already have some criterion in mind in order to do so. Otherwise it would simply be the Justice card. With Petrarch and the "triumphs" theme it is easy. The theme, the triumph of time over eternity, is given, and he has to think of a suitable easily recognized image. The Last Judgment meets the criterion and is a suitable conclusion to the sequence. With Dante, the theme is justice. Only if he is looking for an image of justice suitable for the last card (or next to last) will he pick the Last Judgment. Otherwise the card will simply be Justice. It is then from Jupiter's association with justice, which existed independently of Dante, that the Last Judgment would be suggested; it had that association independently of Dante.

In general, Phaeded, you are missing my point. I am not questioning the relevance of planetary spheres to the cards, nor that Dante uses others' associations to the planetary spheres in his work implicitly. I am questioning the relevance of Dante in particular to the choice of subjects for the tarot, at least for all except marginally the first two.

Justice is associated with Jupiter, and if you want a last card or second to last card related to Jupiter, the Last Judgment is a natural choice, independently of Dante, and not independently of the order of the cards.

For Venus, Love is a natural choice, regardless of what Dante may have said, and its being the third planet corresponds to its being the third card in the tarot sequence. Dante is irrelevant.

For Saturn, Death is a natural choice, regardless of Dante, who hardly mentions it, and perhaps one card out of order is ok. Personally I would have thought that Mars, which is in the right place in the order of spheres, would be associated with Death, and Saturn with the Elysian Fields, as last (as in the B and C orders),

For Mars and the Wheel of Fortune, I have more trouble. Dante associates Mars with the rise of ignoble families and the fall of noble ones, due to hatred, i.e. Mars, and the "scissors" of Time. But he only briefly associates this rise and fall with the Wheel of Fortune, and even there he uses the image of the Moon.

For the Sun, a chariot is natural regardless of Dante, and Dante's brief mention of a chariot is not in that sphere, but that to which Ezekiel ascended, above the planets and fixed stars. Out of all the images in these cantos, which are mainly about saints to choose the chariot to represent the sphere of the Sun, one has to go outside Dante, who is then irrelevant.

For Mercury I concede that yes, it takes Dante to make a connection of Mercury to Emperors, and many such are mentioned. But to make a general connection between ambition and Emperors seems a stretch. A stronger connection between Mercury and Emperors would be his function as peace-keeper and negotiator, but that is not Dante.

It likewise takes Dante to associate the Empress to the sphere of the Moon, although only one is mentioned, out of various examples of inconstancy. A connection of inconstancy to the subject "Empress" is not implied. I would think that a stronger connection between Moon and Empress would be that of female gestation and child-bearing; but that is not in Dante.

To choose cards for the seven virtues does not require a source. And going to Dante does not help. To associate Faith, Hope and Charity with the first three spheres in the Paradiso you had to go to a 1982 interpretation. That anyone in the 15th would have thought of those virtues there, as opposed to the sphere of the Fixed Stars, requires a 14th or early 15th century source. They were usually thought of as higher than the cardinals (as they are for Aquinas), not lower, as they would be if they were associated with the first three spheres. Also, for the cardinals, an association with Dante's spheres would have suggested a different order, with Fortitude first among the three that survived. No later order had that. Also, Dante's order would suggest Prudence as before the other three, and surely the World card (your Prudence) is not before the three virtue cards in any ur-tarot.

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