Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#1
Images of these series are fairly hard to find on the web, so remedying that here. I was in Florence in early April and lucked out in gaining access to the Palazzo dell'Arte della Lana‎ (the powerful Wool guild) by attending a special event (I saw a five piece brass chamber music event at night for 15 euros I didn’t really want to part with, but I was entertained); the Palazzo dell'Arte dei Giudici e Notai (Judges and Notaries guild) is much more easier to access – simply show up and eat in the seafood restaurant that is now in that space, rehabbed in 2011[?] (Fishing Lab alle Murate https://www.fishinglab.it/ - despite the terrible name, a damn good meal so worth eating there, especially with the frescoes in question just above your head if you eat on the mezzanine level).

Both series are discussed with admirable research in this unpublished doctoral thesis available via academia.edu: https://www.academia.edu/7104776/From_M ... y_Florence

Although both cycles are from the second half of the 14th century and thus well before tarot, they still may have had relevance since these virtues are obviously in the decks (prudence controversially so) and the importance of these two guilds in the political life of Florence is unquestioned. The Lana guild was arguably the most important guild in the city and spurred the initiative of the famous statues that adorn the adjacent (and now attached) Orsanmichele Marian cult shrine. The Judges and Guilds held a super-legal status within the guild system as sort of the lead guild and was even lead by the likes of Leonardo Bruni, the chancellor of Florence when the ur-tarot was created c. 1440. The bottom line is both venues received the city’s elite on a frequent basis and thus viewed these cycles frequently as well.

Cardinal virtues in the Palazzo dell'Arte della Lana
The virtues appear here twice – in the standard medallions of the vaulted ceiling and more unusually as protectors of Brutus fighting off vice-like figures trying to influence this political role model (the primary tenant of this building today is the Dante Society – presumably they get the irony of being in a building featuring a historical figure that Dante placed in the devil’s mouth in the lowest level of hell; note: you can also access this building if a Dante Society event is going on but none was while I was there – failing that look for a musical event hosted there). In another post I’ll address the unusual but not unique attribute of Prudence present here: the armillary sphere. Note that the other set of four ceiling medallions are of the Evangelists (again, fairly standard to have the four virtues in one part of a ceiling and the four Evangelists in an adjoining cross-vault, as in the Baroncelli chapel in S. Croce). Justice is all but illegible due to the ravages of time (not my bad pic ;-).
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Lana - Brutus on right, virtues overhead.JPG
overall interior, only 1 medallion virtue seen overhead
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Above - upper left, counter -clockwise: Prudence, Strength, Temperance, Justice (only 2 have standard attributes).
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Temperance.JPG
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Cardinal virtues in the Palazzo dell'Arte dei Giudici e Notai
Just steps down the street from the Bargello/Palazzo del Popolo, the frescoes in this-now restaurant feature the virtues as standard ceiling medallions flanked by two different representations of justice, with a highly symbolic representation of Florence in accord with her civic symbols. Prudence, worse for wear, holds a square (instead of the related compass), about as rare as the armillary sphere. The frescoes are extremely damaged here but generally legible (Temperance's attributes are odd - her vessels look more like incense thuribles and I'm not sure what is in her opposite hand).
Guidici.JPG
overall shot with mezzanine
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Florence as cosmography.JPG
city gates, guild symbols, etc.
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Temperance.JPG
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Phaeded

PS Obviously there is much more going on in the overall decorative programs in each guild hall - I just focused on the virtues. Please refer to the thesis linked above for additional details and references.

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#2
This picture of a ceiling is interesting (you wrote as explanation: "Florence as cosmography ... city gates, guild symbols, etc."
Image
In the center are 4 elements mixed with 4 others.
Then there are 16 elements around it.
Then a circle with 21 elements.
Then another circle with 21 elements.
Then (likely) city gates, I cannot count, how much of them are on the picture.

The 21-groups probably refer to the guilds, which (probably) then were 21.
Compare https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guilds_of_Florence
Six of the nine Priori of the Signoria of Florence were selected from the major guilds, and two were selected by the minor guilds.[1] The "Seven Greater Guilds" are first mentioned distinctly (separating the Calimala from "Wool") in 1197.[3] The first State enactment appertaining to Guilds was not issued until 1228.[3]
The first scheduled list of Florentine guilds encompassing twenty-one guilds, appeared in 1236.[4] The second scheduled list of the twenty-one guilds, differentiating between seven "Greater" Guilds (Arti Maggiori) and fourteen "Lesser" Guilds (Arti Minori), appeared in 1266.[5] That same year the consuls of the seven "Greater" Guilds became the "Supreme Magistrate of the State".[5] In 1280, the first five of the "Lesser Guilds" were designated "Intermediate Guilds" (Arti Mediane) in 1280, when the Signoria first assumed office, and their consults were admitted to the conferences of the consuls of the seven "Greater" Guilds.[6]

In 1282, three "Priors of the Guilds" were elected, with powers only inferior to the Chief-Magistrate of the State.[5] The third scheduled list of guilds, finalizing their order of precedence for over a century appeared in a 1282 document known as the Foro Fiorentino, currently held at British Library.[7] The 1282 document groups the greater and intermediary guilds together, thus creating a new partition of twelve greater guilds and nine minor guilds.[8] The nine lowest guilds were allotted banners and coats-of-arms in 1291.[5]

A General Code, a "Statuto", for the guilds was promulgated in 1296 with the founding of the Corte della Mercanzia.[9] The Statutes of all the guilds underwent a complete revision between 1301 and 1307, and the "New Code" was first adopted by the Calimala;[9] the statutes were again revised in 1386.[10]

Three new operative guilds were formed in 1378 after the Ciompi revolt.[10] The fourth scheduled list of guilds, appearing in 1415, however, still included only twenty-one guilds, partitioned (as in 1266) between seven greater guilds and fourteen lesser guilds (the intermediary ones having lost their special status).[11]

The greater guilds attempted in 1427 to reduce the lesser guilds to only seven.[10] This was defeated. But in 1534, the fourteen lesser guilds were arranged into four Universities, and saw many of their privileges curtailed.[
The group with 16 elements likely belonged to the 16 city destricts ... as presented by the Codebook of the 1427-29 Catasto Data File for Florence ...
http://cds.library.brown.edu/projects/c ... ebook.html
Location. [QUAR]. The Quarter and Gonfalone within the city of Florence:
Quarter of S. Spirito: 11=Scala, 12=Nicchio, 13=Ferza, 14=Drago.
Quarter of S. Croce: 21=Carro, 22=Bue, 23=Leon Nero, 24=Ruote.
Quarter of S. Maria Novella: 31=Vipera, 32=Unicorno, 33=Leon Rosso, 34=Leon Bianco.
Quarter of S. Giovanni: 41=Leon D'Oro, 42=Drago, 43=Chiavi, 44=Vaio.
**************************

We've the interesting feature, that the game Minchiate has a structure (4x20 + 16 + 1), in which the numbers 21 (as 20+1) and 16 (court cards) play a role.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#3
Huck,
I'm not sure why you resorted to Wiki when I provided the link to a worthy doctoral thesis describing this in more depth. From that thesis, a clarifying schematic:
Guidici schematic.JPG
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But I'm not sure why you are still driving square pegs into round holes. Previously chess, now the 16 gonfaloni of the 16 neighborhoods are related to the 16 court cards? Completely apples and oranges - the court cards are a 4x4 structure (four sets of four essentially identical court figures). The 16 gonfaloni are 16 unique figures (as you note above), tied to 16 unique neighborhoods within Florence that in no way lend themselves to a 4x4 structure, beyond the groupings of the four major churches each containing four neighborhoods...but there are not four "king neighborhoods", four "queen neighborhoods", etc. During the pivotal St. John's procession the 16 gonfaloni would have underscored that basic fact - they did not march in groups of four but 1 through 16 (and half of those would not have been considered identical "pawns"; re. your chess theory).

As for the "cosmographical" dimensions (the notion of the urbs as sacred microcosm):
It is worth noting the strategic placement of several insignia in this fresco in relation to the physical city surrounding the palace. Most ostensible is the arrangement of the gonfaloni and city quarters. The (now) discernable squares of the city quarters act as a microcosm of the city’s topography: Santa Maria Novella, San Giovanni Battista, Santa Croce, and Santo Spirito are placed in the northwest, northeast, southeast, and southwest quadrants of the circle, respectively. Additionally, the crests of the commune and the Parte Guelfa are located in conspicuous positions. ...The insignia of the Parte Guelfa faces west, in the direction of its palace on the corner of via delle Terme and via Capaccio. Given its topographical qualities, this image evokes the Aristotelian imagery of
the mappamundi and T-O diagram, and certainly resonates with the world view of Goro Dati’s Sfera (see Chapter One).27 While these representations supply general geographic erudition, they are also replete with symbolic images that provide the viewer with the historical or biblical significance of a locale. In this case, the fresco visually manifests the political structure of Florence. In fact, the image can best be described as a symbolic representation of guild corporatism. As discussed in previous chapters, the arti, represented by the quatrefoils, were the bedrock of this corporate polity; Florentine law mandated that elected officials be matriculated in one of the twenty-one guilds.28 The gonfaloni and city quarters were also vital in organizing the allocation of priors to the government.29 The Parte Guelfa and giglio crests further illustrate the image’s political implications. In the third quarter of the Trecento, although weakened by the crises of the 1340s and the rise of the popolo, subscription to Guelf values remained a prerequisite for entry into communal politics.30 The giglio, a symbol of the Florentine republic, simultaneously honored the annals of the Parte Guelfa.31 In its schematic arrangement of nested circles, further accentuated by the central white circle, this image stressed the order and concord of the Florentine polity. Dating back to antiquity, the sphere symbolized harmony, unanimity, and grace. The Aristotelian cosmos demonstrated order in the universe, where the spheres of the elements and heavenly bodies were encapsulated within one giant sphere ordained by God....
In fact, several contemporary Florentine texts note the orderly nature of the city based on its circular structure. As suggested in Chapter Two, Giovanni Villani’s Trecento Cronica demonstrated the circular shape of Florence. By calculating the intersection of the four gates (Porta alla Croce, Porta al Prato, Porta di San Gallo, and Porta Romana), he concluded that the palace of the Lana guild and the loggia di Orsanmichele represent the [207] city center.34 Likewise, in the early fifteenth century, Florentine chancellor Leonardo Bruni portrayed Florence and its contado as a series of concentric rings. In his Laudatio florentinae urbis (1403-04), Bruni claimed that the Palazzo Vecchio – the “‘fortress of the fortress’” – stood as the innermost point of this massive territorial circle. [p. 204f]

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#4
Prudence with a drafting/building tool is also seen in Visconti Milan, as in my photo below, taken in the Sforza Castle Museum. I think from left to right it is Justice, Temperance, Prudence, and Strength. Their names would seem to be above them, but I can't make out enough of the letters. We tend to think of the attributes of the virtues as quite standardized, but in fact there was considerable variation.
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https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-GjskL4RfWaI/ ... G_1891.JPG

The caption should be the next photo I took:
Image
"Campionese" I think refers to the Lombard commune of Campione, on Lake Lugano, now completely surrounded by Switzerland.

Also, for me what is relevant about the 4x4 structure of the quarters of Florence quartered is its similarity to Marziano's division of the gods into 4 types of 4 gods each. The cardinal virtues could be another such ordering principle, in a deck with 16 trumps. I wonder if other cities associated with the tarot had a similar quartering of quarters.

Thanks for the link to the Ph.D. thesis, Phaeded, as well as the restaurant recommendation.

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#5
mikeh wrote:
05 May 2019, 11:38
Prudence with a drafting/building tool is also seen in Visconti Milan, as in my photo below, taken in the Sforza Castle Museum. I think from left to right it is Justice, Temperance, Prudence, and Strength. Their names would seem to be above them, but I can't make out enough of the letters. We tend to think of the attributes of the virtues as quite standardized, but in fact there was considerable variation.
Image
https://1.bp.blogspot.com/-GjskL4RfWaI/ ... G_1891.JPG
I'll address Prudence's variations at length elsewhere, but what is Fortitude holding? I've seen that sarcophagus a couple of times myself and can't recall nor make it out in available images. Other notable Trecento comparables with a Fortitude attribute unique to the Duchy are the monumental Gothic sepulchral tombs for St. Augustine in the San Pietro in Ciel d'Oro church in Pavia and St. Peter of Verona in Milan proper, in the Basilica of Sant'Eustorgio (usually referred to as in the Portinari chapel, built by the Florentine manager of the Medici bank there, to where the St. Peter Verona monument was relocated in the 18th century). In both cases a very similar looking Fortitude with pronounced Hercules' lion's skin over the head, holds a "world" symbol in her hands, with the other three virtues slightly turned to her in the case of Sant'Eustorgio (I think the overall meaning is fairly clear: Hercules once held the world a'la Atlas, and in this re-purposed case the virtues are thus hovering over the world for its betterment).

San Pietro in Ciel d'Oro/Pavia on left and St. Eustorgio/Milan on right (different sequences of cardinals, but Fortitude is easy to pick out).
Pavia and Milan cardinals, Trecento.JPG
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Detail of the Pavia "world" - strongholds and castles (tomb was commissioned in Pavia while that city was still independent of Milan, so likely representative of her small contado) surrounded on the circumference by "wind gods":
Pavia world detail.JPG
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A more traditional comparable of Jesus and crowned Mary blessing the world (urbs in this case, as it has been commented that the city-scape painted within the tondo looks like Florence), is this Trecento paining from Florence's Santa Maria Novella, a Dominican foundation (and indeed, cut off in my snip below are 17 surrounding Dominican saints, so it is through their intercession that Jesus/Mary bestow graces and blessing on to the city).
_Master of the Dominican Effigies - Detail of the Virgin Christ and 17 Saints tempera on panel -.jpg
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As for the cardinal virtues as the ordering principal - how did we get to 21 + fool on that basis when clearly 7 is the clearly appropriate root (and arguably all 7 virtues were in the CY)? And there certain;ly would be zero connection between Florence's 16 neighborhood based militia units and anything in Milan (i.e., Marziano's deck); if you want to say someone in Florence saw the Marziano deck based on a 4x4 and related it to what he knew in Florence, there is still zero connection between the specific images on the 16 gonfaloni and the 16 gods/heros of Marziano.

Finally, neither Milan nor Florence, but this Trecento association of Prudence with "world" is a difficulty for any theory that seeks to posit a prudence and a world in the same deck, as you have in your other active thread on the Marziano and CY (and why "world" became associated with Prudence versus Fortitude needs its own thread....):
!Minerbi-Prudence.jpg
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Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#6
It seems to me that the Sforza Castle Fortitude is holding hammers/mallets. They complement the drafting/measurement tools in the hands of Prudence.

I couldn't follow your argument about the "World" on Fortitude's stylized shield. If it's an attribute of Fortitude, how does that show anything about an identification of the "World" image that has a world as part of it, with Prudence? Likewise Hercules is associated with Fortitude, as you say, but not Prudence.

In the other thread, I am imagining the CY cards (and when they fail, Minchiate) as reflecting early designs in all the centers. I cannot see how the CY Fama/World card represents Prudence. It is Petrarchan Fama. For the imagery of the Prudence card, I would think that what is most relevant would be the Song of the Virtues and Liberal Arts, the other Bolognese manuscript illustration that is often shown, by Nicola da Bologna, Giotto's images, the Bamberg images of the four cardinal virtues, and other early sets of cardinal virtues that show similarities to the tarot and Minchiate virtue cards, especially ones that show the antitype at their feet.

If Prudence is a separate card from World in the CY, and Prudence is dropped, World stays World, even if it takes on some of Prudence's attributes - or Wisdom's, which I think more accurately describes the lady or man holding the world in medieval manuscripts (except when the image alludes to Hercules). When Prudence is dropped, World doesn't become Prudence. If anything, Prudence would be represented by a new card, one not in the CY, in particular the Hanged Man, for which there is the evidence of Imperiali's poem. It is the Prudence of the ruler who uses or threatens to use such a punishment for traitors. At least I think that is what Imperiali is thinking of.

I have often thought that Bianca's Garden should have a thread on the Prudence card (even if our only example is Minchiate). It isn't studied enough.

One more thing:
Phaeded wrote
And there certain;ly would be zero connection between Florence's 16 neighborhood based militia units and anything in Milan (i.e., Marziano's deck)
Marziano spent time in Florence as a student. He would have known about the 4x4 neighborhood structure there. I don't know what Milan's neighborhood structure was in his lifetime.

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#7
Huck wrote,
We've the interesting feature, that the game Minchiate has a structure (4x20 + 16 + 1), in which the numbers 21 (as 20+1) and 16 (court cards) play a role.
I am not sure where the 20 comes from. There are 10 number cards per suit, and another 40 that are trumps. I can think of more obvious ways to find the number 21 in tarot-related games than yours, albeit not in Minchiate. Here is another number you might find interesting, from the doctoral dissertation by Joseph Stanley (https://www.academia.edu/7104776/From_M ... y_Florence p. 224)
In 1385, the councils of the People and Commune set aside money to decorate the Aula Minor of the Palazzo Vecchio. Several years later, Salutati composed a set of Latin epigrams that paid tribute to twenty-two uomini famosi; these tituli most likely described the decorative project. (93).
_____________
93. Teresa Hankey, “Salutati’s Epigrams for the Palazzo Vecchio at Florence,” Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 22 (1959): 363-365; Nicolai Rubinstein, “Classical Themes in the Decoration of the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence,” Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 50 (1987): 29-30. Rubinstein, for example, argues that as chancellor, Salutati “would have been expected to play a prominent role in the formulation of a new decorative scheme for the palace of his government.”
Of course 22 was an important number in several well-known respects. As was 21.

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#8
mikeh wrote:
20 May 2019, 13:13
It seems to me that the Sforza Castle Fortitude is holding hammers/mallets. They complement the drafting/measurement tools in the hands of Prudence.

I couldn't follow your argument about the "World" on Fortitude's stylized shield. If it's an attribute of Fortitude, how does that show anything about an identification of the "World" image that has a world as part of it, with Prudence? Likewise Hercules is associated with Fortitude, as you say, but not Prudence.
Hey Mike,
Hope you had a good holiday. Back to the thread...

The Virtues' attributes were simply fluid in the Trecento - when you posted the Lombard sarcophagus image where Fortitude does not have a standard club/mace and shield but rather tools it just reminded me of those other Lombard Fortitude's holding the earth (something I associate with the World and Prudence, but like we've both said, that deserves a separate thread).

A more non-controversial theory I'd propose is that with the sheer increase in the number of artistic productions in the 15th century - cassone, spalliere, etc. - and the associated shops (dal Ponte, Scheggia, Apollonia di Giovanni, etc.) that cranked out these items needed a standardization of the virtues' attributes. You can see the self-evident problem below - a detail of dal Ponte's 15th century (1430s) 7 liberal arts showing astronomy (holding armillary sphere) and geometry (holding prudence's compass and square) flanked by two Trecento frescoes: a prudence with armillary sphere in the Baroncelli chapel in S. Croce and the Giudici e Notai's Prudence-with-square (originally posted above; and I believe that is a compass in her left hand - viewer's right - but it seems longer than it should be due to merging with dark ring of feathers in that wing):
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But also why is it the Baroncelli chapel Prudence (same attribute is held in the Lana guild fresco) is clearly holding a symbol that is cognate with "world"....and yet is not world? Rhetorical, as I'll address this in depth elsewhere.
One more thing:
Phaeded wrote
And there certain;ly would be zero connection between Florence's 16 neighborhood based militia units and anything in Milan (i.e., Marziano's deck)
Marziano spent time in Florence as a student. He would have known about the 4x4 neighborhood structure there. I don't know what Milan's neighborhood structure was in his lifetime.
My broader point is Milan and Florence were at odds - Milan would not imitate something so emblematic of Florentine as her 16 neighborhoods (e.g., extolled in Bruni's panygeric; the CY, on the other hand, carefully festoons the novel Florentine ur-tarot with its own signs, featuring Visconti [and newly re-contracted Sforza] stemmi everywhere).

Phaeded

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#9
Holiday? I've been writing my a-- off, in another thread, one of the longer ones with an uninterrupted stream by one author. And I only posted two of the drafts. I did a third as a blog. The tables in particular drove me crazy. At least nobody interrupted me. I would have been lost forever and never gotten out.

Phaeded wrote,
My broader point is Milan and Florence were at odds - Milan would not imitate something so emblematic of Florentine as her 16 neighborhoods (e.g., extolled in Bruni's panygeric; the CY, on the other hand, carefully festoons the novel Florentine ur-tarot with its own signs, featuring Visconti [and newly re-contracted Sforza] stemmi everywhere).
On the one hand, you say that the 4x4 structure that exists in Marziano's game cannot have anything to do with the 4x4 structure of Florence because of the Milanese disdain for Florence.

On the other hand, you say that Milan did copy the ur-tarot of Florence almost immediately, despite still being Florence's enemy, merely sticking in its own stemmi here and there. What changed in the interim? Did Milan suddenly decide that Florence was the peak of fashion, just because Florence's mercenary generals beat Milan's mercenary generals in a battle? That if Florence could honor its general with a new deck of cards of Florentine (or at least Tuscan) design, Milan could honor another general, now restored to Milan, with another such deck, based on the same Florentine/Tuscan design?

Also, was the 4x4 structure of the districts and quarters of Florence unique to that city, or was it shared by other cities? I don't know the answer, and I wish I did. I particularly wish I knew what was comparable in Milan.

I have another question. The diagram you reproduced of the ceiling of that restaurant - formerly the guildhall of judges and notaries - did not show where the four cardinal virtues were located. From the text and one of your pictures, I know they were outside the circle, but where? Around it? All the Ph.D. thesis says is that one was in the northwest of the ceiling, one in the southwest, one in the southeast and one in the northeast. But how were they situated relative to the things in the circle? if you drew a line from the center through one of the rectangles and extended it outward, would it pass through or close to one of the virtues? Or is it that the virtues would be extensions of the leaves of the quadrifoils? And would the two virtues opposite one another be upside down relative to each other? Also, there seem to be other figures outside the circle as well, for example the three figures in your shot of the "cosmology", on the bottom of the image (on the right in Huck's rotation of it)? I first thought they were the virtues, but comparing them with your pictures of the virtues, they don't seem to be the same. Also, the virtues seem to be flanked with other circles to the right and left. What are they? I want to get a clearer picture of the fresco as a whole.

This fresco in particular is a wonderful find of yours, Phaeded.

Re: Cardinal virtues series in two Florentine guild halls

#10
mikeh wrote:
29 May 2019, 11:32
Phaeded wrote,
My broader point is Milan and Florence were at odds - Milan would not imitate something so emblematic of Florentine as her 16 neighborhoods (e.g., extolled in Bruni's panygeric; the CY, on the other hand, carefully festoons the novel Florentine ur-tarot with its own signs, featuring Visconti [and newly re-contracted Sforza] stemmi everywhere).
On the one hand, you say that the 4x4 structure that exists in Marziano's game cannot have anything to do with the 4x4 structure of Florence because of the Milanese disdain for Florence.

On the other hand, you say that Milan did copy the ur-tarot of Florence almost immediately, despite still being Florence's enemy, merely sticking in its own stemmi here and there. What changed in the interim?

Nothing changed, because tarot was never equated to Florence (if it were we wouldn't have fallen out of our chairs with the Giusti "(re)discovery"). Giusti himself embellishes the 1440 deck (perhaps the ur-tarot, to my mind at least) with another ruler's arms - Malatesta's. There is no question then of tarot not being linked to Florence as solely her symbol (and I would argue they simply utilized existing sources common to medieval Italy - the seven virtues and Dante's related exempli - so had no special claim on tarot, albeit Dante was an exiled Florentine).

The 4X4 structure of Florence's city was not only well known but discussed by Bruni in his anti-Visconti piece of propaganda, Laudatio Florentinae Urbis (or Panegyric to the City of Florence c.1403-4) as essential to the governance of the city, and thus specifically Florentine. Bruni's work was the culmination in a war of words between Florence and Milan, exemplified just a few years earlier by Bruni's own mentor and Florence's chancellor at the time, Colluccio Salutati and his Invective against Antonio Loschi written in 1398 in response to Loschi’s charges that Florence was the real oppressor and Milan had the right to unite the peninsula.
Moreover, the city is divided into four quarters so that each section can never lack its own representative, and from each quarter two men are elected. And these men are not chosen by chance, but they have the approval of the citizens for a long time and are judged worthy of such a great honour. Now , in addition to these eight citizens, the task of governing the state is entrusted to one man, outstanding in virtue and authority and chosen in rotation from these same quarters. He is the chief of the prorate and bears the standard that is the symbol of the rule of justice over unruly men. The nine men, to whom the government of Florence is entrusted, can live nowhere except in the Palazzo Vecchio, so that they may be in a better position to govern the city. They are not to appear in public without their sergeants, for their dignity demands that they be treated with respect. Indeed,because it sometimes happens that there is a need for a larger council, the Twelve Good Men are added to discuss public matters together with the nine priors. Besides, to these are joined the standard-bearers of the [16] Companies whom the whole population supports and follows since it is necessary to protect liberty with arms. These standard-bearers are also part of the council, and, like the higher magistrates, they are elected by quarter. They hold office for a term of four months.
Section 4,https://www.york.ac.uk/teaching/history/pjpg/bruni.pdf



The only thing I can find regarding Milan is a reference to 20 "administrative zones" predating the current subdivision arrangement. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zones_of_Milan
Beyond that I see 76 districts of Milan https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category: ... s_of_Milan

None of this goes back to the late medieval period, but I don't see a reason as to why Florence's 16 neighborhoods should be universal, based as it is on four primary churches roughly centered on the urban core, as schematized in the fresco (that situation would have to be replicated in the urban geography of other cities).
mikeh wrote:
29 May 2019, 11:32
I have another question. The diagram you reproduced of the ceiling of that restaurant - formerly the guildhall of judges and notaries - did not show where the four cardinal virtues were located. From the text and one of your pictures, I know they were outside the circle, but where?
First of all to situate the Guidici guild hall (marked with red arrow) in terms of the St. John's parade route along the Via del Proconsolo (that proceeds from the Piazza della Signoria/Palazzo Vecchio) and the other major civic/religious buildings:
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Here's a better overall context for the fresco in question (the Lana guildhall is laid out the same way - an entrance/anteroom and then in the back the four virtues on the ceiling, although the Lana uses the traditional round medallions and sans the round city symbol at the center - but the Silk Guild Hall ceiling, near the Palazzo Parte Guelfa, has this same city symbol but heavily and ineptly restored, so useless now). Facing west with Proconsolo street out the door - the Bargallo just steps to your left once outside and to the right the street curves around to the back of the duomo. Note the restaurant's mezzanine is presumably not based on anything original to the guild hall and thus the ceiling with the frescoes in question would have been quite high (and wave to my wife and her parents on the mezzanine level perusing the menu - who probably think I'm bonkers for being so into this stuff and why we were eating there):
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Inside hall, view to west
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Better shot of the ceiling facing west, you can see parts of Temperance on the left and Prudence on the right; because of the way the ceiling is vaulted you can't see on the back side of the large central Florence "medallion" that Fortitude is on the left and Justice on the right.
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Finally, looking to the east/back of the hall with parts of Fortitude (now on right) and Justice (left) visible (because of the mezzanine there is no way to get a good overall shot from below and you are too close to the ceiling when on the mezzanine) [not pictured are the two allegories of Civil and Canon(?) Law on the longitudinal axis, flanking the central medallion, nor of course the many fresco fragments on the vertical walls):
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So the lay out is something like this, facing the street from the back:
Temperance....................Prudence

............Florence-Medallion............

Justice..............................Fortitude

.................."ante-room".................
.......Via Proconsolo/Entrance......

Phaeded

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