Popess as Mary

The papesse as allegory of the Church has been pretty well documented especially by Ross.

In various posts I have made over the years, I tend to also more strongly suggest that she could also be seen as representative of Mary, and suggest various reasons as to why this is the case based on especially 'confusing' details towards the bottom of the card, and 'similarities' to various depictions of the Annunciation.

The difficulty in those suggestions thus far had been that Mary at the annunciation, though consistent with the overall card design, lacks a triple crown. In contrast, Mary crowned as Queen of Heaven (following her ascension) is normally crowned with a 'normal' crown.

I was therefore please to find a new (well, OLD, but new to me, and as far as I'm aware not presented to the tarot community) triple-crowned image of Mary in the Cambridge online library:


It's also interesting to note that this comes from a Royal Charter of King Henry VI, dating from 1446. Ie, from the period of tarot's early development.

Re: Popess as Mary

Nice find, jmd!! :ymapplause:

I am pleased to be one of the first in the tarot community to see her. Her robes and their colors bring the Papesse to my mind for sure. And that crown. I wonder why such an image of her like this (in the triple crown) would be so rare. Someone ought to let Loredan know of this find, I think she'd be very excited.

One question, is she hairless in that image?
"...he wanted to illustrate with his figures many Moral teachings, and under some difficulty, to bite into bad and dangerous customs, & show how today many Actions are done without goodness and honesty, and are accomplished in ways that are contrary to duty and rightfulness."

Re: Popess as Mary

Great image JMD.

I love the Trinity above her. There's a delicacy to the entire image. Fab.
The Tarot will lose all its vitality for one who allows himself to be side-tracked by its pedantry. - Aleister Crowley

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