GirolamoZorli wrote:I have quickly checked Pratesi's article. As usual, Mr. Pratesi is brilliant, competent and deep. Congratulations to trionfi.com for the auguste writer we are so much grateful to. Minchiate ? well, it's off topics, but my main present curiosity is to solve the misterious Germini-Minchiate puzzle. I am not sure that the XV century Minchiate were played with a tarot pack. I am not sure that the Germini pack was invented before 1520. I guess that XV century Minchiate was a game played with the common pack and that name (and possibly some playing details) was later given to a XVII century variation of the Germini game.
hi Girolamo ...
we have the documents of 1466 (a letter from Luigi Pulci to Lorenzo de Medici), 1470/71 (a juristic case against blasphemy) and an Florentine allowance of 1477 for the existence of a card game Minchiate (all without information, how much cards were used). We have a recent document with Sminchiate detected by Andrea Vitali c. 1510 (Farsa Satyra Morale, also without structural inormation).
Further we have a lot book of Lorenzo Spirito (possibly 1473, sure 1482), which uses a 20-20-20-20-scheme. The elements have a slight similarity to Minchiate, the structure is clearer "similar". Likely Spirito imitated a German lot book, which already existed at least 1450 (but likely is older and it might be much older), which used a 22-22-22-22-scheme. In the case, it is true, that Lorenzo Spirit really imitated this version, we would have the curious question, why Lorenzo Spirito reduced the 22-22-22-22 system to a 20-20-20-20 form. If the Minchiate already existed and had a stronger part of the market, Spirito's choice would be natural.
Well, we have the case, that the word Minchiate appear by far not so often as Trionfi in documents ... but it might be, that outside of Florence these cards were simply addressed also as "Trionfi" cards.
I summarized yesterday, what all happened around a specific critical time (in another context, but it might serve also here):
Pulci wrote the first parts of the Morgante for the Medici, when he likely was engaged to help occasionally in the education of the Medici boys (1460 - 1463), likely mostly, when the family spend their days in the villa Caffaggiolo (Morgante lived in short distance to it in the Mugello). This Morgante actually is "youth literature". Pulci had about 15 chapters in 1463, when Lorenzo reached his 15th year. About this time (so my suspicion) he got a Trionfi deck with 16 trumps, the socalled Charles VI. This had a Fool, but not a Magician. And the Morgante had till chapter 15 also only Morgante, and Margutte wasn't invented. In a later Tarocchi deck in Ferrara (Este deck, Beinecke library) we have a Fool AND a Magician, and both are painted as giants.
Pulci's Morgante reached 23 chapters at the begin of the 1470s, just about the time, when Lorenzo had become 23. Margutte was then part of the story.
Around 1474/75 the relationship Pulci and Lorenzo got troubles. In April 1478 the assassination attempt on the Medici was staged. Lorenzo's brother died, but Lorenzo survived, then 29 years and afew mnths old.
Pulci's and Lorenzo's relationship was repaired about 1479 and Pulci offered a new "finished" version of 28 chapters of the Morgante. It seems, that Lorenzo didn't wish to see a 29th chapter or any more chapter. It seems to express, that "youth was finished".
The Morgante went into printed production at the begin of the 1480's. At around the same time also Boiardo's Orlando text went into its first printed versions.
Pulci died in Padova in his 43rd year, so somehow near to places, where Folengo lived. Lorenzo Medici died April 1492, having reached his 43th year.
Recent researches have made clear, that mass production of Trionfi cards had started (at least) at the beginning of the 1460's, and it seems, they were exported from Florence to Rome.
About Minchiate we know, that it was mentioned in 1466 in a letter from Pulci to Lorenzo. It's already an older suspicion, that Pulci was involved in the invention of the game himself.
Recently a new argument appeared in close relation to the new ideas about Trionfi exports from Florence to Rome. Franco Pratesi suggested, that the Rosenthal Tarocchi had a 4th "unknown" sheet ...
... and inside the internal discussions of Trionfi.com appeared the argument, that the Minchiate development had at a specific not clear moment (but it seems possible "begin of the 1460's") only 96 cards, not 97, as expressed inside the Rosenthal Tarocchi fragments. It might be, that the Minchiate had a double-figure, in which usual qualities of the Magician and the Fool were united.
A fool, but with a table, which usually belongs to the magician.
Michal J. Hurst some time ago at ...
http://pre-gebelin.blogspot.com/search? ... results=13
... had published some details from "children of the Moon" pictures, which are given to Baccio Baldini and the years c. 1464 and c. 1465 (according Michael). Michael pointed already to a similarity to the Rosenthat fool.
So there are running various points together:
1458: New pope Pius II, who knew about German printing technologies
1459: Congress in Mantova with much German participation (woodcut technology and playing cards production technique ?)
??? around 1460 arrival of woodcut technology in Florence
1460-1463: first parts of Morgante (without Margutte)
1462: attack on Mainz, which kept book printing mysteries hidden
1463: assumed date for Charles VI production without Magician
1463: Sweynheim and Pannartz from Mainz to Subiaco
1463-1468: known mass exports of Triunfi cards from Florence to Rome
1463: second Florentine Trionfi allowance
1463: Borso stops his rather normal Trionfi card productions in Ferrara (as far we see them) - possibly cause mass-production had arrived in the Trionfi card production
1464-65: assumed date of Baldini pictures - Fools with Magician qualities
1465: assumed date for 6 card addition to PMB in Milan
1466: Minchiate letter from Pulci to Lorenzo
????? Rosenthal-Tarocchi as Minchiate with united Fool-Magician and totally 96 cards
begin or mid 1470s: Fool and Magician as giants and as two figures in Ferrara (Este cards with Aragon heraldic)
Franco's point is, that 3 sheets of the Rosenthal have 72 cards. Assuming, that this had been part of a deck with 78 cards, would demand, that 6 cards must have been printed additionally ... not very practical. The consideration is, that he printers in the first moment of the game development arranged a game, which was practical in the printing process. Maybe two woodblocks served to produce a deck with 48 cards. 3 woodblocks served for a game with 72 cards, and 4 woodblocks served for Minchiate. A most practical solution.
The general consideration from the side of the 5x14 theory says, that in the early stage of the game development there were decks with 5x14 - structure (as possibly given with the cards - if it were cards - made at 1.1.1441, the 14 Bembo trumps in PMB and the 70 cards in the Ferrarese document of 1457) or decks with 16 trumps and a not clear number of court and number cards (Michelino deck - 16 trumps; Cary-Yale Taocchi - 16 reconstructed trumps; Charles VI - 16 trumps).
Generally (in the 5x14-theory) it's assumed, that early Trionfi card versions knew great creativity and had no standard sequence (hand-painted cards dominated). If cards should be exported on the mass market, then this deck should satisfy also players in other cities, which possibly had other trumps and other sequences. So this deck should have had no numbers on the trumps and enough motifs, so that the expected customers could form their used Trionfi deck just by eliminating a few cards. This would have been a rather practical solution.
The Rosenthal Tarocchi has partly numbers, but the impression is, that the numbers were hand painted and the worker had a few errors. So this piece of paper wasn't used as playing cards.
Well, this is just an idea to explain the situation.