Tarot Ballet of Marolles (1657)

#1
Marolles' Ballet

The following pages appear in
Memoires: Avec Des Notes Historiques Et Critiques, Volume 3 (1657)
by Michel de Marolles
http://books.google.com/books?id=Sfk_AAAAcAAJ
Page 127-156

My not perfect abilities with French language have difficulties to recognize, what this is. So, any reflection on it is helpful. I've the imagination, that this is only a ballet proposal, which never was realized. But I might err ...

In the second "Dessein" (totally there are 4 of them) the cards of Tarot play a great role. From the trumps only World, Fool and Bateleur appear, which means only those trumps, which have points in the game. Further the Kings appear with their queens, then the chevaliers with their valets (which also have points in the game). The suit signs are those of the Italian Tarots.
But then appear also playing cards with French suits and there is a battle in small dimensions between the Valets of the both groups. Then it seems, that World, Fou and Bateleur give a sort of judgment, and then the next "Dessein" starts. Or they look only the show of the others.
I really don't know, what this battle shall mean. I get the suspicion, that this shall present a negative result against the Tarot cards and a win of the French suits.
Tarot history is judged by Depaulis and Dummett, that Tarot in France got a downfall in interest in the game of Tarot. Is this indicated also in this ballet, which seems to express the desire to have own national symbols on the cards and not from foreign countries? We had two Italian queens on French throne and this likely promoted the Italian in France. But what happened, when Louis XIII got his well known conflicts with his mother Maria de Medici? And later this earlier French-Italian phase finished with the Gonzagas leaving France?

Marolles is assumed to have arranged the first French Tarocchi rules, printed in Nevers 1637.

First Dessein:
Ballet du tems
(Ballet about "Time" symbols?)

Second Dessein:
Pour le Ballet des Armoiries, où se trouve compris celui des Cartes & des Tarots
(Ballet about Heraldic ? and playing cards (also Tarot))

Third Dessein:
Du Ballet des Emblémes & des Hierglyphics
(a show about Egyptian symbols)

Fourth Dessein:
Ballet des Muses
(a ballet of the Muses)

Then a Finish of the Discourse and a report, what will happen in the next.

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