Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby Huck on 22 Sep 2012, 22:15

mikeh wrote:Your idea that Etteilla borrowed from the first 9 of Poilly for the first 8 of his tarots is a good one, even compelling for the first 5 or 6. De Mellet is the one who has been considered by others to be Etteilla's source, since most of the later trumps of the Marseille (17-21 except for 20) are at the front end of Etteilla's deck(2-5); but the correspondence to Poilly is closer, as far as the themes and the order, even though the imagery is closer to the Marseille.

Your idea about what happened to Temperance and Faith is interesting. I assume that the designer of the 1775 cards felt they should somehow be there, but put them as "Fidelity" and "Bottle" instead. But I don't know why he would have gone to the trouble to make these changes (unless the mutation happened before 1730, and the Poilly we' re seeing is different in this respect from the 1660 Minchiate Francesci).


Well, we cannot rely on the condition, that we know all parts of the puzzle game "how cartomancy developed". I've drawn the Minchiate Francesi out of the nothing, and found then, that they had some studied reality, when I searched for it. How many decks had been there, and nothing has stayed of them? The English Hooper 1775 deck is a new variant, also apparently "relative new to myself", although I had already a lot of opportunity to see them, and indeed, it has some Tarot relevance. Actually I would like to see the 1770 deck from Liverpool. Both decks show, that Etteilla was not alone.

This German deck is presented by Hoffmann 1972, 18 century, without much detail. Very primitive, each card seems to have 3 divination sentences.



This is a nice page ...

http://www.gamesetal.net/

... but it's just a playing card dealer. Especially this one ...

http://www.gamesetal.net/cis.html

A series of curious decks ... all English.
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby mikeh on 23 Sep 2012, 22:54

Huck wrote
With card number 6 the view and the names becomes different ...

Image

... but the rainbow appears at both pictures

Image

Since there isn't actually a rainbow in Etteilla's scene, just arcs of circles around the sun, this observation threw me for a moment. How is an arc a rainbow?

But then I went back and read what Etteilla actually said about that card. Here it is, on p. 15 of the 2nd Cahier,
as Corodil attached it to a post on Aeclectic (http://www.tarotforum.net/showpost.php? ... stcount=70):

http://www.tarotforum.net/attachment.ph ... 1301993641

Or in my English translation:
No. 6. The sixth sheet offers the false hieroglyph of an Emperor, its number of creation, which can serve for replacing it as it was formerly with the Egyptians, is 4, fourth day of creation: God made two great lights. This sheet primitively offers a Zodiac; and I believe, without rejecting anything that I have said about the fourth sleaf feuillet, i.e. card], that the Cardmakers have moved a part of the sixth sheet onto the fourth; this of which we speak at present, the sixth sheet, has only the third number [i.e. three heavenly bodies]. It is necessary at the bottom of the Zodiac to notice there the allegory of the spirit of the colors, the white; notice that one finds again on another leaf [feuillet, i.e. card] the black, on another the red, and finally on another the seven colors, as Physics conceives them; the most interesting and the most difficult is to discover the true color green, being in the center of the others.

When I first read this, I didn't know what he was talking about, a card with the seven colors altogether. Admittedly it is not clear from Etteilla just which card had the seven colors (the Zodiac might be what he is referring to for card 4, The Sky, where there appear to be a couple of small constellations) But if there were a rainbow on this very card, then of course there would be seven colors right there. In this scenario, the engraver would have decided against the rainbow, knowing that the cards were going to be colored, and that painting the colors would not be easy for someone not used to painting miniatures. So he put in arcs instead.

After that, the seven colors seem to have been forgotten. There is no mention of anything like a rainbow in either of the word-lists for this card that have come down to us (presented at http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread.ph ... ost2768945).

Also, it would be natural to associate a picture of Juno (the lady on the Poilly card, associated with air and rainbows) with this card, which Etteilla says became the Empress. Juno was Queen of the gods, after all, Olympus's Empress.

One other thing, added later: the card you compared Poilly card 1 to was not Etteilla's historic card 1, but rather one with the "sunburst" innovation, which I haven't found in any Etteilla deck or spinoff until after c. 1840. You showed the correct comparison in an earlier post.

(And I see that this is the 22nd post on this thread, which undoubtedly gives it some special importance.)
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby Huck on 25 Sep 2012, 21:06

mikeh wrote:One other thing, added later: the card you compared Poilly card 1 to was not Etteilla's historic card 1, but rather one with the "sunburst" innovation, which I haven't found in any Etteilla deck or spinoff until after c. 1840. You showed the correct comparison in an earlier post.

(And I see that this is the 22nd post on this thread, which undoubtedly gives it some special importance.)


Image

Yes, it was empty and void in Etteilla originally, but I had it just not at hand.

... :-) ... what's s remarkable in the 22th post?

Perhaps the idea of the metamorphoses (Marolles 1654) caused the idea to transfer a Minchiate version to a "French Minchiate version ... around the 1670s there were some esoteric scandals at the court of Louis XIV. Perhap there were some special lot book materials around then ... ?
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby mikeh on 26 Sep 2012, 23:45

About the 22nd post, that was a joke, of course, the point being, it completes the sequence that started with the zero of ignorance.

But here's something that isn't a joke. Why are there 42 special cards in the 1730 Poilly? The Florentine Minchiate had 40 plus the Fool. Merlin's list had 40, including both Chaos and Momus But now we have 42, all of them numbered so we get the point. What point?

One possibility: the Zohar (II, 234a) says,
The world was engraved and established with forty-two letters, all of them a crown of the holy name.
(Tishby, Wisdom of the Zohar vol. 2 p. 361).

Tishby's footnote says
From the first bet of bareshit ("in the beginning") to the letter bet in bahu ("void"), in the first verses of Genesis there are forty-two letters, and these parallel the forty-two letters in the prayer ana ve-koah, a combination of which makes up the forty-two lettered name of God.

For their part, the 42 letters are simply combinations and repetitions of the 22 letters of the alphabet. So in another sense, the 22 letters are what God used to create the world. We know that as well from the Sefer Yetsira.) In Zohar II, however, II it is explained that he did it by means of 42 letters, including repetitions. So we have the 22 of the tarot and 42 of the Poilly minchiate.

The Zohar was well known by 1730. I don't know if it was in the Latin translation of some of it in Kaballa Denudata; I don't find it in the MacGregor English translation. But many could read it in the Hebrew, a skill that was emphasized by the Protestants in their efforts to free themselves from all dependancy on Rome. There were probably Jewish or converted Jewish teachers as well. Such numerology was not to be missed.

Someone with more imagination than I might be able to construct parallels between the Poilly 42 card sequence and the sequence of letters in the first two verses of Genesis, either symbolic or visual. The first letter looks promising, the "bet" of "in the beginning" and "void". But I am somewhat skeptical of such undertakings, so I will leave that task to others.
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby Huck on 27 Sep 2012, 02:52

mikeh wrote:About the 22nd post, that was a joke, of course, the point being, it completes the sequence that started with the zero of ignorance.

But here's something that isn't a joke. Why are there 42 special cards in the 1730 Poilly? The Florentine Minchiate had 40 plus the Fool. Merlin's list had 40, including both Chaos and Momus But now we have 42, all of them numbered so we get the point. What point?


The Merlin list has 41 cards, with Momus, no Chaos. And likely all cards are from c. 1660. The 1730 dating is an older theory, I think. It doesn't matter so much, if you exchange the numbers.

... :-) ... I feel rather sure, that it has nothing to do with the Zohar. There was not such a big interest in Christian Kabbala, I think. And I think, there weren't much Jews in France. After Jews were re-allowed in 1615, significant numbers are given for Alsace and Strasbourg.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of ... _in_France

But this was at least partly Germany during most of 17th century ...

The situation of 1660 was the in the court of the young Louis XIV. He had the idea, that he was a King of the Sun. .
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby Huck on 27 Sep 2012, 12:24

There was some interest for Egypt on the side of the Borgia. Cosimo I, grand duke of Tuscany, was interested in Egyptian artifacts. The son of the grand duke of Florence in 1661 married a French princess. This renewed the earlier bigger marriages of Katharina de Medici and Maria de Medici, also connections between France and Florence. Very smple it was in 1661 or short before the "right moment" in Paris or at the court of the French king to be interested in the Florentine Minchiate.
We have, that France developed at end of 18th century an increased interest in Egypt, but possibly there were preparations before which gave birth to this interest. For instance Gebelin in 1781.
Inide the Egyptians schemes, how they had arranged their religious systems, we have the 42 gods of death, parted in 2 groups of 22 for Upper Egypt (along the Nile) and 20 for Lower Egypt (around the delta of the Nile), where these gods were used for regional districts. There you have a 22 and a 42. The calendar of the Egyptians had been arranged according the sun, not mainly orientated towards the moon. And it was arranged according a mathematical idea: 12x30 + 5 not counted bad days makes 365 days for a year.
The full Minchiate Francesi has 42 cards, and it is parted in two groups: 1-30 and 31-42 and the latter was for the zodiac, so for the months and the year. Logically we 1-30 for the 30 days.
Young king Louis XIV got a lot of theater and ballet, and in these childish games he was already placed as the sun king. A foolish-childish imitation of the Egyptian calendar system as we can detect it the Minchiate Francesi doesn't surprise in these contexts.

It doesn't make sense to see the 41-version in 1660 and the 42 version in 1730. Likely both appeared around the same time, whereby the 41 version should have been the first, cause its closer to the original Minchiate.

Minchiate has a curious confusing Zodiac order. The Minchiate-Francesi-42 is in this aspect "well sorted ... which means, a new king (the sun king of coure) has come and has established a new order. Very nice. Disturbing cards like death etc aren't part of this game.
The earlier "Chaos" got itself a place in the game, as "as chaos at the begin". "Archenemy Chaos is overcome" is the meaning of this position.

... :-) ... that's not Kabbala, that are "new king glamor celebrations", if it is Kabbala, then that of this young French king and his general very egocentric behavior: " L'état c'est moi".

But the Minchiate Francesi didn't become very famous, it was just one of many propaganda actions for the new king.

As this picture, printed in the Poilly house, was just Propaganda. King Louis has as guss the 4 continents (which are also part of the Minchiate Francesi in the court cards).

Image

The picture is given as of 1666, but this is not clear, I would assume. The artist is dead with 1666, so it can't have been made later.
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby HistoricalRetrospective on 02 Nov 2012, 17:18

Huck wrote:I made a list, uniting 3 known Poilly versions with 42, 41 and 22 cards with the possibly original version of Minchiate (nobody knows, which Minchiate version Poilly knew from his stay in Italy, actually I use the version, which was in use c. 1725).


I have recently published a reproduction (with #16 and the pip cards recreated) of the 22-trump Poilly version. You can find a blog post on it here.
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby Kate on 05 Sep 2014, 00:08

Hi Huck,

I’ve been reading your research in re the Poilly decks with great interest.

I’ve summarized the three Poilly packs, below. For the 42-card, Poilly Minchiate, version 2 (ca. 1712-41), I went off your summary. However, it was unclear to me how to order/number the astrological signs of Libra and Scorpio from your notes. Could you kindly give me the correct ordering? (The first, 41-card version, ca. 1658, reverses the order of these cards—viz. with Libra @ No. 26 and Scorpio @ No. 27).

Poilly deck ca 1712 22 Cards.jpg
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Minchiate Poilly ca 1712 42 Cards Corrected.jpg
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Poilly Minchiate ca 1658 41 Cards.jpg
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Additionally, I provide BnF photos of the first version, ca. 1658, below. One exception: BnF did not have the Valet of Hearts for this deck on their website; thus, I copied this card from version 2 (ca. 1712-41). Photos are arranged per groupings in my summary. (Unfortunately , I was not able to get the pix to load properly, so it's difficult to compare various motifs used between groups. (For example, between Momus, Group 1/Gods and Prudence, Group 2/Virtues.)

1. Gods
Poilly Minchiate.Gods.jpg
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2. Virtues
Poilly MinchiateVirtues.jpg
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3. Time
Poilly Minchiate Time.jpg
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4. Senses
Poilly Minchiate Senses.jpg
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5. Elements
Poilly MinchiateElements.jpg
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6. Zodiac
Poilly Minchiate Astro.jpg
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7. Heavens
Poilly Minchiate Heavens.jpg
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8. Court Cards - King, Dame, Knight, Valet of Spades, Diamonds, Clubs, Hearts
Poilly Minchiate Spades.jpg
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Poilly Minchiate Diamonds.jpg
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Poilly Minchiate Clubs.jpg
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Poilly Minchiate Hearts2.jpg
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Attachments
Poilly Minchiate Spades.jpg
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minchiate Poilly ca. 1712 42 cards.jpg
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby Kate on 05 Sep 2014, 02:07

Dear Huck,

As you discerned in your research, François de Poilly (1623-1693) apparently drew extensively for the design of the first Minchiate deck (ca. 1658) from the fantasy pack by Stefano della Bella (ca. 1644). Thus, I thought it might be interesting to start by comparing the court cards of the four suits…

Stefano della Bella (1644):

Stefano della Bella.1644.jpg
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Re: Minchiate Francesi / Poilly decks

Postby Huck on 05 Sep 2014, 09:38

hi Kate

Kate wrote:Hi Huck,

I’ve been reading your research in re the Poilly decks with great interest.

I’ve summarized the three Poilly packs, below. For the 42-card, Poilly Minchiate, version 2 (ca. 1712-41), I went off your summary. However, it was unclear to me how to order/number the astrological signs of Libra and Scorpio from your notes. Could you kindly give me the correct ordering? (The first, 41-card version, ca. 1658, reverses the order of these cards—viz. with Libra @ No. 26 and Scorpio @ No. 27).


Thanks for your interest, it's indeed an interesting object. But it's some time ago, that I made this. So I''ve problems to understand your question.
It seems, that you've now all of the pictures, I don't know, how you got this (or did we have them already ? I don't remember ... ah, yes, finally we had all)

One of my sources was the Merlin list. He had the months running from 24-35 in reversed order, starting 24 in December and finishing in 35 January. There are either some Merlin typos (not only Scorpio and Libra) or the row had some irregular things. I don't remember, that we cleared this.

Image

From your cards (the pictures) I see, that the real number error was only about Libra and Scorpio. Either Merlin was confused and produced further errors himself, or there was another printed version running, which had these greater errors (which looks not totally impossible).
Thanks, that you made this point a little clearer.

In all the decks we've only the number exchanges. Actually it seems, that all 42 cards existed already around c. 1658 or c. 1660.
It was the elder Poilly, who developed the "Chaos Faible" with the production of pictures for Marolles' "Ovid" in 1654. Why should one assume, that a later Poilly added the Chaos figure?

Stefano della Bella fables pictures should be all here:
http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/c ... mages=true
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