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Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 13 Aug 2012, 09:28
by Huck
I get ...

1. Bruzio on horse ... Title page
2. "8 teachers"
3. Theologia
4. Prudentia
5. Fortitudo
6. Temperantia
7. Iustitia
8. Fides
9. Spes
10 Caritas with wings

So far correct? Somehow a strange row ....

Faith is interesting ...
... and has 15 inscriptions and is itself Nr. 16


I see two towers



Chess has also two towers.


Justice has a sword and book // Prudentia has a sort of shield with book on it and a candle



The knights of Chess have usually horses. But a sword and and a shield ... could possibly also address the "knight"


Spes next to a crown (see picture) and Faith with its 16 inscriptions (see above) would make two bishops (both are theological virtues)



The Chess king is naturally Theologia, which is NOT a virtue, but the unity of all virtues:


... and the Chess Queen is Caritas, the last in the series and the only one with wings:


It looks, as if the virtues are present the chess officers and the artes (plus philosophy) the chess pawns so far ... but carefully one should first see the artes pictures.


Well, it's a little bit strange, that Temperantia has "Tower" and "Bridle" ... bridle should address something with horse and so with the knight. If we Temperance as a knight symbol, Prudentia should be something with Tower ... perhaps the "Candle" addresses the light or signal Tower.
Prudentia's usual symbol is the mirror. A mirror could also be used to exchange signal's between near Towers. Possibly the "shield" symbol MUST be interpreted as a mirror. Such military signal systems were of high value in the early fights.

If we would assume, that Prudentia stood for the Tower, we would have in the "strange" manuscript order the somehow logical representation:

1. Bruzio on horse ... Title page
2. "8 teachers"
3. Theologia .... KING
4. Prudentia .... TWO ROOKS
5. Fortitudo
6. Temperantia .... TWO KNIGHTS
7. Iustitia
8. Fides .... .... TWO BISHOPS
9. Spes
10 Caritas with wings .... QUEEN


The Tower at the Temperantia picture is painted as an "inside-the-castle-scene" (see the wall), Fortitudo shows an "outside-the castle-scene". Temperantia doesn't show the knight in war, but the knight in peace, bewaring peace by strong knights "inside the castle".

Perhaps one shouldn't overlook, that Burzio had been an active condottiero.

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 13 Aug 2012, 10:43
by Lorredan
Huck why.....Somehow a strange row ....?
Is that because the usual order is Prudence >Justice> Strength>Temperance?
and.....I thought chess had four castles? Well of course that is if you have an opponent.
I know little about an image, I mean.

Somehow Fides's foliage looks like a Peacock Tail.

Mikeh if you have time could you tell me if Leon Dorez says it is Samson with the lion....or does the script of B Bartoli say it is Samson? I cannot decipher the connection. It looks more like a female in armor. Like it is Judith in another personae.
Aghhhh Hurry up Boat.
here is a very rough translation of the verse/s that are under the drawings of the Fortitude with Holofernes.

Rendered in the manner of Magnanimous and Great women,
As on the first (Theology?) in his beautiful style,
Brave and gentle,
It behoves taking in….(bank), if in it’s Honesty.
Here is the Tower and 500 miracles of Steadiness/Virtues, (excellences?)
And so I teach with pride (haughtiness)
To place in her hands a weapon of (quick?) death. (Speaking of Judith and Holofernes?)
Or if, perhaps from your Constancy,
You make beautiful garlands for the Gods,
What does a vendetta do- act Humble;
Vile thoughts of someone I reigned in,
Rent (life?) was cheap in the time of Tiberius
Take the manner of her beautiful clear eyes like a chandelier,
Have confidence in Judith Oloferne,
Live by the Book,
Be a partner in Love
Live in a likewise manner.

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 13 Aug 2012, 11:46
by Huck
Lorredan wrote:Huck why.....Somehow a strange row ....?
Is that because the usual order is Prudence >Justice> Strength>Temperance?
and.....I thought chess had four castles? Well of course that is if you have an opponent.
I know little about an image, I mean.

Somehow Fides's foliage looks like a Peacock Tail.

Mikeh if you have time could you tell me if Leon Dorez says it is Samson with the lion....or does the script of B Bartoli say it is Samson? I cannot decipher the connection. It looks more like a female in armor. Like it is Judith in another personae.
Aghhhh Hurry up Boat.
If the take the Mantegna Tarocchi order ...

40 Fides
39 Spes
38 Caritas
37 Iustitia
36 Fortitudo
35 Prudentia
33 Temperantia

... if we take the Minchiate order

19 Caritas
18 Fides
17 Prudentia
16 Spes
8 Justice
7 Fortitudo
6 Temperantia

... then both are different. Somehow all three have theological virtues above cardinal virtues (with the exception of Prudentia above Spes in Minchiate).
Justice is high as a cardinal virtue ... somehow in all three, though in Minchiate only second place cause the high Prudentia.
Temperantia is lowest in Minchiate and Mantegna, but not in this new series ... that's strange. Fides is low between the theological virtues in this new order, but not in the others That's also strange.

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 13 Aug 2012, 23:08
by mikeh
Lorredan, Dorez says
A pie del monte si vede, a sinistra, un giovane incoronato, armato da capo a piede, di cui una vesta partita di
verde e di rosso ricopre il giaco di maglia ; è Sansone, che con ambo le mani divarica le mascelle dell'atterrato leone.

(At the foot of the mountain you see on the left, a crowned young man, armed from head to foot, with a vest of green and red covering a coat of mail; it is Samson who with both hands spread apart the jaws of a fallen lion.
But it does look somewhat like a female in armor, I agree. Not how I would picture Samson or Hercules.

Yes, the order is strange. It is also different from the order in Bartolomeo's immediate predecessor, with the frontispiece in color I posted earlier, where Justicia is first.

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 14 Aug 2012, 20:12
by mikeh
Here is my attempt to translate the stanza about Fortitudo, Lorredan. Since most of the words are obsolete or are used with obsolete meanings, I had to look up almost every word in Florio's online 1611 dictionary. Even then I made many guesses, since I am unfamiliar with medieval Italian. For example, I assumed that "el" in line 5 was equivalent to the moden "egli" (he, like the Spanish "el") rather than Florio's "e le" ("and the" or "and him"). Thus the person being talked about in the first part of the stanza is male rather than female (for whom the pronoun would have been "ella", as in modern Spanish, or "glie", as in the last line). Samson was a young man when he encountered the lion, according to the Bible.

I see everything before "death" (morte) as about Samson, and what follows after that as about Olloferne and Judith. The poet is seeing Olloferne as a negative example for condotiere like Bruzio, warning them not to be taken in by seductive women in cities they capture.
Following even now the magnanimous and great
Lady after the first, in his beautiful style,
Valorous and courteous,
How it suits his valor.
For he is the tower and constant
With every virtue, and so as a mark of pride,
He puts the great beast,
With his hands as his weapon, almost to death.
Now constant and strong,
You make of flowers beautiful garlands,
And to give or declare
So as to make a sale, act humble;
And some vile thoughts
In you reign, to see the trickster.
Now you see the splendor
And have her beautiful eyes for your light.
To live in such a manner
Free, secure, joyful. And then the court
Of love has you a wife,
So Olloferne has confidence [in] Judith,
So that she separates his life from his body.
And the original Italian:
Segue mo' l’altra magnanima e grande
Donna, doppo la prima el suo bel stile,
Valoroxo e zentile,
Si chome se convene a sua francheza.
Ch' el è torre e fermeza
D' ogne vertute, e sì d' inzegno althiera,
Che mette la gran fiera
Cum le sue mani arma quaxe a la morte.
Or si’ constante e forte,
Tu, che voi far di suoi bei fiur ghirlande,
E per dona o se pande
Che poi vendecta fare in atto humile;
E s'alchun pensier vile
In ti regnasse, i vedrai pur la treza.
Mo s' tu voi la chiareza
Di suoi begli occhi haver[ej per tua lumiera,
Vivi in chotal mainiera
Liber[o], sechuro, aliegro. e poi la corte
D;amor t'avran consorte,
Si chom fiducia [in] Judith Olloferne
Havé, che '1 vixo dal chorpo glie dicerne.

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 14 Aug 2012, 22:23
by Lorredan
Thank you Mikeh for the translation....I have only one disagreement, but as my Book on medieval Italian, does not make a lot sense to me and is labourious to use, because of the Latin, French, Dutch, Flemish etc influences to make Italian.... the sense of things changes.
..... atto humile;
E s'alchun pensier vile
In ti regnasse, i vedrai pur la treza.
I get....
....(something) was cheap/for sale in the reign of Tiberius....( Christ died in the reign of Tiberius)
Then again a rein is a symbol of Temperance.
I will stumble on......

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 15 Aug 2012, 02:29
by mikeh
So now here is the conclusion of Part One, starting with a photo of the whole page that Dorez will be describing. I will also post details of the individual parts as we go. ... 0476ab.jpg

And here is Dorez. The original Italian for his part is at the end of this post, I will interrupt occasionally to post details from the previous picture. And I will give Dorez's transcription of the Latin without translation, but after each transcription of the Italian I will give my attempt to translate. I have no doubt that there are many errors, which is why I include the original medieval Italian in the same place :
Folio 6 r. – In this one we summarize what is contained in the previous sheets.

ON a chair sits Discretio, Virtutum mater [mother of virtues], a lady crowned, veiled, covered with a blue dress trimmed with green, who, in an attitude


immobile and almost reverential, holds her robe with her hands, in which are scattered flowers mixed with thorns.

Here is that detail: ... 0476aa.jpg

I continue:
Behind the chair stands a tree, from which depart seven branches ending in as many fruits, stylized in the form of a disc, on which are represented the seven cardinal and theological virtues.

It should be noted that the symbols of the Virtues almost never appear the same as we saw those already assigned to them. The Four Cardinal Virtues sit on their usual chair, but if Justice, who is above Discretion, still holds in her right hand a drawn sword, in the left, instead of a book she carries a balance. Nor does the color of the dress remain the same: the blue robe has become red.
I interrupt here to give the detail of the four cardinal virtues. Observe the word "fortitudo" on the tower next to Fortezza, which is what Dorez calls the virtue on the left. ... _0476b.jpg

I continue:
More remarkable still is the transformation of Fortezza. In place of Samson accompanied by the lion and Judith with Holofernes, the Virtue is here alone, dressed in a red and green robe; with her left arm she holds a crenelated tower and in her right the club of Hercules.

Opposite her, Temperance, in a green robe, has exchanged her tower and bridle for a gold pot and silver basin, in which she is mixing hot and cold water (or water and wine); on the left can be seen another jar on the chair. Above, most loyal to her first symbols, Prudence (green robe and blue cloak) again holds the lit candle in her right and in her left the disc with the words: Presens, preteritum et futurum.

The three theological virtues have suffered more profound changes. Faith, dressed in green with a white veil, kneeling, bears in her right, a crucifix and turns her eyes to the Christ in majesty, all covered with red and blessing, with his hands up, as does also Hope, wrapped up in a white cloak, kneeling, hands clasped, in the middle of a small boat, the mast of which is broken.

I interrupt now to show you the detail of the the three theologicals, with Christ in back of Charity. ... _0476c.jpg

I continue:
Finally, in a disc almost double the others, at the top, is Omnipotens Deus, dressed in green, and with clasped hands winged Charity (red robe, red mantle lined with green), to whom is reserved the place of honor.

In this summary, to give each its own greater variety, the miniaturist drew representations of the Virtues of which he spoke earlier by another series of paintings.

On the bottom margin, in another disc, we see the ugly face of an evil old man with beard and horns, it is Vice or the Devil, and out of him extends the heads of seven chimeras in green, the seven deadly Sins, which crush with their sharp teeth the bloody heads of Sardanapalus, Holofernes, Epicurus, Nero, Arius, Judas and Herod.
I interrupt to give you this detail. ... _0476d.jpg

You will notice the similarity of each of the "chimeras" with the Visconti viper, with its red man in a viper's mouth-- especially given the red paint Dorez describes on the heads of the seven negative examples.

I continue with Dorez, including the original of the verses, as well as my translation, because I don't doubt that I have made errors.
Here now are the inscriptions of each verse placed in the mouths of the symbolic characters of the Tree:

OMNIPOTENS DEUS: l' sono eterno et in eterno e' fui
E sserò sempre e son quel che mai fui.


KARITAS: Karità sum eh' in Dio sempre m' abraxo,
Et ello in mi se possa, et in lui giaxo.

SPES: Chon più me trovo in fievoletta barcha,
Più spiero in Dio, del ciel patre e monarcha.

FIDES: De vergen naque e po' fu crucifixo
Quel che de giudicare lo mondo è fisso.

PRUDENTIA: E m' aspiecho in tri tempi, e sì i dispono
Chon voi raxon: però Prudentia sono.

TEMPERANTIA: De l' apetito inordinà la falda
Cum l' aqua freda amorto e cum la calda.

FORTITUDO: Per mia forteza i' porto tutto il carcho
D'ogne vertute, e done ai mei lo barcho.

JUSTICIA: Defendo i boni e cum la spada offexo
O qui ch' a la stadiera enno a mal pexo.

DISCRETIO: Dicerno spin da belle roxe e fiuri,
Perch' o[m] no 'm lassi i primi e gli altri honori.

[VITIUM:] Sardanaphallo, Olofferne, Epichurio,
Nerone et Ario, Juda et Herode
Cum la mia spada percottendo i' schurio,
Chon voi l'eterno re degno di lode.

(OMNIPOTENS DEUS: I am eternal and in eternity was
And always will be and am that which ever was.


KARITAS: Charity I am and am always in God's embrace,
And as much as possible, in his glory.

SPES: The more I am in this feeble boat,
The more I have hope in God, heaven’s father and king.

FIDES: Of a virgin was born, and then was crucified
The one on whom judgment of the world is fixed.

PRUDENTIA: And I have aspects in three times, and yes, act
With a rational will, for I am Prudence.

TEMPERANZA: Those with inordinate appetite enfold
With water cold to death and hot.

FORTITUDO: By my strength I bear the whole load
Of every virtue, and given to me I exceed it.

JUSTICIA; I defend good men and with the sword injure
Or here on the scale the malefactors are hung.

DISCRETIO; I separate the thorns of the beautiful roses and flowers
So that the first are left and the others are honored.

[VICE] Sardanaphallo, Olofferne, Epichurio,
Nero and Ario, Juda and Herod
With my sword obtaining the darkness,
By will of the eternal king worthy of praise.)
Above we see that Temperance's "water cold to death and hot" is the reason why Dorez characterizes her two vessels, normally water and wine, as cold and hot.

The "forteza" in Fortitude's verse is the only occurrence I see of that word in the manuscript text.

Notice also that the order on the tree is different from the order in the book: Justice is here the first above Discretio, followed by Fortitudo and Temperantia, and Prudence the one immediately before Fides and Spes. It is only if you go from the top down, in each set separately, but go from the bottom up for the three sets (Discretio-Cardinals-Theologicals) that the order would be the same.

This part of the book concludes with its Coda:
Text of the Coda of the first part.

Chanzone, ogne vertù ven giù dal cielo
Et al ciel tutte Charità le porta,
O' l'amor ce conforta,
Che de lei nasce, et ella in Dio ci anida.
Chossì schiven le strìda
Di sottoposti a le donne dolen[tri]
Che de l'inferno i centri
Provan per suoi difetti el caldo e 'l zielo.
Nesun lor nome i' cielo;
Mo i va narrando, e s' tu vi' che '1 sezorni
In vitio alehun, fa eh' a vertù mei torni.

(Song, every virtue comes down from heaven
And to heaven Charity bears,
Oh the love there, comfort,
He who is born of her, and she in God there nests.
So avoid the squeeling
Of the above-mentioned ladies’ grief
For one in hell’s center
Experiencing for his faults the heat and zeal.
None of their names in heaven;
Even now is the telling, and if you have the least
Of any vice, make it turn to virtue.)


To the right and left of Discretion reads the Coda of the first part of the Song.
In the Latin at the end we again have Bruzio's name mentioned as the dedicatee.

And here is the original Italian of Dorez's commentary (omitting his transcriptions from the pictures):
Carta 6r. - In essa noi rinveniamo il riassunto di quanto contengono le
carte precedenti.

Sopra una cattedra siede Discretio, mater Virtutum, donna incoronata,
velata, coperta d'una veste azzurra orlata di verde, che, stando in atteggia-

mento immobile e quasi ieratico, tien colle mani i lembi della veste, dove sono
sparsi de' fiorì misti a spine.

Dietro alla cattedra sorge un albero, donde partono sette rami terminati
da altrettanti frutti stilizzati a modo di dischi in cui sono rappresentate le sette
Virtù cardinali e teologali.

È da notare che i simboli delle Virtù non appaiono quasi mai gli stessi che
vedemmo già loro attribuiti. Le quattro Virtù cardinali seggono bensì sulla
solita cattedra ; ma se la GIUSTICIA, che sta al disopra della Discrezione,
stringe pur sempre nella destra la spada sguainata, nella sinistra, in luogo del
libro, porta una bilancia. Né il colore della veste rimane lo stesso : che la veste
azzurra è divenuta rossa. Più notevole ancora è la trasformazione della For-
tezza. In luogo d' essere accompagnata da Sansone col leone e da Giuditta
con Oloferne, la Virtù appare qui sola, vestita d'abito partito rosso e verde; col
braccio sinistro essa regge una torre merlata e col dritto la clava di Ercole.
Dirimpetto ad essa la TEMPERANZA, in veste verde, ha mutato la sua torre e
il freno in una brocca d'oro ed un bacino d'argento nel quale debbono mesco-
larsi l'acqua calda e l'acqua fredda (o l'acqua e il vino) ; a sinistra, sì vede
sulla cattedra un'altra brocca. Al disopra, più fedele a' suoi primi simboli, la
PRUDENZA (veste verde e mantello azzurro) tiene sempre nella destra il cero
acceso e nella sinistra il disco colle sole parole : Presens, preteritum et futurum.

Più profonde modificazioni hanno sofferto le tre VITRÙ TEOLOGALI. La FEDE,
vestita di verde, con un velo bianco, inginocchiata, porta nella destra un
crocifisso e rivolge gli occhi verso il Cristo in maestà, tutto rivestito di rosso
e benedicente con le mani alzate, come fa pure la SPERANZA, ravviluppata in un
bianco ammanto, inginocchiata, colle mani giunte, nel mezzo di una navicella,
l'albero della quale è spezzato. Finalmente, in un disco quasi doppio degli altri,
nel grembo dell'Omnipotens Deus, vestito di verde, sta colle mani giunte la
CARITA alata (veste rossa, mantello rosso foderato di verde), alla quale venne
riservato il posto d'onore.

In questo riassunto, per dare maggior varietà all'opera propria, trasse il
miniatore le rappresentazioni delle Virtù da un altro ciclo di pitture, di cui fra
poco parleremo più a lungo.

Nel margine inferiore, in un altro disco, vedesi il diabolico ceffo di un
vecchio con barba e corna ; è il VIZIO O DEMONIO, e da lui escono sette teste
di chimere di color verde, i sette Peccati mortali, che fra ì denti acuti maciul-
lano le teste sanguinose di Sardanapalo, Oloferne, Epicuro, Nerone, Ario, Giuda
ed Erode.

Ecco ora le inscrizioni metriche poste in bocca a ciascuno de' personaggi
dell'Albero simbolico:

Testo del congedo della prima parte.

A destra e a sinistra della Discrezione si legge il congedo della prima parte
della Canzone.

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 15 Aug 2012, 02:47
by mikeh
Next in the book comes Dorez's commentary and transciptions pertaining to the second part, on the Sciences. After that, he deals with the codex's sources and influence. For these parts, unless there are specific questions, I am content to wait until Lorredan gets her copy of the book. That would make the discussion more fruitful, I think. I have already briefly mentioned four stylistic sources that Dorez supplies and one immediate source for the content of the images. Since he does not give images for the stylistic sources, I will be looking for images.

In the section on the Sciences, there are three illustrations that might relate to the tarot. I will simply post them without Dorez's commentary. First, here is Grammatica: ... _0478a.jpg

She looks to me very close to the Cary-Yale's Charity.

And there are also Geometria and Astrologia, which bear some similarity to the Charles VI's depictions of the heavenly body cards. I think the term "Astrologia" included what today we would consider Astronomy. ... _0483a.jpg ... _0484a.jpg

Also in the Chantilly codex are three illustrations of planetary gods (Saturn, Jupiter, Mars) done in a similar style. But these are not from the same manuscript as the other pages, Dorez says. At some point, in some thread, I will discuss at least the the one of Saturn, as well as a 15th century account of another set of images of the planets that Dorez gives.

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 15 Aug 2012, 05:08
by Huck
In the Mantegna Tarocchi we have ...
21-23 ... Grammatica, Loica, Rhetorica
24-27 ... Geometria, Arithmetricha, Musica, Poesia

28-30 ... Philosophia, Astrologia, Theologia
31-33 ... Iliaco, Chronico, Cosmico

34-37 ... Temperanzia, Prudencia, Forteza, Iusticia
38-40 ... Charita, Speranza, Fede
So - somehow - we have a mirror system:

21-23 Trivium mirrors 40-38 theological virtues
24-27 Quadrivium mirrors 37-34 cardinal virtues
28-30 "higher learning" mirrors 33-31 Iliaco-Chronic-Cosmico

Maybe it's an invitation to assume a complete mirror-relation 21-40, 22-39 ... etc.

The Trivium is related to language, the Quadrivium related to numbers. Language might be well associated to religion (math is not needed) and so to theological virtues, the world of numbers might be well associated to the more practical cardinal virtues.

Now you observe a similarity between Grammatica (20) and Caritas (38) .. possibly the relation in the Mantegna Tarocchi was meant 21-38 - 22-39 - 23-40 ?

Re: Panegyric of Bruzio Visconti by Bartolomeo da Bologn

Posted: 02 Nov 2016, 19:33
by Phaeded
Huck wrote: Image
EDIT: Found Mike Howard's blog translations:
Thanks Mike!
outside of which are inscribed the names of the various phases of human life and time: Infantia; tempus presens, pueritia and adolos[c]entia; preteritum, iuventus et senectus; futurum, mors. In the center of the disc is an open book, which reads: Memoria Intelligentia Prudentia Circumspectio Docilitas Ratio et Cautio, followed by some indecipherable signs, -

traced with the sole intention not to leave blank the rest of the page. Between the circle and the book the miniaturist superiorly portrayed with one black ball Nox, Night; lower down with the other ball, half white and half blue, Dies, the Day.

Beneath her feet Prudence tramples Sardanapalus (red robe with green collar), crowned, from whose hands have fallen a distaff and spindle.