Page 5 of 8

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 28 Dec 2017, 06:28
by SteveM
mikeh wrote:
28 Dec 2017, 02:27
In contrast, to say that dogs bark at the moon is not a solution at all, because it is too obvious, if hieroglyphs are enigmatic and hide their meaning from the vulgar.
Alciato, who himself describes his emblemata as a type of hieroglyphics, includes a dog barking at the moon, as an emblem of 'futile effort' :

https://books.google.com.tr/books?id=zJ ... &q&f=false

https://www.mun.ca/alciato/e165.html

[Alciato's enormously popular Emblemata might as well be an inspiration behind inclusion of dogs on the moon as a reference to Clement of Alexandria - or as a source of hieroglyphic type images and their meanings as 'horapollo')



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The symbolism of medals and later emblems, hieroglypic types, are often obvious, sometimes obscure - often relying on a visual pun of an idiomatic phrase (eg, of the type 'time flies') rather than a literary classical reference -- the level of obscurity may depend upon the preferences of the patron -- some of the medals of Leonello d'Este for example contain many obscure references, many undeciphered to this day -- while others are fairly simple and straightforward --

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 28 Dec 2017, 12:50
by mikeh
I wrote,
Wikipedia in its article on Valeriano, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierio_Valeriano_Bolzani, gives a dog below the moon as its main example. It is his hieroglyph for "Adoratio", which shows a dog with its forelegs raised toward the moon, Wikipedia does not say what edition the image comes from; I cannot find it, or even a reference to dogs (cane) in the entry for "adoratio" in the edition I linked to earlier. Perhaps those who know Latin will have better luck.
Image
I found it, in the original 1556 edition, http://www.unz.org/Pub/ValerianoPierio-1556, p. 46. It is supposed to be a Cynocephalus. Looking up that term in Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cynocephaly), I see the following, besides the sense of "dog-headed man":
The Greek word (Greek: κῠνοκέφᾰλοι) "dog-head" also identified a sacred Egyptian baboon with the face of a dog.

They give no reference. Perhaps one is not needed, but how did "dog-head" become "baboon"? Looking in Horapollo, I see that he has much to say about this baboon, which Boas says in his index is his translation for the Greek "cynocephalus" In I-14 HOorapollo talks about the cynocephalus as sacred to the moon and engaging in various behaviors indicative of their honor to that goddess. Then in I-15 he continues:
When they wish to signify the rising of the moon, they draw a baboon again, but in this way: standing with its hands raised to heaven and a crown on its head. This figure they mean to represent moonrise, for the baboon is represented, so to speak, as if praying to the goddess. For both share in light.
Boas in a footnote adds that the figure of a baboon in this position appears in the Bembine Tablet, and that Lorenzo Pignoria in in his 1608 book Mensae Isiacae Expositio translated that image, with Horapollo as his authority, as an Egyptian hieroglyph meaning "moonrise". Another image of a baboon he translates as "filial devotion". I found three images of this creature on the Bembine Tablet, one on the upper border, one in one of the scenes [note added next day: I have restored the row of figures at the top, which I had originally and then removed as irrelevant and confusing, but then Steve referred to the sphinx in it in his post following!], and one on the lower border:
Image
Image
Image

In the lower one, it may be that the artist wanted to indicate that the creature was naturally circumcised, as Horapollo relates in I.14.

Also, at https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... halusThere are several decent photos of the actual creature as it exists today in Kenya, Zambia, etc. in East Africa, A nice one is at https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... dited).jpg.

My conclusion is that the two dogs on the Moon card are not very profitably interpreted in terms of either Valeriano's text or the Bembine Tablet. The dogs are not Cynocephali. In relation to Egypt, de Gebelin's quote from Clement of Alexandria and what I cited from Diodorus Siculus works better. The Cynocephalus image in Valianero's book is useful mainly as an example of a 16th century heiroglyph,

As far as the example from Alciato that Steve posted in the post just before this one, his account is indeed an answer to a riddle, and as such weakens any case for the dogs' being added as part of an Egyptian interpretation specifically. We have several possible explanations for the dogs as part of an enigmatic image. Egyptianization is just one possibility. I can say ony that given Egyptian explanation for other features of the card, the dogs make sense in relation to its Isis aspect (the Moon, the drops that seem to come from the moon, the lake as the flood) and to its astronomical aspect, which de Gebelin pointed out, in both cases as helpful animals. It seems to me a richer interpretation.

Valeriano has a long section on the dog as a hieroglyph, mostly having nothing to do with Egypt. There are a couple of references to Egypt, but as far as I can tell they derive from Horapollo (priests and prophets). Perhaps someone with a better grasp of Latin than I (about all I can do is recognize cognates) can find something more: http://www.unz.org/Pub/ValerianoPierio-1556, starting p. 38.

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 28 Dec 2017, 13:13
by SteveM
mikeh wrote:
28 Dec 2017, 12:50
Looking in Horapollo, I see that he has much to say about this baboon, which Boas says in his index is his translation for the Greek "cynocephalus" In I-14 HOorapollo talks about the cynocephalus as sacred to the moon and engaging in various behaviors indicative of their honor to that goddess. Then in I-15 he continues:
When they wish to signify the rising of the moon, they draw a baboon again, but in this way: standing with its hands raised to heaven and a crown on its head. This figure they mean to represent moonrise, for the baboon is represented, so to speak, as if praying to the goddess. For both share in light.
Boas in a footnote adds that the figure of a baboon in this position appears in the Bembine Tablet, and that Lorenzo Pignoria in in his 1608 book Mensae Isiacae Expositio translated that image, with Horapollo as his authority, as an Egyptian hieroglyph meaning "moonrise". Another image of a baboon he translates as "filial devotion". I found three images of this creature on the Bembine Tablet, one on the upper border, one in one of the scenes, and one on the lower border:
There is possibly also a standing baboon on the Bembine? I cannot see it clearly enough to be sure (lettered K on the wiki entry picture)

Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians: Including Their ..., Volume 2 By John Gardner Wilkinson
https://books.google.com.tr/books?id=NV ... &q&f=false
Image
Image
Image
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Gallery of Antiquities Selected from the British Museum By Francis Arundale, Joseph Bonom
https://books.google.com.tr/books?id=BB ... &q&f=false
Image
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Source: The Met Museum


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Cynocephalus appears of course as the Ape of Thoth on Crowley/Harris magus card :

https://books.google.com.tr/books?id=ej ... &q&f=false

An especial appeal for Crowley, as he considered himself a reincarnation of Ankh-af-na-khonsu, a priest who lived in Thebes during the 25th and 26th dynasty--
Image
-------------------------------------------------------------------
SteveM wrote:
25 Dec 2017, 09:05
This 18th century Minchiate with Medici arms, has a sort of male looking sphinx looking in a mirror:
http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/c ... id=3058908

[The four of cups I think would usually show a monkey looking in a mirror? Perhaps this 'sphinx' is an ill-drawn baboon!]
mikeh wrote:
26 Dec 2017, 02:50
Nice. I think it's a sphinx: clearly a woman's head, not an animal's, and what appear to be breasts.
Well sphinx or baboon could have an 'egyptian' meaning - though I agree it is more sphinx like; however, it looks more like a male head to me, like the male sphinx in your clip of the Bembine in post above -- [edited to add - which I thought was on the Benbine tablet clip, but no longer is, did you edit the clip, or is my memory playing tricks on me!? Anyways, it is numbered 9, top row of the wiki entry reproduction]

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 28 Dec 2017, 17:14
by SteveM
Here is an example of the depiction of Aquarius in Islamic astrology - it is very different from western depictions in that is usually depicts someone drawing water from a well, or even just a well (or a bucket) - some show a man carrying two buckets however, coming somewhat closer to our two jugs version - in this version we see Aquarius drawing water from a well on the right, Saturn on the left (ruler of Aquarius, often depicted with an axe in Islamic astrology) - what might be more of interest / relevance however is the bird in the foliage above Saturn?
Image

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 28 Dec 2017, 17:16
by SteveM
Here is the Moon with Cancer from same manuscript [link below], I have no idea what the abstract creaturelike figures on either side are meant to be:
Image
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b8 ... checontact

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 28 Dec 2017, 20:13
by SteveM
mikeh wrote:
28 Dec 2017, 12:50
My conclusion is that the two dogs on the Moon card are not very profitably interpreted in terms of either Valeriano's text or the Bembine Tablet. The dogs are not Cynocephali. In relation to Egypt, de Gebelin's quote from Clement of Alexandria and what I cited from Diodorus Siculus works better.
Valeriano discusses the dog in relation to other things, in relation to the Dog star Sirius for example and its relation to Isis, the Nile and its flooding; also along with the Wolf (and/or the crocodile) in relation to 'two deaths' {Mortes Duae -- Sed qui veterum instituta eludunt, non alia de causa cultum apud Romanos ignem asserut, quam apud Aegyptios vel Canis, vel Crocodilus, vel Lupus enutriretur. }, and with Diogenese, under Mollitie {cinaedica petulantia, mollisque & enervis lascivia notatur, per vulgato illo Cyni Diogenis dicto, qui cum a petulcioribus quibusdam convio incessertur, quod canis esset, ac subinde fugitaret, quaerente eo cur fugerent, ne mordeas, respondentibus: bono estote, inquit, animo, canes non edunt betulas} and as you mentioned numerous others in a section on the dog (Book V, on the signification of the dog, p44 to 52 google version, 39 to 45 other link you gave) such as sacrarum professeur, propheta, custodia, dii lares, arbiter genivsve, vespillo, gratus animus, memoria, fides, amicitia, etc - but not in any way, from a quick perusal, that would particular suit the card --

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 29 Dec 2017, 02:02
by mikeh
SteveM wrote,
There is possibly also a standing baboon on the Bembine? I cannot see it clearly enough to be sure (lettered K on the wiki entry picture)
Yes, I see it. That must be the "moonrise" image that Boas cited. The goddess in front of him has a growing plant flanked by two feathers on her head. How it might relate to the Cynocephalus is not clear, probably not at all, although she might be a fertility goddess.
Image


SteveM wrote,
Well sphinx or baboon could have an 'egyptian' meaning - though I agree it is more sphinx like; however, it looks more like a male head to me, like the male sphinx in your clip of the Bembine in post above -- [edited to add - which I thought was on the Benbine tablet clip, but no longer is, did you edit the clip, or is my memory playing tricks on me!? Anyways, it is numbered 9, top row of the wiki entry reproduction]
I have restored the sphinx to the image of my previous post. Yes, after seeing how the three images were jammed together (as they appeared then, a defect of this "improved" version of the Forum), it seemed like the row with the sphinx was both confusing and irrelevant, so I removed it. It is back, with a comment that I hope will make it less confusing.

On the relationship between "Cynocephalus" and "baboon" my problem is, how did educated Europeans of the 15th-18th centuries, before Egyptology, know that the Cynocephalus was a baboon. as opposed to a dog or a dog-headed man, or some weird wild-man? The examples you gave all seem to be things known in the 19th century or later. The Bembine Tablet images look like dog-headed men with very hairy midrifs to me, perhaps one of those weird races or species that were thought to live in the uncivilized and unexplored parts of the world.

Your images from Arab manuscripts are very much to the point. It was Seznec (Survival of the Pagan Gods) who persuasively argued for the influence of such manuscripts on Western European astrological images and images of the gods of the ancients. I have not quite given up my Dendera hypothesis, but such manuscripts do seem a more credible explanation. If so, what needs to be determined is whether the images in these manuscripts would have been thought to derive from Egypt? As I've said, alchemy was thought to have derived from there, so why not this version of astrology, especially with its decans, corresponding to the 10 day weeks, 30 day months of the Egyptians?

The two designs on either side of the Cancer figure could easily be taken for fish, I think, perhaps doubling, with their crescent mouths, with the waxing and waning of the moon. What fish have to do with Cancer is not clear, except that fish live in the sea with the crab, and the tides are related to the moon. They could perhaps morph into crocodiles in Western eyes, if those eyes were looking for something Egyptian (not that crocodiles have anything to do with Cancer, but they do with Egypt and the Cary Sheet card).

SteveM wrote,
Valeriano discusses the dog in relation to other things, in relation to the Dog star Sirius for example and its relation to Isis, the Nile and its flooding; also along with the Wolf (and/or the crocodile) in relation to 'two deaths' {Mortes Duae -- Sed qui veterum instituta eludunt, non alia de causa cultum apud Romanos ignem asserut, quam apud Aegyptios vel Canis, vel Crocodilus, vel Lupus enutriretur. }, and with Diogenese, under Mollitie {cinaedica petulantia, mollisque & enervis lascivia notatur, per vulgato illo Cyni Diogenis dicto, qui cum a petulcioribus quibusdam convio incessertur, quod canis esset, ac subinde fugitaret, quaerente eo cur fugerent, ne mordeas, respondentibus: bono estote, inquit, animo, canes non edunt betulas}...
That looks interesting. Where is that in Valeriano specifically? Can you translate it into English? GoogleTranslate gives rather unclear results.

Added next day: I found the first quote, about the dog, the crocodile, and the wolf, on p. 581, https://books.google.com/books?id=LgNCA ... us&f=false. "Canis" wouldn't give it to me. Still don't know what it means, but probably not significant.

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 29 Dec 2017, 09:32
by SteveM
Detail of the figure on the four of cups (usually a monkey on this pattern), of a Minchiate deck, Florence, 18th century:
MinchiMediciSphinx.jpg
MinchiMediciSphinx.jpg (65.75 KiB) Viewed 2264 times

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 29 Dec 2017, 10:44
by mikeh
Yes, masculine. And it does seem to be the body of a lion, as opposed to that of a monkey. At least the hind paws are leonine, as opposed to a monkey's. The forepaws are a bit more uncertain. I wonder if it is meant to be somebody's portrait.

Here is the monkey version. Is it a Cynocephalus? If so, that, too, could be Egyptianate.
Image
Image
Is it a sphinx, or a monkey with a man's head? Well, there are the hind paws, but, the distinction is rather fine.

Also, I did find your first Latin quote, the one about the dog, the crocodile, and the wolf, "Mortes Duae -- Sed qui veterum instituta eludunt, non alia de causa cultum apud Romanos ignem asserut, quam apud Aegyptios vel Canis, vel Crocodilus, vel Lupus enutriretur", at https://books.google.com/books?id=LgNCA ... us&f=false. Probably not relevant, as you say, but still not sure what it means. I didn't think to look under the subjects you specified. The one about "mollities" is at https://books.google.com/books?id=LgNCA ... es&f=false, and surely isn't relevant, as you say.

Re: Egypt in the pre-Gebelin tarot

Posted: 31 Dec 2017, 06:49
by mikeh
At https://archive.org/stream/quintaessent ... 6/mode/1up is an alchemical illustration published in 1574, by Leonart Thurnheisser zum Thurn in his Quinta Essentia. It seems possibly related to the Popess card, because of her crown and key, rather like in the Catelin Geoffroy tarot of 1557, or the Anonymous Parisian of a little later, early 17th century, although the crown is not a papal tiara but rather that of the Holy Roman Empire.
Image

The knot on her right shoulder, tying a diagonal across her chest that sometimes leaves the breasts exposed, is one form that depictions of "the knot of Isis" took. (In the middle is a statue of Greco-Roman Egypt, and to the right a painting from Roman Africa, 100-400 c.e,, now at the Getty Villa.
Image

She sits on a chest marked "Thoh" and "Azot".
Image

Azot is the name of alchemical Mercury and comes from the Arabic term for that metal, al-zā'būq (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Azoth). In hermetic philosophy it acquired the meaning of quintessence, or spiritual essence. But what is "Thoh"? The likeliest possibility, it seems to me, is a misspelling of "Thoth", the Egyptian god of magic and the Greco-Egyptian equivalent of Hermes/Mercury. If so, the meaning of the figure sitting on the chest, with a padlock on her mouth, acquires the meaning of the guardian of secret wisdom, to which she holds the key. This is much the same as what the esotericists said of the Popess, starting with Levi.