Re: Bolognese sequence

#201
Ross wrote
Why Bologna or Florence? Because Marchione Burdochio's pack was of this last kind, slightly out of reach of the lowest kind of card player. The simplest solution is that since he is from Bologna, dealing in silks (chiefly taffetà in these records), the Bolognese speciality, then his other wares also came from Bologna, especially if they are novelties (no use trying to sell something Ferrara already had) - meaning carte da trionfi were a novelty. Non-luxury novelty from Bologna, suggests Bologna as the invention place.
Good argument, Ross, for Bolognese invention of the quasi-popular tarot. I didn't know about the rest of Burdochio's merchandise. Yes, silk was a Bolognese specialty, not a Ferrarese one. Perhaps your citation for this merchandise is back in the thread somewhere. I should read it, if it's accessible. It seems to count against Huck's proposal that Burdochio got his cards in Ferrara. That was a stumbling block for me.

Ross wrote
...Bologna's A pattern's relation to Florence's allows Florence also to be the invention place. In any case A, and in any case sub-luxurious, and not courtly.

The pattern of evidence suggests the game was invented very close to 1442, which makes the presence of a "popular" form of the game in Bologna already by then hard to explain by a Milanese or Ferrarese courtly invention scenario. It had to have gone out of the courts and adapted quickly - too quickly for the pattern.
Well, Picconino entered Bologna in May 1438, on behalf of Milan. He or an aide might have brought a Milanese deck, then or almost any time later, until the expulsion of his forces in June 1443. And there was the May 1441 wedding, which as market might have accelerated the production time, or as distribution point might have been another place to provide an enterprising Bolognese with the model. How much time does it take to produce a novelty item?

Ross wrote
Luxury versions stay faithful to the 22 subjects except for one instance, the Cary Yale. The augmented trumps appear less remarkable when we note that the court cards are augmented as well - this luxury variation's formula was "augmentation"..
As you know, there is evidence from Ferrara, too, that tarot did not have 22 trumps originally, as late as 1457, but rather 14, but this evidence is subjectd to interpretation.

"Augmentation." Are you saying that the Cary-Yale had 24 or 25 trumps, as Dummett once theorized? If so, what were the others, and what other examples or precedents do you have? I would think it more likely that the CY had 16 or 17 trumps (Fool, if any, unattached to any suit), based on the precedent of the Michelino. The Beinecke's associaton of trumps with suits was not invented by them, they tell me, nor was it unprecedented in Milan, since the same was true of the Michelino. And other decks, although perhaps not 5-suited ones, also had female knights at least. Hind shows French female knights in Vol. 1 of his Introduction to a History of the Woodcut. I am not sure when they were done, but they look fairly early to me.

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We agree, I think, that C probably was invented by the French. B is Venice--is it safe to say 16th century? Late 15th century? Is it also Ferrarese? For the Charles VI and BAR, we surmise that the order was somewhat like the numbers on the Charles VI cards, the Rosenwald, the Tarocchino, the Sicilian and Minchiate--i.e. type A. Minchiate, especially played in both Florence and Bologna, connects these citiesin tarot history, besides numerous cultural and political ties in the 15th century. So A is at least as old as Minchiate and the Rosenwald, again post-1490. We infer that the original order, more or less, in Bologna and Florence was the same, because of the strong traditions there. Thus the A, in comparison to B and C, is the "original" order, in the sense of being the one of the three we can project back the furthest. As For the CY, PMB, and d'Este, do we have any clue what the order was, or what generally the order "originally" was in Milan and Ferrara?

Your (and Huck's) contention that there had to be a Popess if there was a Pope, an Emperor, and an Empress, still seems to me dogmatic. Moreover, even if Bologna was the point of origin, or of quasi-popular dissemination in 1440-1442, it might have had three "papi" then, to be on the safe side (2 Emperors and a pope, if anyone asked, or vice versa), augmented to 4 after Constantinople.

Ross wrote
Why anyone would want a more complex scenario I can only guess. One reason seems to be that the later the 22 standard subjects emerge as a group, the more chance that Kabbalistic ideas might have influenced the structure.
There could have been Kabbalist influence at any point, at the time of origin or after (for the latter, to keep the number at 22, and in possible esoteric use of the cards, a la Pico). Assuming that Bolognese Jewish Kabbalists spoke Italian, in a university town such as Bologna, 1440 would be as favorable as 1460. A Jewish student of Kabbalist literature there might at any time have shared with an inquiring university student a brief outline of the sefiroth. There just wasn't yet a brash, young, rich man going into print then. For myself, I never took seriously the idea that Kabbalah might have influenced the tarot at its point of origin, until this thread and the Bologna University hypothesis. But without further evidence, other factors, such as the ones we have been discussing, are the only ones relevant as to how tarot developed in this pre-Pico period. As for why 22 at all, I am satisfied with Vitali's quote from Origen and the accidents of historical development.

Re: Bolognese sequence

#202
Unfortunately I'm using a different computer and the "edit" option doesn't show up! So I have to make my corrections to the previous post here. The first sentence of the paragraph reading "We agree, I think, that C probably was invented by the French" should read "The C order may have been invented by the French." Then another paragraph follows:

In my view, explained at viewtopic.php?f=11&t=365&start=20#p4687 the CY doesn't fit any of the A. B. or C orders. And the first "C" deck we have is the PMB with the 2nd artist's cards. The reason why Temperance was moved to after Death is that it, along with Star and Moon, commemorates the death of Elisabetta Sforza. I have defended this view at viewtopic.php?f=12&t=426#p5380. I don't expect anyone to agree with me, but I would like to know others' views.

Re: Bolognese sequence

#203
mikeh wrote: Good argument, Ross, for Bolognese invention of the quasi-popular tarot. I didn't know about the rest of Burdochio's merchandise. Yes, silk was a Bolognese specialty, not a Ferrarese one. Perhaps your citation for this merchandise is back in the thread somewhere. I should read it, if it's accessible. It seems to count against Huck's proposal that Burdochio got his cards in Ferrara. That was a stumbling block for me.
The references to Marchione that I gleaned from Franceschini are at trionfi.com (somewhere I can't find now), but Huck posted them on this thread, on page 3 -
viewtopic.php?f=12&t=334&start=20#p5146

I subsequently found one or two other notices of him later in Franceschini, which I'll try to dig up to complete the picture. Note that Franceschini's concern was for things connected to the artists involved with the court - Marchione is only mentioned in instances where he provides fabric for artists of the court. The card sale is not mentioned in Franceschini's big book because it has nothing to do with selling to court artists - he only published it in Ludica 2 (1996) in connection with other information he had found on cards in the Este archives in Modena.
Well, Picconino entered Bologna in May 1438, on behalf of Milan. He or an aide might have brought a Milanese deck, then or almost any time later, until the expulsion of his forces in June 1443. And there was the May 1441 wedding, which as market might have accelerated the production time, or as distribution point might have been another place to provide an enterprising Bolognese with the model. How much time does it take to produce a novelty item?
I don't really know how long it would take to produce a novelty - I assume a conceptual period for designing the game, then drawing/carving the cards and putting them out for purchase. I assume at least three months - admittedly a pure guess. Whatever it is, it is well within any margin of uncertainty we might propose - it could have been invented as late as mid-1441.

This is why I prefer the scenario of a quasi-popular game being adopted by the court than vice-versa. It is easier to imagine a wealthy patron with a house artist (like Leonello with Sagramoro) saying "make me a sumptuous version of these cards, with our city's and family's insignia on them", than it is to imagine a humble cardmaker seeing the wealthy game being played, somehow getting ahold of a pack, and redesigning it for a wider market.

For the first scenario, we have an actual example in the Este purchase from Burdochio. Considering the second point, if the game were restricted to the highest levels of society, and the cards very expensive, it is hard to see how a much more humble kind of game would be received by classes of society who knew nothing about it. In the noble setting, it was played in closed palaces and indoor or walled gardens, not places it could be seen by most of the population.
As you know, there is evidence from Ferrara, too, that tarot did not have 22 trumps originally, as late as 1457, but rather 14, but this evidence is subjectd to interpretation.
Yes, the 70 cards reference is the only serious evidence that Trionfi didn't have 78 cards - in my opinion. Hurst suggested a shortened deck (2 pips of each suit removed), I suggest a "scribal error", and adduce two other instances of exaggeration or underestimation - Berni says a tarocchi player has "200 cards" in his hand, and in 1908 Orioli, writing on the Bolognese card references, says that the Bolognese pack has "sixty cards" (in fact it has sixty-two). Thus, I imagine the accountant just wasn't very familiar with the game, but knew it had "70 something" cards.

Huck suggests it is real proof of the 5x14 theory. Given the attested existence of all of the standard subjects but the Devil by this time (allowing for both Bembo and Charles VI to be this early), and the spread of the game to all of northern Italy and Tuscany by this time, I find it implausible that it would evolve simultaneously in all of these places, into the same set of subjects, afterward, but with their own distinct, but related sequences, if they were not already the standard series of subjects when they were received in each region. So if the Ferrara reference is really referring to a 14 trump deck, it is a non-standard, and very strange deck.
"Augmentation." Are you saying that the Cary-Yale had 24 or 25 trumps, as Dummett once theorized? If so, what were the others, and what other examples or precedents do you have?
Yes - I believe it had the 22 usual subjects, plus the three Theological Virtues. By analogy with Piero della Francesca's Triumph of Battista Sforza, which shows the Theological Virtues on her Chariot, along with the CY's own addition of two female courts in every suit, I strongly suspect the deck was made for a female Visconti.

As for examples of other augmented decks, there aren't any - that is the point. The CY is the unique example of an augmented trionfi deck, before Germini.
I would think it more likely that the CY had 16 or 17 trumps (Fool, if any, unattached to any suit), based on the precedent of the Michelino.
I don't see any reason to think the Marziano-Michelino deck had any influence on the development of Trionfi, unless the trionfi were invented in the Visconti court, and then only conceptually - the idea of adding trumps to the pack. Marziano's game was made from scratch - even the suits were non-standard. On the contrary, the game of Trionfi uses the standard (then standard, it appears briefly) 56 card pack, and adds trumps to them. In the Marziano design, there are 16 "trumps", and they must outnumber the suit cards (I can't believe there were 16 cards in each suit - who could play cards with 12, 13, 14 and 15 birds crammed onto them?), so the proportion of trumps to suit cards was higher, like in standard tarot. If we assume even 10 suit cards, with a King (the only court card the text mentions), we get a proportion of 16:11, which is exactly the same as the proportions of 25:16 and 22:14, for CY and Standard Tarot respectively. This can be rounded for convenience to 3:2 - a proportion Dummett noted, offhandedly, in 1980 in his suggestion about the number of trumps in CY. Does this coincidence have any meaning, if it really exists at all, since we don't have full information on Michelino or Cary-Yale? I don't know, but I do find it seductive. The only suggestion I have is that the designers of each series wanted to make sure that each player got a fair share of trumps in each hand, justifying the effort to learn and play the novel game.
The Beinecke's associaton of trumps with suits was not invented by them, they tell me, nor was it unprecedented in Milan, since the same was true of the Michelino. And other decks, although perhaps not 5-suited ones, also had female knights at least. Hind shows French female knights in Vol. 1 of his Introduction to a History of the Woodcut. I am not sure when they were done, but they look fairly early to me.

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Interesting, thanks. Except for the apparent Knight of Swords, I don't see any other suit markers. Maybe they had not yet been stenciled in - but it is a very interesting set of Knights.
We agree, I think, that C probably was invented by the French. B is Venice--is it safe to say 16th century?
The Steele Sermon is the earliest evidence of B, most likely, and dates on that vary (earliest 1460, latest 1480, although our copy is actually from around 1500). Otherwise, it is the Bud/Met sheets, again very hazily dated, but generally c. 1500.
Late 15th century? Is it also Ferrarese?
Yes, this is the family associated with Ferrara - Tadfor Little gave B the more descriptive and informative name "Eastern", meaning Ferrara and anywhere north and east of there, including Venice. The most famous game associated with Venice is Trappola, whose courts show similarities - I believe Robert has noted them - with Viéville's courts. For that reason I'd like to compare the Bud/Met courts to the Trappola and Viéville courts, which might determine the likelihood of the B pattern having been the one that influenced France the most.
For the Charles VI and BAR, we surmise that the order was somewhat like the numbers on the Charles VI cards, the Rosenwald, the Tarocchino, the Sicilian and Minchiate--i.e. type A. Minchiate, especially played in both Florence and Bologna,
I don't know of Minchiate actually played in Bologna. What is your reference? I know they made Minchiate cards in the 18th century, but I think these were for export, just like they made other kinds of foreign cards for export, especially during that century.

I'm pretty sure there's no evidence of Minchiate actually played in Bologna - although the term "sminchiate", an instruction to play a high trump, exists in the Bolognese game (see Dummett and McLeod, History of Games Played with the Tarot Pack, p. 272).
connects these citiesin tarot history, besides numerous cultural and political ties in the 15th century. So A is at least as old as Minchiate and the Rosenwald, again post-1490.
Yes, it's as old as the Strambotto and the numbers on the Charles VI, although, to be fair, the designs of the Charles VI, Catania and Rothschild are typically A, so the order of the cards is most likely that as well.
We infer that the original order, more or less, in Bologna and Florence was the same, because of the strong traditions there. Thus the A, in comparison to B and C, is the "original" order, in the sense of being the one of the three we can project back the furthest. As For the CY, PMB, and d'Este, do we have any clue what the order was, or what generally the order "originally" was in Milan and Ferrara?
No direct evidence from the earliest time, but the few numbers visible on the Este cards (a "6" for Temperance, "16" for the Star, and "18" for the Sun) seem to show the B order, although it could also be A.

For the Visconti cards, no evidence at all - as far as I can tell, most commentators assume it was C, but there is no evidence of C in Milan until 1547, and the designs on the Visconti cards (in contrast to those for the A types) are nothing like the later cards identified with C, so there is no way to be sure what the order was.
Your (and Huck's) contention that there had to be a Popess if there was a Pope, an Emperor, and an Empress, still seems to me dogmatic. Moreover, even if Bologna was the point of origin, or of quasi-popular dissemination in 1440-1442, it might have had three "papi" then, to be on the safe side (2 Emperors and a pope, if anyone asked, or vice versa), augmented to 4 after Constantinople.
I'm not sure I understand your reasoning here. The dogmatic part is just that I assume an original standard of 21 trumps and a Fool, so four papi follows. I don't think two popes would have been any more dangerous in 1440 than during other times in the following three centuries, when the Bolognese used them just fine. Mitelli has no problem with them in 1665. It is only when Montieri's "Geographical Tarocchino" makes the rude point that Bologna has "mixed government", that the papal governor gets upset, in 1725. For its whole history before that, Church authorities, and the official government of Bologna, took no notice of the game.
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Re: Bolognese sequence

#204
robert wrote: here is the Apollo:

I'm not sure if I have anything decent of the spirit, I'll take a look.
--ETA
Here's the best I can do:
I seem to see a face in the "spirit", but no body - odd looking thing. I'm sure it has to be a conflation with the comet.

Very nice "Appollo". It makes me think, in terms of Tarot, that whoever is standing on the globe should be identified by what they are holding.

Orb and sceptre in Bologna and Florence (a winged-globe sceptre in the BAR), and in the Este cards, and crown and trumpet in Cary Yale (fairly certain to mean Glory). I like the interpretation of Florence, Este and Cary Yale as apotheosis, deification, also called a triumph. But I can't see BAR as meaning deification of the soul.
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Re: Bolognese sequence

#205
Hi Huck,
Huck wrote: In my opinion the "4 papi"-phenomenon developed from ideas to transfer chess-king and chess-queen (also card king and card-queen) to Trionfi-card-emperor and Trionfi-card-empress.
If that were the case I think they would have more power. It seems to me that Trionfi are a completely different kind of game of figures. The Chess-idea was explored in Johannes of Rheinfelden's moralization of cards already; maybe it was realized in the Hofämterspiel, but this is a regular deck. Moralization of cards existed, it was a precondition of Tarot's invention (like Marziano's) in my opinion, but it has nothing directly to do with Chess.
So we have 3 Trionfi card decks (Trionfi interpreted as "Trionfi-function") surviving with Chess relations (all rather different and it was the enjoyment of high standing persons to have different decks) ...

1441 Cary-Yale
made for 16-year-old Bianca Maria
1455 Hofämterspiel
made for 15-years old King Ladislaus
1463 Charles VI
made for 14-years old Lorenzo de Medici
Except for Hofämterspiel, whose story I don't know well, I disagree with the all of those dates and attributions.
... and beside that we've an assumed, not really existing "Trionfi-deck" - so a fiction, of the citizens of Bologna with their clear interest of "liberty" of ca. 1440 with 22 cards - , which is said to have caused all that, what followed ... but all these humble persons in reigning positions didn't dare to extend the number of trumps, this was "too risky" ... what shall one conclude about the reality of the Bologna-early-deck fiction?
I think whoever commissioned the Cary Yale "dared" to extend the number of trumps, but it seems no one else did. Instead, they adapted the standard figures to their taste, made artistic changes, but not number changes which would affect play in the end - not to mention destroying the narrative, if they understood it.

The game was outside the courts, at an affordable price to a professional or middle-class persons, by 1442. The notion that Sagramoro gave or sold decks to Burdochio just to have him resell them to the court is ... strange, to say the least. It was played in Florence in 1450, enough to earn a place in the list of permitted games - it was public - Marcello's first deck seems to have been of a common kind, not worthy of royalty, so much that he seeks "makers of these things" to get a better one; Trotti knows that game as a worthy one among card games.
High nobility had an interest to educate their children to the game, which was officially accepted as "educative worthwhile" and this game was chess. There we have the motif for Trionfi cards and the reason, why Trionfi cards were allowed and other card games not.
I don't think I disagree with you here in principle, but I don't see any reason for Chess motifs to have inspired Trionfi ones. "Educational" here should mean the virtue of civility, eutrapelia, which means that Trionfi was to be a game that did not allow pure chance to decide the outcome and encourage gambling and all the bad things that went with it.

This is why I liked the fiction of Antonio da Rho inventing it for Bianca Maria, since he could have known Marziano's game.
A number of 21 special cards would have associated the game with dice and there are 21 points on a die, which were variously attacked and forbidden strongly. It simply wasn't their interest at specific times, when card prohibition still was strong, to have this association.
I can't see any reason for any authority to have attacked a number. Bernardino attacked dice, and noted that a die has 21 points, like "the alphabet" (which turns out to be a trick, since it is no alphabet anybody used). He didn't attack the number - in fact he says God invented the alphabet of 21 letters, with which the Bible was written.
You're much too early with all your suspicions about mass productions here and there and variation A doing this and variation B doing that. And you've no evidence of mass-production for the early time.
Named cardmakers (printed even) in Florence and Bologna in the 1420s and 1430s, already a tax on cards in Bologna in 1405 (suggests enough to make a tax worthwhile), Venice has to protect its local industry against foreign cards in 1441 (foreign meaning non-Venetian), and printed cards already noted in Palermo in 1422, a card printing machine in Ferrara in 1436; there may be no printed cards left from this time, but there is plenty of evidence of printing.
And if we find a 22 version before or around this time, I would assume, that it would use different motifs.
That's an interesting assumption, with which I strongly disagree.
Thanks for the Strambotto information ... still there seems to be the (small) possibility, that it didn't happen before 1505 and so all these questions stay alive.
What "didn't happen"? The invention of the 22-card standard sequence? You mean, the invention of the name "taraux" and "tarocchi" is itself the invention of the 22? So you would date the Steele Sermon after 1505 as well?
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Re: Bolognese sequence

#206
Ross, here is a scenario for Milanese invention, one involving a popular deck following a luxury deck. In 1438, Filippo, mainly as an intellectual exercise, develops an early version of the CY, with the Michelino as his model and with 16-card suits and trumps (or whatever, it doesn't matter). Perhaps he is also using an idea he saw in a Ferrarese deck with 13 special cards. For the suit of coins, he uses the design of his new coin with the rearing horse (1437, per Tolfo). He has the Bembo workshop make it, Bonifacio's father's shop. He gives it as gifts: to his wife for their 10th anniversary, something for her to write home about and thus help keep the peace between Milan and Savoy. Or to Bianca Maria, as a 10th birthday present. One deck, Xmas 1439, is a gift to Niccolo Picconino, with a figure in the boat of the "World" card, as though enacting a recent episode in his career. Niccolo, perhaps after some joking by his men, shows the deck to Annibale Bentivoglio, who sees propaganda value in a printed deck, as 1440 Xmas gifts to his supporters, including the Visconti and the guests at the May 1441 wedding (unless the deck first comes from one of them!). Annibale has his father's old friends at the University improve it before printing, telling a story in which one meaning pertains to his father, and perhaps reducing it to 5x14 (or whatever). He gives a deck to Bianca Maria, passing through on her visit to Ferrara. The game snowballs. In 1450, when Francesco Sforza takes Milan, Marie returns to Savoy taking the original luxury deck(s) and the Michelino with her. Others are lost. Francesco and Bianca commission a re-creation of the 1438 deck, with certain updatings of the faces and the heraldic devices, but using the same style and clothing as the c. 1438 deck. The Bembo are experts at such re-creations (Evelyn Welch, Bembo entry, Encyclopedia of Art). The only thing that doesn't fit is the coins, which are in the naturalistic style of Sforza's 1450 coins rather than the stiff 1437 Viscontis. But no one in the 1450's notices, much less later. Then, if there aren't 22 by now, in c. 1455 there is the PMB, and in 1463 the Charles VI. A new printed deck comes ut of Bologna in c 1458 reflecting the additional images in those decks.

The advantage of this kind of scenario is that the quasi-popular deck doesn't just come out of next to nothing, as far as there is any trace, and when it does stimulate further luxury decks, the ground has already been prepared by previous decks.

The 6th Chess Tarot (and some others)

#208
From the 9 Goldschmidt cards 5 have a chequered (alternate black and white squares) ground. The ace of cups is very similar to the Visconti-Sforza Ace-of-cups (compare Kaplan p. 110).

From the 4 Guildhall cards one has a chequered ground (Kaplan, p.111).

From the 4 Victoria-Albert Tarocchi cards the card Death has a chequered ground (Kaplan, p. 104).

*********

Chequered ground Goldschmidt Falconer:

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Chequered ground Goldschmidt Sun:

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Goldschmidt ace of swords (?) without chequered ground

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Chequered ground Goldschmidt Ace of cups - with similarities to Visconti-Sforza productions ((a copy error is in the upper left):

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A bishop in the Goldschmidt cards ... the bishop is a chess figure (other recognizable figures between the 9 Goldschmidt cards are queens):

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The cards were presented by Hoffmann 1972, Die Welt der Spielkarten

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The chequered ground in the given context should be interpreted in the manner, that this deck also was involved in the chess interpretations with playing cards from the period 1441-1463, as recently demonstrated. As the deck fragments of Guildhall and Goldschmidt are too small to make structural analyzes with them, it cannot researched by its structure as other surviving decks as Cary-Yale Tarocchi, 14 Bembo cards, Hofämterspiel, Charles VI deck.

The hypothesis of a Bolognese origin draws its arguments only from facts, which are later than 1463 ... beside the documentary points (Marchione Burdochi etc.), which are also accepted informative part of the Chess Tarot hypothesis and not disturbing it.
A current public engagement to establish Bolognese Tarocchi history is a "nice engagement" and certainly a help to promote Tarocchi history in the modern time, but it's not a reason to change, what factual can be proven and what not.

Actually we cannot positively prove, that Caesar didn't play Trionfi cards with Cleopatra. We can only state, that there is no evidence of paper manufacturing in this early time. An older working hypothesis it was, that the normal cards descended from the (as complete assumed) Tarot deck. The hypothesis more or less died, as there was no evidence, instead there was evidence for other types of decks.

Generally we've to assume, that popular decks of the very early time of playing cards were usually self-made and probably hadn't much cards. The simple reason: the usual population hadn't much income and even paper wasn't cheap. "Self-made" probably means, that not all decks had court cards - you need some painting skill to work the figures.
Well, 78 cards are more expensive than 60. 60 more expansive than 48 ... etc ... The Bolognese hypothesis, that social lower classes in Bologna worked out a deck with 78 cards as the first and had considerable success with it, contradicts this simple algebra of the money.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

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