Nicely put, Jim and Lorredan: for the PMB, the heavenly city (and perhaps also a dream for Milan?); for the Charles VI, a dream for Tuscany and Northern Italian smaller places in general. The background of the CY card could be seen in this light, too: a dream of Lombardy, stretching peacefully to the sea (and so taking over Genoa) as a network of towns, castles, and countryside. If only Wisdom prevailed here as it does in Heaven!
I have been reading about the virtues and vices with an eye to the material in this thread. What I am going to say here is mostly facts, of the sort that would fit in the "researcher's study" category.
First, I notice that my assignment of Despair to the Hanged Man is backed up by numerous examples discussed by O'Reilley (Studies on the Virtues and Vices in the Middle Ages
1972, pp. 142-149). On the one hand, it was an extreme example of Acedia (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acedia
for a definition of the sin, inaccurately translated as "sloth"):
Because it stemmed from self-loathing and therefore despair of the mercy of God, the death of Judas became a particularly well-known example of this branch of Acedia...This popular association of Judas' suicide with the sin of Despair is understandable...but there were a number of problems involved in using Judas as the image of such despair, particularly in art...
The main problem was the extreme gravity of Judas's sin in committing suicide, which was considered even worse than his betrayal of Christ (p. 244f). One solution was to show Judas's despair as the opposite of Hope. In Italy, OReilley observes (p. 147), this took the form, starting in the 14th century, of putting a little Judas at the bottom of a depiction of Hope. The CY Hope card is an example of this tradition, I would observe.
Second, Envy was for some writers particularly associated with Satan, according to Rosemond Tuve ("Notes on the Virtues and Vices, Part 2" (Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes
1964, p. 48) along with Superbia, Pride (p. 61); so the assignment of Giotto's Envy to the Devil card is supported.
Otherwise, I have been investigating when and where the depiction of the virtues was done in the way they are in the CY and PMB. I wanted to be sure that these depictions were not introduced too late to affect my projected earliest time of 1428. For example, Kaplan says (vol. 2 p. 168)
Wolff (1974) indicates that although the iconography of a woman and a lion had no precedent in fifteenth century Italian representations of Fortitude, the image was used in French illustrations of the time. Bembo, or the patron who specified the cards, may have known of the French tradition.
I assume it has to be an actual lion, as opposed to a representation of a lion on a shield, a in Giotto. To see how old this "French" tradition is, I turned to Adolf Katzenellenbogen, Allegories of the Virtues and Vices in the Middle Ages
, 1939. I see in the Meuse School, c. 1160-1170, we have a winged Fortitudo "vanquishing a lion" (p. 50); also first half of 12th century, Flemish, "Fortitudo tears open a lion's jaws" (p. 32). Then in Verona, the bronze door of S. Zeno, late 12th-early 13th century, fortitudo is "overcoming a lion" (p. 51); Bamberg Cathedral, c. 1237, fortitudo "conquering the lion" (p. 52); St. Marks, Venice, c. 1200, fortitudo "conquering the lion." Verona and Venice were not in France the last time I checked. I notice that Fortitudo and Prowess, i.e. Strength, appear to be interchangeable terms.
On the web, I see a Nicola Pisano sculpture of Hercules and the lion, Pisa c. 1260, also not in France (http://www.all-art.org/history194-5.html
, identified as Hercules at http://www.albany.edu/faculty/wer52/Images
O'Reilley adds details (p. 198):
Sometimes it [the lion] is trampled underfoot (e.g. the fourteenth century Beleville Breviary); frequently its jaws are wrenched open in Herculean fashion (e.g. the twelfth century Klosterneuburg altar piece or the fourteenth century Chantilly ms. of Bartolomeo di Bartoli);...
These authors do not describe Fortitudo as taming a lion. But at Chartres, according to a picture posted by Jean-Michel David (http://staffs.proboards.com/index.cgi?b ... hread=1678
), it looks like that's just what she's doing
In manuscripts, the first indication of Fortitude as taming that I find is 1450, O'Reilley's plate 10a, an illustration of the livre des quater vertus cardinauls
, showing her taming a small dragon kept in a small tower next to her. There is also a similar one of 1470, her plate 9, which she says is a copy of one from 1403. This is the "new iconography," which I can't see as influencing the CY.
Justice was associated with the balance very early, in "Carolingian times," Katzenellenbogen says (p. 55). Only one of numerous representations of Justice discussed by him has a sword, the relief on the tomb of Clement in Bamberg Cathedral, c. 1237 (p. 52). At St. Mark's, Venice, it's a strong-box and balance (p. 53). In one place it's a scroll and balance. At Chartres it's a scales (p. 80).
Temperance in the 9th century holds a torch and pours out a jug of water--"Ignem libidinosae voluptatis extinguit", so as to extinguish lust, I think that means. But (p. 55):
Temperantia's attributes were exchanged in the course of the eleventh century, for a cup and bottle. Mixing water with wine, the virtue reduces the over-potent drink to one of moderate strength (Figs. 33, 34).
Katzenellenbogen gives numerous examples, e. g. "Temperantia mixes the contents of two vessels" in Valenciennes, Biblitheque Munisipale, Ms. 512, fol. 4v; "Temperantia mixing wine and water", the Eilbertus Altar from the Guelph Treasure, c. 1150-60 (p. 45). (But I don't know how one tells if the bottom vessel has anything in it.) Sometimes she merely holds two vessels (p. 33, 45,46, 51, 52). The San Zeno door in Verona is one of those with two vessels. At Chartres she has a dove (p. 80).
On the web, Marco on ATF posted an image from Venice, http://www.tarotpedia.com/wiki/Image:Temperance01.jpg
), from the Embriachi workshop. That workshop existed from 1390 until at least c. 1431 (http://www.answers.com/topic/embriachi-1
). I notice that Duke Gian Galeazzo Visconti (d. 1402) collected Embriarchi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Certosa_di_Pavia
). Perhaps the PMB card, and so the CY before it, derives from that time, though intermediaries. According to M. J. Hurst at viewtopic.php?f=11&t=71&start=40#p1819
, all the Embriarchi virtues have wings (although I can only see two). I notice that elsewhere, in Katzenellenbogen: sometimes all, more often none. So one need not draw too many conclusions from the wings, I don't think--although over time, no doubt people did, associating her with some goddess or other.
Prudence, in the 9th century, is shown with a book, "the impressive symbol of the discernment between good and evil," says Katzenellenbogen (p. 55). In the 12th century, she has a book and snake at Cologne, and book with cross-staff at Autun (both p. 33). She has a dove on the Eilburtus Altar from the Guelph Treasure; in 1329 it's a snake and book (p. 46), also at Hildesheim Cathedral (p. 49); snake alone at Darmstadt (p. 50) and a different place in Cologne (p. 53); two snakes at St. Mark's, Venice. c. 1200 (p. 53). At Chartres she has a book (p. 80).
At Brussels c. 1160, Spes (Hope) has an olive-branch and a disc with a cross on it (p. 48). At Tongres, she has a branch and a disc with a cross on it. At St. Mark's in Venice she has a scroll and a sceptre of blossom (p. 53). At Chartres she is looking up to heaven (p. 80).
On the Ramaclus Altar, c. 1150, Fides (Faith) holds a baptismal font (referring to Ephesians 4:5, says Katzenellenbogen, p. 45). Also at Brussels, c. 1160 (p. 48). At Cluny, Fides is shown "kneeling to receive the host" (p. 53). At Chartres she is "catching the blood of a lamb in a chalice" (p. 80).
In the Ramaclus cycle, c. 1160, Caritas (Charity) offers bread and wine to the faithful (p. 45). At Brussels she has a loaf and vessel (p. 48). At Hildesheim c. 1200 she has "a cross and a sceptre of blossom" (p. 50). At St. Marks in Venice, she has a sceptre. At Cluny she "gives alms out of a strong-box." At Chartres she is "giving away her garment" (p. 80). At Lyons Cathedral, c. 1220, she is clothing the naked.
Sapientia (Wisdom) is the Sedes Sapientiae, the throne of wisdom, depicted as enthroned Mary (Brixen, mid-13th century (p. 42). In another place, she stands on an edifice of seven columns (p. 43). I take those to be the seven virtues. At Gurk Cathedral, c. 1260, Sedes Sapientia is again the enthroned Mary (p. 53). At Auxerres she has a book (p. 83).
Tuve (p. 59) adds that the Virgin as Sapientia, the highest rung on the ladder of Gifts, was at the same time the chief exemplification of Humility, the ladder's lowest rung.
But meanwhile the ladder of Gifts from Humility to Sapientia--also figured by the Virgin, Sedes Sapientiae--emphasized the Virgin's supreme exemplification of both, from earliest times.
I think that explains why illustrations of the Virgin of Humility look so much like the images of Christ as Sapientia.
On Hope, O'Reilley has some useful additions (pp. 178-180). In a relief at Amiens
this Theological virtue is stretching up to receive the crown poised above her head in the top right hand corner of the relief
(Fig. 53 in Male's Gothic Image
). She says the same representation was in Paris at Notre Dame. And in Italy four fourteenth century Italian mss. described by L. Dorez, the figure "Judas desperatus", shown with a hang-rope, is shown vanquished by Spes (p. 147). In one of them, Bartolomeo di Bartoli's Canzone
, she adds later, (p. 179):
...heavenly hands hold a crown and a scroll inscribed with the Corporal and Spiritual Beatitudes over the head of already crowned figure of Spes who sits enthroned over 'Judas desperatus' with his hang-rope...
She says that the crown is derived from the crown of life shown at the top of the "ladder of virtue" which the successful monk receives at the end of his climb (p. 176). On p. 147 O'Reilley also mentions the anchor, which is conspicous in the CY card:
In John Daye's Book of Christian Prayers, 1578, Patience with a cross stands on Wrath who stabs himself, while Hope with her traditional anchor, overcomes Judas who haned himself.
The only thing in the CY Hope card that hasn't been mentioned is the heavenly body shining its rays down, which it has instead of the crown.
The CY Faith seems related to the Cluny and Chartres images of that virtue. I notice that the Embriachi did some work for Cluny.
I have already mentioned that the motif of Caritas breast-feeding an infant seems to have been introduced in Florence in the 14th century by two pupils of Giovanni Pisano.
So I am reasonably content that the motifs shown on the CY existed before 1428, although the card might have added the innovation of the heavenly body on Hope. The object that I take to be a mirror held by the CY's Caritas is unprecedented and never happens again that I can find. I hypothesize that it was a mistake, confused with Prudence's mirror.
And one other thing: in most cases cited by Katzenellenbogen, if three of the cardinal virtues were present, so was the fourth. But there a few exceptions. In two of them, a different virtue substituted for Fortitudo: in one it was Pax (p. 48) and in the other it was Pietas (p. 49). In another (p. 32), Sapientia substituted for Prudentia and even had her attribute, the book. It seems to me that the illuminator considered Sapientia to be equivalent to Prudentia, as in Cicero. In another case (p. 50), Fides substitutes for Prudentia, And in the fourth case (p. 51), the bronze door of St. Zeno's in Verona, it's just the three, Justice, Fortitude, and Temperance. So there is some small precedent for the tarot's omission of Prudentia.