Re: Decker's new book

#21
Huck wrote,
I think, that the new found Manilius text influenced the court of Filippo Maria Visconti, which was full of astrologers.

A new "old" astrological concept found in a German library must have alarmed the astrologers. The new elected pope Martin, accompanied by Poggio (who found the text), visited, when back in Italy, first Visconti, though he didn't stay long. But surely there was time enough to learn about the text and to get some details.
An important part of Manilius' assignment of planets to signs is the pairing of gods in opposite parts of the zodiacal year. So Jupiter in Leo gets paired with Juno in Aquarius, for example. The awkward ones are Minerva (Aries) with Vulcan (Libra) and Mercury (Cancer) with Vesta (Cap.)--I don't see the relationship between the gods. The others are Venus (Taurus) with Mars (Scorpio), Apollo (Gemini) with Diana (Sag.), and Ceres (Virgo) with Neptune (Pisces).

In Martiano's schema (http://trionfi.com/0/es/p/table-14-1.jpg), there are a couple of these pairs (Mercury/Vesta and Apollo/Diana in "good" suits, but also places where he could have made pairs but didn't (e.g. he could have made Mars/Venus and Ceres/Neptune in the "bad" suits). That would have been more elegant.

It seems to me that Manilius's list of the Olympian gods was not new. It is the same as Apuleius's list in "On the god of Socrates" (Apuleius Rhetorical Works p. 196), a Latin work available throughout the Middle Ages. Apuleius shows here "his archaizing taste", the translator says in a footnote. The translator cites Apuleius's source as Ennius, Annales 240-1, from c. 200 b.c.; it may have been available in the Middle Ages, I don't know.

I am researching the story of Manilius's reception in the Renaissance after Poggio's discovery. I don't find any general survey in English. One essay in English refers us to W. Huebner, 1980, "Die Rezeption des astrologischen Lehrgedichts des Manilius in der italienischen Renaissance", in R. Schmitz and F. Krafft (eds.), Humanismus und Naturwissenschaften, Boppard: Boldt, 39-67. I leave that to you, Huck.

Two essays in English talk about two humanists who wrote works inspired by him, Caroline Stark's "Reception of Manilius' Anthropology" and Stephan Heilen's "Lorenzo Bonincontri on Comets", both in Forgotten Stars: Rediscovering Manilius' Astronomica, ed. Green and Volk, 2010. The first of the two humanists was Lorenzo Bonincontri, who lectured on Manilius in Florence starting in 1475 and "enjoyed a lively intellectual exchange with Marsilio Ficino, Luigi Pulci, and other humanists" (Heilen, pp. 278-9). Apparently there is an article 'Luigi Pulci e Lorenzo Bonincontri,' by R. Bessi, Rinescimento 14: 289-295.The lectures reportedly attracted an audience from all over Italy. He published his lecture notes plus his recension of the Manilian text in 1484.He wrote two earlier hexametrical poems, "for which he drew inspiration from Lucretiius, Virgil, and Manilius", both called De rebus naturalibus et divinis. Before Florence he was in Naples, Bonincontri's commentary (the lecture notes) was the standard text on Manilius for centuries.

The other Manilius-influenced writer is a friend of Bonincontri's in Naples, Giovanni Pontano author of several astrological works, of which his Urania of 1476-80 is closely modeled on Manilius (Stark p. 272). From Stark's discussion, what was interesting about Manilius for humanists was that he celebrates man's "active role in shaping his own destiny" (p. 272).

It seems to me that Manilius may have influenced Minchiate, in particular why Libra is the first zodiac sign there and Gemini the last. But that deserves a separate post.

So far, I see no mention of Milan. But then these two authors are just focusing on the two authors out of Naples. They don't even mention the Schifanoia (and I thank you for the suggestion to Google "Schifanoia Manilius", which I should have thought of myself).

Huck wrote,
When in Manilius teachings the zodiac year starts? Is that also with Aries, or is it another month. The Palazzo Schifanoia pictures seem to have started with Aries. But was this also with Manilius?
It appears to start March 1, in Pisces. Manilius writes (2.192-196),
And the two Fishes that the Ram sends before himself denote two seasons: one concludes winter, the other introduces spring. When the returning Sun (e) courses through the watery stars (a), then winter's rains mingle with the showers of spring; each sort of moisture belongs in the double-sign that swims.
Footnotes:
e (on p. 97): The Sun's annual orbit beginning in Aries.
a (on p. 98): Pisces.
I think Goold (the translator) is wrong in footnote e p. 97, because Manilius clearly says that the returning Sun--i.e. the Sun beginning the new year--is an event in the "watery stars" i.e. Pisces. Also, the sentence before that says that one fish is in winter and the other in spring. Manilius does the same with the Gemini: one of the pair is in spring and the other in summer. But Goold says
265-269: The argument developed by the poet presupposes that the turning point of the seasons occurs in the first degree of the tropic signs (See Introduction p. lxxxi). Notice that the term is applied to Aries and Libra (equinoctial signs) as well as Cancer and Capricorn, the signs properly tropic.
However Manilius clearly states that the seasons change in the signs preceding the tropic signs. It would seem to be after the first degree of those signs, i.e. after the first decan. So summer starts June 1, and autumn Sept. 1.

In his introduction, discussing another place where Manilius discusses the seasons (2.265-269, Goold says something different:
The four seasons are each allotted three signs. Spring gets Pisces, Aries, and Taurus; summer Gemini, Cancer, and Leo; autumn Virgo, Libra, and Scorpio; and winter Sagitarrius, Capricorn, and Aquarius. What Manilius has said at 2. 176-196 confirms this division, although other astrologers begin the seasons with the tropic signs.
This seems to me wrong, too. What Manilius actually says is (2.265-269):
The signs also enjoy power in their special seasons: summer comes with the Twins, autumn with the Virgin; winter begins with the Archer, spring with the Fishes. The four divisions of the year are each allotted three signs; winter's are at war with summer's, the vernal with those of autumn.
In other words, the seasons change in those three signs; it is not that the whole sign of Gemini is in summer, for example.

I can provide scans of the relevant pages if desired, except for lxxxi in Goold's introduction; I didn't notice the reference when I was at the library (one where I don't have borrowing privileges).

Huck wrote
You didn't report the Manilius connection between Greek/Roman gods and months. Can it be, that Decker didn't talk about it?
Not a word.

Huck wrote
For the Greek time Hades had been in "earth", not in air between earth an moon
Sorry, I didn't mean in Greek mythology. I meant, in the allegory that Plutarch tells in On the Face in the Orb of the Moon, which I hypothesize influences these cards by the last third of the 15th century. That essay has its Latin counterpart in Apuleius's essay on daemons, although he doesn't mention Hades specifically, just evil daemons, the souls of deceased evil persons, as being in the air between earth and moon (as well as some souls of good persons; Apuleius Rhetorical Works pp. 204-207). The Latin Aesclepius, which was included the works of Apuleius, who was thought to be the translator, says that the chief daemon sends the souls of those dirtied with vice "to the storms and whirlpools of air, fire and water in their ceaseless clashing - its endless punishment to be swept back and forth between heaven and earth in the streams of matter" (Hermetica, trans. Copenhaver). Later it speaks of air specifically as the place of spirits (p. 88). In Ch. 7 Decker refers often to this work, perhaps correctly, as a source of the order of the trumps in this section of the sequence. These two works, On the demon of Socrates and the Aeclepius were part of any good library during the Middle Ages. Bound with the Metamorphoses, they were in the Visconti Library (Pellegrin p. 403, who notes that the copyist was the same as for the Song of the Virtues and Liberal Arts done for Bruzio Visconti; a sonnet by Bruzio is also in the codex, Vat. Lat. 2194).

Huck wrote
Thales had the idea, that earth swims on the water, likely a way to explain earthquakes. So the mythological "below" for water is "correct" (in the philosophical concept of the time).
But Manilius's time is different. He lives in the time of Middle Platonism, i.e. Philo, Apuleius, and Plutarch. Astrology in the Renaissance is based on astrology during the Roman period. In all the pictures of the Renaissance showing the four elements, it's earth, then water, then air, then fire. Actually, the four elements came in with Empedocles, endorsed by Aristotle.

Huck wrote
I don't know, when the specific suspicious iconography of the 4 cardinal virtues developed. I'm just sure, that it was "before Trionfi and Tarot cards". The Trionfi designers likely were blind for this earlier system, just followed the contemporary tradition, I would assume.
The 4 cardinal virtues are said to have developed in Platon's time, but I haven't researched that.
See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cardinal_virtues. The part "In Classical Antiquity" is accurate, except that Wikipedia says that one of Plato's four virtues was "prudence". All the translations of the Republic I know of (I own three) have Socrates' preferred term as "wisdom', I assume the Greek "sophia", which corresponds to the Latin "sapientia". He also calls it "prudence" (Greek phronesis, Latin prudentia) but only as part of the argument for "wisdom". The other three are courage, temperance, and justice, discussed in that order. Cicero is the one who seems to be the originator of the four cardinal virtues in the formulation adopted by Aquinas, as Wikipedia goes on to say.

The iconography of the cardinal virtues is seen at least by the 9th century. Katzenellenbogen (Allegories of the Virtues and Vices in Medieval Art, p. 33 writes that:
They occupy in the corners of a miniature of the Autun Sacrementary (844-5), in which the Abbot Raganaldus blesses the people from the altar [footnote: Autun, Bibliotheque Municipale, MS. 19, fol. 173v. Prudentia with cross-staff and book, Fortitude armed, Temperantia with jug and torch, Justitia with balance; all are represented full-length. Cf. Koehler [Die karolingischen Miniaturen I. Die Schule von Tours, Berlin 1930-33], pl. 68b and Text II, pp. 96ff.]
Predecessor-images for the tarot are in the Song of the Virtues and Liberal Arts of Bologna 1350s, which reverted to the Visconti in Milan. It has its own thread here, as you know. There were others, of course, including some in Florence and I think Pisa (notably by the Pisano family).

Re: Decker's new book

#22
Now I want to speculate on how Manilius might have influenced Minchiate, specifically Libra as the first sign of the zodiac and Gemini as the last.

On Libra, Manilius writes
But when autmnal Libra begins to rise, blessed is he who is born under the equal weight of hte Balance. As a judge he will hold the scales of life and death and wil put his yoke on the lands and impose his laws. Cities and kingdoms will tremble before him and will be ruled by the nod of one man's head, and after the earth the rule of the sky will await him."
Katharina Volk says (p. 153 of her Manilius and his Intellectual Background, 2009), surely correctly, that the monarch born at the rising of Libra is a clear reference to Augustus, who not only was born in Libra (Sept. 23) but had Libra as his ascendant. Manilius was writing during the time of Augustus. Capricorn was also an important predictor for Augustus, as the sun sign for the time of his conception. Both Capricorn and Libra are tropic signs for Manilius (the start of their respective seasons) and so especially auspicious.

To be sure, there are significant portents for all the sun signs in Manilius. But the importance of Augustus for Manilius and, indeed, for history, might carry special weight. As ascendant (rising) at birth, Libra is fitting for the beginning of a sequence of the zodiac signs.

For Gemini, I go to the essay by Caroline Stark, "Renaissance receptions of Manilius' Anthropology", in Fogotten stars, p. 263. Manilius says that humanity's knowledge of astrology is a gift of the gods, and in particular:
...You, God of Cyllene, are the first founder of this great and holy science, through you man has gained a deeper knowledge of the sky (Ast.1.30-31).
The "god of Cyllene" is Mercury. Under Mercury's influence,man can either negatively desire gold or positively desire knowledge, in particular the knowledge of the stars and so ascend to heaven (Stark pp. 270-271).

What is interesting is what Giovanni Pontano makes of this in his work Urania (1476-80). He imagines that two of the gods have been especially beneficial. One is Saturn (Stark p. 273):
Pontano narrates the story of his expulsion from heaven and refuge in Latium, where he introduces the art of agriculture to men (Urania 1, 705-726).
The other god is Mercury, who, "in conjunction with the moon, "brings about the arts of seafaring, medicine, war, and jurisprudence". Further (Stark p. 273-4; I put the most important part in bold):
Mercury, impressed by the skilful industry (sollers industria, Urania 2. 436) of mankind in the agricultural arts, decides to help man progress to the next stage of his development. Through the constellation Gemini, Mercury 'inspires' and instructs mankind: (traxit, accessit (Urania 2.443-4). Once the process towards the noble arts (bonae artes, Urania 2. 446) has begun, Mercury himself reveals the arts of astrology, rhetoric, and writing to man (Urania 2.451-4, 485-6). Man's achievement not only reaffirms his divine origin but also wins heaven's approval and aid Urania 2.457-61).
So Gemini is the portal by which Mercury communicates to humanity. Since this is the highest calling of humanity, it must be the one closest to heaven, the abode of the gods.

To be sure, Manilius's system Mercury is not the guardian of Gemini. Pontano is not taking up that part of Manilius's system. He just likes the role of Mercury and uses the traditional association of Mercury with Gemini for his purpose. In Manilius himself, however, Gemini is said to produce poets and astronomers, i.e. astrologers (4.152-61). One of the Twins is identified with Apollo, patron of poets, and the other with Mercury, patron of astrologers (Volk p. 208 n. 61). It is perhaps significant that Pontano writes his astrological treatise as a poem in hexameters.

It is possible that the idea of Gemini as the zodiac sign closest to heaven, and the portal for astrology, influenced the placement of the Gemini on the Tarot sun sign as well, starting some time in the 16th century. Gemini is first seen on the "Sforza Castle" Tarot card (although as a man and a woman). However that the Schoen horoscope of 1515 has two children, with arms around each other, suggests to me that Schoen was drawing on a Tarot Sun card with Gemini even then. Moreover, in Manilius's system (as opposed to Pontano's or the traditional one), the guardian of Gemini is Apollo. Against this idea, I would observe that the sign of Libra is not in this section of the tarot.

There are other possibilities. It is possible that the Gemini on the Tarot Sun card, the last before the Judgment, influenced, along with Manilius, the placement of Gemini as the last zodiacal sign of the Minchiate, but that the placement of Gemini on the Sun card has another explanation. It is possible that Dante's entering and leaving the Sphere of the Fixed Stars through Gemini, his alleged birth sign, in the Paradiso played a role in the placement of Gemini in both the Tarot and Minchiate. And I know of at least one other possible reason for Gemini on the tarot card, which I will explain in a post on the "Sun" thread.

I have no explanation for the order of zodiacal signs between Libra and Gemini, which appears to me at this point quite random.

Added later: my post on the "Sun" thread about why Gemini is on the Sun card, is at viewtopic.php?f=23&t=402&p=14273#p14273.

Re: Decker's new book

#23
An important part of Manilius' assignment of planets to signs is the pairing of gods in opposite parts of the zodiacal year. So Jupiter in Leo gets paired with Juno in Aquarius, for example. The awkward ones are Minerva (Aries) with Vulcan (Libra) and Mercury (Cancer) with Vesta (Cap.)--I don't see the relationship between the gods. The others are Venus (Taurus) with Mars (Scorpio), Apollo (Gemini) with Diana (Sag.), and Ceres (Virgo) with Neptune (Pisces).
Hephaistos (Vulcanus) and Athene (Minerva) were the pair gods of Athen. Hephaistos tried to rape Athena, but Athena could avoid it ...
According to the Bibliotheca, Athena visited the smith-god Hephaestus to request some weapons, but Hephaestus was so overcome by desire that he tried to seduce her in his workshop. Determined to maintain her virginity, Athena fled, pursued by Hephaestus. Despite Hephaestus' lameness, he caught Athena and tried to rape her, but she fought him off. During the struggle, his semen fell on her thigh, and Athena, in disgust, wiped it away with a scrap of wool (ἔριον, erion) and flung it to the earth (χθών, chthôn). As she fled, Erichthonius was born from the semen that fell to the earth. Athena, wishing to raise the child in secret, placed him in a small box.

Athena gave the box to the three daughters of Cecrops, the king of Athens (Herse, Pandrosus and Aglaurus), and warned them never to open it. Overcome with curiosity, Aglaurus and Herse opened the box, which contained the infant and future-king, Erichthonius ("troubles born from the earth"). (Sources are unclear whether only one sister or all three participated.) The sisters were terrified by what they saw in the box: either a snake coiled around an infant, or an infant that was half-man and half-serpent. They went insane and threw themselves off the Acropolis.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erichthonius_of_Athens

That's the pairing between Athena and Hephaistos. Actually one should consider this in context of the pairing of Mars and Venus ...

Hephaistos is the husband of Aphrodite (beside Erichthonius he has no children)
Ares is her lover. He has 2 sons (wild sons) and 1 daughter (Harmonia)from her.
Aphrodite, born with help of a genital, is the model of the female lover (with around 10 male lovers) and mother and married woman with lovers (note "genital").
Athena, jumping out of the head of Zeus, is the model of the everlasting virgin (note "head").
Ares is the only legitimate son of Zeus (from Hera). Legitimate from this pair are also only Hebe and Eileithiya.
Hephaistos was born by Hera without male partner.

So the whole group of 4 elements is designed in "sensitive contrasts"

Athena and Hephaistos stood for Athen, Ares and Aphrodite (through daughter Harmonia, who married Kadmos) stood for Theben. Theben was destroyed. Then Ares and Aphrodite fought for Troja (starting with Aphrodite helping Paris). Troja was destroyed. Aphrodite's son Aeneas fled to Italy. Ares caused twins (Romulus and Remus) there. These founded Rome and Rome conquered also Athen (that's history).

For Manilius, he has ...

Minerva ... Aries
Venus ... Taurus
Vulcanus ... Libra
Mars ... Scorpio

Venus reigns Taurus and Mars reigns in Scorpio is the only Planet - Zodiac-sign arrangement in the Manilius system, which survived in modern astrology. Nowadays we have ...

Mars ... Aries
Venus ... Taurus
...
Venus ... Libra
Mars ... Scorpio
...

Somehow Athena and Hephaistos are (now in modern astrology) transformed to special aspects of Mars and Venus.

***********

The pairing of Vesta (Capricorn) with Mercury (Cancer) is based on this ...

Zeus - Hera .... a married pair, Hera has no other lovers
Poseidon - Demeter ... a pair by rape (result: Arion and Despoina), Demeter has also other lovers
Hades - Hestia (= Vesta) ... a pair by the condition, that both didn't get children

Hestia stood for the "begin" (in the festivities the first honored god was always Hestia; this seems rather natural, cause Hestia had been responsible for the hearth, and till today it's rather common to praise the cook, when the menu opens).
Hades (= death) naturally stood for the "end".

Hades is naturally NOT part of the Olymp and the Olympian 12, cause there at the Olymp live the immortals and Hades has nothing to do there.
In the myth of Hermes it's specifically remarked, that he would be now (with his entry in the known world of the gods) the 12th Olympian god, naturally the youngest of them. So Hermes somehow made the "12 Olympian gods" then. He "replaces" Hades and he is somehow his representation, which is relative clear with the function of Hermes Psychopompos ("psychopompos, conveyor or conductor of souls and psychogogue, conductor or leader of souls in (or through) the underworld", from wiki).

As Hades had been the logical pair god to Hestia, now the Olympian 12 "with Hermes" had to give the empty place of Hades to the new god. So we have Hermes as partner of Hestia, as we find it in the Manilius papers with Mercury for Cancer and Vesta as Capricorn.
Hestia as "begin" stands logical in Capricorn as "rebirth of the sun" (winter solstice). The old sun is dead as an old man (usually in Scorpio, as in the Mithras cult), the new sun is born (as for instance in Christianity). Mercury in Cancer stands for the "begin of the end" (cause the days become shorter then), so he guides as Psychopompos to the "next death of the sun"), though himself rather young.
In Martiano's schema (http://trionfi.com/0/es/p/table-14-1.jpg), there are a couple of these pairs (Mercury/Vesta and Apollo/Diana in "good" suits, but also places where he could have made pairs but didn't (e.g. he could have made Mars/Venus and Ceres/Neptune in the "bad" suits). That would have been more elegant.

It seems to me that Manilius's list of the Olympian gods was not new. It is the same as Apuleius's list in "On the god of Socrates" (Apuleius Rhetorical Works p. 196), a Latin work available throughout the Middle Ages. Apuleius shows here "his archaizing taste", the translator says in a footnote. The translator cites Apuleius's source as Ennius, Annales 240-1, from c. 200 b.c.; it may have been available in the Middle Ages, I don't know.
About Ennius I read, that he "have considered himself a reincarnation of Homer" and that 600 lines of his poem "annales" survived. Maybe these ...
http://www.thelatinlibrary.com/enn.html
... but I don't know, where ...

Apuleius himself is "too young", after Manilius.

Nonetheless I think myself, that Manilius (or some other person before him) analyzed in intelligent manner the 12-gods-astrological-model from much older stuff of Greek mythology ... the new factor hadn't been the mythology, which was old, but the astrology, which for the Greek/Roman space had been in comparison relative new (entering somehow during 2nd century BC).
I think, that the original Greek major model of mythology (which knows many variants and contradictions) had been much more complex than just this list of Manilius. The essential quality of the list is, that it doesn't contradict the "major model", quite in contrast to others, who seem to have forgotten the old model.
I am researching the story of Manilius's reception in the Renaissance after Poggio's discovery. I don't find any general survey in English. One essay in English refers us to W. Huebner, 1980, "Die Rezeption des astrologischen Lehrgedichts des Manilius in der italienischen Renaissance", in R. Schmitz and F. Krafft (eds.), Humanismus und Naturwissenschaften, Boppard: Boldt, 39-67. I leave that to you, Huck.

Two essays in English talk about two humanists who wrote works inspired by him, Caroline Stark's "Reception of Manilius' Anthropology" and Stephan Heilen's "Lorenzo Bonincontri on Comets", both in Forgotten Stars: Rediscovering Manilius' Astronomica, ed. Green and Volk, 2010. The first of the two humanists was Lorenzo Bonincontri, who lectured on Manilius in Florence starting in 1475 and "enjoyed a lively intellectual exchange with Marsilio Ficino, Luigi Pulci, and other humanists" (Heilen, pp. 278-9). Apparently there is an article 'Luigi Pulci e Lorenzo Bonincontri,' by R. Bessi, Rinescimento 14: 289-295.The lectures reportedly attracted an audience from all over Italy. He published his lecture notes plus his recension of the Manilian text in 1484.He wrote two earlier hexametrical poems, "for which he drew inspiration from Lucretiius, Virgil, and Manilius", both called De rebus naturalibus et divinis. Before Florence he was in Naples, Bonincontri's commentary (the lecture notes) was the standard text on Manilius for centuries.

The other Manilius-influenced writer is a friend of Bonincontri's in Naples, Giovanni Pontano author of several astrological works, of which his Urania of 1476-80 is closely modeled on Manilius (Stark p. 272). From Stark's discussion, what was interesting about Manilius for humanists was that he celebrates man's "active role in shaping his own destiny" (p. 272).
Thanks ... there are a few names, which I didn't pay attention to till now.
It seems to me that Manilius may have influenced Minchiate, in particular why Libra is the first zodiac sign there and Gemini the last. But that deserves a separate post.
.... .-) ... well, a dangerous theme. Here and there I made some observations to this point, scattered "somewhere" here in the forum.
So far, I see no mention of Milan. But then these two authors are just focusing on the two authors out of Naples. They don't even mention the Schifanoia (and I thank you for the suggestion to Google "Schifanoia Manilius", which I should have thought of myself).
Well, indeed it seems, that even long texts were written about Palazzo Schifanoia, which don't know the word "Manilius". Maybe a blind spot for many.
Huck wrote,
When in Manilius teachings the zodiac year starts? Is that also with Aries, or is it another month. The Palazzo Schifanoia pictures seem to have started with Aries. But was this also with Manilius?
It appears to start March 1, in Pisces. Manilius writes (2.192-196),
And the two Fishes that the Ram sends before himself denote two seasons: one concludes winter, the other introduces spring. When the returning Sun (e) courses through the watery stars (a), then winter's rains mingle with the showers of spring; each sort of moisture belongs in the double-sign that swims.
Footnotes:
e (on p. 97): The Sun's annual orbit beginning in Aries.
a (on p. 98): Pisces.
I think Goold (the translator) is wrong in footnote e p. 97, because Manilius clearly says that the returning Sun--i.e. the Sun beginning the new year--is an event in the "watery stars" i.e. Pisces. Also, the sentence before that says that one fish is in winter and the other in spring. Manilius does the same with the Gemini: one of the pair is in spring and the other in summer. But Goold says
265-269: The argument developed by the poet presupposes that the turning point of the seasons occurs in the first degree of the tropic signs (See Introduction p. lxxxi). Notice that the term is applied to Aries and Libra (equinoctial signs) as well as Cancer and Capricorn, the signs properly tropic.
However Manilius clearly states that the seasons change in the signs preceding the tropic signs. It would seem to be after the first degree of those signs, i.e. after the first decan. So summer starts June 1, and autumn Sept. 1.

In his introduction, discussing another place where Manilius discusses the seasons (2.265-269, Goold says something different:
The four seasons are each allotted three signs. Spring gets Pisces, Aries, and Taurus; summer Gemini, Cancer, and Leo; autumn Virgo, Libra, and Scorpio; and winter Sagitarrius, Capricorn, and Aquarius. What Manilius has said at 2. 176-196 confirms this division, although other astrologers begin the seasons with the tropic signs.
This seems to me wrong, too. What Manilius actually says is (2.265-269):
The signs also enjoy power in their special seasons: summer comes with the Twins, autumn with the Virgin; winter begins with the Archer, spring with the Fishes. The four divisions of the year are each allotted three signs; winter's are at war with summer's, the vernal with those of autumn.
In other words, the seasons change in those three signs; it is not that the whole sign of Gemini is in summer, for example.
Sounds logical.
I can provide scans of the relevant pages if desired, except for lxxxi in Goold's introduction; I didn't notice the reference when I was at the library (one where I don't have borrowing privileges).

Huck wrote
You didn't report the Manilius connection between Greek/Roman gods and months. Can it be, that Decker didn't talk about it?
Not a word.
Maybe another blind spot.
Huck wrote
For the Greek time Hades had been in "earth", not in air between earth an moon
Sorry, I didn't mean in Greek mythology. I meant, in the allegory that Plutarch tells in On the Face in the Orb of the Moon, which I hypothesize influences these cards by the last third of the 15th century. That essay has its Latin counterpart in Apuleius's essay on daemons, although he doesn't mention Hades specifically, just evil daemons, the souls of deceased evil persons, as being in the air between earth and moon (as well as some souls of good persons; Apuleius Rhetorical Works pp. 204-207). The Latin Aesclepius, which was included the works of Apuleius, who was thought to be the translator, says that the chief daemon sends the souls of those dirtied with vice "to the storms and whirlpools of air, fire and water in their ceaseless clashing - its endless punishment to be swept back and forth between heaven and earth in the streams of matter" (Hermetica, trans. Copenhaver). Later it speaks of air specifically as the place of spirits (p. 88). In Ch. 7 Decker refers often to this work, perhaps correctly, as a source of the order of the trumps in this section of the sequence. These two works, On the demon of Socrates and the Aeclepius were part of any good library during the Middle Ages. Bound with the Metamorphoses, they were in the Visconti Library (Pellegrin p. 403, who notes that the copyist was the same as for the Song of the Virtues and Liberal Arts done for Bruzio Visconti; a sonnet by Bruzio is also in the codex, Vat. Lat. 2194).

Huck wrote
Thales had the idea, that earth swims on the water, likely a way to explain earthquakes. So the mythological "below" for water is "correct" (in the philosophical concept of the time).
But Manilius's time is different. He lives in the time of Middle Platonism, i.e. Philo, Apuleius, and Plutarch. Astrology in the Renaissance is based on astrology during the Roman period. In all the pictures of the Renaissance showing the four elements, it's earth, then water, then air, then fire. Actually, the four elements came in with Empedocles, endorsed by Aristotle.
Medieval astrology formed around 100 AD with Ptelomy, as far I'm informed (without knowing too much details about it). Manilius' text is about 80 years before and it has some clear relation to the "old mythological model" (a relation, which is missing later; then the "7 planets" dominate; but the this relation to the old model is just, what's interesting here). So he lives not in the world of Plutarch or others, contemporary to Plutarch or even later. The first century had been very dynamic and likely had changed much. Augustus had given a phase of stability for a longer period. In contrast the first century had been much wilder in its developments.
Huck wrote
I don't know, when the specific suspicious iconography of the 4 cardinal virtues developed. I'm just sure, that it was "before Trionfi and Tarot cards". The Trionfi designers likely were blind for this earlier system, just followed the contemporary tradition, I would assume.
The 4 cardinal virtues are said to have developed in Platon's time, but I haven't researched that.
See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cardinal_virtues. The part "In Classical Antiquity" is accurate, except that Wikipedia says that one of Plato's four virtues was "prudence". All the translations of the Republic I know of (I own three) have Socrates' preferred term as "wisdom', I assume the Greek "sophia", which corresponds to the Latin "sapientia". He also calls it "prudence" (Greek phronesis, Latin prudentia) but only as part of the argument for "wisdom". The other three are courage, temperance, and justice, discussed in that order. Cicero is the one who seems to be the originator of the four cardinal virtues in the formulation adopted by Aquinas, as Wikipedia goes on to say.

The iconography of the cardinal virtues is seen at least by the 9th century. Katzenellenbogen (Allegories of the Virtues and Vices in Medieval Art, p. 33 writes that:
They occupy in the corners of a miniature of the Autun Sacrementary (844-5), in which the Abbot Raganaldus blesses the people from the altar [footnote: Autun, Bibliotheque Municipale, MS. 19, fol. 173v. Prudentia with cross-staff and book, Fortitude armed, Temperantia with jug and torch, Justitia with balance; all are represented full-length. Cf. Koehler [Die karolingischen Miniaturen I. Die Schule von Tours, Berlin 1930-33], pl. 68b and Text II, pp. 96ff.]
Predecessor-images for the tarot are in the Song of the Virtues and Liberal Arts of Bologna 1350s, which reverted to the Visconti in Milan. It has its own thread here, as you know. There were others, of course, including some in Florence and I think Pisa (notably by the Pisano family).
It seems to be this (Autun library) ....

Image

http://www.public.asu.edu/~cschleif/gifts.html

Well, my observation demands a woman with lion (Fortitude), a woman with scales (Justice), a woman with two jars (Temperance) and a women indicating Prudence (with a viper commonly). This is given with the papal sarcophage in Bamberg, as shown before. This is not given with this picture.

I just quote German wiki for the cardinal virtues origin:
Die Gruppe von vier Haupttugenden ist erstmals bei dem griechischen Dichter Aischylos belegt, in seinem 467 v. Chr. entstandenen Stück Sieben gegen Theben (Vers 610). Er scheint sie als bekannt vorauszusetzen; daher wird vermutet, dass sie schon im griechischen Adel des 6. Jahrhunderts v. Chr. geläufig waren. Aischylos charakterisiert den Seher Amphiaraos als tugendhaften Menschen, indem er ihn als

verständig (sóphron),
gerecht (díkaios),
fromm (eusebés) und
tapfer (agathós) bezeichnet;


der Begriff agathós („gut“) ist hier, wie in vielen Inschriften, im Sinne von „tapfer“ (andreios) zu verstehen.

Platon übernahm in seinen Dialogen Politeia und Nomoi die Idee der Vierergruppe. Er behielt die Tapferkeit (bei ihm ανδρεία, andreia), die Gerechtigkeit (δικαιοσύνη, dikaiosýne) und die Besonnenheit (σωφροσύνη, sophrosýne) bei, ersetzte aber die Frömmigkeit (εὐσέβεια, eusébeia) durch Klugheit (φρόνησις, phrónesis) oder Weisheit (σοφία, sophía). Dadurch wurde die Frömmigkeit aus dem Tugendkatalog verdrängt. Noch Platons Zeitgenosse Xenophon, der wie Platon ein Schüler des Sokrates war, schrieb Sokrates einen Kanon von nur zwei Tugenden zu, nämlich Frömmigkeit (die die Beziehungen zwischen Menschen und Göttern bestimmt) und Gerechtigkeit (die für die Beziehungen der Menschen untereinander maßgeblich ist).

Platon ordnet jedem der drei von ihm angenommenen Seelenteile und jedem der drei Stände seines Idealstaats eine Tugend zu, nämlich dem obersten Seelenteil bzw. Stand die Weisheit, dem zweitrangigen die Tapferkeit und dem niedersten die Verständigkeit oder Fähigkeit des Maßhaltens. Die Gerechtigkeit ist allen drei zugewiesen, sie sorgt für das rechte Zusammenwirken der Teile des Ganzen.
http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kardinaltugend

Cicero is also mentioned in the article. The first use of the words "cardinal virtue" as a terminus is given to Ambrosius.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: Decker's new book

#24
Thanks for your explanations about Mercury-Hestia and Minerva-Vulcan. I didn't know that Mercury was the last added to the Olympians, removing Pluto. I knew that Dionysus removed Hestia (although not for Marziano!). I can see Mercury as being Pluto's representative in any case. Thanks also for the beautiful manuscript illustration. For me what is most valuable here is the depiction of Prudence, with attributes similar to those of the PMB Popess. The text is a psalm about prudence.

Huck wrote
Thanks ... there are a few names, which I didn't pay attention to till now.
One more: Heilin says (p. 279) that Bonincontri's two astrological poems "earned him the coveted title of poeta laureatus, conferred upon him by the Roman Academy of Pomponius Laetus in 1484 (Tournoy-Thoen 1972 [Bulletin de l'institut Historique Belge de Rome 42:211-35].)

Also, Heilen mentions a 1474 Bologna edition of Manilius (p. 287).

I see your points about Manilius drawing on an earlier Greek mythological context. Plausible.

When I identify Hades with air, I am not intending to do so in the context of Manilius. It is in the context of Plutarch and Apuleius, who seem to me more likely influences on the tarot of the time when astrological imagery has been added (which we see first in the Cary Sheet).

When I brought up Apuleius's list of planetary assignments to zodiac signs I did not mean to say the list was originated by Apuleius. I am well aware that Apuleius is later than Manilius. I brought it up just to say that the discovery of the list in Manilius didn't add anything not already known to astrologers.

I didn't know one interesting thing in the German wiki article on the cardinal virtues, that they were in Aeschylus but with piety instead of temperance. The article in English has the added information that Plato had five cardinal virtues in the Gorgias, including both piety and temperance.

I hope you will comment on my post regarding Libra and Gemini in Minchiate, Huck, since it is an area you have researched.

Re: Decker's new book

#25
mikeh wrote:Thanks for your explanations about Mercury-Hestia and Minerva-Vulcan. I didn't know that Mercury was the last added to the Olympians, removing Pluto. I knew that Dionysus removed Hestia (although not for Marziano!). I can see Mercury as being Pluto's representative in any case.
The wiki article about the "12 gods" is not bad. This detail ...
Hades, known in the Eleusinian tradition as Pluto, was not usually included among the Olympians because his realm was the underworld. Plato connected the Twelve Olympians with the twelve months, and implies that he considered Pluto one of the twelve in proposing that the final month be devoted to him and the spirits of the dead. In Phaedrus Plato aligns the Twelve with the Zodiac and would exclude Hestia from their rank. But Eudoxus of Cnidus was the first to relate gods and signs.
... contains also something about Plato and Phaedrus in the question, who was before Manilius uniting zodiac and gods. Do you know this passage in Phaedrus?

Once I read an article about months names in old Greece (in Pauly-Wissowa). There was a long list with month names, about 400 (for 12 and actually more objects, as time-lengths were also different), which were once in use "somewhere in Greece".
A good part of these many different names belonged directly to gods (f.i. Hekatombaion, Posideon. Artemiseon, Panemos, Hermaios), others were taken from located old festivities for gods, so indirectly related to specific gods.
For this reason one could take these different month names lists as something similar to Manilius' list, but naturally the research situation is with some right called "Kalenderwirrwarr" (calendar chaos), full of contradictions and incomplete information.
"Old Greece" consisted from more than one nation ... a researcher with the name Bischoff had sorted 6 major groups ("Nordgriechen und Aioler, Mittelgriechen, dor., ion., makedon, hellenist. Kalendar"), but it stayed a chaos.
I didn't know one interesting thing in the German wiki article on the cardinal virtues, that they were in Aeschylus but with piety instead of temperance. The article in English has the added information that Plato had five cardinal virtues in the Gorgias, including both piety and temperance.
Well, "piety" might be seen as the start of the theological virtues.
I hope you will comment on my post regarding Libra and Gemini in Minchiate, Huck, since it is an area you have researched.
Actually I think, that this theme is not part of "Decker's new book" .... and the Manilius stuff earns with some right an own thread, and the question of Minchiate also an own.

... :-) ... and for the moment I think, that I should put my energies into the Esch-Revolution, a theme, which seems to be ignored (or overlooked) by others.

But in short: I think, that the game name "Germini", which since recently first appeared in 1517 and 1519, indicates, that at this time "Gemini" had been the highest numbered trump (although one can't exclude, that this already had been before so). Assuming, that another Minchiate or Sminchiate form was older (name known from 1466, 1470/71, 1477, c. 1510) and that it possibly had been different (perhaps not with Gemini as No. 35), there's the idea, that a "game change" occurred some time before 1517, which stimulated the use of a "new name". There's the year 1512/1513, in which the Medici were restored to their power in Florence, and history has it, that they appeared as "twins" born from two other "twins" (Lorenzo and Giuliano Medici) with Giovanni, who became pope Leo, and the other later pope Clemens.
Inside this scenario the choice of Gemini as "highest numbered trump" appears to have had Medici reasons, not Manilius reasons. In the year 1513 appeared some real actions around the Medici, which had "Gemini content", signs, that some public attention recognized the both Medici as "Gemini".

Nonetheless one can't conclude with total security, that the older Minchiate form was NOT already rather similar to the later version, which we know, with Gemini as No. 35.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: Decker's new book

#26
Huck wrote,
The wiki article about the "12 gods" is not bad. This detail ...
Hades, known in the Eleusinian tradition as Pluto, was not usually included among the Olympians because his realm was the underworld. Plato connected the Twelve Olympians with the twelve months, and implies that he considered Pluto one of the twelve in proposing that the final month be devoted to him and the spirits of the dead. In Phaedrus Plato aligns the Twelve with the Zodiac and would exclude Hestia from their rank. But Eudoxus of Cnidus was the first to relate gods and signs.
... contains also something about Plato and Phaedrus in the question, who was before Manilius uniting zodiac and gods. Do you know this passage in Phaedrus?
I couldn't imagine what they were talking about, so I looked it up. Wikipedia's reference is to 246e-f. It is a passage I know well, but never would have guessed it said what Wiki says. Jowett's translation is accurate enough (http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/phaedrus.html; it doesn't have the page number, but I looked it up in what I have; I put in bold the relevant passage, which actually is 246f-247a):
The wing is the corporeal element which is most akin to the divine, and which by nature tends to soar aloft and carry that which gravitates downwards into the upper region, which is the habitation of the gods. The divine is beauty, wisdom, goodness, and the like; and by these the wing of the soul is nourished, and grows apace; but when fed upon evil and foulness and the opposite of good, wastes and falls away. Zeus, the mighty lord, holding the reins of a winged chariot, leads the way in heaven, ordering all and taking care of all; and there follows him the array of gods and demigods, marshalled in eleven bands; Hestia alone abides at home in the house of heaven; of the rest they who are reckoned among the princely twelve march in their appointed order. They see many blessed sights in the inner heaven, and there are many ways to and fro, along which the blessed gods are passing, every one doing his own work; he may follow who will and can, for jealousy has no place in the celestial choir. But when they go to banquet and festival, then they move up the steep to the top of the vault of heaven.
It's possible that the "eleven bands" refers to the 11 signs of the zodiac (before Libra was added). But from what he says, it's just the 11 Olympians and their retinues, traveling around, even though we can't see them. It's not like they go around in the sky every day like the zodiac signs, it's just for festivals that they go all the way up in the sky, like the zodiac does. And it would not seem that Hestia is excluded from the 12. It's just that only 11 go traveling in the heavens. I always assumed the chariots were above the fixed stars, but I see here a reference to the "inner heaven", so I guess the "winged chariots" do go down that far.

I can't find on the internet information on when Libra was added. I see a statement on one site that it was not part of the Babylonian zodiac, and on another that it was! It doesn't seem from the above that it was part of the zodiac in Plato's day. Actually, I have a scan somewhere of a picture (from a book) of an Orphic medallion, c. 200-300 b.c.e., that shows Scorpio's claws where Libra should be. For my purposes, I cut off the part with the zodiac, unfortunately. But you can see Scorpio's long claws on the lower right of one composite image I put up, at http://www.letarot.it/cgi-bin/pages/sag ... adnedi.JPG
and I have another I made with no claws but the date in the caption:
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_Lu-6PwakMv0/S ... Medall.jpg

The other part of the Wikipedia article, about gods being assigned to the months, and Pluto being given one, is correct, although Plato is quite clear that Pluto is not "heavenly', which would seem to imply that he is not an Olympian, despite being one of the twelve given a month (http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/laws.8.viiii.html).
Further, they shall not confuse the infernal deities and their rites with the Gods who are termed heavenly and their rites, but shall separate them, giving to Pluto his own in the twelfth month, which is sacred to him, according to the law.
So it's the usual Wikipedia sloppiness. At least they gave references. But when you check them out, it's not as clear as they make out.

Thanks for your comments on the Medici as Gemini. I'm not convinced that it is nothing more than that; but I have no idea what's right.

Re: Decker's new book

#27
mikeh wrote: I can't find on the internet information on when Libra was added.
The point with the star picture Libra is, that it has not much stars, only 4 in my "Taschenatlas der Sternbilder".

Scorpio has 9. Sagitarius 13, Capricornus 15, Aquarius 13, Pisces 17. Aries has also only 4, but the triangle with 3 other stars is close, so this in something between 4-7.Taurus has 16, Gemini 15. Cancer has only 5, Leo has 9, Virgo has 8.
It's not clear to me, if the stars earlier were already counted in the manner, as the "Taschenatlas der Sternbilder" offers it, likely there were floating results.
So it seems, that in older time the stars of Libra were seen as part of Scorpio, and so there were only 11. But this (as far I remember from older research) had been an old Babylonian factor, not a Greek.

Around Platon's time, we shouldn't have had much "astrology" in Greece, likely it gained some force, after Alexander took Persia and opened and intensified the East-West dialog.

The old Sumerian had a favor for the sexagesimal-system (based on 60). I (privately) wonder, if the 11 old zodiac star pictures corresponded in someway to the use of 13 months in moon calendars. "11+13 = 24", a number, which should have had some preference for persons which used the sexagesimal system. Naturally a moon calendar doesn't create a precise zodiac, which clearly descends from the solar interpretation.

Ranke-Graves had much influence on me with his Greek mythology work. He postulated (as a hypothesis) an Greek alphabet system with 18 elements, 13 consonants with 5 vocals connected to 13 stations of the moon.

Curiously I found in the "pope and the donkey" researches about a medieval German lot book 13 zodiac signs, followed by 5 birds (and the 5 birds were connected to the 5 planets, as my analyses found; "birds" are somehow a logical idea for "wandering stars", as planets seem to "fly" in contrast to other stars.
In the discussion of this topic it seemed, that "the birds" of Aristophanes (5th century BC, first show in 414 BC ?) might have a been mockery on astrological ideas.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: Decker's new book

#28
From what I recall Libra is an ancient sign (included by the Babylonians/sumerians) - it was dropped/incorporated as part of Scorpio but then re-introduced again.
Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different.
T. S. Eliot

Re: Decker's new book

#29
SteveM wrote:From what I recall Libra is an ancient sign (included by the Babylonians/sumerians) - it was dropped/incorporated as part of Scorpio but then re-introduced again.
Yes, so I've read, too. But my memory on these studies is a little bit outdated.

Well, we have two factors: One is a 13-months system used for the moon calendar. The second consists of 11 groups of stars, which build a cycle at heaven, later called zodiac. Both are somehow used in astonomical/astrological contexts for the Sumerian/Babylonian culture, which is attested to have had a preference for the sexagesimal-system, based on the number 60.

11 + 13 makes 24 (... = 2*12), and 60 = 5x12

One might assume, that they had a preference also for the 24. Perhaps one should also assume, that the both ideas (the system with 13 elements and the system with 11 elements) were not isolated from each other, but combined in another, possibly higher and more complex system.

This seems to be true, as the 13th zodiac sign (for the leap month, which was used all 2-3 years likely) was related to Corvus, the crow or raven, a star picture outside of the zodiac ring close to Virgo. The 13th month was included as the last (13th) month of the year around September time, so somehow close to Virgo/Libra.
And just the time of Libra, which "somehow" presented the missing star picture in 11-elements system, was the beginning month of the year.

*************

I requested the "kleine Pauly", which is a summary of the Pauly-Wissowa work. The Pauly-Wissowa, written by hundreds of related scholars, has about 80 books written in more than 80 years ....

Image

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pauly-Wissowa
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Realencycl ... ssenschaft

... the kleine Pauly has only 5, and this is a work for private people. I have one.

In the question the "kleine Pauly" states (my summary):
The Greek had a ready zodiac with 11 pictures in 6th century BC, which (possibly) stood in some context to Anaximander, probably to Kleostratos and 100 years later to Oinopides. The 12 signs zodiac with Libra was created (probably) during 3rd century BC. The name zodiakos had been Greek, and the zodiac composition has been also Greek, though followed in parts Eastern influences. The kleine Pauly was finished in 1975, more modern finding are naturally not included.

***************

Going back to the original problem .... in Platon's time the Greek likely had 11 zodiac signs.

Mikeh wrote:
I couldn't imagine what they were talking about, so I looked it up. Wikipedia's reference is to 246e-f. It is a passage I know well, but never would have guessed it said what Wiki says. Jowett's translation is accurate enough (http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/phaedrus.html; it doesn't have the page number, but I looked it up in what I have; I put in bold the relevant passage, which actually is 246f-247a):
The wing is the corporeal element which is most akin to the divine, and which by nature tends to soar aloft and carry that which gravitates downwards into the upper region, which is the habitation of the gods. The divine is beauty, wisdom, goodness, and the like; and by these the wing of the soul is nourished, and grows apace; but when fed upon evil and foulness and the opposite of good, wastes and falls away. Zeus, the mighty lord, holding the reins of a winged chariot, leads the way in heaven, ordering all and taking care of all; and there follows him the array of gods and demigods, marshalled in eleven bands; Hestia alone abides at home in the house of heaven; of the rest they who are reckoned among the princely twelve march in their appointed order. They see many blessed sights in the inner heaven, and there are many ways to and fro, along which the blessed gods are passing, every one doing his own work; he may follow who will and can, for jealousy has no place in the celestial choir. But when they go to banquet and festival, then they move up the steep to the top of the vault of heaven.
It's possible that the "eleven bands" refers to the 11 signs of the zodiac (before Libra was added). But from what he says, it's just the 11 Olympians and their retinues, traveling around, even though we can't see them. It's not like they go around in the sky every day like the zodiac signs, it's just for festivals that they go all the way up in the sky, like the zodiac does. And it would not seem that Hestia is excluded from the 12. It's just that only 11 go traveling in the heavens. I always assumed the chariots were above the fixed stars, but I see here a reference to the "inner heaven", so I guess the "winged chariots" do go down that far.

I can't find on the internet information on when Libra was added. I see a statement on one site that it was not part of the Babylonian zodiac, and on another that it was! It doesn't seem from the above that it was part of the zodiac in Plato's day. Actually, I have a scan somewhere of a picture (from a book) of an Orphic medallion, c. 200-300 b.c.e., that shows Scorpio's claws where Libra should be. For my purposes, I cut off the part with the zodiac, unfortunately. But you can see Scorpio's long claws on the lower right of one composite image I put up, at http://www.letarot.it/cgi-bin/pages/sag ... adnedi.JPG
and I have another I made with no claws but the date in the caption:
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_Lu-6PwakMv0/S ... Medall.jpg

The other part of the Wikipedia article, about gods being assigned to the months, and Pluto being given one, is correct, although Plato is quite clear that Pluto is not "heavenly', which would seem to imply that he is not an Olympian, despite being one of the twelve given a month (http://classics.mit.edu/Plato/laws.8.viiii.html).
Further, they shall not confuse the infernal deities and their rites with the Gods who are termed heavenly and their rites, but shall separate them, giving to Pluto his own in the twelfth month, which is sacred to him, according to the law.
So it's the usual Wikipedia sloppiness. At least they gave references. But when you check them out, it's not as clear as they make out.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

A note on Philo manuscripts

#30
At viewtopic.php?f=12&t=971&start=10#p14206 I raised the question of the availability of Philo of Alexandria at the time of the beginning tarot:
[quote]In listing the correspondences, Decker gives few references. He merely lists a few sources at the beginning. Most of these were in Latin and were indeed available before 1440 in Italy. However he does not always stick to that list, e.g. in the case of Philo of Alexandria; I don't know when he was available, nor does Decker say.
I have since pursued that question in the book The Politics of Philo Judaeus: Practice and Theory, 1938, by Erwin Goodenough, which has an extensive bibliography of the extant manuscript copies. Much to my surprise, I see one manuscript of the relevant material (i.e. including at least "On the Creation", abbreviated Opif.) clearly available in the later 1420s and 1430s, namely, that owned by Filelfo (p. 149, family "M", no. 100): http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-vaiDriEvqyA/U ... ugh148.JPG. Goodenough does not say when Filelfo acquired it, but surely it was from when he was in Greece, as afterwards he would not have been able to afford it; he was always complaining about his salary. He brought as many Greek manuscripts as he could with him when he returned in the 1420s. I notice also that there are no extant copies of this manuscript. He seems to have been rather protective of something that many would have loved to read. Only four other manuscripts are possible before 1440. On the same page as Filelfo's, p. 149, there is no. 101, now in Naples. On pp. 146-147 (http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-U-i6pVzEq4c/U ... ugh146.JPG) there are three. No. 80 is "XVth-XVIth century"; no. 83 is "XIV-XVth"; and no. 84, Bessarion's, is "XIVth". About the very complete copy that Bessarion willed to Venice, and which was used (I have read somewhere) for the first printed version by Aldus, it is difficult to say when he would have had it brought to Italy, but of course not before 1438.

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