Re: The Chariot

#41
Hi everyone,

I'm new here, so please forgive me if I do something wrong, and let me know what I'm supposed to be doing...

I discovered this forum about ten days ago, and have since been eagerly reading vast reams of old posts. I've been fascinated by the early history of tarot since reading Michael Dummett's Game of Tarot more than 25 years ago, but haven't really paid much attention to it for the past two decades.

I was fascinated to learn from the older posts on this forum that the Chariot card represented Chastity. I'd always thought of it vaguely as just Triumph in general (which, in my defence, was probably how it was viewed by most people even in the fifteenth century, if the name "Lo Caro Triumphale" in the Sermones de Ludo Cum Aliis is any guide).

A few days ago, however, I read some new information, especially parts of a book by Gianni Guastella, Word of Mouth: Fame and its Personifications in Art and Literature from Ancient Rome to the Middle Ages (Oxford 2017), which made me think that most Chariot cards—even the earliest ones—should be interpreted not as Chastity, but as Fame.

I'll start by discussing the general iconography of the Petrarchan Triumph of Fame in the early 15th century, and then talk about how I think we should view the early development of the Chariot.

The only notable descriptive attribute of Fame in Petrarch's poem is her aspect of being like a "star" (un'amorosa stella) making the sky bright with light; this may be why she appears with a halo in at least one version? Otherwise Petrarch's poem isn't very helpful in depicting Fame; it's mainly just a procession of the great men of Rome, then heroes of Persia and Greece, then biblical figures, women of Antiquity, and philosophers.

The earliest representations of Fame in the Petrarchan illustrations feature wings on the female personification and/or wings on the trumpets that appear with her. Wings and trumpets remain important symbols of Fame throughout the 15th century and beyond (see, for example, Gustella p. 283).

Other elements used to depict Fame were taken from Boccaccio's description of Worldly Glory in his poem Amorosa Visione: her triumphal chariot drawn by horses (un carro ... grande e triunfal, [..] due cavalli .. traeano il carro) and the sword and golden globe held in her hands—sword in the right and the globe in the left (in man tenea una spada tagliente [..] nella man sinestra un pomo d'oro). The chariot and the sword, in particular, became very common in depictions of the Petrarchan Fame. (Guastella p. 286). The sword was viewed as a symbol of power and authority, and in some depictions the globe becomes an orb, likewise symbolizing rulership and authority.

Boccaccio's chariot was in turn inspired by ancient Roman triumphs and possibly by the procession of Beatrice in Dante's Purgatorio (see Dorothy C. Shorr, "Some Notes on the Iconography of Petrarch's Triumph of Fame", Art Bulletin 20:1, 1938).

In the Petrarchan illustrations in Italian works before about 1485, Fame is not usually depicted holding a trumpet, but rather is accompanied by others with trumpets. Her right hand is usually holding a sword, although Michael J. Hurst did find one image where her right hand is empty, and in the earlier illustrations for Petrarch's De Viris Illustribus, her right hand is distributing laurel wreaths (these images can all be found in Hurst's collection of Petrarchan Triumph illustrations). Her left hand most often holds the Boccaccian globe (Hurst's collection has two examples of this, from 1450 and "15th century") or the Cupido Gloriae, a small cupid figure usually colored red or white. Guastella (p. 289) argues persuasively that the latter is derived from a small figure of Victory being held in the hand of illustrious Romans in ancient Roman imagery, such as on coins. Some ultimately saw the sword and winged cupid as symbolizing "celebrity through arms and love" (e.g. https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/436516). Sometimes Fame holds a book in her left hand, and in rare cases a set of scales (Hurst's collection has several examples of that, all from after 1460). The scales indicate that the figure is being equated with Justice, which Guastella says was a misunderstanding; nevertheless, the sword in her other hand was always taken to represent judicial power (Guastella p. 286).

So, enough about Fame in general, let's look at the earliest Chariot cards.

The Cary-Yale Chariot card: This particular card can be identified with considerable certainty as representing Chastity, because of the shield she is holding and the Chariot's position in the standard sequence directly after the Love card (even though the standard sequence could not have entirely applied in the case of the CY). The pillars holding up her chariot's canopy could even perhaps be a subtle reference to the pillar mentioned in Petrarch's poem, which she is sometimes shown holding in illustrations of this Triumph. It is perhaps a little unusual for her to be on a triumphal chariot when the other Petrarchan Triumphs of Love, Death and Eternity are not, and the baton or wand is unusual too (usually she is shown holding a palm branch, an emblem of victory/triumph, salvation, and the zodiacal sign Virgo) but the standard iconography for the Petrarchan Triumphs had not yet become fully established at the time when the tarot deck is thought to have been invented (1430s or earlier). She is, at least, holding the wand in the same demure way that Chastity is often depicted holding her palm branch, with it leaning against her body.

The Pierpont-Morgan Bergamo Chariot card, on the other hand, has to be interpreted as representing Fame, with exactly the same high degree of certainty: Not only is she mounted on a triumphal chariot (and Fame was more strongly associated with triumphal processions than any other allegorical figure), but she also holds the Boccaccian golden globe in her left hand, upgraded here into a regal orb. In her other hand she holds a baton (or possibly scepter) which, like the more usual sword, was another symbol of governmental authority. On the Issy card (the next oldest Chariot card after CY and PMB) and in many later decks, the charioteer carries a sword in place of the baton, which identifies the figure unequivocally with Fame.

The wings on the horses on the PMB card, in my view, further support the identification with Fame: as noted above, wings are an extremely common attribute of Fame in late medieval illustrations, including the Petrarchan images. It's true that the wings of Fame normally appear on the female figure or on trumpets, but it seems entirely feasible that the artist might be inclined to put them on the horses (especially if the iconography of the card seemed too well established by this time to allow the addition of winged trumpets or wings on the figure). Personally, I find this explanation considerably more plausible than the hypothesis that the horses are a reference to the Phaedrus myth of Plato: there are no other Platonic references in the early tarot decks to my knowledge, and this one would be quite hard to recognize given that neither this card nor the deck as a whole contain any other Platonic or classical references. As Michael J. Hurst once observed, the standard trump cycle was all about medieval allegory, for which reason some sophisticated upper-class Italians felt the need to classicize it in variants like the Sola-Busca. So it would seem highly unusual to find a Platonic reference in it, especially a subtle one.

The PMB charioteer lacks the sword which was the attribute most commonly used in depictions of Fame at this time, but the sword was not always used: Several of the earlier images that M.J. Hurst collected don't have the sword (the 14th c. images of Vainglory show the figure with a laurel wreath instead, and the Pessellino one has her with the golden globe in her left hand and nothing in her right hand; the Del Chierico one is the only one with both orb and sword). I have not yet seen any other images of Fame that depict her with a baton or scepter, but we do have the joint portraits in the Uffizi of Federico da Montefeltro, Duke of Urbino, and his wife Battista Sforza, in which they are both portrayed in allegorical triumphal processions: she is depicted as the Triumph of Chastity, and he is depicted in the manner of a Roman triumphator and holds a baton or scepter outstretched in a clear gesture of authority and control. He is accompanied by the four virtues, of whom Justice is the only one that is fully visible. At the time when the Urbino portraits were made—the years around 1470—it seems to have become fairly common to depict the Triumph of Fame by means of the figure of Justice seated on a triumphal chariot (see, for example, the images from 1465 and 1468 in Hurst's collection). That suggests that this allegorical portrait could be viewed as a Triumph of Fame, as does the inscription below it: “Illustrious he is born along in glorious triumph, the eternal fame of his virtues celebrates him as the equal of the greatest leaders, and fitting holder of the scepter.”

So while the baton is certainly not an immediately recognizable attribute of Fame, I think it can be argued that it is at least as appropriate in the hand of Fame on the PMB card as it is in the hand of Chastity on the CY card.

So we have an intriguing situation: The position of the Chariot card in the standard sequence suggests that it should be the Petrarchan Triumph of Chastity, and in our earliest surviving deck (the CY), that is what it does indeed seem to be. However, in nearly all of the surviving later decks where it seems to be intended as a Petrarchan Triumph (and not simply as a non-specific "carro triumphale"), it is depicted clearly as Fame, notably on the PMB and Issy cards.

One possible explanation is that the tarot deck did not originally contain Fame, and that an artist at some stage in the development of the deck misread the Chastity card and changed the shield into a circular object. Perhaps they were working from a card like the surviving CY card, where the shield is gold on a gold background, making its contours harder to discern. The confusion would have been enhanced if the shield also showed the same motif as one or more of the coins in the Coins suit, as it does on the CY card; certainly, many people in our own time have misinterpreted the golden shield on this card as being a coin (I think I did that myself when I first saw it). Later artists then read the resulting image as a representation of Fame and made further modifications to enhance that association, such as changing the baton to a sword.

It is a real possibility that Fame was not originally in the deck, perhaps due to the Petrarchan series not having become entirely canonical yet at the time of the tarot deck's invention. The trump images contain enough differences from Petrarch's descriptions of the Triumphs to make it seem that the deck's inventors were not adhering to their Petrarchan model assiduously.

On the other hand, the cards do have some strong similarities with the standard iconography of the Petrarchan Triumphs in the early 1440s, so it's a little hard to believe they would have left out an entire triumph. There are certain elements, such as the shield on the Chastity card and the depiction of the World (Eternity), which make it look as though the card designers were paying fairly close attention to Petrarch's verses. (The Last Judgement card may also be evidence of this, but that probably requires more discussion in another post.)

There is an alternative explanation, namely that the original sequence included both Chastity and Fame, and Chastity was removed at a later stage. They probably looked fairly similar: female figures on chariots holding objects of similar size, shape, and color. Perhaps at some stage, people felt a need to reduce the number of trumps (to improve gameplay) and so they eliminated one of these similar-looking figures (Chastity) and moved Fame into its position in the sequence. But why disrupt the order that players have memorized by moving Fame to a different position? Why not just leave Chastity where it is and remove Fame? In light of this difficulty, this explanation seems implausible.

There is a third possibility, and this is the one I find the most plausible:

Fame was included in the original deck along with all the other Triumphs—perhaps depicted in a relatively conventional way, with a sword instead of the baton/scepter—and may well have once been present in the CY deck in that form (one of the cards that has not survived), but was dropped relatively early in the development of the standard trump sequence. Its removal then allowed later artists to mistake Chastity for the absent Fame in the manner described above.

My personal hypothesis regarding the origin of the tarot deck is that it was originally invented in Milan in a form similar or identical to the Cary-Yale deck, then it made its way first to Ferrara and then to Florence. The Florentines developed it into the standard 78-card deck, which they eventually began to produce quite cheaply, causing their version of the deck to become a viral hit across Italy in the 1450s. Milan and Ferrara clung to their earlier versions of the deck and resisted this new version for a while but ultimately succumbed, and the PMB deck is an early Milanese version of the new standard 78-card deck from Florence. (This hypothesis is still very much a work in progress, so I won't go into any more detail about it yet.)

If one accepts that hypothesis, then the Fame card must have been removed not long after the game began to be played in Florence, followed by the Chastity card being misinterpreted and its design changed sometime in course of the 1440s. Reasons why this explanation appeals to me:

- It removes the difficulty of believing that the deck was originally designed with only five of the six Petrarchan Triumphs, or that Chastity could have been removed deliberately and Fame moved to a completely different position in the sequence to replace it.
- Call me a snob... but it seems easier to believe that the game players and card makers of Florence could have dropped Fame from the deck and mistaken Chastity for Fame, than to believe that the humanistically educated courtiers in Milan could have done so. Franco Pratesi has convinced me that tarot was being played by a fairly broad cross-section of Florentine society shortly after tarot's arrival in that city, so it may well have been less educated people who effectively made these decisions (one way or another).
- If Chastity was mistaken for Fame not too long after Fame was removed from the deck, the confusion might have been partly due to somebody still having the idea in their head that Fame was one of the card subjects.

Postscript:

There is one more alternative explanation that I can envisage, namely that Fame was conflated with Chastity on the Chariot card. This does not seem as plausible as the third possibility I mentioned above, for two reasons:

- The idea of conflating two of the Petrarchan Triumphs would surely have seemed wrong to anyone who cared about the significance of the Petrarchan motifs. And if you didn't care about them, why go to the trouble of conflating them? It would be so much simpler to just drop one.
- In the unlikely event that you did want to conflate the two, surely the result would show more obvious signs of your intent: You would include at least one unambiguous attribute of Chastity and one unambiguous attribute of Fame. Instead, we have the ambiguous wings on the PMB horses, which could be interpreted as belonging to either Fame or Chastity; the globe, which was not one of the most commonly used attributes of Fame and therefore not an unambiguous identifier of it; and the baton, which in this instance seems to have come from the original Chastity card but is in itself more likely to evoke an association with Fame, if anything, and the same goes for the triumphal chariot itself. Instead, you would expect to see a shield, pillar, or palm branch for Chastity, and a sword or trumpet for Fame. But even if you had them, the result would be a bizarre mish-mash.

Re: The Chariot

#42
You make some good points, Nathaniel, and welcome to the Forum. I used to think much along the lines of your third alternative, the one you support, except that I called the CY Chariot card "Chastity" and the World card "Fame" (because of the lady holding a trumpet in one hand and a crown in the other, with the knight below) In that way all 6 would be represented. However I have upon reflection altered my views slightly. Regarding Petrarch, he didn't actually say it was the triumph of chastity. That is a mistranslation. He says "trionfo de pudizia" (http://petrarch.petersadlon.com/read_tr ... age=II.txt). Here is what I think about Pudicitia and Fama in the early tarot, from https://marzianotoludus.blogspot.com/20 ... basis.html:
For Fame, a figure holding out a golden globe was typical, as in the “Charles VI” World card (Fig. 5, right) and also, for example, on a wedding-chest by Pesellino, c. 1450 (Fig. 5, left).48 The figure sometimes stands on a globe, as is seen on a birth-tray by Lo Scheggia now in the Metropolitan Museum in New York, probably done in 1449 for the birth of Cosimo de’ Medici’s grandson Lorenzo (Fig. 5, center).49
Image

Perhaps the hardest [Petrarchan] triumph to find in the cards is Pudicizia (Pudicitia in English); it is a person's excellence in gender-related virtue, either masculine or feminine. (Added April 4: further research indicates that I skipped a step. It is the opposite of shamefulness, but in particular in matters related to sexuality. So a pathological liar wouldn't be guilty of impudicitia. It takes an additional step to apply this concept to the avoidance of shame generally, for example defeat in a context among equals. However it is an easy enough step to take, since the cards do not stick to Petrarch's concepts in any case.] Petrarch in his poem was thinking only of the feminine side; but the virtue also applies to a man, such as the halbern-holder of the “Charles VI” (Fig. 6, left), an example of masculine Pudicitia: his chariot emulates that of the Roman military leaders who were awarded a triumphal procession when they returned victorious. Even when the figure is female, as it is on the quite similar-looking chariots illustrating Petrarch’s "Triumph of Fame" in manuscripts, wedding-chests, and birth-trays, there are mostly male figures crowding around below. In the “Alessandro Sforza” card (Fig. 6 right, also called the Catania or Castello Ursino), earlier than the “Charles VI”, the figure even holds a golden disc, typical of that Triumph in a Petrarchan context.50
Image

The Chariot card is always below Death in the sequence, as opposed to the World, which is always above. Thus this gender-related excellence is being seen as an excellence celebrated in the person’s own lifetime, in contrast to the fame in heaven of the so-called World card; thus the Catania Chariot’s disc is divided into the three parts of the world (Europe, Asia, Africa).51 Likewise feminine Pudicitia is as much a matter of reputation as of deeds, even if it is also, when earned, a virtue recognized in heaven. The Chariot card is a close enough fit.
____________________
48 https://www.gardnermuseum.org/experienc ... tion/10787.
49 https://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/1995.7.
50 For Catania card (on right), Maggio 2016 [“New Insights into the So-Called Alessandro Sforza Deck,” The Playing-Card 44:4, pp. 257-268, https://www.academia.edu/25238482/New_I ... forza_Deck]; for "Charles VI" (left) see note 46 [https://gallica.bnf.fr, search “Tarot de Charles VI"}.
51 For these labels, see the Triumph of Fame in the series "Petrarch's Triumphs: Florentine; Italian, 15th century", at https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Petr ... s_triumphs

When I wrote this I was applying it to the Florentine tarot. It applies also to the CY, if the Fame-lady in the CY is seen as looking down from heaven, comparable to the Fame-lady in the clouds in Florence. That it is a woman in both the CY and the PMB does not make it chastity. Abstractions with feminine endings were typically made into women. But her this-worldly status is starting to blur: the wings complicate things. My view is that it puts her in heaven, where the virtues are anyway, not as eternal fame but as eternal pudicitia, a Platonic image from the Phaedrus of the chariot of Pudicitia (feminine excellence) drawn by great winged horses, which the soul sees and then remembers on earth when in the presence of its earthly image, and which it now must honor. Also, while not a conflation of Petrarchans, but rather a meaning on another level, the CY Chariot card is an image of Bianca Maria entering her dowry-city as the embodiment of maidenly Pudicitia and the PMB an image of Bianca Maria as embodiment of the virtue of Pudicitia in a married woman. Fama in the PMB is then at the end of the sequence, eternal glory, the city in a bubble. Or alternatively, that card could be Eternity and the Angel cad be fama. At some point World and Angel switched places in the Lombard sequence. Probably people played it both ways , in different places. It still would be, if anybody played the game in Milan; probably they still play it with the Angel last in Piedmont. Ambiguous figures make sense when that happens.

As to why I now think that there is a realistic possibility that the tarot was invented in Florence or Bologna, counterbalancing the arguments for Milan, my argument is rather complicated. I think ithas to be: the Giusti note doesn't show anything except what it is. Likewise Pratesi's finding in 1443 of two adults arrested for playing the game testifies to its popular nature in 1443 and probably somewhat earlier. I encourage you to read my blog. Since you, just as much as I, want to see the six Petrarchans in the ur-tarot, I would much appreciate your thoughts, either there (https://marzianotoludus.blogspot.com/2019/12/), here, or at the bottom of viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1382&p=21535#p21535, where the discussion of my proposal leaves off.

Re: The Chariot

#43
Thanks for the welcome Michael!

I am very impressed with the huge amount of work you have put into your blogs, and I very much intend to read them. I have read parts of several of them already, but it will take me quite a while to read the rest (especially as there are many other resources competing for my attention).

For the moment I will just confine myself to the topics you have raised in your post here.

In the week since I wrote my post above, my views have changed in one important detail: I am now inclined to think that the Ur-tarot quite possibly did not contain all six Petrarchan Triumphs. I think it may only have contained five, with Fame (earthly Fame that is, Gloria Mundi) absent from the start. This means that the first explanation in my post above would be the correct one: Fame was not in the deck when tarot made its way to Florence, meaning that Chastity/Pudicitia could have turned into Fame very early in the course of the deck's development in that city.

In part, the change in my views was actually prompted by some of your own remarks in favor of the possibility that the earliest proto-tarot dates to the Savoy marriage of 1428, or not long after. The hypothesis that I am now entertaining is that the early tarot was designed with female members of the Milanese court in mind, and consequently a central part of the appeal of Petrarch's Trionfi poems was the love story contained in them.

In sharp contrast to the other five Triumphs, the Triumph of Fame has virtually nothing to do with that love story. It is the only one of the six that is not intimately bound up with Petrarch's beloved Laura and her life and death. It mentions his beloved only briefly at the very beginning; the entire remainder of the poem is simply a list of famous people (and he doesn't even make much mention of their amorous exploits). In fact, the Fame poems seem so irrelevant to the love story that one can't help wondering why Petrarch even included this Triumph in the cycle; I think it must have been simply because he had such a strong personal interest in the lives of the illustrious ancients, as evidenced by his De Viris Illustribus.

As the Petrarchan cycle of Triumphs had not yet become canonical at this stage, the designers of the deck could have left Fame out without anyone being overly shocked or puzzled by the omission.

What makes this theory all the more appealing to me is that if you don't include Fame, then there is little to stand in the way of placing Death above Time in the hierarchy of the Triumphs. Because the cycle had not yet achieved its canonical structure, such an ordering would still have been possible. The Time poem talks at length about Time's triumph over Fame, but doesn't mention the earlier defeat of Death. On the contrary, it talks of the brevity of life, "nessun sa quanto si viva o moia" etc. ("no man knoweth when his life will end"), and even contains the lines "non aspettate che la morte scocchi, come fa la più parte" ("Delay not, as most mortals do, until / Death shall transfix you with his fatal dart"). So Death coming after is perfectly appropriate, especially if then followed by the Last Judgement.

I'm always driven by the desire to find the simplest possible solution that explains the observed facts, and this "love story" theory would seem to neatly explain both the absence of Fame and the Death/Time reversal. It also provides additional support for locating the tarot's earliest origins in the years immediately following the Marziano deck. The long gap between the latter and the first mention of the trionfi cards in 1440 is otherwise rather puzzling.

As far as the main part of your post is concerned, I must confess I find your discussion of Fame, Pudicitia, and the Chariot and World cards rather confusing. You seem to view worldly Fame when represented by a male as "masculine excellence" and Pudicitia represented by a female as "feminine excellence" and you thus equate them? And you see the female figures on the World card in CY and Charles VI also as Fame but not Pudicitia?

I personally prefer to keep things as simple as possible, as I said above. In this case, that means:

The CY Chariot is Chastity, or Pudicitia if you prefer (as far as I'm concerned all that matters is that it represents Petrarch's Triumphus Pudicitie) and the CY World is the "mondo novo, in etate immobile ed eterna" from Petrarch's Triumph of Eternity, i.e. the "new world" promised in the Book of Revelation. The female figure on that card seems to me to be an allegory of divine eternity in heaven, with her winged trumpet symbolizing heavenly fame, as you yourself noted. I think she is mainly on the card simply because the designers shied away from putting God himself there (which is who we usually see there in the standard iconography of this Triumph that became established in the 1440s).

The PMB Chariot is earthly Fame and the PMB World is still the "mondo novo" of the Triumph of Eternity, this time held by angels instead of topped by a figure of divinity (an alternative iconographic style which we also see in some other depictions of Petrarchan Eternity after 1440).

The Issy Chariot is also earthly Fame. I don't think either the PMB Chariot nor the Issy Chariot have anything to do with Pudicitia. There is absolutely nothing on those cards that clearly suggests that they represent Chastity/Pudicitia (unlike the shield on the CY Chariot). On the contrary, the Issy card shows a quite conventional representation of earthly Fame, and the PMB card, while less conventional, also has characteristics which were typical attributes of earthly Fame.

Artists misinterpreting what they saw on the earlier cards they were copying is a very common occurrence in the history of playing cards, and tarot was no exception; the most obvious example is probably Time's hourglass turning into a lantern. As in the case of Pudicitia, that misinterpretation led to a change in the understanding of that card's subject: it went from being Time to being simply "the Old Man" or "the Hermit". I think Pudicitia's transformation was very similar. The fact that it happened very early in the history of the cards in no way makes it less likely to have happened.

So the Chariot card seems to have started life as Petrarch's Triumph of Pudicitia. It then turned into Fame (as a result of an artist's misinterpretation) even before the standard 21-trump sequence had become established.

Before long, however, the understanding of the subject degenerated further and it simply became nothing more than "the triumphal chariot" ("Lo Caro Triumphale"). By that time, the essential element of the card's design had altogether ceased to be the person riding the chariot and had become the chariot itself, and after that, it really didn't matter who the artists depicted riding it. They had free rein to paint whoever they wanted as the charioteer (which explains the Minchiate card, among other things). It really wasn't a Petrarchan Triumph for very long at all.

Re: The Chariot

#44
welcome

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=345&start=280#p17682
... and the following posts
This are arguments, that Fame in the 14 cards of the first artist of the PMB is presented by the card, which usually is regarded as Justice.
Image
Image
... looks like Justice
Image
... but is Fame (elephants belong to Fame)

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Petr ... 1465-2.jpg ... large picture
... with the comment
"Triumphs of Fame, Time, and Eternity
Attributed to Domenico di Zanobi. - Scanned from Virtù d'amore. Pittura nuziale nel Quattrocento fiorentino."

Fame had often different attributes, the presentation likely depended on the condition, what an honoured person was standing for. In the case of the PMB Justice-Fame we've as the honoured person Francesco Sforza and as an additional attribute to Justice a rare knight in the background, in the case of the most famous condottiero of 15th century an acceptable idea. Strange enough we've as the date of the Domenico-picture a "1465", the death year of Francesco Sforza. Domenico di Zanobi worked in Florence, which had reason to give some honour to Francesco Sforza.

I found 2 other pictures, where Fame got the attributes sword and scales:
Image
Image
Full picture:
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... orence.jpg
... with the comment:
"Illustration of Petrarch's Triumph of Fame, oddly depicted as Justice with sword and scales.
The artist is unknown. - Scanned from Von Bartsch: The Illustrated Bartsch, v.24."

Found at ...
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... f_Petrarch#/
... I found also the other 5 pictures of the series.

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... orence.jpg
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... orence.jpg
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... orence.jpg
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... orence.jpg
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... orence.jpg

A 3rd picture of Fame with sword and scales is from ca. 1470.
Image



Later added:
https://www.artcodex.it/opere/petrarca/ ... hp?id=img8
offers a view on the full Trionfi poem version, which is called Strozzi 174 (as it seems all pictures, but not all in the correct row). Here the relevant Fama


Image



Image
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: The Chariot

#45
Thanks for continuing the discussion in such a thoughtful way.

Nethanial wrote,
In the week since I wrote my post above, my views have changed in one important detail: I am now inclined to think that the Ur-tarot quite possibly did not contain all six Petrarchan Triumphs. I think it may only have contained five, with Fame (earthly Fame that is, Gloria Mundi) absent from the start. This means that the first explanation in my post above would be the correct one: Fame was not in the deck when tarot made its way to Florence, meaning that Chastity/Pudicitia could have turned into Fame very early in the course of the deck's development in that city.

In part, the change in my views was actually prompted by some of your own remarks in favor of the possibility that the earliest proto-tarot dates to the Savoy marriage of 1428, or not long after. The hypothesis that I am now entertaining is that the early tarot was designed with female members of the Milanese court in mind, and consequently a central part of the appeal of Petrarch's Trionfi poems was the love story contained in them.

In sharp contrast to the other five Triumphs, the Triumph of Fame has virtually nothing to do with that love story. It is the only one of the six that is not intimately bound up with Petrarch's beloved Laura and her life and death. It mentions his beloved only briefly at the very beginning; the entire remainder of the poem is simply a list of famous people (and he doesn't even make much mention of their amorous exploits). In fact, the Fame poems seem so irrelevant to the love story that one can't help wondering why Petrarch even included this Triumph in the cycle; I think it must have been simply because he had such a strong personal interest in the lives of the illustrious ancients, as evidenced by his De Viris Illustribus.
The love story is partly about preserving the Fame of Laura's Pudicitia after Death, over Time, hence his own Fame as a poet, until Time erases all trace and they reunite in Eternity.

As the Petrarchan cycle of Triumphs had not yet become canonical at this stage, the designers of the deck could have left Fame out without anyone being overly shocked or puzzled by the omission.
Well, yes, but the CY World card is such an obvious candidate, with its trumpet and crown carrying Lady and its Knight below.

What makes this theory all the more appealing to me is that if you don't include Fame, then there is little to stand in the way of placing Death above Time in the hierarchy of the Triumphs. Because the cycle had not yet achieved its canonical structure, such an ordering would still have been possible. The Time poem talks at length about Time's triumph over Fame, but doesn't mention the earlier defeat of Death. On the contrary, it talks of the brevity of life, "nessun sa quanto si viva o moia" etc. ("no man knoweth when his life will end"), and even contains the lines "non aspettate che la morte scocchi, come fa la più parte" ("Delay not, as most mortals do, until / Death shall transfix you with his fatal dart"). So Death coming after is perfectly appropriate, especially if then followed by the Last Judgement.
That is part of what it talks about, the part that applies to the image of Time as an old man with an hourglass. That in itsel is enough to put Time before Death. But there is also cosmic time, imaged by the sun, which is the poet's principal concern, and why he puts Time after Death.

I'm always driven by the desire to find the simplest possible solution that explains the observed facts, and this "love story" theory would seem to neatly explain both the absence of Fame and the Death/Time reversal. It also provides additional support for locating the tarot's earliest origins in the years immediately following the Marziano deck. The long gap between the latter and the first mention of the trionfi cards in 1440 is otherwise rather puzzling.
Yes, if Fame were absent. But since it isn't, the process is rather complicated: first it is there (in Petrarch), then absent, you say (in the ur-tarot), then present again, you say. That seems to me needlessly complex. It is simpler to find Fame at least in the general vicinity of where Petrarch put it, with World. World in the CY and Florentine decks isn't Eternity, for which see below, after I quote your account of Eternity.

As far as the main part of your post is concerned, I must confess I find your discussion of Fame, Pudicitia, and the Chariot and World cards rather confusing. You seem to view worldly Fame when represented by a male as "masculine excellence" and Pudicitia represented by a female as "feminine excellence" and you thus equate them? And you see the female figures on the World card in CY and Charles VI also as Fame but not Pudicitia?
My aswe4rs are all "yes", except that I am not equating feminine and masculine excellence. They are different. They are the two types of Pudicitia, which is simply gender-related excellence. That was one thing in two expressions. For example, you can play bass notes on a bass horn or a bass saxophone. They're still bass notes. For the artist, there is the question of how do you depict such a thing? Excellence is rewarded with a prize: a laurel wreath, a medal, maybe a sash (as in the Minchiate card). Early on, the artists typically chose the medal, being awarded by a female figure. Another thing is the horses, like in a Roman triumph, rewarding a general, or a wedding procession. This works for either gender, On the Minchiate card she is even nude! That indicates her godly nature. The recipient can be either male or female. But there can also be a second level of meaning elevating a particular person being commemorated. In Florence we get a male Charioteer card with Medici insignia on it: that connects the Medici faction there with masculine excellence. Another thing is that awarding a medal also makes the recipient somewhat famous, as excellence mplies a comparison with others. So there is a blurring with Fame. That's just a fact, not a theory to account for the facts. It is the Fame of Laura's Pudicitia that Petrarch wants to preserve.

I personally prefer to keep things as simple as possible, as I said above. In this case, that means:
The CY Chariot is Chastity, or Pudicitia if you prefer (as far as I'm concerned all that matters is that it represents Petrarch's Triumphus Pudicitie) and the CY World is the "mondo novo, in etate immobile ed eterna" from Petrarch's Triumph of Eternity, i.e. the "new world" promised in the Book of Revelation. The female figure on that card seems to me to be an allegory of divine eternity in heaven, with her winged trumpet symbolizing heavenly fame, as you yourself noted. I think she is mainly on the card simply because the designers shied away from putting God himself there (which is who we usually see there in the standard iconography of this Triumph that became established in the 1440s).
It seems to me that there is another candidate for Eternity, namely the "rise to judgment" or "Angel of Judgment", blowing his trumpet. It is that which defeats Time. The CY World card iis of a this-worldly scene with a this-worldly knight, even if the Fame being awarded is in heaven. The CY World (Fame) probably precedes the CY Angel (Eternity) in the series. No need to have Fame present (in Petrarch), then absent, then present again.

The PMB Chariot is earthly Fame and the PMB World is still the "mondo novo" of the Triumph of Eternity, this time held by angels instead of topped by a figure of divinity (an alternative iconographic style which we also see in some other depictions of Petrarchan Eternity after 1440).
I think you are right about the PMB World, which in the series now is the last card. By then Fame is lost, or reduced to the worldly fame of the Chariot card, or conceivably attached to the Angel card, as in Minchiate's banner). But that doesn't make you right about the CY World. And we don't know what the PMB "first artist" World looked like. The style of the "second artist" card puts it rather late, in comparison to the "first artist" cards, in my opinion, and that of the art historians.

The Issy Chariot is also earthly Fame. I don't think either the PMB Chariot nor the Issy Chariot have anything to do with Pudicitia. There is absolutely nothing on those cards that clearly suggests that they represent Chastity/Pudicitia (unlike the shield on the CY Chariot). On the contrary, the Issy card shows a quite conventional representation of earthly Fame, and the PMB card, while less conventional, also has characteristics which were typical attributes of earthly Fame.
Well, "clearly" is your hedge. The style of the Issy is Ferrarese, and if you look at the medals that Pisanello produced for Leonello, there is nothing clear about them. That way the owner can tell the admirer what the medal means, to increasing admiration. There is a lot going on in that card. What do you make of the red dress on the lady bearing Fame's atributes? And the red horse being whipped as it looks at the white horse, not being whipped, the rider more nonchalant, the horse looking straight ahead? Plato's Charioteer? And the four attendants on the card, with their different gestures? Not very clear, but that doesn't mean meaningless or irrelevant. The four elements? If so, the lady on top the quintessence, i.e. most perfect, most pure, most excellent, the rubedo of alchemy, and yes, most famous, for those with discernment. Excellence earns fame. he red dress might also reference particular woman who favored that color (Ross once said Bianca Maria Sforza did so).Anyway, this is not the ur-tarot. I like your idea of artists drifting away from Petrarch over time, especially toward something not otherwise represented, such as worldly fame, i.e. fame recognized by the world., But Chariot cards can have various meanings, depending on what else is there. Plato's chariots, for example, seems to be an influence, and fame is irrelevant in his allegory. Petrarch didn't know the Phaedrus, but someof his language comes close, for example when he imagines Pudicitia's companions (other virtues), similar to Plato's imagining of Beauty's companions (Temperance, etc.) on her chariot in the circle of the gods.

Artists misinterpreting what they saw on the earlier cards they were copying is a very common occurrence in the history of playing cards, and tarot was no exception; the most obvious example is probably Time's hourglass turning into a lantern. As in the case of Pudicitia, that misinterpretation led to a change in the understanding of that card's subject: it went from being Time to being simply "the Old Man" or "the Hermit". I think Pudicitia's transformation was very similar. The fact that it happened very early in the history of the cards in no way makes it less likely to have happened.
It would take pretty poor eyesight to see an hourglass as a lantern. More likey they were redefining the card as Prudence, the light that guides one to the future, in this case especially the soul's future after death, given its place in the sequence. Likewise, yes, the Chariot card gets redefined over time, including "worldly fame".

So the Chariot card seems to have started life as Petrarch's Triumph of Pudicitia. It then turned into Fame (as a result of an artist's misinterpretation) even before the standard 21-trump sequence had become established.
I would say, went away from Pudicitia into related themes, sometimes with attributes of the Fame that excellence earns.
Before long, however, the understanding of the subject degenerated further and it simply became nothing more than "the triumphal chariot" ("Lo Caro Triumphale"). By that time, the essential element of the card's design had altogether ceased to be the person riding the chariot and had become the chariot itself, and after that, it really didn't matter who the artists depicted riding it. They had free rein to paint whoever they wanted as the charioteer (which explains the Minchiate card, among other things). It really wasn't a Petrarchan Triumph for very long at all.
The Minchiate card fits the earliest conception just fine, in my view: a goddess awarding excellence, perhaps now with a sash, or just by saying "Viva! Viva!". One of the first changes, if it is one, is that Petrarch's feminine variety of Pudicitia has been replaced with masculine Pudicitia, or excellence more generally, and emphasizing the adulation aspect so as, yes, to provide a place for worldly fame. Whether it is a degeneration I don't know. It is going from a poem with personal meaning to a card game for everyone.

This is a good, thought-provoking discussion, so keep it up if you want.

Huck. The PMB card particularizes Fame as not just glory, but glory in the pursuit of justice. That was something that seemed to be popular in Florence at the time, too. It is a statement against tyranny, in the sense of self-aggrandizement and oppression of the weak, I think, one that Francesco appreciated but was lost on his sons. Life is short, but fama is eternal, someone said.

Re: The Chariot

#46
Thanks for your replies, Huck and Mike. In reply, I first want to respond to Mike's comment "It would take pretty poor eyesight to see an hourglass as a lantern." It looks like it might be useful to discuss these kinds of copying errors, before I proceed any further with our discussion of what happened to the Chariot card.

As I said before, such copying mistakes have been very common in the history of playing cards, as cardmakers copied a standard design from an earlier deck. It was even more common for cardmakers to make changes which they felt improved the representation of the subject in some way. Over the years, through a long chain of copying from one deck to another, the result was a visual equivalent of the Telephone game, and the original subject signified by a card could change to a completely different subject simply through a series of small errors and modifications, entirely without any deliberate decision to change it being made at any point.

Mike, do correct me if I'm wrong about this, but I get the impression that you want to see most of the details visible on most tarot cards down the ages as having had some significant meaning, and being freely chosen by the cardmaker with the deliberate intention of expressing that meaning. Whereas that is quite contrary to what happened in most cases; the cardmakers usually did not feel that they had much freedom in their design choices at all. Card players want the images on playing cards to be familiar and easily recognizable, and they don't care about the meanings and the symbolism, except insofar as it helps them to remember what a card looks like (and in the case of the unnumbered trumps of early tarot decks, it also sometimes helped them to remember the trump order). So when a cardmaker made a new deck, their only important aim was to make the new images essentially similar to those on the cards already in widespread use.

They might have made a few changes that they thought improved the clarity of the image (including corrections of what they thought were errors in previous designs), or a few little aesthetic embellishments. But what they mainly tried to do was copy the existing images, often as closely as possible. When significant changes to symbolic details occurred, it was often by accident, ignorance, or error, not by intention, because neither the cardmakers nor the card players ever greatly cared about the symbolism. The only cardmakers who ever thought a lot about the meanings of the visual details, and who felt they had a lot of freedom in choosing them, were those making brand new types of decks, like the Sola-Busca, or Marziano, or the original creators of tarot. To the latter, yes, the meanings of the images were no doubt the subject of much deliberation and careful attention. But not to those who came after them, especially those making cards for the popular market. And that includes the vast majority of all playing cards ever made.

In other words, with only very few exceptions, the designs of virtually all playing cards we now have are the result not of the cardmaker's personal creative vision for the design, but rather the result of them doing their best to recreate whatever went before, and in some cases struggling to make sense of it.

When I wrote my post above, I assumed it was common knowledge that the hourglass on the Time card turned into a lantern. Michael Dummett wrote about this in the 1980s, such as in his article "Tarot Triumphant" from 1986, which was reproduced on THF in 2009
viewtopic.php?p=19527#p19527 (by mikeh! and I can't thank you enough for all of these articles and other materials, by the way—I am hugely grateful to you for that): "The hermit was called il vecchio or il gobbo in the early sources. He carried an hourglass instead of a lantern, though this mistake dates back to the late fifteenth century. Teofilo Folengo calls him il tempo, and Time was what he was originally intended to represent." He also discussed these kinds of errors in The Game of Tarot, which I unfortunately do not have to hand, and therefore cannot cite page numbers.

The lantern first appears in a woodcut-printed deck dating from between 1465 and the early sixteenth century, variously known as the Budapest Tarot, the Tarot of Ferrara, or the Dick sheets. That deck was very crudely made, and the deck it was modeled on was probably another similarly crude woodcut print, so it's not at all surprising that the artist misinterpreted what they were seeing. As Dummett noted, even in the second half of the fifteenth century, players were simply calling the card "the hunchback" (il gobbo) or "the old man" (il vecchio), so it seems many people didn't know it was meant to represent Time—and very few of them would have greatly cared—so there was nothing to prevent the misinterpretation occurring and the resulting design taking hold.

Multiple copies of cards from this Budapest/Ferrara deck survive, and as Sherryl E. Smith says, "it's either an extraordinary coincidence that so many cards printed from the same wood blocks were preserved, or this particular deck was very popular."

Its popularity would explain why the image of this card featuring a lantern became as widespread as it did: The mistake made here spread far and wide. Ironically, it's precisely the cheapest and shoddiest decks which were most likely to be the biggest sellers and thus most likely to become the standard model on which later decks were based. This made it even more likely that the card images would change over time as a result of misunderstandings. If the deck is badly enough made, the best eyesight in the world is not going to help you.

You might object at this point that the PMB was a hand-painted deck, not a printed one. While this sort of error most commonly occurred with the cheaper woodcut decks, there is in principle no reason why it could not have happened with hand-painted cards as well, if the details were hard to make out, and especially if the subject was unconventionally portrayed. The shield on the CY Chastity card may well have been hard to make out, and by the 1440s that image had definitely become a fairly unconventional portrayal of Chastity (it may even have already been so at the time of the card's first creation).

However, that is not quite what I believe happened.

One must bear in mind that the PMB itself—in my theory at least—would most likely have been based on the popular new tarot pattern coming out of Florence, which seems to have owed its extraordinary viral success in no small part to it being cheaply printed with woodblocks. That bestselling cheap printed deck would have become THE standard pattern of 1450s tarot. I don't believe the PMB card designs were based solely on that pattern—I think it's obvious the earlier Milanese tradition srongly informed the artwork as well—but I do think that the PMB was almost certainly made to replicate the new standard Florentine 78-card deck, so the card designs in those cheap popular decks would have exerted a decisive influence on the cards in the PMB. Even if the designers of the PMB were aware of the earlier Visconti design of the Chariot card, they may have been confused by its unconventional nature, choosing also for that reason to rely more on the new Florentine card. In any case, they would have been making the deck for people who were familiar with the popular Florentine cards, who were expecting to see the same trumps as in that deck. If their customers expected to see something like Fame holding her orb, that is what the makers of the PMB were going to give them.

So it is highly likely that the misinterpretation occurred not when the PMB itself was made, but when a Florentine woodblock carver misinterpreted the design they were copying from another cheap woodblock deck made earlier, just like the lantern in the Budapest pattern. Hand-painted cards were probably not to blame at all.

Anyway, that's why I think a copying error is definitely the simplest and most obvious way of explaining what happened with the Chariot card between the CY and the PMB. We know this kind of thing happened a lot, and it could very easily have happened in this case too.

Postscript:

Another interesting likely example of this kind of Telephone-style misinterpretation error, and one which I don't think anyone else on this forum has spotted yet, can be found on an early cheap woodcut version of the Tower, which I saw on one of Mike's excellent blogs. Mike, you say there that it dates from around 1500. The card, of which only half survives, is the first on the left in the second set of images down the page, and shows a cow poking its head out from behind the tower, or possibly from inside it:

https://tarotchristianbasis.blogspot.co ... tower.html

It would make a great deal more sense if that "cow's head" was the head of a devil, would it not?

And I would be very surprised indeed if that is not exactly what it originally was, on the card this card was modeled on... or possibly on the card before that... or the card before that...

Re: The Chariot

#47
Moving on now to your main objections.

First, and very briefly:

mikeh wrote
The love story [in Petrarch's I Trionfi] is partly about preserving the Fame of Laura's Pudicitia after Death, over Time, hence his own Fame as a poet, until Time erases all trace and they reunite in Eternity.
Yes, of course Petrarch must have seen it like that (except that time triumphs over fame!) but he barely mentions it in the Fame poem. There is just a very brief hint of it at the beginning, and then he moves on to his long catalog of the famous, and never alludes to Laura again. So I can readily imagine that a fan of the Laura poems (as Filippo Maria evidently was) might not find this particular poem very interesting and might leave it out. But just to clarify, I only presented that as one possibility; I believe that the likelihood of Fame originally having been included in the tarot deck along with the other Trionfi is still almost as likely as it not having been.

As for the other objections both of you raise, I feel the problem lies in your fundamental approach to identifying the subjects represented on the cards.

When interpreting what these cards were intended to signify to people at the time, we need to compare them with other images produced around that same time, and with the other cards in the deck.

If you think a card was intended to represent Petrarch's Chastity/Pudicitia, it is not enough to simply find something on the card that you personally could imagine as meaning Chastity/Pudicitia—it has to be something that people at that time would definitely have understood as indicating Chastity/Pudicitia. You can't just look at a red dress and say oh, some people associated red with excellence, excellence earns fame, therefore this figure might have meant Fame. No. You need to find other contemporary images that definitely represented that subject, and establish direct similarities. You especially need to look for elements that recurred in the images from that period.

This is essentially what Huck is doing in his analysis of the PMB Justice card, but Huck, you make another mistake: Neither you nor Mike focus on the essential details of the images. You talk about the knight on horseback on the Justice card, the red dress on the Issy card, the rider on the Issy horse, even the direction the Issy horse is looking... None of these things are ever used as essential determinative elements in the other images of Fame or Pudicitia in the era in question, so they are simply not relevant in determining whether or not the image would have been understood as signifying Fame or Pudicitia.

For a card to represent Fame, there needs to be some typical attribute on the card to indicate that it means Fame. A knight mounted on a horse is not a typical attribute of Fame. Both of you seem to think that it was; I'm not sure why. Knights might appear alongside Fame sometimes but they were never essential or determinative features of the representation. I listed the determinative features of Fame in my first post, following Guastella: the chariot, the wings, trumpets, a female figure with her right hand holding a sword, and her left hand holding a globe, book, cupido gloriae, or the scales of Justice. Sometimes she holds a laurel wreath. Later, in the second half of the fifteenth century (after the earliest tarot cards), the chariot's horses were usually replaced by elephants.

Huck is right to point out that Fame was sometimes represented as holding a sword and scales, exactly like Justice. But there are three obvious problems with your attempt to interpret the PMB Justice card that way:

First, like the elephants, this way of representing Fame appeared relatively late; I am not aware of any image of Fame with the scales of justice before 1460, which is too late to explain why it would appear like that in the PMB deck— even if you believe the PMB card was produced after that date, it would still have been modeled fairly closely on a card design from before 1460.

Second, the standard tarot deck contains three of the cardinal virtues, Fortitude, Temperance, and Justice. It is highly likely that all three were there in the first version of the standard tarot deck, and vastly less likely that the card that looked exactly like Justice was actually meant to be Fame.

This is reinforced by my third and most important point:

A figure that looks like Justice was only understood as representing Fame if she was shown seated on a chariot. If the justice figure was not on a chariot, it was simply Justice. That was how people distinguished between the two—not by whether or not she had a knight leaping over her head.

Mikeh, you're on slightly stronger ground with your interpretation of the CY World: we see a female figure holding a winged trumpet in one hand, which was certainly a determinative attribute of fame (even if no one is blowing it, unlike the standard images of Fame) and in the other she holds a crown, which is a symbol of power and so perhaps not too far away from the laurel wreath she sometimes holds. Nevertheless, I'm not aware of any contemporary images of Fame showing her actually holding a crown.

But a major reason why she cannot be considered to represent earthly Fame (and note that it is only earthly Fame that we need to find, because that is the Fame of Petrarch's Triumph) is that the overall image bears a striking and unmistakable resemblance to the typical contemporary images of Petrarch's Eternity. In my earlier posts I referred to Michael J. Hurst's excellent collection of illustrations of the Petrarchan Triumphs, here: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Petrarch's_triumphs
I have never been able to understand how you can look at the illustrations of Eternity on that page, especially those from the early 1440s, and not immediately see that this is exactly what the CY World (also from the early 1440s) was intended to represent. I would have thought the resemblance undeniable. The first 1440s image even shows angels with trumpets. So this card has to be the novo mondo of the Eternity poem, as I said before, even if the designers opted to represent God's sovereignty by a symbolic crown rather than depicting Him directly enthroned there. (I actually have a lot more to discuss about the representation of the Triumph of Eternity, but this is not the place; I'll put that in another post in a different thread, when I find the time to write it.)

There is another very strong reason for thinking the CY World figure does not represent earthly Fame: like Justice in the PMB, she is not mounted on a chariot.

Every single Italian image of earthly Fame I have seen from the entire fifteenth century depicts her on a chariot—including the early Vainglory ones illustrating Petrarch's De Viris Illustribus, which don't even have anything to do with his Triumphs.

In other words, the chariot was more strongly linked to Fame than to any other of the allegorical figures used in Petrarch's Triumphs: None of others - Love, Death, Time, etc - were ever normally portrayed riding triumphal chariots except in illustrations of I Trionfi. But Fame was always on a chariot, even when not in an illustration of that work.

This has two obvious implications:

1. If the figure was not mounted on some kind of chariot, it wasn't Fame (or at least not earthly fame, gloria mundi / vainglory, which was the Fame of Petrarch's poems).

2. If there was only one allegorical figure in the entire tarot deck mounted on a chariot, it would have been entirely natural—indeed almost inevitable—for a cardmaker to assume that that figure represented Fame if they couldn't see anything that clearly contradicted that interpretation.
And in this instance, it seems they could not, because the one and only thing that would have clearly contradicted it—the shield she was holding—turned into an orb.

So it seems quite indisputably clear that someone along the line misinterpreted the image and changed the shield into a globe or orb, thereby erasing the only clear link to Chastity/Pudicitia, and establishing the image as a representation of Fame instead. Other changes were then made too, which reinforced that new interpretation of the figure: They added wings (to the horses), and—in a detail I forgot to point out in my original post—they moved the determinative object (the shield/orb) from the figure's right hand to the left hand, which is the hand in which Fame always holds the globe as described by Boccaccio (see the quote from him in my original post) and as shown in other contemporary illustrations of Petrarch's Fame. The right hand normally holds a sword in such illustrations, again just as described by Boccaccio; instead the PMB card has her still holding the wand or baton that CY Chastity had in her left hand. This baton is the most non-standard aspect of the version of Fame depicted on the card—so it's therefore not surprising that this aspect was "corrected" by the designer of the Issy card, who took the baton away and put the usual sword in its place. It is, however, somewhat surprising that the Issy card designer allowed the objects to remain in the "wrong" hands, meaning that even this version of the card was still a slightly non-standard representation of Fame, despite getting every other aspect of the Boccaccio description right.

Later still, however, the card went the way of the Time card and lost all its allegorical associations, either because most players by that time were less educated people who weren't very familiar with allegorical images, or perhaps because by that time elephants had become such a standard feature of the Fame allegory that people no longer recognized it if they weren't there; the globe/orb likewise seems to have become a much rarer attribute for Fame by that time too. The card became merely the triumphal chariot, and we can see the consequences of that in the way that the later cards no longer resemble any standard images of Fame. They also no longer resemble any standard images of Chastity/Pudicitia either, of course, but that hadn't been the case since at least the 1450s anyway.

This explanation is much simpler and easier to believe than the explanations you are both proposing. Mike, you want to see the World card in CY and Charles VI as Fame, and the Chariot as Pudicitia. But at the same time, you feel compelled to admit that in other decks the World card sometimes isn't Fame, even in some of the earliest examples, like the PMB—where you both think Justice is Fame! It is really not plausible to assume that the subjects would jump around from one card to another as much as this. Yes, I am suggesting that the Chastity card turned into Fame, but in my view that means Fame could not have been present anywhere in the deck when that happened, not that it was moved from one card to another. That is exceedingly unlikely, especially when you consider that this means changing its place in the order of trumps.
And then you have to engage in a complex, convoluted and highly improbable explanation of how the Chariot can be Pudicitia even when the figure is male (Charles VI and others) or a naked woman prancing about with a ribbon (Minchiate).

I feel that for both of you, your errors are an unfortunate consequence of your dogged conviction that Fame just has to be there somewhere. But if you are having difficulty finding Fame in the sequence, the obvious explanation is that, like Prudence and the theological virtues, it simply isn't there—and certainly not that it is concealed on a card that looks far more like a representation of another subject. It is far easier to explain the former (its absence) than to explain the latter.

If a card appears to represent one thing much more than another, we should interpret it as being that thing, unless we have an absolutely compelling reason not to, and we definitely do not in these cases. We must therefore assume that CY World is Eternity, that PMB Justice is Justice, and neither is Fame. Any other interpretation flies in the face of the evidence.

Re: The Chariot

#48
Nathaniel wrote:
In the week since I wrote my post above, my views have changed in one important detail: I am now inclined to think that the Ur-tarot quite possibly did not contain all six Petrarchan Triumphs. I think it may only have contained five, with Fame (earthly Fame that is, Gloria Mundi) absent from the start. This means that the first explanation in my post above would be the correct one: Fame was not in the deck when tarot made its way to Florence, meaning that Chastity/Pudicitia could have turned into Fame very early in the course of the deck's development in that city.
I think, you spoke of the Cary-Yale.
Image
Kaplan in his Tarot Encyclopedia I created the illusion, that this card means world, cause the standard theory of Kaplan's research time was, that Tarot had already a "mondo". But Tarot in c. 1441 didn't exist (Tarocho existed in 1502, Tarochi and Taraux in 1505, the deck type was called Trionfi or ludus triumphorum) and there is no evidence, that decks with 22 trumps or special cards existed.
The picture shows a trumpet with wings, it's not easy to see it immediately.

http://emblems.let.uu.nl/av1615033.html ... the emblem book combines pictures with text, and the text shall explain the picture:
Image
Ne tumeas fastu, si non ingloria nomen
Fama tibi & laudes addidit egregias.
Sic te larga Dei excepit clementia: cuius
Iste tibi solo munere cessit honor.
The Chariot in the PMB doesn't mean FAME. Fame was presented by the card, which was taken as Justice, as already demonstrated.
The Chariot in the Cary-Yale doesn't mean FAME. Fame was presented by the card, which was interpreted as Mondo-World.

English wiki
Pudicitia ("modesty" or "sexual virtue") was a central concept in ancient Roman sexual ethics. The word is derived from the more general pudor, the sense of shame that regulated an individual's behavior as socially acceptable.
The basic triade of the first 3 Trionfi of Petrarca is composed by the 3 essentials of life, birth, wedding and funeral. Birth Trionfi happened for the first son of a noble house (as in the case of Alfonso d'Este; btw. Amor, the god of love, had a very young outfit), the wedding trionfi was the journey of the bride (as in the case of of Eleonore of Wragon, mother of Alfonso) and the funeral Trionfo was especially spectacular in the case of Cosimo Medici.

I don't see much difference between Pudicitia and Chastity, both addresses the larger context, how a girl becomes a woman.

There are Trionfi card Chariots with female rider and those with male rider. The female riders are in the older decks, the male riders in the younger. Possibly 20-25 years might be between the 2 different motifs, male or female for the chariot rider . I don't expect, that the Trionfi decks with male riders had still a strong orientation on the Trionfi poem structure. The older version of PMB with 14 cards had this stronger orientation.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: The Chariot

#49
Huck wrote:
23 Feb 2020, 14:49
Kaplan in his Tarot Encyclopedia I created the illusion, that this card means world, cause the standard theory of Kaplan's research time was, that Tarot had already a "mondo".
Kaplan did not "create" the identification of this card as the World. Leopoldo Cicognara was the first to describe these cards, in 1831. He called it "XXI. Mondo," page 62.
Image
https://archive.org/details/gri_3312500 ... 5/mode/2up
Image

Re: The Chariot

#50
.... :-) ... nice, but for the usual English reader likely Kaplan was responsible. The Trionfi.com version of Cary-Yale-with-Fame was self-developed and existed at least since 2003 (FAME at the lower left chessboard field) ...
http://trionfi.com/0/c/35/
Image

... although I think, that the observation of the hidden trumpet came later, just as a confirmation of an earlier suspicion. The suggested order of CY was replaced later, the idea with Pope and Papessa was dropped. The actual version looks more like this:
Cary-Yale Tarocchi
Image

with a larger and readable version at ..
http://a-tarot.eu/pdf/cy-jpg.jpg
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests

cron