Re: The Hermit

#31
Ross,
Incredibly nice find - I keep coming across that painting and wondering if it was discussed in an article somewhere. Trexler touches only briefly on it (Public Life in Renaissance Florence, 234).

Some thoughts on the details, from left to right:
1. The Time standard bearer has a small dog on the lower part of the horse's caparison; the same image is on the gold(?) shield on the helmeted jouster towards the front of the action. The bridle has a name on its cover: Francesco; opposite him in black a "Carlotto" charges forward. There are other names but I can't make them out. Any chance Francesco Sforza's company would have been participating in a joust in 1440? After the Anghiari victory the herald's poem gives "all thanks to Sforza's men" even though they were lead by his cousin, Michele Attendolo. However, I'm not sure of the date of the Sforza adoption of the dog imprese; image here:
http://www.storiadimilano.it/arte/impre ... age060.jpg
2. The woman on the right banner: Psyche, being looked down on by Cupid, perhaps even in a cage (the latter no longer visible on the small hill to the right)? Just read this fascinating article which connects the myth's depiction by the early Medici: "Cupid and Psyche in Renaissance Painting before Raphael," Luisa Vertova, Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, Vol. 42, (1979), pp. 104-121. EDIT - scratch this: The "woman standing on a globe, holding a bow (I can't make out what her left hand is doing)" - the bow is at rest, unstrung, and thus the lax bowstring in her other hand (its colored in alternating bands, but definitely a "rope" of some kind hanging from her hand). Perhaps the fiery desires of the world are being held in check by a version of Chastity, refusing to do Cupid's bidding, thus tying it to the theme of the banner (if Psyche and Cupid)? Actually I believe the bow is strung and the limp rope, made of the same material as the border of the banner, trails back as if to pull the banner (although the banner bearer is clearly not behind the "world" float; perhaps "painter's logic" is at work here). So Venus with her son's attributes, with Psyche inflammed with passion for Cupid? Here are triumphs of Chastity (c. 1450-1460) and Love (c. 1460) on birth trays by the same artist who did the cassone in question (Apollonio di Giovanni); the cassone almost appears to have switched out Chastity [or more likley Venus] for Cupid upon the latter's globe :
Image

Image

For comparison's sake - the cassone detail:
Image

Phaeded

There goes that theory, was Ca. 1440 Time with hourglass

#32
There goes that theory, for the Time being, more or less...

A new paper, 2012 - Patricia Lurati, in "A proposito del cassone di Apollonio di Giovanni con scena di giostra alla Yale University Art Gallery", in Annali di Storia di Firenze, VII, pp. 35-71.

There are multiple online sources for the paper.

Lurati argues for a daing of ca. 1460 for the cassone, suggesting it is a depiction of the games held in April 1459 for the visit of the Pope, Pius II, and Galeazzo Maria Sforza.

Her argument sounds fairly good to me, and the main detail that made former scholars like the great student of cassoni Paul Schubring date it to about 1440 was the account of a giostra held in 1439, on account of the Council, and the fact that the statue on the church, Donatello's St. Louis of Toulouse, was moved from there before 1452 (pp. 40-41; she provides a comparative picture of the cassone and the statue, which has survived, in figs. 3 and 4 (p. 65))). The first argument she deals with easily, showing how the accounts of the tournament of 1459 match far better the cassone than what is known about those of 1439.

The other argument she deals with by attributing the statue's presence to "artistic licence" (note 55 (p. 55)), or that something like it still existed. It seems a minor point, given her overwhelming presentation of the similarities of accounts with many of the details of the painting, but I have to read it and think about it more before giving up entirely on the earlier dating.
Image

Re: The Hermit

#33
Following "Carlotta" and "Francesco" I found the note ...
Partecipa alla battaglia di Tenno; salva Niccolò Piccinino dalla cattura mentre egli è fatto prigioniero con 200 cavalli e 300 fanti da Francesco Sforza e dal Gattamelata (60 morti fra i veneziani e più di 300 fra i viscontei). Condotto a Verona è rinchiuso in Castelvecchio: viene rilasciato poco dopo in cambio di Domenico Malatesta.
... for "Carlo Gonzaga" in November 1439 ...
http://www.condottieridiventura.it/inde ... di-tortona

... which didn't take place in a tournament at San Croce in Florence, but on the Venetian/Milanese battlefields end of 1439, a few months after the council.

But Francesco Sforza had been a tournament hero in Florence before (in the early time in the Marches after 1433, I remember at least two occasions ; surely also at the given place, San Croce) and his success November 1439 was surely "observed with great interest" in Florence, which waited for good news from the battlefield. Wasn't it so, that Carlo Gonzaga was then considered as a possible alternative future husband for Bianca Maria ? ... a plan, which likely was dropped after Carlo Gonzaga was captured ("è fatto prigioniero").

In 1438 Francesco Sforza prepared a wedding in Fermo, but Bianca Maria didn't come. Finally he crossed the river Po, in a Florence/Venetian commission. Florence was often involved in the complicated negotiations. That just Francesco Sforza captured Carlo Gonzaga naturally triggered enthusiasm.

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

Perhaps arguments of the used style of the picture indicate "an early work", which might have led to the assumption, that this would be "from c. 1440"?

The "Lady in the boat" would be Bianca Maria ... the "naked Time" might indicate, that Sforza would get Bianca Maria anyway.
Too bad, that the reading of the other names is rather difficult.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: The Hermit

#34
The cassone in question seems to be a commentary of the the empty Dowry fund 'Monte della Doti'
The Mountain of debt (the mountain in the boat) has a gilded cage upon it.
Deposit made at 5yrs held for 15 years, by 1440 the fund was deeply in debt and the husband had trouble getting the Dowry after marriage.
Naked time= 15 years and no money for groom.
Several good books are around about the crisis of Monte della Doti dowry fund.
Makes the Hermit of the PMB understandable in some sense, with his hourglass.
The Universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.
Eden Phillpotts

Re: The Hermit

#35
Lorredan wrote:The cassone in question seems to be a commentary of the the empty Dowry fund 'Monte della Doti'
The Mountain of debt (the mountain in the boat) has a gilded cage upon it.
Deposit made at 5yrs held for 15 years, by 1440 the fund was deeply in debt and the husband had trouble getting the Dowry after marriage.
Naked time= 15 years and no money for groom.
Several good books are around about the crisis of Monte della Doti dowry fund.
Makes the Hermit of the PMB understandable in some sense, with his hourglass.
Interesting observation .... as these cassone were often made for weddings, the dowry question is indeed very near.

Though I don't feel sure, that it is a critique. We don't know for sure, that the picture is really from 1440.

In 1440 had been a general crisis, cause Piccinini attacked Toscana. Everybody in Toscana had problems, especially the price for grain.
For the moment I don't find a specific crisis for the "Monte della Doti" around this time.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: The Hermit

#36
Not that what I say next dates the cassone, but might help with the subject it portrays.
From Dante on Old Florence, but right on until mid 15th century, the increasing cost of having daughters and their need for dowry,(both for marriage and convent) connects the image of Time and Dowry together.
Florence, within the ancient boundary
From which she taketh still her tierce and nones,
Abode in quiet, temperate and chaste.

No golden chain she had, nor coronal,100
Nor ladies shod with sandal shoon, nor girdle
That caught the eye more than the person did.

Not yet the daughter at her birth struck fear
Into the father, for the time and dower
Did not o'errun this side or that the measure.
In 1441-1442 Soldiers pay and fortifications and armory were unable to be paid- so the Government fund raided the Doti and put the doti/dowry fund at risk.
The cassone could well show Dante's Old Florence, but I do not understand the jug and ribbon in the triumph figure's right hand. Is it to put out the fire of sin/unchastness/promiscuity etc? It is not an actual event- it is allegory like Appolonia Giovanni's other cassone's i.e Triumph of Darius at Issus said to be 1450c.
The Universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.
Eden Phillpotts

Re: The Hermit

#37
I agree, that dowry should have been a great theme.

In my own ancestor research a local "Brautschatz-Verzeichnis" (since 1760) was a major source for information. The place, where this was formally done, had been about 15-20 km apart, and one had to cross a river to get this done.

For the local farmer society the Brautschatz was very important, it formed the society of the future. The contract was just a big part of the one great event in life, the wedding, the "big thing" between birth and death, which is also recorded in the formal acts.
... :-) ... is ancestor research usually only these 3 things are recorded ...

A woman in a boat with a mountain on it. Do we have this symbol somewhere else?
Huck
http://trionfi.com

The boat lady

#38
About the lady on the boat, on a standard-bearer's tournament flag:
Image


How about the lady on the right, in Bartolomeo's "Song of the Virtues and Sciences", c. 1350 (in the same ms. as the Saturn I posted)?
Image


She is Spes. The illumnation illustrates the line in the poem (as I posted at viewtopic.php?f=11&t=862&p=12633&hilit=Dorez#p12631):
SPES: Chon più me trovo in fievoletta barcha,
Più spiero in Dio, del ciel patre e monarcha.
(SPES: The more I am in this feeble boat,
The more I have hope in God, heaven’s father and king.)
Hope is a suitable sentiment to put on one's banner in a tournament, it seems to me. I'm not sure there's a mountain; it looks like the prow of the boat to me. It might be a reference to Mary Magdalene, who according to legend was put in a boat without a rudder to sail where it would. Fortunately, she had someone to watch over her, and she landed at the mouth of the Rhone.

Re: The boat lady

#39
mikeh wrote:About the lady on the boat, on a standard-bearer's tournament flag:

...

She is Spes. The illumnation illustrates the line in the poem (as I posted at viewtopic.php?f=11&t=862&p=12633&hilit=Dorez#p12631):
SPES: Chon più me trovo in fievoletta barcha,
Più spiero in Dio, del ciel patre e monarcha.
(SPES: The more I am in this feeble boat,
The more I have hope in God, heaven’s father and king.)
Hope is a suitable sentiment to put on one's banner in a tournament, it seems to me. I'm not sure there's a mountain; it looks like the prow of the boat to me. It might be a reference to Mary Magdalene, who according to legend was put in a boat without a rudder to sail where it would. Fortunately, she had someone to watch over her, and she landed at the mouth of the Rhone.
Well, Marco at ...
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=983&start=23
... noted another association of Hope and boat
Vincenzo Imperiali (Ferrara, 1550 ca), in his reply to Lollio's Invective, associates the Star trump with Hope:

Per ordine dapoi si’ ne vien quella,
Ch’à naviganti da non poca spene,
D’indurli al porto, e trarli di procella.

(In the order [below the Sun and the Moon] follows the one
that gives hope to the sailors of leading them
to a port, saving them from the storm.)
Venus (morning and evening star) easily is connected to water and ships (goddess of Cyprus, after the phallus dropped from heaven).

Generally one shouldn't overlook, that Spes had its other second system, the "4 passions" ... Love, Hope, Fear and Jealousy.

There the theme seems to be more the general erotic drama than a "theological order".
"Female Hope" naturally associates "Hope for a husband" and then we would be close to the "Dowry theme".

***********

Inside the "Decamerone" research the general opinion was expressed, that the 7 women, accompanied by 3 men, were disguised "7 virtues".
I'd spend some time to get an opinion, what this might mean. To me it seemed clear, that Hope is the youngest of the theological virtues, Caritas the oldest (in Boccaccio's idea). As the youngest ("before marriage" in the old triad "girl, married woman, old woman" alias Hebe-Hera-Hekate with Hebe waiting for Herakles) the theme is naturally "who will marry me".
Huck
http://trionfi.com

The Alessandro Sforza Temperance card

#40
Phaeded had some interesting questions about Temperance in relation to Saturn. I have some comments, first a short one and then a longer one. If what I say withstands criticism, I will post a link on the Temperance thread.

Phaeded wrote,
I was thinking of a possible later conflation of Temperance/Saturn imagery (more on that below), but one can connect Temperance and Saturn at an early date via Dante’s Paradiso (they represent the same sphere). The question is: was Temperance represented as diluting wine with water with two jugs at a date prior to Mike’s Saturn image with a jug in the 14th century? Very speculative here (need the full context of Mike’s image) but Aquarius seems to be a negative aspect (upside down) with Saturn looking away from that constellation’s upturned jug. Saturn is usually considered malefic so perhaps the opposite of Temperance here – not diluting the wine (his jug) with water?
The context of the Saturn image isn't much. Just a series of illustrations of the planets, of which Mars, Saturn, and Jupiter exist, perhaps the others weren't made, as Mars is unfinished. (I thought it was the Sun at first, as there are rays behind him; but Dorez says Jupiter, and indeed he's with Pisces and Sagittarius.) Probably they are from the same workshop as the Bartolomeo "Virtues and Liberal Arts" series, Bologna, then transferred to Milan after Bruzio Visconti, who commissioned it, was exiled.

Looking in Katzenellenbogen, Allegories of the virtues and vices in mediaeval art, I see that most of the depictions of Temperance showed her with two vessels, sometimes mixing them. Mixing water with wine is mentioned specifically on p. 45, in relation to the depictions of the virtues on "the Eilbertus Altar from the Guelph Treasure, circa 1150-1160"; also p. 49, from the Meuse School, circa 1160-1170. On that one, there is the inscription, "Omne tulit punctum, qui miscuit utile dulei", from Horace, he says. There is nothing about Temperance with an hourglass. That must have come later, perhaps localized in Italy. The book mainly draws on Northern European images, from the 9th through 13th centuries.

I see no significance to Aquarius's being upside-down. After all, the other one is sideways. It just fits there. Also, that's where the context in the manuscript might be relevant, which I didn't give. For Jupiter, one of the fishes of Pisces is in back of the figure, the other on his right; and Sagittarius is on his left. All are sideways. For Mars, no zodiac signs appear to have been drawn, as far as I can make out.

Also, from the description, it would appear that Saturn is not being portrayed negatively. He is portrayed as a god of agriculture, hence beneficial.

Phaeded wrote, very interestingly, I think,
The conflation of Temperance/Saturn attributes I hinted at above is in regard to the Temperance(?) card from the AS deck. The naked person atop the deer appears to be pouring the liquid out onto his own genitals – presumably inhibiting the sexual desire, just as the effects of wine are diluted when mixed with water. By this date Time/Saturn was shown with an hourglass, its two chambers pouring into one another resembling that of the two jugs pouring into one another by Temperance (and again, Dante explicitly links them). But to my primary point: why Temperance on a deer? As we know from the Florentine cassoni, that animal is Saturn’s – thus the conflation (or rather loaned attribute). I can see no other explanation for a deer with Temperance.
Well, let's see:
Image

Someone has taken pains to rub out whatever was there. From the whitish spots, it looks to me like a female-genitalia-looking cup being poured onto a male-genitalia-looking torch. I get "torch" from data in Katzenellenbogen. Talking about the 9th century ms. with the four cardinal virtues that I referred to and Huck found a colored picture of, he says (p. 55):
Temperance holds a torch and pours out a jug full of water, for, as Julianus Pomerius says: "Ignem libidinosse voluptatis extinguit". Footnote: De vita contemplativa lib. III, cap. 19 (Migne P. L. 59, 502)
I could not find Migne listed in his bibliography, to decipher the "P. L." But here is Ross's enlargement of that Temperance, somewhat reduced:
Image


Katzenellenbogen adds that
Temperantia's attributes were exchanged, in the course of the 11th century, for a cup and bottle. Mixing water with wine, the virtue reduces the over-potent drink to one of moderate strength (Figs. 33, 34).
Fig. 33 is a "Rhenish Lectionary, c. 1130" (http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-hGMv1LYaD8k/U ... /Fig33.JPG). Here are its Temperance and Justice:
Image


Fig. 34 is French, early 11th century. Here is the Temperance from his Fig. 34:
Image

Here are both 34 and 35, whole illuminations: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-ZtTONtCGrpM/U ... 252635.JPG. I did not see anything of interest in 35, but it was on the same page.

Unfortunately Katzenellenbogen does not give other illustrations of the cardinal virtues. On the cards, of course, we usually have two similar vessels, not dissimilar as in his examples (an exception is the Catelin-Geoffroy).

Katzenellenbogen continues (p. 56)
Temperantia bears a spray of blossom as well as her usual vessels.
He cites examples from the 12th century.

However even in the latter part of the 13th century Temperance was shown with torch and vessel. His example is Arundel ms. 83 II, British Museum, in Trees of the Virtues and Vices. He says (p. 72) "cf. Saunders [O. Elfrida Saunders, English Illumination I, Florence-Paris 1928], pl. 105 and p. 103". I went to the library yesterday and looked up this reference. All it had was the Tree of the Vices; but it said that this ms. was also called the De Lisle Psalter. I found a book on this ms, The Psalter of Robert de Lisle in the British Library, by Lucy Freeman Sandler, and scanned the relevant image. Below, the part with Temperance is on the right.
Image

The whole illumination is at http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-c5EjM4lUmaA/U ... irtues.JPG.

Of the attributes, Sandler says:
Prudence holds a dove and a serpent at arms' length; Justice holds a palm branch (whip?) and scale; Fortitude, a sword and shield with a heraldic lion; Temperance, a chalice-like bowl (of water?) and a cornucopia of fire.
I would say a torch, following Katzenellenbogen's designation. And for Prudence, winged serpent. A similar image occurs at the bottom right of another illumination in the same book (by a different artist, not quite as good), this one of a "tower of wisdom," another diagram of virtues: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-URo3y37vpH0/U ... 3Tower.JPG. Same attributes, except that the lion on the shield is exchanged for a red cross on white ground. Both illuminations are part of a "speculum theologiae" series of 13 or 14 such diagrams that were extremely popular. Most do not illustrate the virtues with persons, just columns with words on them. I will have a post with more details about them on the "theological virtues" thread.

This Psalter is English, with a note written in it saying,
I Robert de Lyle give this book on this day [November 25] in the year of our Lord 1339 to my daughter Audere with my blessing. ... Written in my hand.
However it was done "in the years soon after 1308", Freeman says, based on the theological diagrams in it (including the Tree of Virtue) worked out in France that did not start appearing in manuscripts until the "first years of the fourteenth century" (p. 17)

Then there is the question of the deer. Deer as such are not listed in Katzenellenbogen. But he does have something on a stag:
Constantia with two windows in her breast (mirror of faith) and a leaping stag (heavenly longing) above them
It is in an illumination of Christ surrounded by five virtues, in a manuscript of Hildegard of Bingen's Liber Scivias, c. 1175. It illustrates her first vision. But did Hildegard have conventional visions or idiosyncratic ones?

Looking in other books, I see that a stag meant "longing for God" in the St. Albans Psalter. This work is 13th century. per http://www.abdn.ac.uk/stalbanspsalter/english/. One image and explanation is at http://www.abdn.ac.uk/stalbanspsalter/e ... e154.shtml. Another image, from a different copy, is reproduced in Kristine Haney The St. Albans Psalter: an Anglo-Norman song of faith, p. 428. Since I can reproduce it here (unlike the other) I will focus on it, even though the one online is more beautiful.

Image


The second verse is what is being illustrated:
As the hart panteth after the fountains of water, so my soul panteth after thee, O God.
However in the illustration it appears that the stag is consuming a serpent rather than water. Haney says (p. 493):
The visual theme here is the longing of the petitioner for God, expressed in v. 2. Here are two further themes not clearly addressed in the psalm itself. Goldschmidt (292) points out that there is a reference to the Physiologus, which describes the stag killing the serpent in order not to die but to obtain fresh water. The other is Christ's direct involvement with the psalmist. While the psalmist cries out to Christ in psalm 41, it would appear that the trust in God expressed in v. 2 is symbolized by the stag overcoming the serpent which symbolizes the soteriological power of Christ.
The online commentary points out what might be the best explanation:
The stag devours a serpent and no fountains are illustrated. This is because the illustration is allegorical. St. Augustine wrote that when the stag ate the serpent (evil) it developed a great thirst and came to drink the pure waters of baptism. (PL, St. Augustine, xxxvi, 465).
Haney notes (pp. 493f) that the same theme of the stag for this psalm is in the Utrecht Psalter, the Stuttgart Psalter, and several Byzantine psalters. These all have water instead of a serpent. The theme of the serpent seems to be an interpretation introduced by Augustine, according to the online commentary.

An illustration of a stag is in the Physiologia of Angelos Gregorios, Crete 1510. I suspect this copies previous Physiologias.
Image

So the stags for Time's chariot (not Saturn's; he usually had dragons, I think) is to suggest that in old age one longs for God.

Between Phaeded's analysis of what is in the hands, and mine of what the stag means, I think we now have a fairly complete interpretation of the Alessandro Sforza Temperance card. The extinction of the sexual appetite and a longing for God. In Platonic terms (the Symposium), it is the transmutation of vulgar love into celestial love, Aphrodite Pandemos into Aphrodite Uranos, Göttliche Liebe.

This, it seems to me, is especially suitable for a Temperance card that either immediately precedes or follows the Death card, as it seems to relate particularly to old age, and so the soul just before or after death; in the latter case, not only are the bodily appetites extinguished, but the body itself.

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