Re: The Wheel of Fortune

Hello Pen and Robert. I am glad you appreciate this passage :)
I like the fact that Fortune is described as one of the astral powers that turn the heavenly spheres, and that her wheel is seen as one such sphere. I was also impressed by the use of the term "gods" ("dei") to refer to such angelical powers.

Re: The Wheel of Fortune


Fortune appears at the first of 24 paintings in the Echecs Amoureux (Chess of lovers) of Evrart da Conty (c. 1398), which with its 16 gods might have been the idea-giver for Filippo Maria Visconti and his Michelino deck.
It's presented together with Juno (which likely indicates, that the whole book is an interpretation of Chess as a game between lovers in marriage and for the choice of the partner).


See other paintings of echecs amoureux (with 16 gods):

Fortune had also a role in the wedding manuscript for the marriage of Camilla d'Aragon and Costanzo Sforza 1475 ...
the "Influsso of Fortuna" is connected to a rather different picture, a female (?) with a basket with a viper (?) on the shoulder.


So "Fortune" was likely a general wedding guest (at least the "rich weddings"), likely in form of astrologers, who had chosen a lucky and promising day.

Re: The Wheel of Fortune




Pierpont-Morgan-Bergamo Tarocchi, Fortune
If you look very precisely, you discover the ass ears at the upper figure. Likely it refers to King Midas, who was so lucky, that anything he touched became to gold. He got ass ears.


Sebastian Brant: Narrenschiff (1494)

In the German lot book with 22x22x22x22 elements, the donkey was associated to the highest 22th element group, the pope.


Re: The Wheel of Fortune

This is from a fragmented version (fragmented by age). No, the picture is destroyed, the writing is at a second page below the picture page.
Material to Fränkisches Losbuch ... 2941#|home
Note: Not all pictures belong to the lot book. The lot book starts in the 5th row with the right picture and contains totally 13 pictures (last picture is the pope, the first is the lion)
The text is fragmented and in rather bad shape. The lot book is collected inside a MS with other texts.
Berlin, Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin - Preußischer Kulturbesitz, Inventar-Nr. Ms. germ. fol. 642

Other versions are complete

Re: The Wheel of Fortune

dr bartolo wrote:The minchiate eturia seems to have a rather curious thing sitting on its top

(sorry- cannot get the individual pic)

it looks like a donkey to me- any ideas?
Hello friend,

this is an old idea. The theoretical premises are these:

a) The wheel symbolizes the [stupid] desire for the material world, as you can read on the Consolation of Philosophy of Boethius.

b) From a Christian perspective, the important thing is the desire of God, not the desire of material things.

c) The humans are not beast because the humans can have religion. Then if you are not religious, you're an animal.

For example, in the Consolation of Philosophy of Boethius (translated with Google translator):

Who has been transformed by evil can not be taken by men. Which has become a thief, his heart burns with greedy desires the good of others. We would say that is a wolf. The thug and bully with his tongue up countless lawsuits, we could compare it to a stray dog​​. The cunning trickster who hides in the ambush of their fraud will compare the fox. Al intemperate roaring with anger, we attribute the lion's heart. The fugitive trembling coward, terrified of imaginary fear, it seems the deer. The man slave softness and stupidity lives like donkeys. The weak and inconsistent constantly changing tastes no different from the birds. The passions that are wallowing in lewd lives trapped by the pleasure of disgusting pig. Happens, then that leaves virtue ceases to be man and, unable to be god, descends to the condition of the beast

In spanish:

«Quien se ha dejado transformar por el mal no puede ser tenido por hombre. Al que se ha hecho ladrón, el corazón le arde en codiciosos deseos del bien ajeno. Diríamos que es un lobo. El matón y pendenciero que con su lengua levanta pleitos sin cuento, podríamos compararlo con un perro callejero. Al astuto tramposo que se oculta en la emboscada de sus fraudes le compararemos al zorro. Al intemperante que ruge con ira, le atribuiremos el corazón de león. El cobarde tembloroso y fugitivo, aterrado por un miedo imaginario, se parece al ciervo. El hombre esclavo de la molicie y estupidez vive como los asnos. El débil e inconstante que cambia incesantemente de gustos no se diferencia de los pájaros. El que está enfangado en pasiones lascivas vive atrapado por el placer del cerdo repugnante. Sucede, entonces, que abandona la virtud, deja de ser hombre e, incapaz de ser dios, desciende a la condición de la bestia».

This idea was very strong in the Renaissance. For example, Vincenzo Cartari explained at the start of L' Imagini de i dei antichi (translated with Google translator):

«Of all the perfections of human nature, no more no more man's own religion, which is why there was never any people who did not participate in it somehow. Although it is said that man differs from beasts above all by reason, not least also noted that before using it, religion is showing it as something that comes natural to the human soul, as he explained the Platonic philosopher Iamblichus, which said that some divine light was coming to hurt our souls and awakened in them a natural appetite for good, on which we reflect later».

In italian:

«Di tutte le perfettioni date alla natura humana altra non è che sia maggiore della religione, ne piu propia all’huomo, e perciò non fu gente alcuna mai che di questa non participase in qualche modo. E benche si dica che la ragione principalmente fa l’huomo differente da gli animali bruti, nondimeno si vede che ancho innanzi à l’uso di questa , la religione si mostra in lui, come che naturalmente accompagni l’animo humano, secondo che diceva Iamblico Filosofo Platonico, il quale vuole che certo lume divino venghi à ferire gli animi nostri, e che in questi risvegli un appetitio naturale di bene, sopra del quale si discorre poi, e se ne fa giudicio».

Another example is the book La Circe of Giovanni Battista Gelli: ... li&f=false
When a man has a theory // Can’t keep his mind on nothing else (By Ross)

Re: The Wheel of Fortune

mmfilesi wrote:I dont read yet, but sem interesting:

The book of fortune : two hundred unpublished drawings.

Author: Jehan Cousin , Ludovic Lalanne , Imbert d' Anlezy

Literature ... &q&f=false
hm ... 1567 or 68, dedicated to a 14 years old son of French king Henri II (1547-59) ... his 3 brothers become also kings, he not.
E5. François, Duc d'Anjou, d'Alencon, de Touraine, de Berry et de Lorraine; he interposed himself in the struggle between Spain and the United Provinces, and was recognized for a while as Count of Flanders; *1555, +Chateau-Thierry 1584, bur St.Denis

... and to Louis de Gonzaga, duc de Nevers, descending from Isabella d'Este and ancestor to the princess, which urged the publication of the first Tarot rules in 1637, later Queen of Poland
B3. Luigi, Duc de Nevers et Rethel, *22.10.1539, +23.10.1595; m.4.3.1565 Henriette de La Marck, heiress of Nevers et Rethel (*31.10.1542, +24.6.1601)

The scheme shows 100 "double elements", 200 pictures. Recently I wrote short about a memory system in Mantova at the school of Vittorino da Feltre 1434, which had caught the attention of Andrea Vitali.

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=345&p=10296&hilit= ... oco#p10296

There was also a system with 100 elements used ...

Louis de Gonzaga, duc de Nevers, came from the same place (Mantova), where Vittorino da Feltre had worked. Naturally Louis, who was in Nevers (not too far from Paris) likely since "4.3.1565 [marriage to] Henriette de La Marck, heiress of Nevers et Rethel", should have been interested to import Mantovan culture to France (the book project is from 1467/68). If I read the commentary correctly, then the project started big (in good quality, translated to some languages) and ended small (the pictures got less quality, the translation to various languages more or less wasn't fulfilled). It seems to be a half-ruined book project finally. It seems to contain a Mantovan memory system.

But a nice finding anyway ...

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