Re: The Star

#31
Hi Robert,

I made a joke about the original Tarot de Marseille creator and called him "Jos Bleau". I've read somewhere that's Canadian french for Jonh Doe and find it obscure enough to be a private joke. Of course, from such a small sample it is very risk to make assumptions of any kind. But the same would be truth for most of the Science of History.

My assumptions seem reasonable to me. Not right, just reasonable.

1)"Jos Bleau" creator of Tarot de Marseille, whoever he was, was a creative, original, artist that lived in France and produced his work around or a little before 1650. Someone must be the first to put a naked nynph like girl pouring water on the Star card. Does not matter much if he is Noblet or other person. The Cary Sheet, the nearest surviving relative, shows, as Pen instructed me, a boy. And the Tarot de Marseille as a whole is unlike its predecessors..

2)The Jean Noblet tarot did not included the bird. And it is at least 50 year older than any one that included it. So it is reasonable to suppose that the original "Jos Bleau" tarot did not included the bird, being a later addition.

3)Artisans sometimes traveled and changed shops, bringing knowledge from their original Masters. Besides, the XVII century was very unlike modern times. Me, my father and my son all have very different cultural references. But at time, cultural references changed much slower. It seems reasonable that card makers of France understood each other much better than we do.

4) Dodal (or whoever created the bird) had a reason to add it. It seems unlikely that he simply wasted ink to add an unimportant detail that would not improve his selling, if not for some artistic reason. It seems that reason would come from how he understood the card. Of course it could come from an "ink speck" or any other number of reasons. But, again, Historians reconstruct entire civilizations from a little more than accounting records and pottery. There is no point of discuss Tarot History without some educated guess.

"Dodal created the bird 50 years later. He had Noblet's card as a model." is just a much shorter version of what I just said. And, despite my obvious failure, I REALLY try to not write too much. lol

Am I being so far fetched?

A great hug,
What the heck was on the Tarot de Marseille original creator mind ?

Re: The Star

#32
Catholic wrote: Of course, from such a small sample it is very risk to make assumptions of any kind. But the same would be truth for most of the Science of History.
If a scientist were to carry out an experiment with a sample of 4 (or 40!) out of a pool of 1,000,000, I wonder how reliable the research would be?

1)"Jos Bleau" creator of Tarot de Marseille, whoever he was, was a creative, original, artist that lived in France and produced his work around or a little before 1650. Someone must be the first to put a naked nynph like girl pouring water on the Star card. Does not matter much if he is Noblet or other person. The Cary Sheet, the nearest surviving relative, shows, as Pen instructed me, a boy. And the Tarot de Marseille as a whole is unlike its predecessors.
We don't know what the Cary Sheet is, it might be a "proto-Tarot de Marseille" or it might be a variation. It certainly gives witness to some of the iconography of the Tarot de Marseille being known sometime around 1500, the fact that the Star is included and incredibly similar to the Tarot de Marseille is rather astonishing. I'm not convinced it is a man on the Cary Sheet Star. It might be, it might not be. We have the Two Coins from the Sforza Castle cards, which seems very like a Tarot de Marseille card but we can not be certain, dated to 1499. I doubt seriously that the creator of the Jean Noblet tarot, Noblet or whomever, is the creator of the Tarot de Marseille pattern. It seems likely to me that the Marseille pattern dates probably to around or before 1500.
2)The Jean Noblet tarot did not included the bird. And it is at least 50 year older than any one that included it. So it is reasonable to suppose that the original "Jos Bleau" tarot did not included the bird, being a later addition.
This is where I disagree with you. As an example, look at the Noblet Chariot:
Image

Notice that on the Noblet, the faces are missing from the charioteer's shoulders. Should we assume that the faces were added by the next person that copied his tarot? Or is it more likely that the pattern already existed, and this is an omission made by Noblet when he created his version? I think the second option is far more likely, especially since we find that virtually every other sample, whether a Tarot de Marseille I, Tarot de Marseille II, a Besançon or the Vieville... have the faces on the shoulders. So did Noblet make a mistake or did every other carmaker see the shoulders and think, "gee, some faces would look good there!"? The bird might be another example of this. All we can say is that it is missing on the Noblet, but present on most other versions of the Tarot de Marseille. Why? Maybe he hated birds? (and faces on shoulders!). :D
3)Artisans sometimes traveled and changed shops, bringing knowledge from their original Masters. Besides, the XVII century was very unlike modern times. Me, my father and my son all have very different cultural references. But at time, cultural references changed much slower. It seems reasonable that card makers of France understood each other much better than we do.
Yes, there seems to have been a lot of travelling around, moving shop, mix and matching. If you start looking closely at as many TdMs as possible, you really notice this mixing and matching. Sometimes entire cards are replaced and a slightly different looking picture is substituted, other times, little changes happen. If you compare the Jean Payen and the Jean-Pierre Payen, there's even differences between the two of them and this is a case where I would say that the cardmakers did know each others work!
4) Dodal (or whoever created the bird) had a reason to add it. It seems unlikely that he simply wasted ink to add an unimportant detail that would not improve his selling, if not for some artistic reason. It seems that reason would come from how he understood the card. Of course it could come from an "ink speck" or any other number of reasons. But, again, Historians reconstruct entire civilizations from a little more than accounting records and pottery. There is no point of discuss Tarot History without some educated guess.

"Dodal created the bird 50 years later. He had Noblet's card as a model." is just a much shorter version of what I just said. And, despite my obvious failure, I REALLY try to not write too much. lol

Am I being so far fetched?

A great hug,
And hugs back, really! :ymhug:

But yes, I do think you are being a little too far fetched. We don't know at all that Dodal created the bird, I think it is highly unlikely that he did. We don't know who added the bird, it might have been there from the very first Tarot de Marseille deck. Why did they add it? Maybe they liked how it looked? Maybe it reminded them of something they saw as a child? Maybe there was a popular story or saying about a "bird in the tree is better than..", ... we don't know. I do think it is treading into slightly dangerous territory to think that everything on the cards "means" something, or that there is a reason for every detail. And why Dodal? If we are looking for the earliest *existing* instance, it would perhaps be better to award it to the François Chosson from (possibly) 1672.
Image


I've stated several times now that it is likely that we are looking at copies of copies of copies, the existing decks are relatives, but most are not directly related to each other. They all share the DNA of an earlier version, and by comparing and contrasting them, we can, I think, gather some generalities of what the earlier Tarot de Marseille might have looked like. Thankfully, because of the incredible general similarities rather than differences, I think we already have a pretty good idea just by looking at the remaining members of the family. I won't keep on about this anymore, and it is, after all, simply my opinion.

It's great to have you here, I love your enthusiasm, and it's lovely to have someone who shares such a passion for these decks.

cheers,
robert
The Tarot will lose all its vitality for one who allows himself to be side-tracked by its pedantry. - Aleister Crowley

Re: The Star

#33
This is proving to be a fascinating discussion.

May I just note though, that I never 'instruct' anyone? I do see the Cary Sheet Star as a young man, but not everyone does, and I'm perfectly willing to admit that I could be wrong.

Catholic wrote:
The Cary Sheet, the nearest surviving relative, shows, as Pen instructed me, a boy.
Pen (%)
He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy...

Re: The Star

#34
Robert wrote:
All we can say is that it is missing on the Noblet, but present on most other versions of the Tarot de Marseille. Why? Maybe he hated birds? (and faces on shoulders!).


Or perhaps the engraver was less accomplished than others and found such small details too difficult to execute. Some Noblet images are certainly quite crude compared to some other TdMs. But maybe not...:)
He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy...

Re: The Star

#35
Hello,
robert wrote:If a scientist were to carry out an experiment with a sample of 4 (or 40!) out of a pool of 1,000,000, I wonder how reliable the research would be?
I may be wrong and would like to be corrected if I am, but in my understanding, the million is an evaluation of the number of copies, not the number of different decks.
Considering the figures I've seen of the number of cardmakers in different cities, and considering that those who made Tarot decks (not all of them did) may have used (this is an optimistic estimate) four different molds in their carreer, I believe the figure of different decks would be more like thousands (or thousand) - closer to 1000 in my opinion.
Again please correct me if I'm wrong !

Moreover if Noblet was selected by Marolles, it may have been because it was a noticeable deck - either for its craftmanship or because it was a good sample of the dominant model.
Regarding the cardmakers and if they knew what they were doing I'll try to post tomorrow, it's awfully late now.

Bertrand

Re: The Star

#36
robert wrote:
It certainly gives witness to some of the iconography of the Tarot de Marseille being known sometime around 1500, the fact that the Star is included and incredibly similar to the Tarot de Marseille is rather astonishing. I'm not convinced it is a man on the Cary Sheet Star. It might be, it might not be. We have the Two Coins from the Sforza Castle cards, which seems very like a Tarot de Marseille card but we can not be certain, dated to 1499. I doubt seriously that the creator of the Jean Noblet tarot, Noblet or whomever, is the creator of the Tarot de Marseille pattern. It seems likely to me that the Marseille pattern dates probably to around or before 1500.
YES!

We see so many common cards in different "styled" decks, from the more elegant examples of the Cary Sheet deck, the Vieville, the Chosson, to the more rustic Payen/Dodal and Noblet. They seem all to be drawing on a common source, or sources. I've dare to wonder if the source for many of these later woodcut decks (aka TdMs and cousins) may have been a now lost hand-painted deck. Just imagine what THAT would have looked like!! :x
When a clock is hungry, it goes back four seconds.

Re: The Star

#37
Hi robert,

What you call enthusiasm I call my very annoying style to chew an argument ad nausea. But there are advantages of being annoying. Sooner than later, people stop playing nice with you and hammer hard on your mistakes. And this is when I start learning.

I still think that of all candidates known to me (Aquarius, Virgo, Venus and Cassiopeia), the Nymph/Pleiades/Alcyone hypotheses fits better for the naked girl pouring water. But this is because the other candidates fail in at least one point: for do not appear naked, not being a girl or do not pour water. But I am not satisfied with just an iconography that fits. I think you need to tell a story to really do History. And you showed some holes on my story. Maybe I could patch it, but it would lack the charm of my original one.

The reason why I don't mention the Sforza Castle much is because it is so frustrating having only two cards. If we only have the Empress and the Moon of the Cary Sheet, for example, we would guess that it were much closer of the Tarot de Marseille than it really is. Having said that, it is totally possible that the Sforza Castle was, if fact, a full Tarot de Marseille style tarot already in 1500. What a nightmare!!! It means that we don't have a single deck showing anything of the Tarot de Marseille style for at least 150 years after it was created.

But I am ashamed to tell you that the reason why I didn't mention the Chosson deck was that I did not have it. For some reason, people seem to give Noblet, Dodal and Conver some primacy on Tarot de Marseille. And I just assumed that the Chosson were closer to Noblet. But the cursed bird is there. And only 20 yeas after Noblet. This is close enough to chalenge my belief that Noblet's , being both more primitive and half a century older than Dodal, was also the closer to the source. I need time to think about it.

By the way. I don't know if it is of general knowledge. But I've found the Chosson on a awesome page with near 20, copyright free, full deck images on https://tarotmeditations.wordpress.com/decks/.
Pen wrote:
May I just note though, that I never 'instruct' anyone?
I am sorry, Pen. I am not sure what is the strength of "to Instruct" in English. In Portuguese "instruir" is equivalent with "to teach". You taught me to look at the Cary Star in a different way. Now I really see a boy. And teach is good. I am here to learn.

And I think I am not the only one learning from this thread. Five days ago the Star was abandoned. Now she is a hot topic. :-bd
What the heck was on the Tarot de Marseille original creator mind ?

Re: The Star

#38
Hello
Catholic wrote:By the way. I don't know if it is of general knowledge. But I've found the Chosson on a awesome page with near 20, copyright free, full deck images on https://tarotmeditations.wordpress.com/decks/.
I don't think that pictures from the Bibliotheque Nationale can be copyright free, regarding the Chosson, I think the pictures from this specific copy of the deck are not copyright free at all neither.

Bertrand

Re: The Star

#39
Catholic wrote:Hi robert,
Pen wrote:
May I just note though, that I never 'instruct' anyone?
I am sorry, Pen. I am not sure what is the strength of "to Instruct" in English. In Portuguese "instruir" is equivalent with "to teach". You taught me to look at the Cary Star in a different way. Now I really see a boy. And teach is good. I am here to learn.

And I think I am not the only one learning from this thread. Five days ago the Star was abandoned. Now she is a hot topic. :-bd
No need to be sorry, Catholic, I just wanted to make a note for anyone coming late to this thread, as 'instruct' is very strong in English and implies much authority (which I don't possess).

And you're right about this thread... :ymhug:
He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy...

Re: The Star

#40
Bertrand wrote:Hello,
robert wrote:If a scientist were to carry out an experiment with a sample of 4 (or 40!) out of a pool of 1,000,000, I wonder how reliable the research would be?
I may be wrong and would like to be corrected if I am, but in my understanding, the million is an evaluation of the number of copies, not the number of different decks.
Considering the figures I've seen of the number of cardmakers in different cities, and considering that those who made Tarot decks (not all of them did) may have used (this is an optimistic estimate) four different molds in their carreer, I believe the figure of different decks would be more like thousands (or thousand) - closer to 1000 in my opinion.
Again please correct me if I'm wrong !

Moreover if Noblet was selected by Marolles, it may have been because it was a noticeable deck - either for its craftmanship or because it was a good sample of the dominant model.
Regarding the cardmakers and if they knew what they were doing I'll try to post tomorrow, it's awfully late now.

Bertrand
Yes, you're absolutely right Bertrand. Thanks for the clarification. My point really being that the sample is very tiny, and caution should be used when trying to define relationships.
The Tarot will lose all its vitality for one who allows himself to be side-tracked by its pedantry. - Aleister Crowley

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