Posted: 12 Nov 2009, 22:10
A thread to discuss the iconography of The Sun
Over 500 years of history in 78 cards
Thank you Huck,Huck wrote: ...the following card, made according the usual Visconti-Sforza Tarot, is given to 17th century
Albrecht Dürer made this painting 1512 - the combination of sun, moon and basilisk is interpreted as "eternity"Wikipedia wrote:Splendor Solis ("The Splendor of the Sun") is a well-known colorful alchemical manuscript. The earliest version, written in Central German, is dated 1532-1535 and is housed at the Prussian State Museum in Berlin. It is illuminated on vellum, with decorative borders like a book of hours, beautifully painted and heightened with gold. The later copies in London, Kassel, Paris and Nuremberg are equally fine. In all twenty copies exist worldwide.
The original of Splendor Solis which contained seven chapters appeared in Augsburg. In miniatures the works of Albrecht Dürer, Hans Holbein and Lucas Cranach were used. The author of the manuscript was considered to be a legendary Salomon Trismosin, allegedly the teacher of Paracelsus. The work itself consists of a sequence of 22 elaborate images, set in ornamental borders and niches. The symbolic process shows the classical alchemical death and rebirth of the king, and incorporates a series of seven flasks, each associated with one of the planets. Within the flasks a process is shown involving the transformation of bird and animal symbols into the Queen and King, the white and the red tincture. Although the style of the Splendor Solis illuminations suggest an earlier date, they are quite clearly of the 16th century.
That is, if the 21 trumps of the Tarot de Marseille pattern are laid out in a 3x7 grid, the light of the World the Sun, is above the light of the world the Pope, and both 'lights of the world', the Sun and the Pope, have a vignette of a couple beneath them. Similarly we may note that the deceiver of an Ephesian juggler old Adam is below the great deceiver the Devil above, the popesse (which we may interpret as faith or the church) below the house of God, the empress, wife and mother of king of kings is below the star, sign for the birth of the king of kings, the light of the world emperor beneath the light of the world the moon, cupiditas is below caritas, and the chariot of 'the little world' is below the greater world above (which also bears the four holy animals of the Chariot in Ezekial's vision), or the triumphal prince as groom is below his bride, the City, Jerusalem represented by a maid (as was common in triumphal entries of the king into the city), relating to my crackpot theory that the triumphal prince completes a rank of seven cards that mirror the Augustinian concept of citizenship of the two cities as dependent upon the object of one's love, not one's position in society. From perfect love arises the virtues by which one triumphs over the viscitudes of life towards the perfection of the soul, thus the middle rank of seven cards defined a virtue beginning, middle and end.SteveM wrote:Beneath the light of the World
Beneath the light of the World,
the Sun, stand the shepherd Kings,
twins Romulus and Remus:
before a wall of bricks stand
the City building brothers;
above the light of the World,
the Pope: Shepherd of Shepherds,
the Bishop of Rome, on high
above the conquered founders
of an Empire made Christendom.
Note also that the crucifixion of Christ is said by a variety of sources to have taken place under the consulship of the two Gemini at Rome. By which the sign Gemini by nature of a pun on the two consuls name comes to symbolise the end of Christ's passion.SteveM wrote: Re: the poem note that another name for Gemini (the twins, castor and pollux (on whose ship St. Paul was brought to Rome, romulus and remus (founders of Rome)) is 'bricks' or 'pile of bricks'.