Hello Phaeded,Phaeded wrote:Ross,
Straw man’s argument and you know it. Unless I’ve missed something there is not a single scrap of explicit evidence as to why anyone actually commissioned a triumph deck; Giusti, the only reference to actually state such a deck was commissioned (again, unless I’ve missed something), merely provides the name of the city in which it was made.
what you write deeply saddens me. You sometimes seem to have some awareness of the fact that your knowledge of the available evidence is incomplete, but more often you seem to lose touch with the situation and write things like the first sentence in this post or that "it is impossible to not think" what you think, or that your own fantasies are "not unreasonable". We are very lucky to have a chance to discuss here our hobby with serious scholars like Ross. I think we should try to speak to them with some respect, so that they don't lose their interest in helping us understand more of tarot history.
Giusto Giusti clearly states that the Tarot deck was a personal gift (“donai”) from him to Malatesta. He personally commissioned the deck and paid for it.
Venerdì a di 16 settembre donai al magnifico signore messer Gismondo un paio di naibi a trionfi, che io avevo fatto fare a posta a Fiorenza con l’armi sua, belli, che mi costaro ducati quattro e mezzo. (Friday 16 September, I donated to the magnificent lord sir Gismondo, a pack of triumph cards, that I had made expressly in Florence, with his arms, and beautifully done, which cost me four and a half ducats.)
I am sorry that to you Depaulis' discovery “merely provides the name of the city in which [the deck] was made”. I hope that, if you take the time to carefully read this sentence again, you will be able to get a lot more information out of it. If you have trouble reading Italian, I will be happy to help.
Luckily, Ross and other scholars have also found other evidence as to why people commissioned card decks. Apparently, they were commissioned for the personal use of the commissioner or as gifts (but no case I can think of can be interpreted as a marriage gift). Here are some examples:
* Filippo Maria's 16 Gods deck (1425 ca) which the duke invented and comissioned to Marziano and Michelino. (The documents have been translated from Latin by Ross). A game that would “be enjoyable, and ... fitted to the serious man wearied of virtue ... and ... conducive to happiness”. Filippo Maria kept this game for himself (Marcello found it among "the riches and splendours of the Duke" in 1449). His personal passion for card games is documented by Decembrio.
* This 1442 note in which Leonello D'Este pays for a trionfi deck made “for his own use”.
* This other 1442 note in which a deck is bought for Leonello's young brothers (9 and 11 years old).
* This 1452 letter (brought to our attention by Ross) in which the secretary of Francesco Sforza commisions a trionfi deck with the ducal coat of arms as a present for Sigismondo Malatesta (who had written to Bianca Maria asking for such a deck).
Thanks to trionfi.com and google, this information is accessible to everyone. Others have done the hard work for us, I feel grateful to them. If you are not interested enough in the subject to do a google search, you could politely ask for help, instead of writing that “there is not a single scrap of explicit evidence” about something.