Bertrand wrote:Sorry for the late reply, as you point out elsewhere. Although my french is correct, my english is at its best barely acceptable so I didn't react to your message hoping that someone else would be more at ease in helping you here.
Much thanks, Bertrand, I can deal very good with somebodies else bad English than with my own worse French ...
... and actually I never noticed, that your English is bad (perhaps cause I also have some bad English occasionally ... .-)) You indeed got some details, which I alone wouldn't have figured out.
At p. 113: The author is in Nevers and a young princess wants to play Tarot, the author seems not very interested. The father of the princess dies. In the further development, the author gets a lot to do with the paper material of the family. It seems, that at least till 1656 he had intensive contact.
translating the passage regarding the princess of Mantoue
Madam the Princess Marie wanted to play Tarots, which is a kind of cards that used to be played much more formerly that is is nowadays ; and, having invited me to be in her game, as the rules didn't seem beautiful enough to her, nor varied enough, she decided to create new ones, and instructed me to wrute them and have them printed, so they would be more useful and so that no one would abuse.
It is true that those rules made the game a lot more beautiful, et the ones who learned them and got used to them enjoyed them so much that they could nearly not like any other game. I was among those ones ; and although I wasn't lucky, as I wasn't lucky in any other games, I must admit that the hours I spent playing it seemed quite short. But since this Princess's exaltation deprived me of the happiness to see her, I didn't like this game anymore nor didn't I care anymore to see the great world maybe "the high society" might be more appropriate here
So it's indeed a sort of 95% confirmation, that the rules, which we know, are those, which are written by Marmolles, under the assumption, that location and printing date somehow appears in the document. In the latter part he seems to reflect the condition, that the princess left France to become Polish queen around 1445, which would mean, Marmolles more or less didn't play the game between 1645-56.
His personal impression is in 1456/57 (as you translated), that "Tarots, which is a kind of cards that used to be played much more formerly that is is nowadays" ... with which he naturally only expresses his own individual observation. If one takes his opinion as of general value, it would possibly say, that society played "Tarots till ca. 1445", but lost interests later.
If one looks at the general politic, then we have a grown-up king plus the necessary connected dominating "grown-up society" till 1643, when the king died, and a new child-king started to reign with his minister of the state Mazarin and a king-mother in the background.
The "princess" builds a salon since 1640 and likely causes a lot of opportunity to play with cards herself - but only till 1645. Marolles himself is noted to have frequented also the salon of Madame de Scuderi, likely later. In her character the literary aspects seem to have dominated. Also the time of the Fronde might have caused, that opportunities to play with cards became less.
This all might have been changed since around 1455-56, when the young king himself started to demand own public festivities, or when he officially took the reign, in 1461.
We've another printing of rules in 1659, so perhaps the public sign, that Tarot cards use started a new, more successful, period.
Would be nice to know a little bit more about the two salons, that of the "princess" and that of Scudery.
(there is a 3rd "very important" salon mentioned in the Wiki article
["The first renowned salon in France was the Hôtel de Rambouillet not far from the Palais du Louvre in Paris, which its hostess, Roman-born Catherine de Vivonne, marquise de Rambouillet (1588–1665), ran from 1607 until her death. She established the rules of etiquette of the salon which resembled the earlier codes of Italian chivalry."] .... more intensive described in the biography of the owner, see
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catherine_ ... ambouillet
the 1637 rule might well be the version of the game created for the princess Louise-Marie, also it might be inspired by Marolles' father way of playing the tarots, or is it the then standard rule ? I lack severalimportant references in recent researches so please excuse me if I missed the point.
That's it for book 1, hope that helps.
Yes, this was already a big help, but the real interesting (and difficult) part might be the analyzes of the ballet-intentions in Book 3.
As I perceive it, it's the "princess", which knows the better rules.
Studying the situation and especially the genealogy and other political conditions, it seems clear, that a close contact between Nevers and Mantova (original home of the Gonzagas) is still given in the critical time (1637).
... and this princess is descended from Isabella d'Este
, which definitely is one of the few very clearly known "Trionfi card women" in 15th/16th century. And she was called for some time the one very dominant woman
Isabella collected and she played cards often (and we may assume: Trionfi cards), connected to some very impressive culture ... she gave a model to later salon behavior. It's likely, that her children grew up with this impression and that this special favor for Tarot cards went through the generations and also to Nevers in France.
The Nevers-Gonzaga definitely stayed in familiary contact, cause - although the Nevers line was founded only by a 3rd son in 1565 by marriage - since 1627 the reigning Nevers-Gonzaga duke got also the major title "Duke of Mantova" for his line ... and spend likely most his time in Italy again, where he died in 1637, just the year of the Tarot rules.
The "princess" had been quasi "prisoned" for some time, and a marriage contract to the oldest brother of the king (so the possible replacement king for the case, that Louis XIII died) was broken by the intervention of the King Louis XIII. before.
After having spent her childhood with her mother, she was to have married Gaston, Duke of Orléans, in 1627, but King Louis XIII of France opposed the marriage and subsequently imprisoned her in the Vincennes fortress and later in a convent.
The first proposal that she marry the King of Poland, Władysław IV Vasa, was made in 1634, but Władysław eventually married Cecilia Renata of Austria.
In 1640, Marie Louise met Władysław's brother, John Casimir, and started her literary salon in Paris.
"After having spent her childhood with her mother, she was to have married Gaston, Duke of Orléans, in 1627" ... this somehow is nonsense, cause her mother was dead in 1618. The mother descended from the d'Este court in Ferrara, she also was half-Italian / half French, somehow also from a Trionfi-card-family. Possibly she partly had been educated in Italy (?) ... perhaps I find a better page.
But I note, that you've made a second post, thanks ... and I see, there's some expanded material to study ... so I better stop my rambling to get the new information.
I just give these additional material to the development of the salons:
The salon was an Italian invention of the 16th century which flourished in France throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. In 16th-century Italy some scintillating circles formed in the smaller courts which resembled salons, often galvanized by the presence of a beautiful and educated patroness such as Isabella d'Este or Elisabetta Gonzaga.
The word salon first appeared in France in 1664 (from the Italian word salone, itself from sala, the large reception hall of Italian mansions). One important place for the exchange of ideas was the salon. Literary gatherings before this were often referred to by using the name of the room in which they occurred, like cabinet, réduit, ruelle and alcôve. Before the end of the 17th century, these gatherings were frequently held in the bedroom (treated as a more private form of drawing room): a lady, reclining on her bed, would receive close friends who would sit on chairs or stools drawn around. This practice may be contrasted with the greater formalities of Louis XIV's petit lever, where all stood. Ruelle, literally meaning "narrow street" or "lane", designates the space between a bed and the wall in a bedroom; it was used commonly to designate the gatherings of the "précieuses", the intellectual and literary circles that formed around women in the first half of the 17th century. The first renowned salon in France was the Hôtel de Rambouillet not far from the Palais du Louvre in Paris, which its hostess, Roman-born Catherine de Vivonne, marquise de Rambouillet (1588–1665), ran from 1607 until her death. She established the rules of etiquette of the salon which resembled the earlier codes of Italian chivalry. The salon evolved into a well-regulated practice that focused on and reflected enlightened public opinion by encouraging the exchange of news and ideas. By the mid-eighteenth century the salon had become an institution in French society and functioned as a major channel of communication among intellectuals.