Re: News and Updates

We've spoken of Geiler over the years. He is the principle basis for the identification of Imperatori with Karnöffel.

Ross 2009, discussing Filippo Maria Visconti's 1420 law about card games:

Mike Howard 2020, in his transcription of Dummett's Game of Tarot:
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=1175&p=22205&hilit= ... udo#p22205

‘But now a game has been invented
which is called Kaiserspiel or Karnéffel in which
everything is turned upside down: thus “the 3s
beat the Ober, the 2 beats the King, and so on;
and there occurs a wonderful transformation
(vicissitudo) of Kaisers, as in this game the Kaiser
is made by chance now from this set (cetu), now
from another.’ ‘But now another game has been
invented with the ranking of the cards such that
the Unter beats the King, and the 2 and the 6
likewise, the 3 beats the Ober and the lower-
numbered beats the higher-numbered; and it
may happen that from this number some are by
chance made Kaisers.’43

43 Sed nunc ludus inventus gui appellatur (keiserspil)
ludus Caesaris: vel (karniffelius) in quo hec omnia
pervertuntur: ita ut tria vincant superiorem: duo regem etc.
fitque mira vicissitudo cesarum: ut in hoc ludo iam de hoc
cetu, iam de alio fiat cesar ad fortunam ... Nunc aut est
alius ludus inventus in cartas potestatum ut inferior vincat
regem/ et duo et sex etc. tria superiorem et minor maiorem:
si fuerit ex horum numero qui forte fortuitu facti sunt
cesares’, Sermones Prestantissimi Doctoris Fohannis Geilert
Keisersbergtt de Arbore Humana, Strasbourg, 1515, pp. 132b-

The German text differs
slightly. In it, the first passage runs: ‘But now we
have a game called Karniffelspiel in which
everything is turned upside down: the 3s beat an
Ober, the 4 beats the Unter, the 2 and the 6 beat
a, King; and a card is turned over, so that now
one is Kaiser, now another becomes Kaiser, as
luck will have it.’The subsequent passage runs:
‘But now there has been invented another game
with the ranking of the cards such that the Unter
beats the King, the 2 and the 6 beat the King, the
3 beats the Ober, and the lower-numbered beat
the higher-numbered, when they are in the game
of Kaiserspiel.’44

44 Aber jetz so hat man ein spil/ heisset der karniffel spil
karniffelius/ da seint alle ding verkert/ die drü stechen ein
ober/ die fier den undern/ zwei und sechs stechen ein
künig/ und so schlecht man umb/ ietz so ist einerlei keiser/
darnach so würt ein anderer lei keiser/ wie das glück gibt ...
Aber ietz so ist ein ander spil funden in dem regiment/ auff
der karten/ das der underbüb sticht den künnig/ die zwei
und sechs ein künnig/ die drü den obern/ und der minder
den merern/ wan sie von dem keiser spil sein’, Geiler von
Kaisersberg, Das Buch de Arbore Humana. Von dem menschlichen
Baum, Strasbourg, 1521, pp. 138-40.

Re: News and Updates

We got a note of a new Italian Tarocchi book. It appeared October 2020.
"Tarocchi piemontesi. La civiltà del gioco" by Franco Ressa
Image ... 8854941144

I giovani di oggi che giocano e collezionano le trading cards, cioè quel tipo di carte sul quale è raffigurato un personaggio fantastico, un suo punteggio e certe altre proprie caratteristiche, ignorano di certo che i loro antenati sapevano divertirsi con mazzi di carte altrettanto numerosi e ugualmente popolati da creature fantastiche e mostruose. Si tratta dei 78 tarocchi, nati all'inizio del '400 presso la splendente corte degli Estensi di Ferrara, o delle 97 prodotte in Firenze a partire dal 1500. In Piemonte, dove i tarocchi erano giocati fino a pochi anni addietro, si poteva scegliere tra ben diciotto diversi tipi di gioco, tutti molto appassionanti e considerati dalla comune opinione, sia aristocratica che popolare, attività di ingegno se praticati con abilità. Su questi giochi fiorirà tutta un'arte figurativa e una letteratura in prosa e in poesia che non dovrà andare perduta. In questo libretto Franco Ressa, ricercatore e divulgatore storico, fornisce un'antologia delle regole, dei modi di giocare, e delle composizioni letterarie ispirate dai mazzi di carte.
Automatic translation
Today's young people who play and collect trading cards, that is the type of cards on which a fantastic character is depicted, his score and certain other characteristics of his own, are certainly unaware that their ancestors knew how to have fun with equally numerous decks of cards and equally populated by fantastic and monstrous creatures. These are the 78 tarots, born at the beginning of the 15th century at the splendid Este court of Ferrara, or the 97 produced in Florence starting from the 1500s. In Piedmont, where tarots were played until a few years ago, you could choose among eighteen different types of games, all very exciting and considered by common opinion, both aristocratic and popular, ingenious activities if practiced with skill. A whole figurative art and a literature in prose and poetry will flourish on these games that must not be lost. In this booklet Franco Ressa, researcher and historical popularizer, provides an anthology of the rules, ways of playing, and literary compositions inspired by decks of cards.

Re: Agnolo Hebreo

455 ... 8-2041-a-b

British Museum gives a "17th century ?" for this card.
An Italian tarot playing-card split to show recto and verso. On the front is the Devil consuming two or three humans. On the back a standing man seen from behind and lettered below "M.Agnolo.Hebreo" (Magister Agnolo the Jew) and above a flowing scroll lettered "CHA PERSE SE GRATA EL CUL LO" (loosely translated as "The loser scratches his backside"). Hand-coloured woodcut, 17th Century (?)

Sherrill E. Smith, who also detected the card, gives a "shortly after 1500". ... evil-card/
The most unique single reproduction card in my collection is the Devil card printed by Agnolo Hebreo (Angelo the Jew) shortly after 1500 and now residing in the British Museum. It was undoubtedly part of a complete tarot deck; but no other cards by this individual exist anywhere, and there is no trace of him in the records. This Devil card is the only clue we have that the printer Agnolo Hebreo may have existed. It’s possible the name is a pseudonym borrowed from popular culture by an anonymous deck designer.
Kaplan II, page 297, gives "attributed to 16th century by Michael Dummett."

Re: .... Colonna sheet?

I found this sheet at pinterest which looks very similar to the cards of the Colonna sheet, Kaplan 1, p. 134


It has a year "1613"at the right bottom card. It is taken frim British Museum page .... ... -0501-1089
One entire uncut sheet of 12 playing-cards and a fragment of another containing 8 playing-cards taken from the binding of an old book; worm-eaten and otherwise damaged. The two sheets had contained 24 cards including the four aces, knaves and kings of each suit and eight pip cards of the suit of swords, the value of each being indicated by letters and numerals placed at either end, as R.D. (Re Danari), F.D. (Fante Danari), S. 5, etc. On each ace the suit-mark is held by a gryphon.
I forgot, that we had this earlier in 2012 with some more material:

Re: ... Jean-Pierre Garrague

A book review of a Walter Haas in the IPCS paper had the object ...
La Carte à jouer en Catalogne. XIVe XVe siècles. ... by Jean-Pierre Garrigue. 2015. 166 pages. 16 Euro.
Image ... 00121.html

I found a related webpage with various pictures:

Conférence : l'histoire des CARTES à JOUER CATALANES par Jean-Pierre GARRIGUE - mardi 25 février 2014.
http://cultureetpatrimoinevillelonguet. ... 29618.html

Re: ... discussion oldest woodcuts

Occasionally the question of the oldest woodcuts appears ...
The webpage
https://www.historisches-lexikon-bayern ... hrhundert)
offers some detailed dates
Anfänge des Holzschnitts in Europa
Der Grund für die Einführung des in Ostasien erfundenen Holzschnittes in Europa ist nach derzeitiger Forschungslage unklar. Alle bisherigen Erklärungsversuche, um 1400 hätten das Aufkommen von Papier, die Herstellung von Spielkarten und eine aufkommende Frömmigkeit verbunden mit einer Individualisierung des religiösen Verhaltens den Holzschnitt hervorgebracht, lassen sich nach neuerer Forschung komplett widerlegen. Demnach zeichnet sich als Beginn die Zeit nach 1420 ab, da nun die zuvor eingeleiteten Klosterreformen griffen, die sich auch in einem sprunghaften Anstieg der Handschriftenproduktion bemerkbar machen. Ebenso lässt sich das Stereotyp, der Holzschnitt mit seiner einfachen Form wäre für das "einfache Volk" bestimmt, nicht halten. Alle überlieferten Informationen zu Benutzern und Funktionskontexten stammen nicht aus den unteren sozialen Schichten (Schmidt 2005).

Für die ersten Jahre lassen sich nur wenige Holzschnitte zuordnen. Hilfsmittel ist hier die Papieranalyse. So kann beispielsweise das Papier des Holzschnitts "Die Marter des Heiligen Sebastian" (Staatliche Graphische Sammlung München, Inv. Nr. 171 505), für den Zeitraum 1406-1412 belegt werden. 1 Der in einer 1410 datierten Handschrift des Klosters St. Zeno in Reichenhall bei Salzburg eingeklebte Holzschnitt wird um 1410-1420 datiert (Anfänge 2005, Nr. 26). 2 Der Holzschnitt "Tod der Maria" ist auf 1422 in Ansbach nachgewiesenem Papier Nürnberger Provenienz gedruckt worden und wird "vor 1422?" datiert (Germanisches Nationalmuseum Nürnberg, Inv. Nr. H2; Anfänge 2005, Nr. 84). 3 Weitere Holzschnitte ohne entsprechende Belege werden stilkritisch dieser Periode zugeordnet, was jedoch als problematisch einzustufen ist (s. u.). Dies gilt auch für die Neubewertung des aufgrund der mitabgedruckten Jahreszahl 1423 berühmten "Hl. Christophorus" aus dem Kloster Buxheim nahe dem schwäbischen Memmingen (Lkr. Unterallgäu).

1 "Die Marter des Heiligen Sebastian", the paper is dated to 1406-1412, Staatliche Graphische Sammlung München, Inv. Nr. 171 505

2 Manuscript of cloister St. Zeno in Reichenhall near Salzburg 1410, 2 pictures are pasted during 1410-1420

3 "Tod der Maria", was made on paper from Nuremberg in Ansbach 1422, the woodcut is dated before 1422