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Ross G Caldwell  Ross G Caldwell is offline
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Join Date: 07 Jul 2003
Location: Béziers, France
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Ross G Caldwell 

I don't know the latest treatment of this image, but the miniatures in the manuscript were done by different artists over at least a few decades. If you google-image "Add. 12228" you'll get a few that will show you the obviously different hands at work, and for the manuscript itself you'll find some information.

Jeremy Montagu, for instance, in his bibliography of mss. containing depictions of musical instruments in the British Library notes of Add. 12228 that “the miniatures differ in date and some are 15th c.”

http://www.jeremymontagu.co.uk/MssBL.pdf

It seems like the miniature’s dating is very uncertain – maybe within a half-century. So while still early, no matter when dated, it can’t be relied on to propose a revolution in the chronology of playing cards in Europe.

If Huck could translate some of this German discussion about the 1367 document, we could understand the arguments better. But like Michael says, there is nothing implausible about earlier isolated instances, it's just that all known families of card-styles do seem to derive from a single kind of model, or are simply pure inventions after the idea was known.

If there were an evolution in eastern Europe from Mongolian cards there in the 13th or early 14th century, there is no trace of them. Knowing what the Turfan card looks like (like a Chinese card), if cards went straight into Europe looking like that, the development would have been very different than those having been mediated by Mamluk-style cards.

Ross
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