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The 5x14 Theory: An Investigation.

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Huck  Huck is offline
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Well, Phoenix and (or) turtle dove ...

I typed the both terms in the search engine and got a poem of Shakespeare, which is said to be very unusual and a mass of literature is present about it ... now I ask myself, if a sort of "tradition of connection" between both or possibly all 4 birds was already existent in 1425, which we overlook und to which Martiano da Tortona or Filippo Maria refered.

Shakespeare's poem is interpreted as "allegorical poem about the death of ideal love" and so somehow in the direction of Daphne's theme (woman becomes a piece of wood) or Chartiers "cruel woman" (man dies cause of unfulfilled love) - this surprizes me.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Phoenix_and_the_Turtle
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MikeH  MikeH is offline
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Thanks, Huck. I'll read the post over again.

Now I have a technical question for the specialists, regarding the PMB World card. Kaplan's Vol. 2, p. 22, discusses the Bonomi version of the card, which is very similar to the PMB. He says:

"Of the four newly discovered Visconti and Visconti Sforza groups, the Bonomi cards bear the strongest resemblance to the cards of the Pierpont Morgan-Bergamo deck. The World cards of the two decks are of the same type: two putti support a medallion in which a city floats on an island and the gold tooled background has squares rather than lozenges. It is interesting that The World cards of both the Pierpont Morgan-Bergamo deck and the Bonomi group are so similar, while neither card seems to fit into its respective group. It seems likely that the Bonomi group and the Pierpont Morgan-Bergamo deck were painted by the same artist or workshop within a close span of time."

In the paragraph before this one, Kaplan also observes, "The World card has a tack hole at the top; the rest are without tack holes. "

My question is, which "same artist" painted both the Bonomi and the PMB? The second PMB artist or the first? You see the difficulty: since the Bonomi cards include both Justice, which in the PMB was painted by the first artist, and The World, painted by the second? Or did two different artists paint the two Bonomi cards? The other two Bonomi cards are the King of Cups and the 8 of Coins, both quite similar to the PMB versions.

The relevance of the question to the present discussion is that if the same artist painted both Bonomi cards as well as the PMB Justice, then likely the painter of the PMB Justice card also painted a World card similar to the Bonomi one. Hence the original PMB would have had just such a card.

If the 2nd artist the Bonomi cards, then who did the PMB King of Cups and 8 of Coins?

I can't imagine that this issue hasn't been discussed somewhere in the literature, but I certainly haven't found it. Or have I mixed things up somewhere?

Here are the PMB and Bonomi Justice cards:



And The World:



And the King of Cups, with the Bonomi 8 of Coins (unfortunately I left Dummet's book with the PMB images at work):

Top   #32
Huck  Huck is offline
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hi Mike,
thanks for the observation. I haven't seen it discussed either. Generally we have the problem, that the cards from the PMB exist not only once, and obviously not only from one production. Some may even be modern forgeries.
One can see minor differences between PMB and Bonomi even under this bad conditions, but Kaplan's opinion will probably have a realistic background.

When the cards were added (there is reason to assume that this happened in the form of a gift at a wedding), it might be, that immediately more than 1 addition was done, which would say, that the Sforzas had a special family game in a specific style and not only one deck in use. To amuse a smaller community at a festivity, which really could now play with such cards, the production of the gift might have considered perhaps 4-8 decks and so 4-8 additions (Leonello ordered 4 decks, when he became signore in Ferrara, the serial production in Ferrara 1454 even some more - here the suspicion exists, that this production was done for the wedding of Beatrice d'Este and Tristano Sforza).
Wedding festivities could last a few days, enough time for a little bit card playing in the pauses between the events.

Generally it has to be assumed, that trumps were less often produced than normal cards (the 56 others) and that for simple standards and simple games also the number 56 was reduced. The most used German deck nowadays has 32 cards anda lot of games exist for this deck. So trumps and small arcana might have been occasionally different productions.
In the Charles VI we've nearly only trumps. The suspicion is given, that the trumps were sold (or produced) alone, in the exspection, that a buyer would have own small arcana (with personal heraldic etc..)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huck
Well, Phoenix and (or) turtle dove ...

I typed the both terms in the search engine and got a poem of Shakespeare, which is said to be very unusual and a mass of literature is present about it ... now I ask myself, if a sort of "tradition of connection" between both or possibly all 4 birds ...
There is the biblical tradition between phoenix (bird/tree*) and dove from Song of Solomon.

Kwaw
* Just as phoenix is a homonyn meaning both the bird and palm tree in Greek, so the Egyptian word Benu means both the bird and the palm tree.
Top   #34
MikeH  MikeH is offline
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real coins and images of coins


So you are saying that the first artist did the Lover and the suit cards in both decks, and then 5 or 10 years later, whenever the second artist was employed, the second artist did the World card for both. Yes, I suppose that's possible, although I am still skeptical. Come to think of it, I don't remember your theory about how far apart the two artists were.

Now I have something else. I have been looking at Ross's images, for which I thank him. The more I look at them, the more puzzled I become. I put them next to each other. The Visconti coin is top right, Cary-Yale top left, and Brera-Brambilla bottom. Here are the obverses.



They are similar but by no means identical, even allowing for wear and tear and the worn edges of the Visconti. The horse's rein is curved on the Visconti, straight on the CY. The sword comes against the edge differently. The rider stands more stiffly in the Visconti. Above, I rotated the Visconti counter-clockwise a bit, so that the horses would match up better. But then the rider, sitting straight up in Ross’s image, looks completely unstable, compared with the other two. And several other things, like the horses' legs.

It is the same with the reverses.



The wing comes up against the top edge differently. The snake at the bottom edge is at a different angle (I didn't rotate anything.) The two sides are different. And so on. But I am no expert. What do you make of these apparent discrepancies?

Another interesting comparison is with an actual coin from the 1450 period, Francesco's ducat reproduced on "Andy's Playing Cards." It looks different from any of the others. But on stylistic grounds alone, isn't it more similar to the two cards than to the Visconti ducat? (Here the Visconti rider is sitting stright up; I didn't rotate it.) The Visconti has less artistic sophistication than the other three, in the naturalness of the figures. It looks to me as though the coin-maker had orders to copy the Visconti design. But he did it in a later style. At this time, the mid-15th century, artistic style was changing rapidly, toward greater naturalism.



I have not examined all the coins on all the CY and BB Coins cards. In fact, I have not examined any--just the blown-up enhanced images Ross and Pollet have given me. Doing so may or may not shed further light on the subject.
Top   #35
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Ross G Caldwell  Ross G Caldwell is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeH
The relevance of the question to the present discussion is that if the same artist painted both Bonomi cards as well as the PMB Justice, then likely the painter of the PMB Justice card also painted a World card similar to the Bonomi one. Hence the original PMB would have had just such a card.

If the 2nd artist the Bonomi cards, then who did the PMB King of Cups and 8 of Coins?

I can't imagine that this issue hasn't been discussed somewhere in the literature, but I certainly haven't found it. Or have I mixed things up somewhere?
Michael Dummett recently wrote an article with a novel theory about the dating and artists of the PMB.

"Six XV-Century Tarot Cards: Who Painted Them?", in Artibus et Historiae Nr. 56 (2007) pp.15 - 26.

Huck summarized Dummett's conclusions on this thread -
http://www.tarotforum.net/showthread.php?t=16234
(see posts 116 and 118)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Huck
http://www.artibusethistoriae.org/?...ibusIssue&id=57

an essay about the "six added" (trionfi.com terminology) cards in the Pierpont-Morgan-Bergamo Tarocchi.

In his usual excellent manner he explores the evolution and errors about the statement of Leopoldo Cicognara, who presented a document, which couldn't be found. This takes most of the article.

In the final statement of the essay (about 1/3 of a page) he suggests as most probable for the painter of the six cards Benedetto Bembo, brother of Bonifacio, who was first mentioned 1462 and is suggested to have painted in a Ferrarese style.

Dummett than offers the suggestion, that the whole deck was produced in the range of the years 1462 - 1468. No replacement (as earlier suggested), no adding process (as the 5x14-thesis suggested), just as a unique cooperation of two brothers to fulfill a commission of Bianca Maria Visconti.
A Benedetto Bembo image that shows his affinities for the Ferrarese style Dummett is talking about in the 6 second-artist cards:


"Madonna introno col Bambino" Cremona, Museo Civico
http://www.alfonsomariadeliguori.ne...IS77IS2006.html

So by Dummett's argument your question would be answered (if Kaplan's identification for the Bonomi artist is correct) that yes, the original PMB did have these cards, because it was painted by the two brothers at the same time. Copies of this pack were done in the workshop, and some must have been made by the Bembos.

I'm not aware of any critical evaluation of Dummett's theory yet; as it stands, all I can say is that it sounds plausible, especially given that all copies of the PMB have the same style "secondary artist" cards (I obviously don't mean all by the same secondary artist as the PMB, but the same iconography as the secondary artist's original cards).

Ross
Top   #36
Huck  Huck is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaw
There is the biblical tradition between phoenix (bird/tree*) and dove from Song of Solomon.

Kwaw
* Just as phoenix is a homonyn meaning both the bird and palm tree in Greek, so the Egyptian word Benu means both the bird and the palm tree.
Thanks, Stephen ... that's really good

Do we have other traditional connections between other birds (especially dove, turtle dove, eagle) to other trees?

Daphne is connected to the laurel, she becomes this tree ... is the turtle dove connected to the laurel?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Huck
Thanks, Stephen ... that's really good

Do we have other traditional connections between other birds (especially dove, turtle dove, eagle) to other trees?

Daphne is connected to the laurel, she becomes this tree ... is the turtle dove connected to the laurel?
Both phoenix and eagle were also connected with the Tree of Life in the garden of Eden....
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kwaw  kwaw is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaw
Both phoenix and eagle were also connected with the Tree of Life in the garden of Eden....
...and like the phoenix, the eagle is connected with regeneration, renewal in the bible:

Psalms 103:2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:
Psalms 103:3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;
Psalms 103:4 Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;
Psalms 103:5 Who satisfieth thy mouth with good; thy youth is renewed like the eagle's.

(NSher = eagle, vulture, griffon).

According to Jewish legend that can also be found in Physilogus (a common medieval source book) when the eagle grows old it seeks out a spring, flies into the atmosphere of the Sun to burn away its wings and the dimmness of the eyes, then dips itself three times into the spring of water / fountain of life to renew itself.
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Huck  Huck is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaw
...and like the phoenix, the eagle is connected with regeneration, renewal in the bible ...
Sounds, as if the eagle became mythological a Northern replacement figure for the Phoenix, who was difficult to detect in nature.



Marshall Boucicaut after a longer life as accepted hero with many adventures turned the battle of Azincourt in a total desaster for the French army, cause he underestimated the difficulties of ploughed soil in rainy weather for men in heavy armour.

This happened 1415 and changed the world decisively till 1429, when the French had a similar success in the battle of Patay with similar catastrophic losses for the English, this inside the surprizing militaric activities of Jeanne d'Arc.

The Michelino deck appeared during this process, ca. 1425, with phoenix, with eagle, turtle dove and dove).

The heraldic device of Boucicaut was the red eagle (an interesting question: since when ? is this possibly an after-life heraldic ? ), naturally associating the "phoenix in fire". For the French history one could interprete the historic run 1415-1429 as "Phoenix development" (actually history knows many "Phoenix developments"), in this case however rather curious, if Boucicaut had this red bird in his heraldic before 1415.

Filippo Maria was only a distant observer, but it's well known, that his diplomatic system worked and he had a lot of observers at other courts (Sforza learnt from him and his diplomatic mechanisms are called the most modern in their time).

So Filippo sat at home in Milan and interpreted the world history ... we may assume that he thought in astrological categories and had a sense for interpreting symbols. He would have known Boucicauts heraldic probably.

He had personal contact to Alain Chartier, the political diplomat and poet, who did a lot to help up Charles VII. in his desperate position.

In his card game he associated the phoenix to "riches". "Riches" and Nations appear and disappear and reappear, we know that from studying historic land maps. Filippo's choice is not bad, so one could say.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hundred_Years%27_War

100-years-war developments
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