De Gebelin and Comte de M***


> Tarot Forum > Tarot Special Interest > Tarot History & Development



 
kwaw's Avatar
kwaw  kwaw is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 29 Dec 2003
Location: Nr. Ephesus, Turkey
Posts: 5,400
kwaw 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaw
Seventeen, the Creation of Stars & Fish , represented by Stars & Aquarius.

Stars and Fish [Dix-septième, la Création des Étoiles & des Poissons, représentées par des Étoiles & le Verseau]?

There is an image of the star tableau [cary sheet?] that shows what appears to be the tail of a fish rising from the water, but what deck is de Mellet using? He is clearly using a Besancon style pattern of deck [later referencing Jupiter and Juno], is there a besancon style deck that shows a fish on the star card? Or is C.d.Mellet reflecting here some tradition or attribution of the card without having actually seen an image of a fish on the card? In relation to Aquarius the fish on the card is most likely to represent Pisces Austrinus, the Southern Fish whose 'mouth' is one of the four royal stars of persia Fomalhaut, images as drinking from one of the jugs of the water bearer.

Aquarius is attributed to the letter tzaddi, said to represent the ideogram of a fish-hook, the Gra attributes the kingship word LOYTH [lamed-ayin-yod-teth-heh] to Tzaddi, which means 'to feed animals' the root being LOT meaning 'to swallow greedily, to glut, to devour like an animal' [Kaplan in his SY says LOYTH means 'taste' but I can't find any reference to that in any of my dictionaries, strong, brown-driver-briggs or jastrow; fellow students in an SY study group who speak Hebrew are also unfamiliar with the word; it seems to me there is some difference between 'to devour greedily', 'feed animals' and 'taste']. However, while C.d.Mellet clearly does intend that interpretation of the images has relation to Hebrew letters, according to his scheme the the letter attributed to the Star would be Heh, not Tzaddi, so the association he is making cannot come from the association of Tzaddi, aquarius, fish-hook and the feeding of animals, glutting greedily on their food. If that is he is being open about the attributions, his description of Tau as meaning completion and perfection would make sense with the world card but seems completely out of context in his description of Madness.

Crowley too makes a connection with fish with this card, but it develops exegetically from a free association of star-tzaddi-aquarius-fish-hook I think:

"O my beautiful God! I swim in Thy heart like a trout in the mountain torrent.
I leap from pool to pool in my joy; I am goodly with brown and gold and silver.
Why, I am lovelier than the russet autumn woods at the first snowfall.
And the crystal cave of my thought is lovelier than I.
Only one fish-hook can draw me out; it is a woman kneeling by the bank of the stream. It is she that pours the bright dew over herself, and into the sand so that the river gushes forth.
There is a bird on yonder myrtle; only the song of that bird can draw me out of the pool of Thy heart, O my God!" [from the Book of the Lapis Lazuli].


Kwaw
Top   #21
kwaw's Avatar
kwaw  kwaw is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 29 Dec 2003
Location: Nr. Ephesus, Turkey
Posts: 5,400
kwaw 

Ce Livre paroît avoir été nommé A-Rosh; d'A, Doctrine, Science; & de Rosch [Rosh est le nom Egyptien de Mercure & de sa Fête qui se célébroit le premier jour de l'an.], Mercure, qui, joint à l'article T, signifie Tableaux de la Doctrine de Mercure; mais comme Rosh veut aussi dire Commencement, ce mot Ta-Rosh fut particulierement consacré à sa Cosmogonie; de même que l'Ethotia, Histoire du Tems, fut le titre de son Astronomie; & peut-être qu'Athothes, qu'on a pris pour un Roi, fils de Thot, n'est que l'enfant de son génie, & l'Histoire des Rois d'Egypte.

Following a google/babel fish translation:

This Book was named A-Rosh; from A, meaning Doctrines, Science; conjoined with Rosh [Rosh is the Egytian name of Mercury & of his Festival celebrated on the first day of the New Year], Mercury, which, joined to the article T, means 'The Images of the Doctrines of Mercury'; but as Rosh also means 'beginning', so this word A-Rosh was particularly devoted to its Cosmogony; just as Ethotia, Temporal History, was the title of its Astronomy; & perhaps that Athothes, that one took for a King, a son of Thot, is only the child of its genious, & the History of Kings of Egypt.

notes:

C.d.Mellet's Egyptian etymology here is obviously false, and is clearly related to hebrew letter symbolism and words rather than ancient Egyptian. His derivation of the word Ta-rosh as being related to cosmogony, is derived from the Hebrew as follows:

The letter T he decides is the definitive article, probably he is relating it to the Hebrew definitive article 'eTh';

'A' as doctrines, science - the homonym 'doctrine' for the letter aleph can be found in St. Jerome and is repeated in Kircher [and later in Levi]. Probably from the homonym for 'learn/teach'.

Rosh as 'beginning' is from the Hebrew, as in b'reshith, 'in the beginning'.

So we have Ta-rosh = 'the doctrine of the beginning'; which C.d.Mellet goes on to develop as a history of the earliest times divided into three periods corresponding to a century of gold [seven cards world - devil], a century of silver [seven cards temperance - justice] and a century of iron [seven cards chariot - bateleur].


Kwaw
Top   #22
MikeTheAltarboy's Avatar
MikeTheAltarboy  MikeTheAltarboy is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 18 Oct 2005
Location: New York, USA
Posts: 264
MikeTheAltarboy 

I'm willing to offer my french skills. My translations aren't necessarily works of literature, but they're more accurate than babelfish. ;-)
Top   #23
kwaw's Avatar
kwaw  kwaw is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 29 Dec 2003
Location: Nr. Ephesus, Turkey
Posts: 5,400
kwaw 
*jump*


Quote:
Originally Posted by jmd
To subscribe to the Newsletter by email, use the form on our Newsletter page...

This month,
Ovid, Egypt, Hebrew and Tarot

In preparation for a future Newsletter presenting le Comte de Mellet's 1781 essay, I digress into flights of fancy.

http://association.tarotstudies.org/newsletter.html
Look forward to reading your translation JMD.

Just a reminder that original text and draft google/babel translation is here:

http://www.tarotpedia.com/wiki/index...sur_les_Tarots

Some notes, observations, questions:
The first published connection is made between the Tarot and the Hebrew alphabet:

Google/bable fish translation:

"First, the Juggler holds the rod of the Magi, with which to affect miracles & deceive credulous people. It is followed of a single Card representing the Madness which carries its bag or its defects behind it, while a tiger or the remorses, devouring his 'bulges', delays its walk towards crime [This Card does not have a row: it completes the crowned Alphabet, & answers the Tau which wants to say completion or perfection: perhaps one wanted to represent in his direction the most natural result of the actions of men]. These twenty-two original Cards are not merely hieroglypics, which, placed in their natural order, retrace the History of the earliest times, they are also letters [ the Hebrew alphabet is composed of 22 Letters] which variously combined, can form many sentences; even their name (A-tout) is just a literal translation of their employment and general character."

Here we have the first published account of a correlation between the 22 hebrew letters and the 21 trumps and the Fool, which was to have a great influence in the development of the occult tarot. C. De Mellet does not give a complete list of attributions, but from those he does:

Quote [google/babel fish translation]:

"The Sun answering to Gimel, signifies, in this context, remuneration, happiness. Fortune or Lamed means rule, law, science. The Fool does not express anything by itself, it corresponds with the Tau, it is simply a sign, a mark. Typhon or Zain announces inconstancy, error, faith violated, crime. Death or Teth indicates the action to reap: indeed, Death is a terrible reaper."


Shows that C. de Mellet places the fool before the bateleur, and attributes the letters from card XXI, conceived as beginning or creation to the Fool as last, so World is attributed to Alef, Judgement to Beith, Sun to Gimel etc., in order to Fool as Tau.

The connection with Hebrew is also made in his 'etymology' of the word Tarosh, quote:

"Ce Livre paroît avoir été nommé A-Rosh; d'A, Doctrine, Science; & de Rosch [Rosh est le nom Egyptien de Mercure & de sa Fête qui se célébroit le premier jour de l'an.], Mercure, qui, joint à l'article T, signifie Tableaux de la Doctrine de Mercure; mais comme Rosh veut aussi dire Commencement, ce mot Ta-Rosh fut particulierement consacré à sa Cosmogonie; de même que l'Ethotia, Histoire du Tems, fut le titre de son Astronomie; & peut-être qu'Athothes, qu'on a pris pour un Roi, fils de Thot, n'est que l'enfant de son génie, & l'Histoire des Rois d'Egypte."

Google/babel fish translation:

"This Book was named A-Rosh; from A, meaning Doctrines, Science; conjoined with Rosh [Rosh is the Egytian name of Mercury & of his Festival celebrated on the first day of the New Year], Mercury, which, joined to the article T, means 'The Images of the Doctrines of Mercury'; but as Rosh also means 'beginning', so this word A-Rosh was particularly devoted to its Cosmogony; just as Ethotia, Temporal History, was the title of its Astronomy; & perhaps that Athothes, that one took for a King, a son of Thot, is only the child of its genious, & the History of Kings of Egypt."

C.d.Mellet's 'Egyptian etymology' here is is clearly based upon hebrew letter symbolism and words rather than ancient Egyptian. His derivation of the word Ta-rosh as being related to cosmogony, is derived from the Hebrew as follows:

The letter' T' he decides is the definitive article, probably he is relating it to the Hebrew definitive article 'eTh';

A as doctrines, science - the homonym 'doctrine' for the letter aleph can be found in St. Jerome and is repeated in Kircher [and later in Levi]. Probably from the homonym for learn/teach.

Rosh as 'beginning' is from the Hebrew, as in b'reshith, 'in the beginning'.

So we have Ta-rosh = 'the (T) doctrine (a) of the beginning (rosh)'; which C.d.Mellet goes on to develop as a history of the earliest times divided into three periods corresponding to a century of gold [seven cards world - devil], a century of silver [seven cards temperance - justice] and a century of iron [seven cards chariot - bateleur].

The origin of the coins being called Pantacles/pentacles i.e,, talismanic forms? quote [google/babel fish translation]:

"When the Egyptians had forgotten the first interpretation of these images, & used them like simple letters for their sacred writing, it was natural that such a superstitious people attached occult virtues [also the science of numbers & the value of the Letters as was extremely well known formerly] to characters esteemed for their antiquity, & that the Priests, who alone understood them, employed them only for religious things. They even invented new characters, & we see in the Holy scriptures that the Magi initiated in their secrets, divined by the cup [Cup of Joseph]. That they performed wonders with their Baton [the Rod of Moses & of Pharoe's magicians]. That they consulted Talismans [the Gods of Laban & Théraphim, the Urim & Thummim. ] or of engraved stones. That they divined future things by Swords, Arrows, Axes, and by weapons in general. These four Signs [ie, cups, batons, coins (talismans) and swords] were introduced along side the religious images when the establishment of Kings led to the different estates in society. Swords representing Royalty & the powerful of the Earth. As the Priests use Cups for the Sacrifices, so the Cup came to represent the priesthood. Coins, Trade. The Baton, as the crook and the pivot, representing Agriculture."

Stars and Fish [Dix-septième, la Création des Étoiles & des Poissons, représentées par des Étoiles & le Verseau]?

There is an image of the star tableau [cary sheet?] that shows what appears to be the tail of a fish rising from the water, but what deck is de Mellet using? He is clearly using a Besancon style pattern of deck [later referencing Jupiter and Juno], is there a besancon style deck that shows a fish on the star card? Or is C.d.Mellet reflecting here some tradition or attribution of the card without having actually seen an image of a fish on the card? The star card imagery of the TdM has parallels with images of the astrological sign Aquarius, which C. de Mellet here refers to [le Verseau]; in relation to which the fish on the card is most likely to represent Pisces Austrinus, the Southern Fish whose 'mouth' is one of the four royal stars of persia Fomalhaut, often shown in images of the constellations as drinking from one of the jugs of the water bearer.

Section III Names of various Cards, preserved by the Spaniards:

In 'A Wicked Pack of Cards' Decker/Dummet observe Mellet here "..commits the same mistake as Court de Gebelin in supposing that the names given to certain particular cards in the game of Aluette apply to the corresponding cards in the Tarot, and makes the same error of detail as Court de Gebelin had done in assigning the name 'le Borgne' (the one-eyed man) to the Ace of Coins rather than to the 2. Is Mellet copying Gebelin, Gebelin copying Mellet, or are they using the same source? Does C. De Mellet's text cast doubt upon Gebelin's own account of his own 'discovery' of the Egyptian connection?

Have added a computor generated translation as a make do until such time as a proper translation can be made. The nature of the method of translation is bound to incorporate some errors so I urge caution in using it as a reference. Because of the archaic French many words and phrases were not translatable by babel/alta vista and I have had to research some words/phrases and in others made a guess. I have been aided in translation in reference to partial translations in printed works, especially 'A Wicked Pack of Cards' by Decker/Dummet, though only in identifying obscure words, I have follow the literal rendition of translation produced by alta vista/babel.

Kwaw

Retrieved from "http://www.tarotpedia.com/wiki/index.php?title=Talk:Recherches_sur_les_Tarots"
Top   #24
jmd's Avatar
jmd  jmd is offline
fourhares
 
Join Date: 05 Aug 2001
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 8,502
jmd 

Thanks kwaw - I looked at the tarotpedia page, and will make alterations there as well.

It's a quite fascinating essay - and readily available in French. As far as I'm aware, the currently only available translation is the one from jktarot (which I did purchase some years back, but as the pdf is keylocked and requires that one is organised with keeping a password that was sent by email, cannot re-access it - I find the locking of documents that are not highly confidential rather in poor taste).
Top   #25

kwaw's Avatar
kwaw  kwaw is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 29 Dec 2003
Location: Nr. Ephesus, Turkey
Posts: 5,400
kwaw 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmd
Thanks kwaw - I looked at the tarotpedia page, and will make alterations there as well.

It's a quite fascinating essay - and readily available in French. As far as I'm aware, the currently only available translation is the one from ******* (which I did purchase some years back, but as the pdf is keylocked and requires that one is organised with keeping a password that was sent by email, cannot re-access it - I find the locking of documents that are not highly confidential rather in poor taste).
The google/babel translations I tidied up were never meant as anything more than a stop gap and I look forward to seeing a decent translation of both Gebelin and Mellet as readily and freely available in English. Glad you are involved in accomplishing this JMD, although I tidied up the Google translation for Mellet I only so far completed about a half for Gebelin (which is on taropedia), and though I have draft for rest have not completed the 'tidy up'. If I can help in any way please let me know. Firemaiden did some excellent and idiomatic translations of parts of Gebelin, perhaps she might be willing to help? Or have you now completed the translation? Maybe Firemaiden, who has a wonderful touch for idiomatic translation, might check it over?

Kwaw
Top   #26
kwaw's Avatar
kwaw  kwaw is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 29 Dec 2003
Location: Nr. Ephesus, Turkey
Posts: 5,400
kwaw 

Quote:
"Dix-huitième, la Création de la Lune & des Animaux terrestres, exprimés par un Loup & un Chien, pour signifier les Animaux domestiques & sauvages: cet emblème est d'autant mieux choisi, que le Chien & le Loup sont les seuls qui hurlent à l'aspect de cet astre, comme regrettant la perte du jour."

Eighteenth, the creation of the Moon & Land Animals, expressed by a Wolf & a Dog, to mean domestic & wild animals: this emblem is an even better choice, in that only the Dog & the Wolf howl at the aspect of this star as if regretting the loss of the day.
We may also note here the expression Entre chien et loup, between dog and wolf, meaning a la tombée du jour that is the fall of the day or twilight, the time between day and night when it is to dark to distinguish a dog from a wolf, a friend from foe:

"The dog symbolizing the day because like him, he can guide us, while the wolf is a symbol of the night, posing a threat, but also of nightmares and fear. It appeared in French in the thirteenth century, but the term existed in ancient times. We can read in a text of the second century, "when man can not distinguish the wolf from the dog."

http://www.linternaute.com/expressio...chien-et-loup/
Top   #27
jmd's Avatar
jmd  jmd is offline
fourhares
 
Join Date: 05 Aug 2001
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 8,502
jmd 

'entre chien et loup' - metaphorically, 'between daytime and night-time'!!!

...as dusk - of course!

How so bloody obvious! I recall my grandmother using such expression, which use to be quite scary as well to a young boy (especially as my grandparents had their woodlands across the road from the main house about 50km South of Paris).

Thanks kwaw - I can't believe this obviousness had not severely jolted in my memory before.
Top   #28
kwaw's Avatar
kwaw  kwaw is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 29 Dec 2003
Location: Nr. Ephesus, Turkey
Posts: 5,400
kwaw 

moved...
Top   #29
Ligator's Avatar
Ligator  Ligator is offline
Citizen
 
Join Date: 28 Mar 2008
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Posts: 255
Ligator 

You can use the new google-translator too:

http://translate.google.com/translat...F8&sl=fr&tl=en

I would also like to read: Etteilla’s Manière de se ré créer avec le Jeu de Cartes nommées Tarots

as well as:

Dictionnaire Synonimique du Livre de Thot


/Torbjörn
Top   #30
Elsewhere on the Tarot Forum
Popular Tarot Boards
· Using Tarot Cards
· Talking Tarot
· Tarot Spreads
· Tarot Decks
· Rider-Waite-Smith

Special Interest Boards
· Astrology
· Crystals & Herbs
· Divination
· Lenormand
· Spirituality

Popular Tarot Threads
· Pet Peeves
· Timing of cards
· Interesting tarot pairs
· The Moon as how someone feels
· The World as feelings

More Tarot Threads
· Cards for certain events
· Tarot meanings for health
· List of Tarot Questions
· Can Tarot be Dangerous?
· List of Tarot Myths



Elsewhere on Aeclectic Tarot
· Tarot Cards & Reviews
· Free Tarot Readings
· Tarot eBooks
· Tarot Card Meanings

Copyright © 1996 - 2022 Aeclectic Tarot. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy. Contact us. Advertise with us.