The Lovers/L'Amoureux - Contrasting the Dodal and Conver


For those who occasionally glance at small developments on my own website, I have included a few small 'studies' (or rather personal reflections) on very few cards. This one, however, being one of them. What strikes me is that the common title ('L'Amoureux') seems to be taking some liberties with the depicted imagery: an image, I would suggest, that is principally of a wedding.

Admittedly, this is neither evident, nor likely, on either the two cards used for our contrast studies... so let's first have a look at them:

Dodal ->
Conver ->

Some differences are clear, especially with regards to the 'cherub' at the top of the card: in the Dodal, his body faces downwards towards the left of the card, whereas in the Conver, upwards towards the right of the card; On the Dodal, he appears to be wearing a band over his eyes obstructing his sight (and hence whence his arrow will hit), whereas on the Conver, he seems to see precisely the heart his arrow will pierce.

Both cards have what appears to be an older crowned woman standing on the left, and a younger 'crowned with flowers' woman on the right of the card, between them the young man whose eyes head in the direction of the older woman, but whose arms and hands point towards the younger one.

The Dodal seems to take its imagery from a model that was perhaps longer, with the bottom panel cutting across his legs (even without the panel, one would expect, it seems to me, to see his feet lower than the bottom of the card indicates). The Conver has re-adjusted the trio to be placed higher up in the card, showing that the carver had, very likely, the frame intended as part of the overall depiction.

Of titling note is that the Conver spells the card as 'LAMOVREVX', whereas the Dodal not only has the final 'X' omitted, but 'strangely' separates out the word as 'LA - MOVREV' (note here that the 'V' and 'U' are equivalent).


La Moureu

I think it is likely that "LA MOVREV" meant something to the engraver of the Dodal card. The separation between the two words seems indeed quite clear.
According to this heraldic site Moureu is a surname that derives from "Morron" which means "dark-skinned person".
The word also reminds me of the Venetian dialect "La Morosa" ("the lover" or "the mistress").

It seems to me (more clearly in the Dodal) that the woman on the left is crowned with laurel.



Cinema 6 "Movie Madness" by Fulgour

On The Left: Sophie's Choice (1982)
The year is 1947. Aspiring southern author Stingo (Peter MacNichol)
heads to New York to seek his fortune. Moving into a dingy Brooklyn
boarding house, Stingo strikes up a friendship with research chemist
Nathan Landau (Kevin Kline) and Nathan's girlfriend, Polish refugee
Sophie Zawistowska (Oscar-winner Meryl Streep).
(Pun: Sophie aka Sophia aka La Papess)

On The Right: Peggy Sue Got Married (1986)
Tells the story of a woman, on the verge of divorce, who finds herself
transplanted back to the days of her high school prom. Academy Award
nomination: Kathleen Turner, Best Actress in a Leading Role.
(Pun: Peggy for "peg" ~Hebrew Waw "hook or nail")

In The Middle: ??:(?? (2006)
Maybe somebody can find some really gorey insane tosh
in the Book of Revelations for this guy? Is he the Beast?
I always love it when Revelations gets the centre stage.


The Choice of Hercules

Fulgor is right, the woman with the laurel is Sophie, or Virtue/Pallas/Minerva. It has been noted before on ATF (by JMD I think) that this card seems to echo a classical theme: "The Choice of Hercules". The other woman is Pleasure / Venus.
This is a painting by Annibale Carracci.

We also have paintings of this scene by Rubens and Veronese among others.
Pallas wears her laurel (which quite evident in the painting by Veronese).

Panofsky has written on this subject:

Panofsky 1930
Panofsky, Erwin. Hercules am Scheidewege und andere antike Bildstoffe in der neueren Kunst. Studien der Bibliothek Warburg 18. Leipzig and Berlin, 1930.

What I was most surprised of, is that there is a Cantata by Haendel about the Choice of Hercules!
Here is the Libretto.

In the Cantata there are four characters, just like in the Card:
* Hercules
* Virtue
* Pleasure
* Attendant to Pleasure


le pendu

Wonderful post Marco, thanks for the links, pretty convincing I'd say.