created 2003 - 2005       

Document 03

The Marcello-document gives a lot of information about the early situation of the Trionfi cards, much more than the short entries of Ferrara. Of great importance is the fact, that Marcello don't show any astonishment about Gods as motives and the fact, that there are only 16 trumps. Indirectly that gives evidence, that Marcello doesn't know standard decks with fixed motifs or fixed number of triumphs and contributes with that to the 5x14-theory.
Compare our excessive article to the Michelino-deck: The Oldest Tarotcards, especially the translation of the Marcello-letter. The Michelino deck was bought by Marcello and send to the wife of Ren d'Anjou, Isabella, Queen of Lorraine.

Jacopo Antonio Marcello

1449 [13 November, from a dedicatory letter of Jacopo Antonio Marcello to Isabelle de Lorraine]

(a) "... eo ludo quem triumphum appellant: cartae quedam oblatae mihi"

(b). " novum quoddam et exquisitum triumphorum genus."

[Bibl. nat. lat. 8745, fol. 3r, 3v.; Pratesi 1989a, Pratesi 1989b]

Preliminary translation
(by Ross Gregory Caldwell)

a. "... this game/pack which is called triumph, which were the cards being offered to me"

b. a certain new and exquisite kind of triumphs.