Minchiate and me :)

Having been much encouraged by the Money Hungry Lettuce Lion

I am continuing my tentative explorations into the world of the Minchiat Fiorentine and its world and time.

A few facts first:

The Minchiate deck:.

Here we have an early sister to the Tarot:

But: Is the Minchiate a Tarot deck???
Or not??

It has 40 trumps – and then the Fool and then the minors and courts…
There are 2 Emperors and all the Zodiac signs as well as the Elements and the Virtues….

There is no Empress, High Priestess or Hierophant or Pope

It used to be a game… waaaay back in 1466
It was called minchiate = meaning “nonsense” or “trifle.”
The word minchione in Italian has meaning “fool,” and minchionare means “to laugh at” someone. The intended meaning may be “The Game of the Fool”
I am the fool, that is playing it this week. and I am learning a lot on the way.

I am doing my daily draws with this deck and will “let you in” into what I think about what I see and also, what I learn along the way.

My head is swirrrzeling

Meet the mayors:0 The Fool 14 The Devil 28 Capricorn
1 The Magician 15 The Tower 29 Sagittarius
2 The Grand Duke 16 Hope 30 Cancer
3 The Western Emperor 17 Prudence 31 Pisces
4 The Eastern Emperor 18 Faith 32 Aquarius
5  Love 19 Charity 33 Leo
6 Temperance 20 Fire 34 Taurus
7 Strength 21 Water 35 Gemini
8 Justice 22 Earth 36 The Star
9 The Wheel of Fortune 23 Air 37 The Moon
10 The Chariot 24 Libra 38 The Sun
11 Time 25 Virgo 39 The World
12 The Hanged Man 26 Scorpio 40 Fame
13 Death 27 Aries

Images of the deck can be found here:


How the Minchiate game was played:


OK, time to have a look at the Fox in the Hen House:

After 2 days of “miniciiating” and comparing it to my very limited experiences with other early decks, I am reminded of the fact, that I will have to throw out of my head EVERYTHING I know and consider “traditional Tarot”
This deck comes from BEFORE there was any traditional Tarot.

I think we have to see these early decks in the mirror of THEIR TIME!
There is a LOT of study involved, to learn the allegories the cards hint at –
Each card will need study……
Then it will open up a fascinating world for us.
I personally am in my earliest baby steps when it comes to explore the early decks. Learning about Renaissance Italy and its culture and its players.

6 thoughts on “Minchiate and me :)

  1. Would you mind sharing me the meanings of some major arcanas, such as the Prudence, the Hope, the Faith and so on? 😀

    Thank you !

  2. obviously like your web-site but you need to check the spelling on quite a few of your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling problems and I find it very bothersome to tell the truth nevertheless I will definitely come back again.

  3. Hi Mi-Shell, this is interesting. The oldest Visconti-Sforza tarot (late 15 century) has Hope, Faith and Charity as well. There is a theory that once there were 14 trumps instead of 22 – so 4 suits of 14 and 1 “suit” of trumps. See: http://forum.tarothistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&p=17231 for more on this.
    It might be that it sheds some extra light on the development of these cards as at first glance it seems that hope, faith and charity are not in the current decks.
    The 4 elements and 12 zodiac signs seem redundant as the other cards could correspond with them. Stars, Sun, Moon and the World seem to have survived in the current Tarot (but don’t seem to be in the Visconti-Sforza or lost). Not sure what place Prudence currently has or has had in the tarot. Just some thoughts. So this Minchiate is not that different from Tarot, you could even say it’s Tarot with 2 extra sets (12 zodiac + 4 elements).
    I am looking for a personal oracle system, looking at the origins of Geomanty, I Ching and the cards. I have had some experience with Rider, Crowley and came across the intruiging work by Chesca Potter and the Green Wood tarot and so I also went through the shamanicdrumm.

    • Thank you for your interesting comment,
      ,right now we are travelling ,on vacation, so I will answer in more detaile, when we get back home at the end of N ovember. Blessings! Mi-Shell

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