Review Tarot de Marseille from Nicolas Conver published by Editions Heron

Nicolas Conver ‘s Tarot de Marseille dated 1760 has become a reference. We can concede that Nicolas Conver is the successor of a tradition that has evolved over several centuries. And that the tarot card model he proposes has been copied and recopied by the postdate generations of cardmakers. De facto, Nicolas Conver ‘s tarot card has become probably the best know congressman of the basic shape of the Tarot de Marseille. however, Conver is probably not the writer of his own tarot card, so we can discuss the authenticity of the Conver tarot card as the standard of the Tarot de Marseille .
indeed, Isabelle Nadolny in her book “ Histoire du Tarot ” brings interesting elements about the Conver family. The name Mathieu Conver ( Nicolas Conver ‘s father ) is mentioned for the first time in the archives of the city of Marseille in 1783-1789. Nicolas Conver, was born himself in 1784 and worked as a master cardmaker from 1809 to 1833. He was consequently unable to engrave or publish a tarot card in 1760 ! The explanation of the mystery fortunately remains very simple. It was far-flung at the fourth dimension that pearwood molds, used to print cards, were bought back from card godhead to wag godhead, or even inherited from church father to son. In fact, the black line was obtained by xylographic serve from a pearwood shape, and this proficiency lasted until 1880. Nicolas Conver obtained his molds by this means, erased the list of the erstwhile cartier to put his own, but he left the date of engraving, probably to gain credibility or authenticity. I am not talking about Conver as an imposter, but I am simply referring to a common practice among the cartiers, buying back or inheriting the molds.

however, the fact that Nicolas Conver is officiated in 1760 or from 1809 onwards does not change the facts or entirely slightly. He remains one of the last cardmakers of his generation to have printed Tarot de Marseille cards. indeed, the popularity of the Tarot de Marseille was already declining in 1760, as the production of such tarot card cards was concentrated in Marseille. Paris and Lyon no long produced tarot card cards because the stencil color had six shades ( not counting the black line ) and made the cards expensive. furthermore, the alleged french signs ( Heart, Spades, Clubs, Diamonds ) were already preferred by the french. The Conver model was then retained by publishers who continued to produce tarot card cards. frankincense, the Conver tarot card became a reference.

But above all if the Conver has been so popular, it is because of the wide distribution of Paul Marteau ‘s tarot card published in 1930 by Grimaud, which is based on the Conver canon. For two generations, the Grimaud tarot card called “ L’Ancien ( Old ) Tarot de Marseille ” was the merely Tarot de Marseille published in France.

It is important to understand that the Conver tarot card is the result of a long development. indeed, the beginning Tarot de Marseille type II was created by Pierre Madenié from Dijon in 1709. other Tarot cards such as Jean-Pierre Payen ( Avignon, 1713 ), Francois heri ( Solothurn/Switzerland, 1718 ), Jean-Pierre Laurent ( Belfort, 1735 ), François Chosson ( Marseille, 1736 ), Pierre Cheminade ( Serravalle-Sesia/Italy, 1742 ), Claude Burdel ( Fribourg, 1745 ), or Claude Rochias ( St Sulpice/Switzerland, 1754 ) to name a few. today we have a significant measure of Tarot de Marseille cards of different authors and from unlike periods ( preserved at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, among others ). This abundance of decks demonstrates the variety show of graphics and colors that “ suddenly ” freeze with the Conver model. Thanks to these tarot card cards kept in libraries and museums, we understand better nowadays, that Nicolas Conver ‘s tarot card is not the first tarot card of Marseille. It would be more the synthesis of the evolution of the tarot card cards, the sum of the know-how of the french cartiers .

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