Friday, June 12, 2009

The Trojan prince Paris, whose fateful choice was responsible for starting a war, is associated with The Lovers card, and I think that The Judgement of Paris would be a fine selection for a classical Tarot. Above is a charming late 16th century work by Hendrick von Balen. We see the three goddesses posing before Paris: Athena, with her shield and owl; Hera, with a peacock by her feet; and, rounding out the fetching trio, Aphrodite with Cupid by her side. Hermes looks on, perhaps a little anxiously, as Paris decides who will receive the golden apple.

In this engraving by Renaissance artist Marcantonio Raimondi (after Raphael), some other gods have turned up to participate in this drama. Apollo is suspended mid-air in his chariot, while Zeus surveys the scene from his throne.

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