I have been asked to provide a translation of my article Tarot et Zodiaque. I kept a copy of an old post of mine on that subject. It was published on the TarotL forum. I edited it a bit here. I think this should satisfy my reader.
Date: Mon Feb 11, 2002
Subject: Astrology and Tarot
Here is the Tarot/Astro coding. It links the Latin names of the Zodiac constellations to the Conver Tarot cipher and the number 78. (…) We first need to look at the Latin names of these constellations. I list them here in such a fashion as to highlight the fact that there is a correspondence in these names and the cipher of the secret Conver code. There are 13 letters in this Tarot cipher:
A, C, E, H, I, L, M, O, P, R, T, V and X.
Here are the constellations with the letters belonging to the code in capitals.
ARIEs, TAuRus, gEMInI, CAnCER, LEO, VIRgO, LIbRA, sCORPIO, sAgITTARIus, CAPRICORnus, AquARIus, PIsCEs.
First, we note that we have here a total of 79 letters. 79 is the mathematical result of L+A+ M+O+R+T, Death, who is coded elsewhere in the Tarot. But to get a 78, we must look for the odd man and put him out. The second T in Sagittarius stands out for two reasons. First, it is involved here in a pair, making it expandable for our purpose. Second, this T appears in the 49th position in the sequence of letters. 49 is 4+9= 13, or XIII (Death or The Arcana with no name). And the Camoin Bicentennial Conver Arcana XIII carries a blade with 49 notches (Z+23).
We will use this invitation to remove the T. By killing it, we are left with a total of 78 letters, a first and direct link to Tarot. But this T does not disappear only to highlight the number 78. We will call it from the grave in a few seconds. For now, let’s look at the cipher in relation to the Latin names of the constellations. The T being temporarily excluded, we are left with 78 letters who come in a singular fashion. Again:
ARIEs, TAuRus, gEMInI, CAnCER, LEO, VIRgO, LIbRA, sCORPIO, sAgIT(T)ARIus, CAPRICORnus, AquARIus, PIsCEs.
The letters belonging to the cipher appear 55 times. The letters not belonging to the cipher appear 23 times. 55 and 23… An irritating result as we would be much more taken by a 56-22 combination ! But there is really such a combination. Here’s how. Let’s go back to our floating T. It is time to call in this little treasure. T has a value of 20, which reduced is 2. This 2 applies to the 55-23 combination. Take one here, add one there… 56-22!
There is an added twist to this demonstration. Three constellations come with an alternate Latin name. They are Sagittarius, Capricornus and Aquarius, also known as ARCITENENS, CAPER and AMPHORA. 22 letters… These three constellations (with a dual name) occupy a particular placement in the Zodiac wheel, particular because the space they occupy on the said wheel is delimited by the 270th degree and the 348-49 degree, a distance of 78/79 degrees! (Together these constellations regroup a total of 39 stars. 39 is a sacred number in Rom’s Tarosphere. It is the number of the Cup. Cup in French is COuPE, 39. But never mind that.) This particular spacing (270-348) is valid only for a XX-XXIth century decoding as the constellations shift themselves backward one degree every 88 years on the Zodiac wheel. It would be fun to calculate accurately the XIIth century positioning. My guess for that period is a spread between the 278 and 356 degrees…
So really, the XIIth century creators of Tarot didn’t have to add any *obvious* astrological graphical substance to their iconography as the coding of the game/system, its cipher, was directly picked from the alphabetical root of Astrology, the Latin names of its constellations. (The Benedictine expert in Astrology and Alchemy at the time of Suger was the Benedictine abbot of Pamplona, Robert of Chester, an English monk known for his translations from Arab to Latin of various works, including the Koran. I submit that he may have been involved in Suger’s Tarot project.)