From left to right the 5 of Coins (Darahim), the 3 of Cups (Tunan) the T of Swords (Suyuf) and the 10 of Polosticks (Jawkan). On the top row the Mamlûk cards and on the bottom row the Tarot cards of Jean Dodal. The resemblance of the suit symbols is striking. The Mamlûk decks had three court cards in each suit. For religious reasons they were all male: the King (Malik), the Viceroy (Na’ib) and the Second Viceroy (Na’ib thanin). In the following figure as an example the court cards from the suit of Cups, ordered from the lowest to the highest !
Al the Malik (King, right most picture) cards share the same octal pattern on the base. On the bottom of the court cards a description of the value of the card, and on the top of the cards a saying of which I ignore the significance. Mamlûk cards arrived in Europe around 1375. In Italy they were brought by Venetian merchants who had lots of contact with the Mamlûk civilization. The cards were called Saracen cards or also Na'ibs (Naips).
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