About The Sola Busca Tarot (circa 1491)
The Sola Busca tarot deck is the oldest known complete 78 card tarot deck. It dates back to the 15th century, the most likely date being 1491. The cards were engraved on copper, probably in Ferrara, and only one deck was hand-painted in colours a few years after printing, probably in Venice, or for the Venetian market.
The deck, then owned by the Sola Busca family, was photographed in 1907 for the British Museum. The deck is currently owned by the Pinacoteca di Brera museum in Milan.
The trumps and figures represent historical and mythical characters, identified by the names printed on the cards. Many correspond to characters from ancient Rome who participated in the end of the Roman republic. Nenbroto and Nabuchodenasor are Babylonian kings from the Bible.
The deck has been attributed to Marco d'Antonio di Ruggero also known as Marco Zoppo (Ferrara 1433 - Venice 1478), or the painter Nicola di maestro Antonio (Florence 1448 - Ancona 1511).