A Fool’s Paradise

July 4th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

The picture below (which I found at VictorianWeb.org) is by Edmund J. Sullivan. It’s an illustration he did for the 1836 publication of Thomas Carlyle’s novel Sartor Resartus: The Life and Opinions of Herr Teufelsdroch.

The drawing is called A Fool’s Paradise, and when I saw it, I was struck by the number of Tarot characters pictured in it. Not only is the Fool represented (as both a Fool and an Emperor), there’s also the Magician, the Empress, the Hierophant, and the Hermit. Wow!

The only character in this picture who’s not overtly Tarot-oriented is the guy on the left taking notes. I’m guessing that he’s meant to be Herr Teufelsdroch himself, but to keep with the Tarot theme, I’m going to name him the King of Swords, a man of fine words and intellect able to explain what all the others in the picture might be doing.

FoolsParadise_EdmundJSullivan_1898_SartorResartus_pg255

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