VI. The Lover

Arlecchino, Colombina, and Pierrot stand in conversation beneath a clown angel with a bow and arrow.

This card is based on three characters from the Commedia dell’Arte. Colombina the saucy maid (center) is married to dour Pierrot (right) and is having an affair with slightly-demonic Arlecchino (left, see also XV. The Devil). Just like the ambiguously-related characters on the card in the Tarot de Marseille, these were stock characters who could be put in endless conflicting permutations in any performance.

Image Description

Three characters stand looking at each other. In the center is Colombina. She is dressed in a knee-length dress with a wide skirt, a white ruffled collar, and a white apron. Her dress is red, green, gold, and black with different patterns. Her shoes are black with pointy toes and large blue bows. Her hair is curled and she wears a ruffled green headpiece. Her hands, in red gloves, rest on her skirt.

Colombina looks over to Arlecchino on her right (the left side of the card). Arlecchino wears a tight jacket and pants decorated with red, black, and green diamonds. He also wears a black hat, a red mask, black gloves and pointy black shoes with gold buckles. His back is toward the viewer and looks at Colombina, taking a step toward her. He rests his left hand on her arm and holds a large green, yellow, and red club behind his back in his right hand.

On the right side of the card, Pierrot stands behind Colombina, looking at her sadly and raising his left hand. He is dressed all in white. He wears a soft white hat and has a tear painted on his cheek. The hems of his cape and loose shirt and trousers have lacy patterns of moons, stars, and hearts.

Above the trio, a winged clown in a jumpsuit patterned with hearts holds a bow and aims an arrow between Colombina and Pierrot. This clown has curly yellow hair, a ruffled white collar, and oversized red shoes. He hangs in a circle of red and yellow triangular rays.