The Rose in the Key of the Key
Whilst trawling through the most obscure of tarot research, we discovered another Key; the so-called “Postel Key” which was published in the 1646 edition of Guillaume Postel’s Absconditorum a constitutione mundi clavis (originally published in 1547).
This has been thoroughly debunked (also by A. E. Waite) as having anything to do with tarot – in fact, the diagram was apparently added by the publisher of this later version, Abraham von Franckenberg, not by Postel in the original edition of his book, which was published under his ‘prophetic’ pseudonym, Elias Pandochaeus.
Postel may have been discussing the Key of David …
And I will lay the key of the house of David upon his shoulder: and he shall open, and none shall shut: and he shall shut, and none shall open.
However, Eliphas Levi, and then others through into the Golden Dawn and writers even after, took the text of Postel’s original writing, discussing ROTA, TARO, ORAT, ATOR … as indicating Tarot.
This even became written into the Wheel of Fortune diagram, and is often found discussed in contemporary tarot books, as being associated with Tarot.
Unfortunately, it is not associated with Tarot at all.
However, there is a mystery to Franckenberg adding this ’emblem’ and deliberately drawing attention to it by calling it “The Editor’s Key to the Author’s Key”.
Despite it not having any connection to tarot at all, if we turn over the key and ignore the obvious ‘Deus Homo Rota’ reading of the key, and the supposed tarot anagram of ROTA, and look beyond, we see …
Hidden in plain sight, Franckenberg has placed ROSA, the Latin for ‘Rose’. This is a ROSE KEY, dated from 1646, and it unlocks VERITATEM, the truth – but what truth?
It appears that as far back as 1646, publishers were somehow involved in embedding the Rose Key as an ‘in-joke’, even if their authors were unaware of it – Postel was writing 100 years prior to this later edition with the added diagram and was long-dead.
Or perhaps Postel himself knew more than he was letting on – after all, his book titles translates as the “Key of Things Kept Secret from the Foundation of the World”.
For what purpose has the Rose Key been placed? Our research continues …