Saturday, February 04, 2006

The Fool on the Hill

More from Lizette:

In J. A. Prufrock, line 119, the reference to the Fool is assumed (per the footnote) to refer to the
stock-character Elizabethan fool/clown/jester. Considering the context of this stanza, the assumption
is probably correct. However, the fool used to have another sense: that of the sapient, clever and wise
man, a la Till Eulenspiegel and the Fool in the Marseilles Tarot deck (I believe the sense remains
unchanged in the Rider-Waite deck as well.

Just a thought.

1 comment:

rodney k said...

Great point. I think this is a good example of Eliot's attraction to palimpsest--several myths "overwritten" with the same image: Christ becomes the Hanged God of Frazer becomes a card in the Tarot becomes the Fisher King becomes ... you get the idea. Hope we'll get a chance to talk more about this tonight.