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Taurus, by Johfra Bosschart

Johfra Bosschart Taurus

Taurus by Johfra, pg. 121 in your personalized book You and the Universe




         In Johfra Bosschart’s Taurus above, a voluptuous maiden, perhaps the sensual, receptive goddess Venus in Taurus herself, rides a ceremonial white bull, symbol of Taurus’ strength, fixity and inertia (The bull was also associated with the Greco-Roman cult of Mithras, in which tauroctony, the killing of the astral bull, was as important to Mithraism as the Crucifixion was to Christians of the time). Fertility and fecundity are everywhere in Johfra's painting is , for in Taurus the earth receives the outrushing seed of Aries and gives birth to its multitudinous forms. The passionate, maniacal soldier we saw in Aries has been subdued by the maiden’s receptivity and embrace; deprived of his defining aggression he lies indolently and seemingly without direction. And of course babies abound: Venus’ companion Cupid leading the doves of peace across the sky, and mortal children playing with their father’s cast-off armor at the foot of this peaceful tableau. Roses, too, are everywhere: forming Venus’ Tiara; as a necklace on the white bull; and adorning Johfra’s ever-present and complex border. Symbolizing love and beauty, roses were identified with Venus or Artemis, the astrological ruler of both Taurus and Libra.

         In the left background is The High Priestess, the Major Arcana card or second trump of the Rider-Waite Tarot deck. In the 18th century Woodcut Marseilles Tarot, the first Tarot deck with inscriptions, she is labeled La Popesse (The Pope), possibly referring to the mythical Pope Joan who allegedly ruled for a few years in the Middle Ages. Her reign was quickly ended when she gave birth while riding a horse. Since this act resulted in the exposure of her sexual organs, she was reportedly then killed by angry witnesses. In any event, Taurus’ fertility and fecundity is again expressed through this symbol. Wearing plain blue robes The High Priestess has her hands in her lap holding a partially open scroll with the letters “TOR,” the beginning of “TORAH.” Johfra studied the Jewish Cabbala and here refers to Jewish teaching and instruction in general and in particular to the Jewish Bible. The light and dark pillars on either side of the Priestess carry the letters J and B for “Jachin” and “Boaz,” the names of the two immense metal pillars on the porch of Solomon’s First Temple in Jerusalem (6 feet thick and 27 feet tall of copper, brass or bronze, they are described in the Bible, 1 Kings 7:13–22, 41–42). The veil of the temple behind the Priestess, embroidered with pomegranates and palm leaves, again symbolizes fertility and conceals the esoteric mysteries to which the Priestess invites mankind.


Links to all 12 of Johfra Bosschart's Zodiac Series posters:







small Scorpio glyph in the Johfra Bosschart sign-links table










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astrology book open to pages 2,3

Pages 2-3 from your astrology reading in a fine art, personalized astrology book: You and the Universe







deluxe and standard covers for all book versions

Deluxe cover for all personalized, fine art astrology books









© Carl Woebcke, Taurus, by Johfra Bosschart, 1991-2017. All rights reserved.