Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Cleromancy and Phrenology

More from Everybody's Book of Fate and Fortune. In fact, this is the third and final post from this book in the last week. The illustration above I was rather taken with. I assume it's a lino or woodcut and it accompanies a section in the book about Cleromancy, or the art of divination by the casting of dice. The words along the top are supposed to be 'magic words of power' that will influence the dice being cast to tell the future. The author does mention, however, that he learnt the finer details of this art from a Welsh magician so perhaps it's possible that he simply heard the said magician talking his own language! Who knows...

Anyway, after being impressed by the illustration, if not the subject I then found elsewhere in the book a great b/w photo illustrating such divination in progress, and then, a photo of a 'student' studying Phrenology with the help of a mask of Gothe. What amazes me most about that is the realisation of just how big a thing this stuff must have been for their to be 'schools', 'students' and all that equipment.

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