aspidomancy

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Greek aspid- from aspis, a shield.

Noun[edit]

aspidomancy (uncountable)

  1. divination by entering or sitting on a circled area, or sitting on a shield, to summon an entity or go into a state of altered consciousness to gain prophetic knowledge.
  2. divination by the examination of a shield.

References[edit]

"Aspidomantia, per clypeum." -- Fabricii Bibliographia Antiquaria xii., 1713
"Aspidomancy: A little known form of divination practised in the Indies, as we are told by some travellers. Delancre says that the diviner or sorcerer traces a circle, takes up his position therein seated on a buckler, and mutters certain conjurations. He becomes entranced and falls into an ecstasy, from which he only emerges to tell things that his client wishes to know, and which the devils has revealed to him." -- L. Spence Encyc. Occult, 1920
"Sitting on a shield, within the magic circle, and pronouncing conjurations, the karcist falls into a trance during which he makes mantic revelations. This is aspidomancy." -- H.E. Wedeck Treasury of Witchcraft xii, 1961
"ASPIDOMANCY: A primitive form of divination in which an entranced sorcerer, seated in a magic circle, becomes inspired by the devil and upon awakening recounts the predictions revealed to him from that source." -- Gibson Complete Illust. Bk Div. & Prophecy, 1973
"aspidomancy a form of divination involving examination of a shield." -- Urdang (ed.) -Ologies & -Isms (3rd ed.), 1986