Cheiromancy or Palmistry, as it is more popularly known these days, is an ancient art cum science, which has bemused people throughout the ages. Although not considered an exact science by the majority of Astrologers it is still by far the most popular form of predicting the future. The common man on the street is always willing to have his hand read by anyone he presumes is capable of doing so.
Heron-Allen has brought us down to earth in his detailed description of Palmistry or Cheiromancy as he likes to refer to it. He makes it quite clear throughout his very detailed and explicit book that Palmistry is not for the charlatans to befool the public at large but rather a serious and very exacting subject which requires much more than a cursory knowledge to predict a persons future. So beware of the persons who have little or no knowledge of this exacting subject for if you really wish to have your hand read, go to a person who is known to have studied and perfected this art.
Not unlike Astrology, Palmistry has always played a great role in moulding people's lives. There was a time in history when no King or Emperor worth his salt did not employ persons gifted with the powers of reading ones palms. How many decisions of the greatest importance were made only after consultations with oracles or astrologers? Even in more recent times examples of heads of state can be found who always confer with astrologers or palmists before making decisions of great importance.
The author has very lucidly and succinctly explained much of the reasoning behind the making of predictions after observation of subjects' hands. It becomes clear whilst reading this book that there is a lot more to palm reading than meets the eye.
Cheiromancy is that branch of the science of cheirosophy which reveals not only the habits and temperaments of men, but also the events of their past, the conditions of their present, and the circumstances of their future lives, by the inspection and interpretation of the formations of the palm of the hand, and the lines which are traced thereon. It is necessary that in making a cheirognomic examination of a subject the inspection should be conducted with a due regard to the cheiromancy of the hands; it will be seen immediately how much more important it is that the shapes of the hands and fingers should be considered in giving a cheiromantic explanation of any submitted palm. For what is clearer and more easily to be understood than that the character and temperament of a man (chiefly revealed by the cheirognomic examination, of his hands) should very greatly influence, even if it does not absolutely bring about, the events which are recorded in his palms, so that, a glance at the fingers and thumb will nearly always explain anything which appears doubtful in the palm, and by making a preliminary cheirognomic examination of a subject, the cheiromantic examination will be rendered very much clearer and easier of interpretation. Therefore, as we shall immediately see, I shall combine cheirognomy with cheiro-mancy far more than I combine cheiromancy with cheirognomy, [because we had not yet entered upon the consideration of this more complicated branch,) with a view to rendering my exposition easier of remembrance.
Mounts of the palm We shall consider in turn, the mounts and the lines of the palm, with the signs and other modifications which it is necessary to bear in mind; but first, we must arrive at a complete understanding of the various parts of the hand, of the lines traced in the palm, and of the names by which they are known to cheirosophists.
And I take this opportunity of pointing out that the names given to the Mounts [those of the principal planets] are not given to them by reason of any astrological signification which they were at one time supposed to bear, but because we have been accustomed to connect certain characte-ristics with certain gods of the pagan mythology, and because it is therefore convenient to give to the formations of the hand which reveal certain characteristics, the names of the particular gods whose characteristics those were; a principle obviously more reasonable than to describe geographically in every instance the locality [in the hand] of the formation which it is desired to designate; a course which would inevitably culminate in a confusion only to be expected from the continual reiteration of an indicative verbosity. I shall therefore be understood not to be using the expressions in the old astrologic sense when I make use of such terms as "The Mount of Venus," or "The Plain of Mars," but merely to be indicating the characteristic betrayed by a development of the hand at a certain point.
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