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Word for the Wise December 14, 2006 Broadcast Topic: Nostradamus

Pat yourself on the back if you knew we were going to be discussing predictions today. Today we honor the work of French physician Michel de Nostredame—Latinized Nostradamus—who was born on this date in 1503 and who is remembered, centuries later, for his Prophecies, collections of quatrains still cited as foretellings of specific events. (来源:英语学习门户网站EnglishCN.com)

Nostradamus was an astrologer who turned to the heavens for guidance. Give yourself a star if you anticipated his history would set us checking out other methods of divination.

We’ll begin with phyllomancy, "divination by means of leaves." "Divination by tea leaves," however, is known as tasseomancy. Less familiar than these modes of divination are belomancy, "divination by drawing arrows at random from a container;" and alectryomancy, "foretelling the future that begins by placing a rooster in the center of a circle of grains of corn covering letters of the alphabet;" a would-be diviner predicts the future by reading the letters according to the bird’s pecking order.

We’ll close by pointing out the importance of keeping straight coscinomancy, ceromancy, and cleromancy. Followers of coscinomancy rely on a sieve and shears to tell the future; believers in ceromancy turn to melted wax in water; while those who trust in cleromancy cast lots to tell the future.

 
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