Among Ancient Romans

In ancient Rome divination was given a high place even in public affairs. Every public act was done under magical guidance. Cicero, the great statesman himself, was an augur. He observed the flight of the birds and their cries and based decisions on public policy on the omens which it was believed these things signified.

Roman divination was really a religious system of consulting the gods. It was believed that the gods sent particular omens to guide the people. Jupiter, the father of the heavens, was seen in thunder and lightning. These signs of the elements had tremendous importance when observed by the diviner in a certain section of the sky. The eagle was Jove's messenger and gave high hope of victory, while the owl was the most unlucky bird when it cried dismally. Sacred chickens gave omens according to whether or not they were eager to feed and dropped crumbs on the ground. The good or bad signs from other birds depended on whether they were on the right or left of the augur.

So important a part did Divination play in Roman public affairs that foreign soothsayers thronged to Rome to practice their art among the rich Romans.

So you see Magic was then a profitable business, as it is today.

Both Necromancy and Divination form the background of modern day Superstitions. In the next lesson I will take up the development of Superstitions from their Magical origins.

I am sure that you are convinced by now that this course is scientific. You must realize that you are learning things about magic that you can get nowhere else — things that the average magician does not give a thought to, yet things which are vital to Magic. You must know by now that you will be a different kind of Magician -- a Scientific Magician.

Today we will continue with the Psychology of Magic. This time I will discuss the Credulity of People.

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