Page 1


s

^he Xibrar^ Brietol

of the

nDeMco««(i;bivur9ical Society,

191;


A


ASTROLOGY IN MEDICINE


MACMILLAN AND LONDON

CO., Limited BOMBAY CALCUTTA MELBOURNE •

THE MACMILLAN COMPANY NEW YORK DALLAS

BOSTON CHICAGO SAN FRANCISCO •

THE MACMILLAN

CO. OF CANADA, TORONTO

Lti


IN MEDICINE

ASTROLOGY

THE FITZPATRICK LECTURES DELIVERED BEFORE THE ROYAL COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS

ON

NOVEMBER W^ITH

6

AND

II, 19

1

ADDENDUM ON

SAINTS

AND

SIGNS

CHARLES ARTHUR MERCIER,

M.D.

FELLOW OF THE COLLEGE

MACMILLAN AND ST.

CO.,

LIMITED

MARTIN'S STREET, LONDON 1914


COPYRIGHT


TO SIR

THOMAS BARLOW,

Bart., K.C.V.O.

PRESIDENT OF THE ROYAL COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS OF LONDON


Lec

Lk


CONTENTS PAGE

Lecture

I

Lecture

II

Saints and Signs

1

39 80


*

-


LECTURE The is

among the

position of Astrology

quite unique.

antecede

all

I

Its origin is so

written records

important part of the

life

remote as to

has formed an

it

:

Sciences

of every nation that has

advanced beyond barbarism

it

:

has been studied

with enthusiasm not only by every European nation,

but also by the Egyptians, the natives of India, the Chinese, the Arabs, the Jews,

and by the Baby-

lonians and the Chaldeans.

was studied

It

in

one

long unbroken effort for thousands of years, and

engaged the most strenuous endeavours of some of the greatest intellects in

every age.

Albertus

Magnus was a convinced astrologer, and even Roger Bacon, that very great man, projected a universal

medicine founded upon Astrology.

A

knowledge

of Astrology was a necessary part of the equipment of aU educated

men

;

and Astrological terms form

to this day an integral part of every

language. M.

We

still

consider

;

we

still

European

find persons 1


2

Astrology in Medicine

and things in opposition

we

find

still

we

;

still

suffer disaster

some things exorbitant

in the ascendent

;

some persons are

and others

;

still

enough to be born under a lucky star deal in merchandise

;

with merchants

;

fortunate

we

\

we

familiar with the martial cloak of Sir J.

we

describe

still

dispositions

day

;

still

are

all

Moore

and persons as

Saturnine, Jovial, Martial or Mermrial; we retain the

;

still

names of Saturday, Sunday and Mon-

in Medicine

and Venereal

we

disease,

retain the terms Lunatic

and

prescribe Mercury, and

in the latter

we

still

we

still

begin our pre-

scriptions with the sign of Jupiter.

Yet these are the only remaining remnants of a science and an art that were once of paramount

importance

;

and even medical men are ignorant

of the very terminology of a science and an art that have been declared, by authority after authority, to

be so necessary to the proper practice

of medicine, that without them medicine could not

be

efficiently practised,

was

fully

equipped for his

utterly extinct.

sance;

the last

it

and no medical practitioner

It

task.

Astrology

began to decay at the

is

now

renais-

languished in the seventeenth century;

man

of high distinction

who

practised

it

in


3

Death of Astrology

was John Dryden^; but though Peter

this country

Woulfe, a F.RS., maintained the truth of Astrology at the beginning of the nineteenth century, really expired

the biting

when

humour

Walter Scott,

less

it

received

its

it

had

deathblow from

of Jonathan Swift.

Yet when

than a century afterwards, in-

troduced into one of his novels the terms of the there was no one then living, nor has there

art,

been since any commentator of sufficient knowledge, to expose the blunders that he made.

To such a record there history of

human

is

endeavour.

no parallel

in the

There are indeed

two subjects of study that afford an approximation, but

an approximation

Astrology.

The

really included

first

only,

of these

what we now

to the is

call

history of

Alchemy, which Chemistry, and

In a letter to his sons John and Charles, dated Sept. 3, 1697, Dryden says 'Towards the latter end of this month, September, Charles will begin to recover his perfect health 1

it myself, I am sure things hitherto have happened according to the very time that I predicted them.' See also the Preface to

according to his nativity, which, casting

is true,

and

his Fables,

all

and the

lines

The utmost malice of the

Now And

stars is past frequent trines the happier lights among. high raised Jove, from his dark prison freed,

Those weights took off that on his planet hung, Will gloriously the new-laid works succeed.

1—2


Astrology in Medicine

4 is

therefore very far from extinct.

usually, however, understood to it

did in fact include as

its

Alchemy

mean

is

what

solely,

principal objects, the

search for the philosopher's stone, and the search for the elixir of

desired, not as

life.

The philosopher's stone was

an end in

itself,

but as a means to

the transmutation of metals, which were not then

known

to

be elements.

I

need not remind

this

audience that this endeavour, which has been the object for the finger of scorn for so

now almost

many

years, is

Certain ele-

within sight of success.

ments are now transmuted, or transmute themselves

;

least of the metals

and one at

the ancient Alchemists

Nor need

tory.

I

is

now made

known

to

in the labora-

remind you that one eminent

physician discovered, a few years ago, the elixir of life in

orchidian extract

more recently made the the elixir of milk.

who

life is

still

surprising discovery that

neither

He was more

first

while another has

;

more nor

less

than sour

fortunate than a predecessor,

isolated alcohol,

and having drunk

of the newly discovered elixir of

life,

died,

freely

by the

irony of fate, of acute alcoholic poisoning.

A nearer be found

parallel to the fate of Astrology is to

in that of Aristotelian Logic;

but the


Astrology parallel is

still

it

5

It is true that

not quite complete.

cultivated with the

Logic -was once versality

and Logic

same

and the same fervour as Astrology

of the equipment of every ;

that

like Astrology, a necessary part

was aforetime,

be educated

;

uni-

and that

it is

man who pretended to now fallen into neglect

and contempt that are well-nigh as universal as former cultivation

its

but, unlike Astrology, Logic is

;

not yet quite extinct.

It is dying,

the very agony of death;

The lamp of Astrology

is

but

indeed

it

still

gone

utterly

:

it is

in

breathes.

out,

but the

expiring flame of Logic stiU flickers precariously in

earth.

We might

diligent search, professors

who know

some of the dark places of the

stiU find,

by

the meaning of Barbara and Celarent, of Bocardo

and Baralipton, and can even subject them to the orthodox manipulations of logical art;

now knows

but who

the meaning of a triplicity or a horo-

scope? or could cast a geniture, or rectify a nativity? is

Logic

is

moribund,

already dead.

no longer stinks

perhaps because

in the writings of so in their day.

true,

We

but Astrology

has been dead so long that

It ;

it is

many men

it is

it

embalmed

that were eminent

have even forgotten how con-

spicuous and important a position

it

occupied


Astrology in Medicine

6

among

the sciences, the

forefathers;

medicine,

and

its

through so

crafts of

our

because the long sleep of

it is

and want of progress

stagnation

many

and the

arts,

was due

centuries,

in

no small

degree to the shackles of Astrology, and of the

humoral pathology, which Astrology countenanced

and corroborated, that

I

think

seemly and

it

proper to bring before this College the elementary principles of Astrology,

and the ways

in

which they

were applied to medicine.

known

Astrology had a

thousand years.

been

in

history of nearly six

Chaldea about 4000

throughout

all

seems to have

beginning

Its

B.c.

:

it

was diffused

nations and peoples that had any

pretence to civilisation

;

and it engaged, throughout

that immense time and that enormous area, the attention of innumerable votaries,

were some of the greatest adorned the human

race.

among whom

intellects It

that have

had consequently

attained to a degree of elaboration and complexity

which

renders

it

difficult

to

give,

within

reasonable compass, a clear account of

minous

details,

its

any volu-

expressed as they are in highly

technical terminology,

and conveyed

in Latin so

canine and so extraordinarily abbreviated as to be


7

Factors of Astrology

In

obscure, often to the point of unintelligibility.

preparing the account that

I shall give, I

have had

the advantage of appealing on different points, to

a Latin scholar of rare attainments, to a Professor of Astronomy, and History,

and

I rejoice

to

a Professor of Ancient

and

to say that one

all

have

been unable to solve some of the problems that

had puzzled myself have

Where such

failed to illuminate, it is

farthing candle

The main

if it

solar luminaries

no disgrace to

my

gives no light.

factors in Astrology are three

:

—the

Signs of the Zodiac, the Seven Planets, and the

Houses of Heaven \ In factor,

Medical Astrology there

which

is

is

yet

another

equally important, and without

which Medical Astrology cannot be understood. This factor consists of the four Elementary Qualities,

Heat, Cold, Dryness and Moisture;

which cor-

respond with the four elements, Fire, Earth, Air

and Water; with the four humours, Yellow Black

Bile,

Bile,

Blood and Phlegm; and with many

other things. ^

A

House has two meanings

in Astrology.

It

may mean

a twelfth part of the heavens, as will be shown presently, or it may mean a Sign of the Zodiac specifically appropriated to a particular Planet, which is its Lord.


Astrology in Medicine

8

Since there are twelve Signs of the Zodiac,

Seven Planets, and twelve Houses of Heaven, will

it

be easily seen that the merely numerical

combinations of any one of these with the others are indefinitely multitudinous

known in

that each

many

and when

may be combined

many

human

it

is

with the others

difierent ways, the complications

too great for the since

;

become

intellect to follow

;

and

of the combinations depend on con-

siderations that are both vague

and

arbitrary, it is

not surprising that scarcely any two Astrologers should combine them in the same way, or draw the same conclusions from the same disposition of

the heavens.

Every Sign of the Zodiac, every Planet, and every House has certain special powers and ence, not only over

over individual

moment

mankind

generally, but specially

men and women,

according to the

of their birth, according to their com-

plexion, disposition

and temperament, according

to the place in which they live, and so forth in addition, every Sign, Planet,

special

and

dry, cold

its

;

and

and House has

powers at certain times of

Sign and Planet has as hot

influ-

life,

and every

own elementary

and moist, and so

qualities,

forth,

and


Signs of the Zodiac

9

has special power over some part of the body and

some faculty of mind.

Moreover, these powers,

both general and special, are reinforced or minished in so

many ways

scarcely retain

them

;

that the

memory can

and since neither the

inforcement nor the diminution

any exact computation, the

is

re-

susceptible of

even

result,

di-

if all

were

must always be

to be allowed their proper weight,

dubious.

The Signs of the

Zodiac.

These, of course, are twelve in number.

Astronomy they are disposed

in the order in

In

which

the sun successively occupies them, Aries, Taurus

and Gemini being the Signs of Spring; Cancer,

Leo and Virgo those of Summer and Sagittarius those of Autumn

;

;

Libra, Scorpio

and Capricornus,

Aquarius and Pisces the Signs of Winter.

In

Astrology, however, they are differently arranged,

according to their several qualities or properties.

They are

still

in

groups of three, but each group

forms, not a season of the year, but a Triplicity,

thus: Aries, the first

month of

month of Summer, and

Spring, Leo, the second

Sagittarius, the third

month


10

Astrology in Medicine

of Autumn, form the

which

is

first Triplicity

hot and dry, regulates the

masculine, diurnal, and

Lord

is

;

is

every sign in Bilis flava, is

influential in youth.

Its

Sol by day and Jupiter by night.

Fig. 1.

The second

Triplicity consists of Taurus, the

second Sign of Spring, Virgo, the third Sign of

Summer, and Capricornus, the These Signs are cold and dry

humour

is

Bilis atra

;

;

first

of Winter.

their corresponding

they are feminine, nocturnal.


The

and preside over decrepitude.

Venus by day and Luna by The third

Triplicity is

Libra and Aquarius

1^1

Triplicities

Their Lords are

night.

composed of Gemini,

the third of Spring, the

;

These are

of Autumn, and the second of Winter.

hot and moist in complexion, their

first

humour

Sanguis, they are masculine and diurnal

;

is

they

preside over our childhood, and their Lords are

Saturn by day and Mercury by night.

The Signs of the fourth the

first

and

Triplicity are Cancer,

of Summer, Scorpio, the second of Autumn,

Pisces, the third of Winter.

and moist

their

;

humour

feminine and nocturnal period of

life

and Mars by

;

and

;

They are cold

Pituita

is

;

they are

they regulate the middle

their Lords are

Venus by day

night.

It is also

important to know that some signs

are mobile, such are Cancer, Libra, Capricornus

and Pisces

;

others are stable, and such are Taurus,

Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius is

;

while a third group

mediocre with respect to mobility, as Aries,

Gemini, Virgo and Sagittarius.

A

masculine Sign

is

so called because a child

conceived under the influence of that Sign will be

a male

;

and children conceived under feminine


12

Astrology in Medicine

Signs are female.

(Yet

a fixed rule that

it is

all

children are born under Aries, just as by the

common

law, all children born at sea are parish-

ioners in Stepney.)

A

Sign

power

is

is

diurnal or nocturnal according as

its

greater by day or by night.

In addition, every Sign has an aspect towards

some particular part of the human body. Aries

of

is

the principal and most important sign

In whatever scheme the Signs are reckoned,

all.

Aries comes

first

:

consequently

its

aspect

is

to the

Taurus relates to the neck and shoulders,

head.

because a bull

is

these

in

parts very robust.

Gemini relates to the arms and hands, because the twins

are

represented

quality of embracing

is

as

embracing, and

in the

the

arms and hands.

Cancer pertains to the chest and the adjacent parts, because

a crab

and thereabouts.

is

very robust in the chest

Leo pertains to the heart and

the mouth of the stomach, because the whole virtue 6f a lion

is in

his courage.

Virgo relates

to the intestines, the base of the stomach and

umbilicus, because the virtue of a virgin resides therein.

they

lie

Libra relates to the kidneys, because equally balanced, one on each side of the


13

The Planets spine.

Scorpio refers to the genitals, because the

whole virtue of the scorpion

is

these are the caudalia of man. Sagittarius

is

and

The aspect of

to the hips, of Capricornus to the

knees, of Aquarius to the legs, feet,

in his tail,

and of Pisces to the

these being the parts of the body, as those

are the Signs, that

come next

in order.

The Planets. It is scarcely necessary to

that in the time

remind

this audience

when Astrology came

into being,

the earth was the centre of the universe, and the Planets were seven in number, Uranus and Neptune

being then as unknown as Pallas and Ceres, while the sun and

moon differed from the other wandering

stars only in their greater size

and

lustre,

and in

the greater regularity of their movements.

There was a certain conventional order, the origin of which cannot

now be

traced, in

the Planets were always enumerated;

which

an order

that does not correspond with their relative size

and importance, for then the Sun would come It is Saturn, is

first.

however, that takes precedence, and

followed by Jupiter, Mars, Sol, Venus, Mercury


14

Astrology in Medicine

and Luna,

in the order in which I

have named

them.

The range of

influence of the Planets over

matters terrestrial was plenary.

On

the whole, the

term influence best conveys the meaning of the Astrological term *

corresponds

with,'

which

'aspect,'

a

substituted for 'aspect'

term

that

Though

more than

is

sometimes

is

some things

as to

which they aspected, or with which they con-esponded, such as the Zodiacal signs and the four elements, the Planets were neither productive nor regulative, yet with respect to

were at

least

regulative,

most

and as to many were

actually originating. For instance, called

things, they

Guy de Chauliac,

by Fallopius the father of Surgery, as

Hippocrates

is

the father of Medicine, attributed

the great plague of 1345 to the conjunction of the three planets, Saturn, Jupiter and Mars, in Aquarius

on March 24th of that year. Torella, physician to Caesar Borgia

Alexander VI, attributed conjunction of the Planets. tinus,

and

1584.

it

a peculiar

So does Basil Valen-

so does Petrus Maynardus,

moreover, to predict that in

syphilis to

and Pope

who was

able,

would come to an end

The College of Physicians of Paris


15

Jurisdiction of the Planets

attributed the Black Death of 1349 to a vapour or

fog generated

by the struggle between the con-

which combated the rays of the sun

stellations,

and the warmth of the heavenly

fire,

struggling

violently with the waters of the great sea.

vapour,' they said,

as the sun

is

'

will

in Leo..,.

'

This

continue to spread as long

We

are of opinion that the

constellations with the aid of nature strive

virtue of their divine might to protect

human

the

by

and heal

race.'

Taken together, the Planets had jurisdiction

Each

over everything, but not indiscriminately.

Planet had

its

own

peculiar jurisdiction over

some

between them

things, while other Planets divided

the jurisdiction over other things of that kind. Like the Signs of the Zodiac, each of the Planets had

a jurisdiction over some part of the

human

but this was only a small region of

sway.

Planet aspected

its

own

its

element, and

body,

Every its

own

complexion, or pair of elementary qualities, so that Saturn, for instance, was cold and dry, Jupiter

Each Planet had

hot and moist, and so forth.

own

colour,

odour and taste

of animals and plants still

;

each

;

each

its

its

own

its

own groups

metal, and

we

speak of Saturnine poisoning, of crocus Martis,


16

Astrology in Medicine

and of the metal Mercury its

own day

what

is

of the

each has

its

own

plants,

week and hour of the day

more germane

every Planet had

;

and

;

to the present purpose,

corresponding humour, part

its

of the body, sense, faculty, part of the mind, bodily configuration and mental temperament, life,

and

One

its

peculiar diseases and

two

or

instances

mode be

will

exemplify the way in which sublunary

its

time of

of death.

enough

to

afiairs

are

apportioned among the Planets. Take for instance animals: of these, Saturn has jurisdiction over the camel, the bear, the

ass,

the

cat,

the owl, the bat,

the tortoise, the mouse, the beetle

over beasts of evil

omen

The aspect of Jupiter the strong

dog, the ostrich,

or of slow movement.

to the wise, the swift,

and the

horse, the wolf, the

and bull.

the

bee,

venomous snakes, scorpions and

all either fighters

beings.

and generally,

to the elephant, the stag

:

Mars aspects the

spiders;

is

;

or noxious to

human

Sol presides over regal and dominant

animals, the lion, the eagle and the cock.

Venus

over the goat, the sheep, the

has jurisdiction

pheasant, the partridge, the pigeon, the dove and

the sparrow

otherwise

;

all

amatory, and either polygamous or

prolific.

The aspect of Mercury

is

to


17

Jurisdiction of the Planets

the fox, the ape, the serpent, the parrot, the spider,

the bee. and the ant, and generally, to animals that are reputed wise or cunning. hare, the swan, landsnails,

Luna

influences the

the nightingale, the frog,

crabs

and

fish,

and generally,

shellfish,

animals that are nocturnal or aquatic.

Of plants, Saturn has

jurisdiction over the oak,

the mespilus, the rue, the hellebore, and generally

over those of slow growth, of narcotic virtue, and Jupiter over the laurel, the

of crass substance.

sandal-wood, the cinnamon, the balsam and the incense tree. jalap,

Mars over pepper,

scammony,

generally over

and

euphorbium,

colocynth,

all bitter

ginger, mustard,

plants

and hot

poisons.

Sol aspects the palm, rosemary, heliotrope, crocus,

Venus the

and

all

lily,

the rose and the pea; Mercury the corylus

aromatics.

and the

millefoil;

gourd, pepin

the pine, the

olive,

and Luna the cucumber, the

fruits,

apples and pears, and

i.e.

lettuce.

The minerals of Saturn are lead and stones;

of Jupiter,

amethyst

;

the

tin,

black

and the

of Mars, iron, jasper, and magnesia

Sol, gold, carbuncles,

and

crysolite

per, smaragdus, turquoise, M.

sapphire,

all

;

;

of

of Venus, cop-

and coral

;

of Mercury, 2


Astrology in Medicine

18 quicksilver,

Luna,

chalcedony, and cornelian;

silver, crystals, beryl,

I defer to

and of

and the diamond.

the next lecture the consideration of

those planetary aspects that have a special bearing

upon medicine, but place

make

to

this

is

perhaps the proper

the very important distinction

between the benevolent, propitious, or fortunate Planets and those that are malevolent, unpropitious,

The

or unlucky.

fortunate,

or

benevolent, or

propitious Planets are Jupiter, Sol, and Venus, of

which the degree.

and

first

last are

Saturn, Mars, and

unpropitious, and unlucky. this respect.

He

lucky in the highest

Luna are malevolent, Mercury

is

variable in

has scarcely any character of his

own, but he reinforces the benevolence or the malevolence, as

Planet

may be

the case

may

be,

of whatever

in conjunction with him, or

may be

favourably aspected by him. It is evident, if these

premises are granted, that

the course and termination of every malady in

every sick person depend on the relative power,

with respect to other Planets, of the particular Planet or Planets that have jurisdiction in the matter.

They will depend, in the

first place,

on the

Planet that has jurisdiction over the temperament,


Planets and Disease as Saturn jovial,

if

Mars

he

if

he

will

depend

also

the

humour

that

bile,

is

saturnine,

is

martial,

19

Jupiter

and so

if

forth.

he

is

They

on the Planet that presides over is

peccant, as yellow bile, black

blood or phlegm.

They

will

depend on the

Planet that governs the part of the body that

is

diseased; on that which governs the disease; on that which has jurisdiction at the time of

which the sick person

is

life

at

arrived; on that which

presided over his nativity, and so forth.

Here are

at least six circumstances to be taken into account,

and of course, the Planet that governs one of these circumstances

must be

may

different

not be the same, and in fact

from those which govern others.

So that seven Planets may and the

disease

all

be influencing the

sick person at once,

be pulling in different

directions,

and may

some towards

health and some towards death, some

acuteness disease.

all

towards

and some towards chronicity of the

It is evident, therefore,

depend on the

relative

that his fate must

powers of the propitious

and unpropitious Planets, and that

it

is

of the

utmost importance to determine the factors on which

tlie

powers of the Planets depend, and to

estimate their strength in any particular case.

2—2


20

Astrology in Medicine This

is

by no means

very numerous.

easy, for the factors are

be enough to obtain an

It will

approximate estimate, however,

if

we

confine our

consideration to the ten in the following enumeration.

The power of a Planet

moment

at any given

depends on: 1.

The Sign

of the Zodiac in which

it is

situated at that moment. 2.

Tlie Sign of

which the Planet

is

3.

The Sign

which the Planet

rejoices.

4.

The Signs

in

in

Lord.

which the Planet ascends

or descends. 5.

The House in which the Planet is situated.

6.

The House

7.

The

in

position

which the Planet

rejoices.

or aspect of the Planet

towards other Planets. 8.

The aspect of the Planet

to

the As-

cendent. 9.

The motion of the

Planet, as fast or slow,

direct or retrograde. 10.

The day and hour.

In this estimation of the powers of the Planets,

much depends on

the Houses of Heaven, and these

must be described before we can proceed.


The Houses of Heaven

21

The Houses of Heaven.

We

recognise that, while the stars have an

all

apparent motion from the eastern horizon up to the vertical

meridian, and

down again

to the

western horizon, yet the horizons and the vertical

meridian keep their places with respect to

do not move.

The eastern horizon and the

us,

and

vertical

meridian enclose between them a fourth part of the heavens, whose content

is

continually changing,

as the stars rise above the eastern horizon

reach and pass the meridian.

Similarly,

meridian to the western horizon part

;

is

and

from the

another fourth

and the two remaining fourths are beneath

the horizon, and are divided from one another

the inferior vertical

meridian,

all

by

these fourth

parts remaining stationary, while the stars occupy

them each heavens.

in turn in the daily revolution of the

Now imagine each of these fixed quarters

of heaven to be divided

by three equidistant

meridians: the heavens will then be divided into

twelve parts, six above the horizon and six below,

whose starry contents are continually changing. These twelve divisions are the twelve Houses of

Heaven.


22

Astrology in Medicine That

is

to say, they are so

the meridians

if

which divide them meet at the north and south poles of the horizon of the place

and

;

it

was the

usual rule in Astrology so to consider them it

was not the invariable

Some

rule.

put the meeting places at the

;

but

astrologers

celestial poles,

and

then the Houses were divided by the ordinary meridians.

Others put the meeting places at the

Zenith and the Nadir of the place. that those astrologers

It is

who computed

manifest

the positions

of the Planets in one set of Houses, must arrive at

very different results from those who computed the positions in another set in

;

for a Planet

might be

one House according to one computation, and in

a different House according to another.

That House which

is

immediately below the

eastern horizon, so that the stars therein are the

above the horizon,

next to

rise

which

also called the

is

the Ascendent.

It is

first

House,

Ascendent House, or

shortly,

is

the

the principal House, the most

powerful House, and takes rank over

all

the others.

The Planet or Planets that occupy the Ascendent chiefly

determine the fate of the native.

of the Houses are

The

rest

known by numbers, and foUow

one another widdershins, that

is,

in

the order


23

Cusps of the Houses reverse to the

movement

of the hands of a clock.

The second and third are between the Ascendent and the lower

vertical meridian

and sixth between the lower the western horizon

house meets the

;

first

the fourth,

;

vertical meridian

and so on

fifth

and

until the twelfth

at the eastern horizon.

The anterior boundary of each House, the meridian which the stars in that House will cross next,

is

called the cusp of that

House

;

and from

the cusp the position of the Planets in the is

measured

in degrees

the Ascendent I

may

House

The cusp

and minutes.

called the horoscope

is

;

of

and

here correct a prevalent error with respect

to this term.

It is

a horoscope, as

if

customary to speak of casting

that were a possible and usual

operation in Astrology.

expression is

House

is

What

meant by the

is

casting a nativity or geniture

to say, setting out, on a plan of the

;

that

Houses of

Heaven, the position of the Signs of the Zodiac

and of the Planets

in the respective

they occupied at the

we may

moment

of birth.

cast a decumbiture, that

a similar plan for the

Houses that

is,

moment a

Similarly,

we may set out

disease begins

;

* and such an operation was as necessary in the daily routine of a physician as

is

now

the taking the


24

Astrology in Medicine

temperature of the patient

we cannot

that

in this

:

but

it

is

manifest

sense cast a horoscope,

for the horoscope is but the cusp of the Ascen-

dent.

Fig. 2.

This

is

the most obvious method of setting out

the Houses, but

it

was not usually adopted, perhaps

because compasses were not common, and not

so

easy

to

draw as

straight

lines.

circles

The


26

Aspects of the Houses

conventional figure, on which the positions of the

heavenly bodies were always set out, was thus

Fig.

3.

Each House of Heaven,

like

Zodiac and each Planet, has jurisdiction, or influence over

each Sign of the

its

special

human

aspect,

affairs

;

but

unlike the Signs and the Planets, the Houses are

not complexionate

:

they are neither hot nor cold,

neither moist nor dry.


26

Astrology in Medicine Just as Aries

is

the

first,

the most powerful and

important of the Signs, and Luna the most powerful is

and important of the

Planets, so the Ascendent

the most powerful and important of the Houses.

When

a Planet

paramount over

may be

they

may be

it

The Ascendent

by them.

is

the other Planets, wherever

all

still,

;

power

in the Ascendent, its

is

is

strongly influenced

the House of projects,

of the beginnings of things, especially of journeys it is

the House of

tions

life,

of movement, and of ques-

and answers.

The second House of servants

and

;

is

the House of riches, and

signifies the

the lessening of the years of

The sisters

House

third

;

is

;

of kingdoms

;

the House of brothers and ;

of heirs ;

;

of quiet

of religion, and ministers of religion.

;

is

the House of parents

of towns in which the native

which he

The

life.

of continuance of journeys

The fourth House heredity

end of youth, and

of acquaintances and friends

of changes

in

;

is

fifth

lives,

;

of

and

born, and of his fate after death.

House

is

the House of children

;

of

eating and drinking; of games; of fighting; of pictures, vessels

The

sixth

and money.

House

is

the House of sickness and


Powers of health

of servants

;

27

Houses

the

of domestic animals

;

and of

;

receiving.

The seventh House marriage

;

and

signifies

The eighth House fear

of riches

;

is

;

and of

House of dignities ;

;

of laws ;

ness

;

;

of books

of princes

;

;

of

;

It is

the

and magis-

and of half of

life.

;

is

the House of fortmie

of friends and

faith

;

is

of labour

and of beasts and

allies.

the House of unfriends, ;

of battles

;

of sad-

birds.

The strongest House of

Next

of

;

last years of life.

of mothers

The twelfth House and of bad

and

life.

the Royal House.

The eleventh House of good faith

of

of pilgrimages and journeys

is

of memories

the years of

;

sleep.

The tenth House

trates

;

the House of Death

of wisdom and philosophy

;

rumours

is

the middle of

and of the

;

The ninth House of faith

House of women

the

of contentions and strife ; of saints

;

of thieves

is

all is

the Ascendent.

to this are the other angulares, which im-

mediately precede the other cardinal points, the fourth, seventh and tenth, pitious Houses.

The next

the

of the

successors

all

viz.

powerful and pro-

in succession are called

angulares, and are less


28

Astrology in Medicine

powerful than the angulares, but

be good, or propitious.

still

disposed to

The remaining Houses,

the third, sixth, ninth and twelfth, are called ab angulis cadentes, and are unpropitious, and dis-

posed to

evil.

We are

now

in which the

in a position to discover the

power of a Planet

is

ways

increased or

diminished.

In the

Signs

certain

ways. itself^

first place,

every Planet

is

related to

of the Zodiac in three different

First, it

has a Sign or Signs peculiar to

which are called the houses of the Planet,

and of

this house, or of these houses, the planet is

Lord.

Second, every Planet has a Sign in which

rejoices.

When

situated in any of these Signs, and

especially

when

Planet

augmented.

is

it

in its

house, the power of the Third, every Planet

is

ex-

alted in a certain Sign, and depressed in that which is

diametrically opposite, and the power of the

Planet

is

increased or diminished according as the

one or the other of these Signs

For tially,

instance, Saturn

is

is

Lord of Capricorn essen-

and of Aquarius accidentally; he

in Aquarius, is exalted in Libra, Aries.

in the Ascendent.

Consequently, his power

rejoices

and depressed

is

at its

in

maximum


The Houses and when he he

is

is

in Capricorn,

and

augmented when

is

It is increased

in Aquarius.

29

the Planets

the Ascendent, and subdued

when Libra

when Aries

is

is

in

in that

Saturn (chronos) regulates the beginnings

House.

of things, especially of things relating to the earth,

such as planting, sowing, ploughing, and other operations of agriculture. therefore to be begun

when he

Such operations ought

when Saturn has power,

in the Ascendent, or in Capricorn or

is

Aquarius, provided that Aries dent.

If Libra

not in the Ascen-

fail

to be successful.

hot Planet in a hot Sign will have

augmented reduced

A

is

should be in the Ascendent, however,

such operations can scarcely

A

;

as

;

but in a cold Sign

its

its

heat

heat vdll be

and so of the other elementary

qualities.

moist Planet in a humid Sign will be dripping

wet,

and

We

will

aggravate diseases due to moisture.

have seen that certain Houses are more

propitious than others, those, namely, whose cusp

is

on the horizon or on one of the vertical meridians.

A

benevolent Planet will be doubly so when in a

propitious House, but will have benefit

when

The House

it is

in

in

little

power to

an unpropitious House.

which

it is

Planet in more ways than

situated influences a

this.

Every Planet has


30

Astrology in Medicine

not only a Sign, but a House also in which 9

joices

and when

;

augmented.

Luna

it is

Mercury

in the third

in this

House

its

it re-

power

is

rejoices in the Ascendent,

House, Mars in the sixth, Sol in

the ninth, Jupiter in the eleventh, and Satui'n in the twelfth.

Perhaps the most important factor

in modifying

the power of the Planets, and certainly the factor to which the

most importance

relative position ^

is

attached,

is

their

or aspect with respect to one

another, and to the Ascendent.

The

first

aspect of Planets to one another

is

Conjunction, which, like other terms in Astrology,

and

in its congener. Logic, is not always used in

the same sense. thorities to

be

Planets are said by some au-

in conjunction

when they are within

one another

;

by

others,

when they are within

15° of each other

;

by

others,

when they are

2° of

same Sign, and by others when they are

same House. ever a Planet

and wise,

its

in the in the

All are agreed, however, that whenis

within 15° of Sol,

it is

powers are for the time abolished.

when Planets of the same

combust, Other-

qualities are in

conjunction, they corroborate and reinforce one

another

;

but when Planets of opposing qualities


31

Aspects of the Planets

are in conjunction, each cancels a part of the power of the other

;

so that

when a good Planet

is

con-

joined with an evil one, the malice of this

tempered, and the benevolence of that

One

tated.

of

my

is

is

debili-

Arnaldus de Villa-

authorities,

nova, gives the following instance.

'

When you

are

anxious to begin some good work, you should see that

Luna makes junction with benevolent

or at any rate,

is

well separated from

but he who wants to do poison a

little girl,

to choose a time

or

is

evil,

Planets,

bad ones

as for example, to

or anything of that kind, ought

when Luna

is

conjoined with bad,

separated from good Planets.'

The second aspect

is

Sextile.

This

is

when two

Planets are separated by a sixth part of the Zodiac,

or by two Signs.

Such an aspect

is

moderately

—not manifestly, but occultly, or of hidden

friendly

benevolence.

The third aspect

is

Quartile,

and

is

when a

Planet aspects another through three Signs, which is

a fourth part of the Zodiac.

is

of moderate or occult unfriendliness or con-

Such an aspect

flict.

The fourth aspect

is

Trine,

when a Planet

aspects another from a distance of four Signs, or a


32

Astrology in Medicine

third part of the Zodiac.

warm

friendship,

The

is

is

the aspect of

and perfect benevolence.

last aspect is Opposition,

distant from another

This

This

when one Planet is

by half the Signs of the Zodiac.

the most hostile aspect of

all

the

it is

;

aspect of open unfriendliness, hatred, and perdition.

Every Planet has two movements.

First,

it

partakes of the general movement of the heavenly

and

bodies, rising in the East

a movement due to the second, stars,

it

has

its

primum

;

and

is

sometimes

sometimes retrograde, and sometimes

bolished, so that the Planet stars.

greatly,

mobile

own proper motion among the

which varies in rapidity, and

direct,

the

setting in the West,

The speed of

this

is

stationary

among

proper motion varies

Luna completing her course

in 28 days, or

thereabouts, and Saturn requiring 29 years.

motion of the Planets

is

of

a-

The

much importance

in

medicine, for acute diseases, whose course

is

rapid,

are governed by the moon, whose motion

is

rapid,

while chronic diseases, whose course

governed by the sun, whose course If

any Planet that

disease should

is

is

is

slow, are

likewise slow.

regulating the course of a

become retrograde

patient will of course get worse.

in its motion, the


Hours of

33

the Planets

Lastly, every Planet has its hour, in

dominant

;

which

it is

and, subject to the dominance of the

Planet that rules the hour, every Planet dominates that day of the

week of which

its

hour

is

Thus, Saturn dominates completely the

the

first

first.

hour

of Saturday, and in a less degree, and subject to

the infiuence of the other Planets, the whole of the Jupiter rules the second hour of

dies Sabbathum.

Saturday, Mars the third, and so on until

Luna

dominates the seventh hour, and then Saturn again takes

up the

rotation

is

tale,

then continued, so that Saturn comes

in again at the fifteenth

and twenty-second hours

Jupiter follows at the twenty-third

;

Mars

twenty-fourth, which completes the day.

Planet on the rota the

first

The

and rules the eighth.

is Sol,

;

at the

The next

which therefore takes

hour, and in less degree the whole, of the

following day, which

is

accordingly Dies Solis, or

Sunday. It is scarcely

necessary to point out that every

undertaking to which any given Planet

is

propitious

ought to be begun in the hour in which that Planet is

dominant, and

operations

of

Saturday, or M.

if

if

possible on his day.

husbandry should

be

So

begun

all

on

on any other day, then in the hour 3


34

Astrology in Medicine

of Saturn.

When

to

written directions are given as

any undertaking, the Planet that

is

propitious

to that undertaking should be signified, so that

may

be,

hour of that Planet.

If

the undertaking, whatever

begun

in the

it

may be we

give

written directions for sowing seed, or planting, or

any of the operations of husbandry, we should preface our directions with the sign of Saturn. If

we

write to a commercial correspondent instruc-

tions to

buy or

we should remind him

sell,

of the

hour and day propitious to the transaction by placing at the head of our instructions the sign of

Now, the Planet that

the Planet Mercury.

is

most

propitious to the operation of letting blood, and to taking medicine,

is

and therefore

Jupiter,

all

written directions for letting blood or administering

medicine should bear the sign of Jupiter sign of Jupiter prescriptions,

is

and

^

= ^,

which

testifies to

still

;

and the

heads

all

our

the intimate con-

nexion that existed aforetime between Astrology

and Medicine. If

we keep

at our fingers' ends the knowledge

we have now gained logical lore,

we

shall

of the rudiments of Astro-

be in a position to turn that

knowledge to practical

use, to erect

a scheme of


A

35

Specimen Nativity

the heavens at the nativity of any given person,

and

to-

interpret that scheme so as to predict at

least the general course of his suflBcient

For

whose career

and,

we have

if

the individual incidents therein.

skill,

purpose

this

life,

is

it is

convenient to select a person

closed, because this gives us the

double advantage of ascertaining whether our pre-

and of keeping an eye on

dictions are correct,

his

career during the course of our interpretations,

may

so that they I

not go too wide of the mark.

select therefore a

XII

of Sweden,

distinguished man, Charles

whose career

is

familiar to

you

all.

As

is

usual, the pole of the

Houses

at the

is

horizontal north of the place, Stockholm, and not at the celestial pole, given,

and therefore the latitude

is

and the Houses do not correspond with the

Signs of the Zodiac.

the whole of the of the fourth,

Aquarius

lies

Taurus, for instance, occupies

fifth

House, with six degrees

and twenty of the sixth

whoUy within the

;

while

second, which

includes also seven degrees of Capricorn and five of Pisces.

The

first

omen

that attracts our attention

is

that Mars, the military planet, occupies the twelfth

3—2


36

Astrology in Medicine

We

House, the House of battles and of enemies. predict, therefore, that

No joys to him pacific scepters yield, War sounds the trump, he rushes to the

field

Peace courts his hand, but spreads her charms in vain Think nothing gain'd,' he cries, till nought remain *

!

'

Fig. 4.

Nativitas Caroli Duodecimi, Eegis Suecise.

Venus, in the second House, does not aspect the native, and exerts no influence over him and ;

Charles

XH

was notoriously insusceptible

to the


Nativity of Charles charms of of

love.

He was

XII

37

a neglecter and despiser

women O'er love, o'er fear extends his wide domain,

Unconquer'd lord of pleasure and of pain. Sol, in the

Ascendent, predicts for the native

an illustrious and glorious career, and equips him with the necessary qualities

A No

frame of adamant, a soul of fire, dangers fright him, and no labom-s tire;

Behold surrounding kings their poVr combine, And one capitulate, and one resign.

But Mars ill

is

an unpropitious Planet, a Planet of

omen, and his presence in the House of battles

cannot but signify

military disaster

sextile to the Ascendent, exerts

an

Luna, in

:

evil influence,

which Jupiter, sequestered in the second House

from exerting any counteracting sway, to restrain.

What is the

is

powerless

inevitable consequence?

He

comes, not want nor cold his course delay; Hide, blushing Glory, hide Pultowa's day:

The vanquish'd hero leaves

And shews

his brok'n bands.

his miseries in distant lands

Condemn'd a needy supplicant to wait. While ladies interpose, and slaves debate. Finally, Saturn, a very malevolent Planet, is

most ominously situated

House of Death, a

in the eighth

House, the

certain indication that death


Astrology in Medicine

38 will

How

come

early

and

in disastrous circumstances.

true the indication let the poet testify But did not Chance at length her error mend Did no subverted empire mark his end ? Did rival monarchs give the fatal wound ? Or hostile millions press him to the ground? His

A

fall

1

was destin'd to a barren strand,

petty fortress, and a dubious hand

He

left a name, at which the world grew To point a moral, or adorn a tale.

pale.

:


LECTURE Having

II

discovered in the last Lecture the

we are now

general principles of Astrology,

in a

position to discuss their application to medicine.

We

have already found that every Zodiacal Sign

and every Planet has

own complexion, or

its

of elementary qualities, as hot moist, cold

and

dry, or cold

and

pair

and

dry, hot

and moist, and that

each has, accordingly, power over the corresponding

humour

phlegm.

—yellow

We

bile,

blood, black

bile

or

must now remark that among the

powers of the Signs and the Planets are some, specially

appertaining

to

medicine,

that

were

omitted in the previous review.

Each Planet has

its

own

peculiar power over

the developing foetus, and exercises this power at

a certain period of pregnancy. in the first

month

frigidity (Saturn

the

foetus,

after conception,

and by

its

own

being cold and dry) infrigidates

coagulates

early abortions.

Saturn has poAver

it,

and drys

Jupiter

is

it

up, so causing

potent in the second


40

Astrology in Medicine

month, and bestows on the embryo the spiritm Mars, in the third month, supplies the

naturcdis.

concept with bones, and generally composes,

we should organs.

or,

as

say, differentiates, the various internal

Sol,

in

the fourth month, supplies the

concept with blood, and perfects the heart and liver.

Venus, in the

fifth

month, gives to the con-

cept ears, eyebrows and pudenda. sixth month,

Mercury, in the

opens the nose and mouth

;

and

Luna, in the seventh month, causes the develop-

ment of the

lungs,

and divides the

fingers

and toes

according to their places. After birth, each Planet takes under diction certain organs

and

certain faculties of the

its juris-

tissues of the body,

mind

;

and

jurisdiction over certain diseases

and

has, moreover,

and certain modes

of death.

Saturn, which

is

cold and dry, and therefore

regulates the black bile, presides also over the

bones, teeth, cartilages, the right ear, the spleen

and the bladder

;

and over the memory.

It

has

power, of course, over the diseases of these parts,

and

in addition, over quartan fever, scabies, lepra,

tabes, melancholia, paralysis, icterus niger, dropsy,

cancer, cough, asthma, phthisis, deafness of the


41

Jurisdictions of the Planets right ear,

and hernia. Under Saturn occur sudden

and violent deaths by

falls,

ship-

precipitation,

and

wreck, suffocation, hanging, lead-poisoning,

death at the hands of the public executioner. Jupiter has jurisdiction over the radical moisture,

over the blood, the

the pulmonary

the diaphragm, and the muscles

veins,

trunk

liver,

;

the

of

over the senses of touch and smell

;

over

the judgment, and the apj^etitus concupiscibilis

;

over the diseases of these parts and faculties, and in addition over small-pox, angina, inflammation, pleilrisies

and peripneumonias.

Deaths due to the

influence of Jupiter occur in war, in duels,

the

command

of Princes.

Mars has power over the yellow bladder, the left ear, the

He prompts the due to

his

and by

pudenda and the kidneys.

The

diseases

fevers,

plague,

appetitus irascihilis.

influence

the gall-

bile,

are

acute

yellow jaundice, convulsions, haemorrhages, carbuncles, erysipelas,

ulcers,

causes death by weapons of steel, from projectiles,

animals,

by

beheading,

especially

He

and phagedsena.

mutilation,

venomous animals,

fire,

from

bites

of

by the

slaughters and blood-letting of ignorant surgeons,

and death from burns.


42

Astrology in Medicine Sol regulates the heart, the arteries, the right

eye, the right

women

;

side in

men and

the

left side in

the vital spirits and the bilious blood

the sight of the right eye in men, and of the in

women, and

all

good

The

desires.

;

left

diseases due

to the influence of the sun are ephemeral fevers,

syncope, spasm, catarrhs, and diseases of the eyes.

When

Sol causes death,

it is

by plague, by syncope,

or on the field of battle.

Venus semen

:

presides over the pituitous blood and

over the throat, the breasts, the abdomen,

the uterus and genitalia

;

over taste and smell,

touch and the pleasurable sensations, and the

due to

appetitus concupiscihilis.

The

Venus are

gonorrhoea, priapism,

lues

venerea,

diseases

barrenness from cold and moisture (Venus being cold and moist), lientery, and abscesses.

Deaths

due to her influence are those from poison and from sexual excess.

Mercury has jurisdiction over the animal over the legs and

feet,

the hands and fingers, the

tongue, the nerves, and the ligaments

and

hearing,

reason.

The

common

spirits,

sense,

;

over taste

imagination

and

diseases that he influences are erratic

and relapsing

fevers,

mania,

phrenitis,

deliria.


43

JiiHsdictions of the Planets insanity, epilepsy, convulsion, balbuties,

Under

with ptofuse expectoration.

and cough

his influence

occur deaths by poison, by witchcraft, and by process of law for perjury, forgery, Finally,

Luna

and

false

presides over the phlegm, the

women and

brain, the left eye, the right side in

the

left in

men, the stomach, and the membranes

over the sight of the right eye in the

left in

money.

men

;

over fear

women and

;

of

over quotidian fevers,

;

epilepsy, apoplexy, fatuity, vomiting, fluxes, such

as diarrhoea abscesses.

and menorrhagia, dropsy, and cold

She brings those deaths that occur

fi'om superpurgation It

and from drowning.

would seem, from the several jurisdictions

here assigned to Mercury and Luna, that those

whom we

call lunatics

ought properly to be called

Mercurials, for though the

Mercury has mania,

moon

jurisdiction, as

phrenitis,

strictly speaking,

delirium,

we it

is

fatuity interrupted

shall find further on,

had

Acts.

in law

we have

seen, over

and insanity

;

and,

no one with any of these maladies

ought to be called a lunatic. sense

rules the brain,

down

and

Lunacy

in the strict

by lucid

intervals, as

this is the sense that

to the passing of the

Lunacy

Until these enactments, the legal meaning


44

Astrology in Medicine

of a lunatic was a fatuous or demented person

who

had, nevertheless, intervals of lucidity

though

common

in

generalised,

;

and

speech the meaning became

and the term was used to include

all

insane persons, whatever the nature of their insanity,

and whether

tinuous, yet lawyers,

precise and

was interrupted or con-

it

who

are always both more

more conservative

in the application of

terms than other men, continued to use the term lunacy in

its strict

sense

till

the middle of the last

century.

With respect

to the corporature, or the bodily

configuration, which, with the corresponding mental disposition, is

is

aspected by the several Planets, there

much misapprehension and ;

the true doctrine

corrupted, and attenuated to a mere remnant.

are apt to consider that a Saturnine person turn, cynical,

and disposed to be malevolent

a Jovial person

is

good-humoured and

is

We

is taci;

that

hilarious;

and vagrant, not

that a Mercurial person

is

continuing in one stay

that a Martial person has

a soldierly bearing his

mind

;

;

;

restless

and that a Lunatic

is

out of

and although we should not be wrong

in attributing

these mental dispositions to the

persons so denominated,

we should

give them but


45

The Planetary Temperaments

a tithe of the mental qualities the names actually

connote; and we have forgotten altogether, not

a corporature, or bodily con-

only that there

is

figuration, that

accompanies and indicates each

mental temperament, but

also

are

there

that

persons of Solar and Venereal temperament as

and so

well as those that are Jovial, Saturnine, forth.

The corporature, and the mental

tion that accompanies

is

by

signified

are

it,

detailed, so that the expert astrologer

precise

and

can

at a glance

tell

and

disposi-

what sort of person he has to

deal with, and what Planet has jurisdiction over that person's

life,

fortunes,

Those, for instance,

known by the moderately

who

and

health.

are Saturnine,

following physical signs

fleshy, of

medium

:

may be

they are

height, their counte-

nances are long, their eyes large and black, their teeth very large

;

they are of dark complexion,

have scanty straight black

hair, thin beards, are

pigeon-toed, and of truculent bearing. afiected

When

well

by the Planet, persons of such a corpo-

rature are

profound

thinkers,

investigators

of

mysteries, prudent, reticent, inclined to solitude, suspicious, laborious, patient, persevering, lovers of

work, eager for gain, and masterful.

When

ill


46

Astrology in Medicine

aflPected

by the Planet, they are

sad, melancholy,

austere, timid, miserly, querulous, taciturn, soli-

Black Art, suspicious, un-

tary, followers of the

truthful, malevolent, untrustworthy to the point

of fraudulence, treacherous, and often suffer the penalties of the law for their misdeeds.

The favoured of Jupiter with rounded knees

fleshy,

stature, elegant

;

and majestic

plexion they are rosy rather large.

are, in configuration,

;

they are of medium in bearing.

their eyes are dark

They are prone

have thick reddish beards.

faithful,

humane,

to baldness,

When

by the Planet, such persons are religious,

In com-

and and

well affected

simple, just, pious,

merciful,

hilarious,

gracious, open, affable, liberal, splendid, magnani-

mous and

law-abiding.

When

have these qualities in excess. stitious, sentimental,

ill

affected, they

They are super-

humanitarian, prodigal and

vain-glorious.

The tioned

;

subjects of

Mars are

thin

and well-propor-

they are pale, with blue eyes and abundant

curly hair, not only on the head but on the body.

They are of middle faces,

stature, with large heads,

round

small eyes, large nostrils, long teeth and

military bearing.

When

well affected, they are


47

The Planetary Temperaments strong, robust, brave, greedy of fame,

irascible,

given to hunting and games, vindictive, impatient

and

of control, domineering, delighting in war

contemptuous

battles,

self-confident,

hasty,

When

affected,

ill

of

danger,

ready,

agile,

and indifferent to

religion.

they are impious, unjust, arro-

gant, merciless, seditious, foolhardy, quarrelsome,

brawlers, homicides, tyrants, incendiaries, robbers,

thieves

and bandits.

Those under the jurisdiction of Luna are pale, good-looking, with light hair

When

with becoming beards.

and

eyes,

tall,

and

well affected, they

are ingenious, subtle, sincere, open, honest and

well-mannered

even to

;

when

ill

fatuity, timid

affected,

and

they are stupid

restless.

It

very

is

important to know that, as might be expected, is

when the moon

affected,

is

and they are

the wane.

it

waxing that they are well ill

affected

Here we see the

when she

is

on

origin of the legal

doctrine, already alluded to, that a lunatic is a

demented person who has lucid intervals being

when the moon

is

intervals, these

in the first

two

of her phases, while the periods of fatuity are the last

two phases, when she

light is waning.

is

past the

full,

and her


48

Astrology in Medicine

The

Mercury are characterised by

votaries of

medium

stature, a well-proportioned body, pleasing

complexion, and yellow hair.

They are

with very small hands, feet and teeth

graceful,

they have

;

scanty beards, thin voices, and are rapid in their

movements.

When

well affected, they are witty,

studious, quick to learn, even without being taught

they

are

easily

disputatious,

wise,

cautious, prudent,

accommodating themselves to persons and

circumstances

When

sociable and inquisitive.

;

affected, they are unstable, forgetful, apt to

hallucinations and to talk nonsense, flatterers,

sites,

calumniators,

deceitful,

forgers

money, meddlers

in

of

liars,

have para-

perjurers,

perfidious, wills,

ill

coiners

of

false

things that do not concern

them, and dangerous counsellors.

Under the

medium

jurisdiction of

Venus are those of

stature, succulent, with delicate

and

fair

complexions, good-looking, with crisp brown or blackish hair, dark eyes, narrow eyebrows, narrow chests,

are

and thick

indolent,

thighs.

bland,

When

pious,

well affected, they

religious,

merciful,

peaceful, sociable, lovers of the arts of singing

and

of music, elegant and graceful, and given to delicacies

and pleasures.

They are lucky

in love

and


49

The Planetary Temperaments in fi'iendship, forgiving,

fortune.

-

When

ill

and impatient under mis-

affected,

they are timid, im-

prudent, effeminate, lecherous, and betrayers of

women.

who

Lastly, the characters of those

are ruled

by the Sun are a large head, a round and glowing face, large eyes,

long hair which at length

and leaves them

When

bald,

falls

out

and a sallow complexion.

well affected, they are pious, just, upright,

apt to anger,

faithful, open, chaste, worldly-wise,

but magnanimous, honourable, splendid and magnificent,

and

warm

in friendship,

and lovers of their wives

children. It will

have been noticed that the descriptions

of the bodily configurations are not very definite,

and we are warned by Maninius to be very careful of judging of the dominant Planet by the configuration of the body.

the science in which fully ascertained.

This,

many

fail

he ;

says, is

and

The knowledge

by long experience

only.

is

a part of

it is

not yet

to be attained

Maninius had, indeed,

good reason to inculcate caution

in interpreting

the indications obtained from Astrological lore, for

he sought to clench the arguments with which he

was

defending M.

Astrology

from

the

attacks 4

of


50

Astrology in Medicine

Gasseiidi,

by predicting the death of the

upon a certain in

When

date.

sceptic

the date came round

due course, Gassendi unexpectedly refused to

and Maninius then discovered a mistake

die,

calculation which event. tion,

He

had led him

in his

antedate the

to

corrected the error, revised his predic-

and fixed another and

later

date,

which Gassendi could not survive.

He

beyond seems,

however, to have overlooked a second time some material factor, for his opponent lived on, and

laughed him to scorn, giving much occasion to the

enemy

to blaspheme.

Maninius, unfortunately,

lacked the resource of Dean Swift,

who was

con-

fronted with the same difficulty by the survival of the astrologer Partridge.

pseudonym of Isaac

Swift,

Bickerstalf,

under

predicted

the that

Partridge would die " on the twenty-ninth of March next, about eleven at night, of a raging fever";

and,

when the date was

past, published a circum-

stantial account of the death, with a confession

by

Partridge of the imposture of his predictions.

In

vain Partridge denied the facts, for Bickerstaft

gave

five conclusive reasons for disbelieving these

protestations,

was

and

in fact dead,

for

and

holding in

that

Partridge

denying the fact had


61

Medical Astrology carried

beyond the grave

his proclivity for telling

lies.

When

it

is

may be

Zodiac

remembered that any Sign of the any of the Houses of Heaven

in

any House, and may

that any Planet

may be

have any aspect,

sextile, quartile, trine, or opposi-

tion,

in

towards the Ascendent and towards the other

Planets these in the

;

and that the various Planets have by

means

powers reinforced or attenuated

their

most various degrees

ber further the

diflferent

and when we remem-

;

powers that different

Planets have over different persons and different diseases,

it

will

easily

be seen that the varia-

tions are virtually infinite, far too complicated to

and the whole scheme

put to practical applica-

tion.

In practice, however, the calculations of the physician were narrowed

down

to a small

number

Arnaldus de Villanova, a physician of

of factors.

great repute in the thirteenth century, limits these as follows

:

—A

perfect physician, he says, should

constantly bear in

mind eight Astrological

and then we are disappointed enumerates only seven.

It is

to

factors

find that

;

he

no doubt the want of

the eighth factor that has falsified the predictions

4—2


52

Astrology in Medicine

that

I

have ventured to make

his rules.

Be

that as

in accordance with

may, the factors that he

it

enumerates, as necessary for the perfect physician to consider, are these 1.

:

The thing concerning which the inquiry

is

made. 2.

The Sign that

3.

The Lord of it. (Whether

in the Ascendent.

is

the Ascendent 4.

The Sign that

is

is in

inquired about. this

may be

House

;

not clear.) the House of the thing (In the case of sickness,

either the first House, the

of Life

of Death

of the Sign or of

;

or the eighth, the

or the sixth, the

House

House of

Diseases.) 5.

The Lord of

it.

(Again, whether of the

Sign or of the House 6.

Its (?) relation to the

7.

Its relation to

is

not

clear.)

Ascendent.

the Moon.

These are to be interpreted in the following

manner 1.

The Ascendent and the Lord of

it

signify

the sick man. 2.

The middle of Heaven

(the tenth

signifies his physician.

House)


53

Medical Astrology The sixth House and the Lord of

3.

it

signify

The fourth House and the Lord of it

signify

,

4.

his disease.

his physic.

The consequences are these

:

If there is evil in the Ascendent, or if the

of the Ascendent

is

subject to adverse influences,

the patient will do badly pitious,

he

do

will

;

but

if

these are pro-

well.

If there should

be a benevolent or propitious

Lord of the tenth House, which physician, then his treatment will

good

;

but

if

the Lord should be

patient will be injured If there should

in the eighth

Lord

the

signifies

do the patient evil,

then the

by the treatment.

be a powerful influence for good

House, which

is

the House of Death,

the patient will be quickly cured

;

but

if

there

should be an evil influence in this House, he will

go from bad to worse. Similarly, if there is

good fortune in the fourth

the House of Remedies, his medi-

House, which

is

cine will do

him good, but

medicine will

make him

If the Sign in the

and Luna should be

if

evil fortune,

the

worse.

Ascendent should be mobile,

in a mobile Sign, such as Aries,


54

m

Astrology

Medicine

Cancer, Libra, or Capricorn, and the Lord of the

Ascendent should also be

soon terminate, either well or badly,

illness will

especially if it

mobile Sign, the

in a

Luna

in swift motion.

is

happens contrarily,

Luna

especially if

is

it

signifies

If,

however,

a long

illness,

in a stable Sign, as Taurus,

Leo, Scorpio or Aquarius. If the

pitious,

Planets,

Lord of the Ascendent should be pro-

and

free

from adverse influences of other

and Luna

likewise, the illness will

favourably, especially

if

end

Luna and the Lord of the

Ascendent should aspect favourably the Lord of the eighth House, which that if

is,

if

is

the House of Death

they should be in sextile, and especially

they should be in trine, to that House.

But

if

Luna, or the Lord of the Ascendent, or

the Lord of the House of Sickness, which

is

the

be combust and retrograde, or

if

the

sixth, should

Lord of the Ascendent should be in the House of Death in conjunction with Mars or Saturn, both of

them malevolent Also, if the

Planets, then there

moon should be

is

no hope.

in conjunction with

a propitious Planet in the Ascendent, and should be moving forward and her light waxing, and both should be free from adverse influences, then the


55

Medical Astrology disease will be quickly cured

but

;

if

the

moon

should be in the House of Death, the patient

cannot be saved.

And

generally,

whenever Luna and the Lord of

the Ascendent are subject to adverse influences, is

a mortal sign, and

or long illness

;

we must

fear death, or relapse,

but when they are fortunately

and aspected by well-disposed powers, as

situated,

when Luna and the Lord are then

it is

But

it

if

House of

a good sign, and the

in the Ascendent,

ad

vitam.

House of Death, and the Lord of the

Infirmity, or the

Lord of the House of

Death, are fortified by situation or by aspect, especially

when they aspect the moon

then

a bad sign, and

it is

ad mortem

they are impeded or weakened,

Now

it is

adversely, ;

but when

a good sign.

the position of the heavenly bodies in the

Houses of Heaven

alters

fatal disposition of

them now may

from hour to hour, and a alter to a favour-

able one in a couple of hours, and vice versa.

Luna, which smiles

is

now in the Ascendent, and

upon the

patient, will, in fourteen or fifteen

hours' time, be in the eighth House, and

him

to death.

therefore

It is

condemn

manifestly of the utmost im-

portance, therefore, to fix upon the correct hour


56

Astrology in Medicine

and minute

for setting

up the tabula ccelestiamm.

be feared, however, that in

It is to

this

matter

astrological physicians allowed themselves a

good

There are two fixed moments,

deal of latitude.

one or other of which should be taken as that on

which the scheme should be erected. is

the

moment

of birth

;

the other

One

is

of these

the decumbi-

ture. It will

be seen that the scheme of the nativity

of Charles

XII

day, hour,

and minute of

month, the

sets forth the year, the birth,

and the scheme

is

erected accordingly, and admits of no doubt or variation.

There was, however, a process known

to Astrologers by the

name

of Rectification of the

Nativity, a process the rules of which are difficult

to discover, but the practical result was to shift

the heavenly bodies from positions that were in-

convenient to the Astrologer to positions more suitable to his purpose.

make an

I

should never myself

alteration of this nature, which does not

seem to me quite

justifiable, but,

emboldened by

this established astrological practice, I

tured to

make a

of nativity that

Charles

I

XIL As

trifling alteration in

have ven-

the scheme

have placed before you as that of originally erected,

it

referred not


The Nativity of Charles

XII

57

and

to the

to the year 1682 but to the year 1594,

moment previous

of birth, not of Charles XII, but of a

King

Sweden,

of

namely,

Gustavus

Adolphus, the Lion of the North, and the Bulwark In working

of the Protestant Faith. that by no ingenuity

make the

and by no

of nativity

fit

artifice

drawn from

predictions to be in with the

out, I

it

known

this

found

could

I

scheme

career of that

great and successful commander.

They

suited,

however, with such surprising accuracy and appropriateness the career of his successor Charles

that

I

felt it

XII

was a pity to allow myself to be

fettered, in applying

them

needless scrupulosity.

I

to him,

by a punctilio of

did not venture to take

that liberty with the facts that astrologers were

accustomed to take, by altering the positions of the heavenly bodies in the Houses of I

merely altered the date by

less

Heaven

;

than a century,

and substituted the name of one King of Sweden for another.

In estimating the scheme of the heavens relating to

the ilhiess of a patient,

advisable to compare nativity.

it

If that Planet

Ascendent in the nativity

it

is

always

with the scheme of his

which was Lord of the is

favourably placed and


58

Astrology in Medicine

fortunately aspected in the scheme of the decumbiture,

and

is

neither combust nor retrograde, the

patient will be strengthened and

live,

and vice

versd.

These are the considerations that should weigh with a perfect physician

now quoting from

but the authority

;

lived seven centuries ago,

the world was very different then from what

now.

It

would appear that

benighted times

who were not

am

I

and it is

in those remote

and

there actually were physicians

perfect,

and

to

temper the

difficulties

of astrological practice to these weaker brethren,

they were taught a method of procedure that shorter and easier, but less accurate.

been noticed how prominent a place the

moon

in the explanations that

It will is

is

have

assigned to

have been given,

although in setting, up the scheme no separate

mention was made of in

her,

but she was just lumped

together with the other Planets, which had

presumably equal value, except

in as far as their

power was subdued or enhanced by

their position.

In the modified and abbreviated scheme that was

drawn up

for the guidance of the general practi-

tioner, the

whole burden lay upon the moon.

It

was recognised that a busy practitioner could not


Facilitates Naturales

The

59

be expected to have the correct positions of the Planets always at his fingers' ends

;

but he could

scarcely be ignorant of the phase in which the

moon

waxing or waning,

was, of whether she was

or even of the Sign she occupied.

except to the very expert

—to

Consequently,

the dwellers in the

Harley Street and Wimpole Street of that day

moon

the

alone was the guide to treatment and

prognosis. I

must now go back

moment, and

for a

call

your attention to certain Facultates Naturales possessed by the

the Planets.

human

body, and governed by

These are the Retentrix, the Coctrix,

the Expultrix, the Attractrix, the Vegatatrix and the Generatrix

;

and each

sponding complexion.

has, of course, its corre-

Retention, for instance,

is

favoured by cold and drought. Digestion by heat

and moisture, Expulsion by cold and moisture, and Attraction by heat and drought. It follows, of course, that retentive medicines,

given to check fluxes of any kind, should be administered either

when Luna

is

in

a sign that

is

cold and dry, such as Taurus, Virgo or Capricorn,

or

when one

of these signs

is

in the

Ascendent

and at such times retentive drugs should be not


60

Astrology in Medicine

only administered but prepared, for their virtues are not in themselves, but are part of the celestial virtue communicated from the celestial bodies,

from which

all

virtues are derived.

So that reten-

tive medicines, such as sugar of roses, diaciton

and

diapapaver, should be prepared as well as admini-

when one of these cold and dry

stered

moon

the Ascendent, or when the

however,

If,

we wish

is

in

signs

the

to reinforce the expulsive

when one

of

for these Signs are cold

must be given

amenor-

medicament must be prepared and

administered when Luna Pisces, or

in

one of them.

faculty, as for instance in constipation or rhoea,

is

careful,

them and

however

when the motion

of

Cancer, Scorpio or

is in

;

in the

is

moist.

Ascendent

In this case

we

for if a purgative is

Luna

is

retrograde, the

expulsion will be retrograde, and instead of purgation

we

shall cause vomiting

but

;

if

we

are so

incautious and ignorant as to give purgatives

the

moon

is

when

retrogi-ade in Leo, which has an aspect

to the heart and blood,

we

shall

produce vomiting

of blood.

Diseases of plethora are very dangerous

a

man

is

taken sick upon a

full

when

moon, and diseases

of wasting are most dangerous

when he

is

taken


The Moon and sick

the

upon a waning moon.

Humours me

Let

61

entreat you

therefore to give physic for inanition

when the

moon

when she

near the

is

full,

has lost her light

and

for plethora

and remember that a humour

;

can scarcely be diminished but when the moon is

nor increased

waning,

except when

she

is

waxing. It is

very bad when, in the beginning of a sick-

ness, the

moon

in a Sign of the nature of the

is

peccant humour, as in the hot and dry Signs Aries,

when the peccant humour

Leo or

Sagittarius,

choler

the cold and dry Signs Taurus, Capricorn

;

or Virgo,

when it

is

melancholy

;

is

the hot and moist

when

Signs Gemini, Libra or Aquarius,

blood

it is

or the cold and moist signs Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces,

when

it is

Naturally, to

phlegm.

when she

amend a disease

wait until she

We

is

is

in a fiery Sign, it is easy

of phlegm, but

if

choler abound,

in a watery Sign.

see, therefore,

how very important

consider the aspect of the heavens before

our treatment

;

and though

it is

it is

to

we begin

true that patients

do sometimes recover under the care of ignorant physicians

who take no account

yet in such cases, says

my

of these things,

authority, the patient


62

Astrology in Medicine

recovers by accident, and not by the

skill

of the

physician.

An of the

additional reason for studying the motion

moon

in illness is because this

A

lates the critical days.

swift

crisis is

and vehement motion of a

recovery or death.

motion regudefined as a

disease, leading to

Strictly speaking, those only

are true crises which lead to recovery, but in-

accuracy and corruption have crept into the meaning, until

some authors enumerate

which

crisis,

I

need not enumerate here

authorities are agreed,

to

me

and

their

six conditions

In the is

must be

;

but

all

agreement seems

crisis

fulfilled.

to say, the whole of the materia peccans

tertian fever, If the

and perfect

the crisis must be complete,

first place,

must be evacuated

ated,

kinds of

to arise from everyone copying the words of

his predecessor, that for a true

that

six

and

all

;

for instance, all the bile in

the phlegm in quotidian fever.

whole of the materia peccans

it is

evident that the patient

The second condition

is

be evacuated.

may

relapse.

that none of the pec-

cant material should remain. quite as important as the

not evacu-

is

first,

This that

is

all

of

evidently it

should


Days

Critical

The

third condition

63

that health

is

must be

completely regained, and there must be no terrible accidents or pernecabilibus, such as running of the eyes.

The fourth condition be manifest

that

;

is

to

is

say, there

sensible evacuation of the

The

condition

fifth

indication,

is

that the crisis must

must be a

materia peccans.

that the crisis must

and as to the meaning of

make have

this, I

come, after long and careful study, to the con-

on another subject arrived at

clusions

authority,

words,

my

and piously expressed by him in the

Deus

ca/put neque

The

by

solus

quia habet neque

cognoscit,

caudam.

sixth condition

is

that the crisis

must

occur on a critical day.

The

critical

days are governed entirely by the

motion and positions of the moon.

It is clear that

there can be no crisis for good except materid

peccante coctd, and

it is

evident that the materia

peccans cannot be digested in as short a time as

two days

;

consequently the

of a disease cannot be intercadent,

first

critical.

and the fourth

and second days

The

third day

is

is

indicative, because,

manifestly, whatever happens

on the fourth day


64

Astrology in Medicine happen with exaggerated force on the seventh.

will

The

day again

fifth

significance, is

the

first

nor

is

is

and of no

intercadent,

The seventh

the sixth of any.

then the

critical day, for

and

quartile to the decumbiture,

a Sign of opposite nature in

all

is

respects to that in If she

Aries at the decumbiture, she will

dry,

Cancer feminine

The

Now, Aries

Cancer cold and moist ;

;

in

is

necessarily in

which she was at the decumbiture.

seventh day in Cancer.

moon

Aries

was

in

be on the is

hot and

masculine,

is

Aries diurnal, Cancer nocturnal.

quartile aspect

is

thus thoroughly hostile, and

whatever process Luna favours at the decumbiture she will oppose when she reaches the quartile. the decumbiture she

At

favoured the disease, for

otherwise the disease would not have occurred at the quartile, therefore, she opposes the disease,

and makes

for a favourable crisis.

The eighth day

is

dent, the tenth neutral, for

neutral, the ninth interca-

and the eleventh

whatever happens on the eleventh

indicative,

will

happen

with exaggerated force on the fourteenth, which

is

the second and most critical day, for then the

moon with

is

all

in opposition to

the decumbiture, and

her might counteracts

all

that took place


65

The Decumbiture The next

at the decumbiture.

when she

the twenty-first,

course, quartile,

and

critical is

day

is,

of

again in

between the twenty-seventh

finally,

and twenty-eighth she comes into conjunction.

If

the disease has not been ended by crisis on one of the three critical days, the reinforcement that it

now

receives fi'om the conjunction of the

moon

converts the acute disease into a chronic, and

henceforth

governed no longer by the posi-

it is

moon, but

tions of the

is

regulated, according to

The next

the same laws, by the sun.

crisis will

not take place therefore for two months, when the

sun

will

Of

be in quartile to the decumbiture.

course,

the

character of the

favourable

crisis

will

or

unfavourable

depend largely upon

whether, on the critical day, the

moon

is

favour-

ably aspected by good Planets, or unfavourably influenced by bad ones. It will

be seen that

dates depend upon the ture,

which

is

all

of these influences and

moment

described as the

of the invasion of the disease says, is very

hard to

find.

;

of the decumbi-

first

and

It is

punct of time this, as

Galen

easy, indeed, to

find the

decumbiture

say, the

time when the patient takes to his bed

M.

in the literal sense, that is to

5


66

Astrology in Medicine

but when the beginning of the sickness says Culpeper,

man

the question

is

that,

for a lusty stout

bears the disease longer before he takes to

bed than a puny

his

' ;

is,

sickly

man

a meer suspition

:

of sicknesse will send a faint-hearted

you may perswade him he

to

whether he

sick

is

man

bed is

;

or

Notwithstanding, in most acute diseases, as

no.

many

also in

FaUing Sickness,

others, as

Apoplexies, and Pleurisies,

'tis

Palsies,

an easy thing to

find the precise time of the invasion of a disease.

The best opinion

that that

is

be taken in which a hurt in his body

;

man

moment

of time

is

to

finds a manifest paine or

for instance,

when a man hath

got a Fever, usually the head akes certain dayes before

this is not the Fever,

;

forerunner of the Fever

when a horrour

;

but a messenger or

the true beginning

is

or trembling invades the Sick.'

Certain objections to these doctrines did not

escape the notice of the astrologers

them.

'

If,'

says one,

*

the

crisis

who taught

depends on the

motion of the moon and her aspect to the other Planets, ill

what

at one

one

falls

reasons

is

the reason,

if

two men be taken

and the same time, that yet the

crisis

out well, and not so the other?' are

manifold.

of

The

The virtue working

is


and Answers

Objections

67

changed according to the diversity of the virtue receiving

you

for

;

know the sun makes the

all

and the wax

clay hard

soft,

white and the face black child,

a

man

whose nature in the

so then,

if

cloth

one be a

hot and moist, the other

is

prime of

;

makes the

it

life,

whose nature

hot and

is

dry,

and the third an old man, whose nature

and

dry, the crisis

is

cold

works diversely because their

natures are different. Secondly, in the Spring time, diseases are most

obnoxious to a

A

and moist. a choleric in

man

child,

because his nature

in

Summer, with a melancholy man

Thirdly, if at the decumbiture the

aspected by Mars, whose nature

not so

if it

be

in Winter.

moon was

hot and dry,

is

the disease be of heat and drought :

and moist.

if

mightily

it is

cold.

Fourthly, the complexions of the patients

be different

hot

disease works most violently with

Autumn, and with a phlegmatic man

aggravated

is

may

the one hot and dry, the other cold

;

If the disease

be hot and dry,

it will

not be so violent upon a cold and moist body as

on a hot and

dry.

Fifthly, their nativities

may

not agree.

moone be aspected by Saturne

or

Mars

If the

at the

5—2


68

Astrology in Medicine

nativity, the disease is

dangerous

be aspected by Jupiter or Venus

;

not so

;

may

get the nativities, you shall not

err.

my

all

all

For example,

At

five years of

age

three had convulsion, whereby they were

three lame of one

and the

'

authority, 'three children born

at one and the same time.

they

and

you can possibly

If

know,' says

other,

hurt the one and not the other, for

the Devil will not hurt his own.

I

she

may

or Saturn

be Lord of one nativity and not of the then he

if

girl

on the

leg,

left.

the boyes on the right,

At 14 they dyed

alto-

gether on one and the same day of the small pox.'

To

us,

with our present knowledge, and require-

ments of evidence, and our ways of thought, this appears such is

difficult to

a farrago of tomfoolery that

understand how

seriously entertained

gence

;

it

it

it

can have been

by men of ordinary

and yet we know that

all

was

intelli-

in fact be-

lieved by the rarest intellects of their time,

some

of them, like Roger Bacon and Albertus Magnus,

among is

the rarest intellects of

all

time

;

and

it

an interesting exercise to try and carry our

minds back and put ourselves as

far as

the position of our forefathers.

We

find

it

easy to understand

why

we can shall

in

then

the system was


Dictum

Sir William Hamilton's

maintained, and not difficult to discover

The

originated.

how

it

explained by the over-

is

first

69

whelming power of authority, the

last

by the belief

that was overthrown by Copernicus.

"

In the

first place,

we must imagine

living

on an earth that

verse,

and that to the

human

ourselves

the centre of the uni-

is

earth,

and especially to

its

inhabitants, the rest of the universe is sub-

servient.

The universe was created

certain purpose,

'

the diapason closing

to serve a full in

man.'

That anything could exist for any other purpose than the service of mankind was not conceived,

was probably not conceivable, by our forefathers.

At a time almost within the memory of some now living,

one of our leading philosophers declared

that in the world there If

he had expressed

is

all

nothing great but man.

that was in his mind, no

doubt he would have said

in the

nothing great but Scotchmen declaration as he

made

it, it

;

world there

is

but taking the

summarises effectively

the attitude of our ancestors towards the cosmos. It

was made

for their benefit.

To them there was

no greater paradox than that many a gem of purest ray serene The dark, unfathomed caves of ocean bear, Full many a flower is born to blush unseen, Full

And

waste (mark the word)

its

sweetness on the desert

air.


70

Astrology in Medicine This being

The overpowering and incalculable value

bodies ? to

man

of what use are the heavenly

so,

of the sun

is

By

evident enough.

transit through the

sky

it

makes the

between the day, the time of man's

through the Signs of the Zodiac

among

daily

difference

activity,

By its annual

night, the time of his repose.

differences

its

it

and

transit

makes the

the seasons, and so regulates his

food supply, whether animal or vegetable, his comfort,

and

his welfare in

a thousand particulars.

Here we have the root of the whole matter to understand

it

fully

we must remember

sun was but one of seven Planets,

him

in so

many important

if

that the

was im-

it

them powers

his, if different

from

but

resembling

respects that

possible not to attribute to

sponding with

all

;

his.

corre-

So

that,

the sun had power over the affairs of men, so

had the other Planets

;

if his

power varied accord-

ing to the Sign he occupied, so did theirs

power altered with so did theirs.

his height

;

if his

above the horizon,

In a world in which natural law was

unknown, and everything seemed

to

happen by

chance, the mind clutched at anything that offered

an explanation of the ways

in

which things happen.

Here was an explanation ready

to hand,

ing only study and interpretation.

and need-


71

Origin of Astrology The moon

is

Her power

sun.

and at

tion,

this

evidently complementary to the is

when she

greatest

is

in opposi-

time she antagonises the sun by

producing a colourable imitation of daylight at night,

and thus interfering with

his

and darkness.

is

lating light

This

power of regunaturally taken

as an instance of a general law, that opposition

means antagonism, a meaning that fixed

and general

;

sucli difference

means some moon, as sun,

—

trine, quartile

but one

follows that

and

sextile

Again, the

But the sun

is

mani-

and immensely beneficial to the human

and is a benevolent power is

is

power extends, antagonises the

and works against him.

festly

it

difference of influence.

far as her

now become

and since opposition

of several differences of position,

every

is

;

consequently, the

malevolent and injurious.

are but samples and Planets,

race,

moon

Both sun and moon

members of the family of

and whatever

must be shared by the

characters

they possess

rest of the family.

The

other Planets, therefore, must be benevolent or

malevolent in their degree, and must exercise their powers, as the sun and

moon

do, according to their

position above the horizon, that

is

in the

of Heaven, or in the Signs of the Zodiac.

Houses


72

Astrology in Medicine

As the sun undoubtedly by movements produces the

position

its

and

and as the moon

seasons,

has faculties and qualities of like kind, though inferior in power,

it

follows that she too regulates

some natural phenomena of minor importance to the seasons.

Such minor natural phenomena are

displayed by the weather

moon

;

and the

regulates the weather

doctrine that

still

is

belief that the

the one astrological

The other

displays vitality.

Planets are irregular in their movements, being

now

rapid,

now

slow,

now

direct,

now

retrograde

clearly, therefore, their influence will

be exerted

upon those great natural events that are and occasional

in their incidence

;

;

irregular

and thus

it is

that Saturn produces intense frost, inundations

and tempests

;

that

Mars regulates thunder and

lightning and the invasion of pirates

that

;

brings beneficial floods, rains, and mists

under Mercury occur droughts and

Venus ;

squalls,

that

and

so forth.

All these catastrophes have their effects on the

welfare and fortunes of men, and consonantly with

the belief already stated, were conclusively pre-

sumed

to take place for no other purpose than to

aff*ect,

in

one direction or other, the

lives

and


The Planets and Disease fortunes of men.

73

would be strange

It

after

if,

being credited with these powers for this purpose, the Planets were not further

endowed with the

power of causing those catastrophes, equally explicable

human

and

otherwise,

still

more

welfare, plague, pestilence,

in-

affecting

and

all

other

diseases.

In order to produce diseases, the Planets must influence the

humours by whose defect or excess

diseases were produced

;

and

since entia

non sunt

multiplicanda praeter necessitatem, the Planets could not influence these humours except by themselves possessing

and distributing the same

mentary qualities, heat,

cold, drought,

that characterise the humours.

the easier to establish since

it

that these four qualities pervade

ele-

and moisture,

This doctrine was

was already known all

things in nature.

The very elements themselves, out of which

all

things are compounded, are but embodiments of

the four elementary qualities in their four possible Fire

combinations. moist. Earth moist.

is

When

humours are

is

hot and dry, Air

cold and dry. it

is

Water

is

is

hot and

cold and

remembered that the four

similarly

compounded, yellow

bile

being hot and dry, blood hot and moist, black bile


74

Astrology in Medicine

cold and dry, and phlegm cold and moist,

comes evident, even

it

be-

were not already certain

if it

from the universal prevalence of these

qualities,

that corresponding pairs must be possessed by the

them those powers over

several Planets to give

disease useful

they undoubtedly

that

method of the circulus in prohando

the only device that

queathed to with

us,

This

exercise. is

not

our forefathers have be-

and that

still

serves our purposes

all its original efficacy.

When we

have got thus

far,

the remaining

doctrines of medical astrology follow naturally by

the development

and elaboration of those we

already possess, aided by further analogies, more or less far-fetched, and by chance coincidences,

such as that already mentioned which led Guy de Chauliac to attribute the great plague of 1345 to 'the conjunction of Saturn, Jupiter

and Mars

in

Aquarius in March of that year.

We

should

take a very superficial view of

Astrology, however,

beneath

all its

if

we

strange doctrines, and under

monstrous assumptions, of the

failed to recognise that

human mind

lies

all its

the insatiable craving

for explanation.

that happens before us throws

Every event

down an

irresistible


Modern

challenge to us to explain

we cannot

tuted that

75

Astrological Doctrines

We

it.

are so consti-

rest until it is explained

but we are also so constituted that we are apt to accept as sufficient anything that purports to be

an explanation, even gi'ound, or

tion

even

if it rests

a mere verbal explana-

if it is

We

that explains nothing.

Astrology as a garment that

even as the snake wriggles

and the crab withdraws that

is

too small for

selves that

mental

itself

it

upon no reasonable

have discarded

we have outgrown, out of

itself

its skin,

from a rigid envelope

but can we assure our-

;

we have outgrown and discarded the

carapace

renders

that

Astrology possible?

Do

such

not logicians

beliefs

as

teach

still

doctrines every bit as absurd as the doctrines of

Astrology

?

And even

in

Medicine

do we

itself,

never take that for an explanation that explanation?

we no windows

of our

own

to

Let those answer who explain aphasia by

guard ? it

a loss of

ataxy by calling ting

no

Before we can cast stones at the

Astrologers, have

calling

is

movements

covering

a

memory for words

it loss ;

in

who

explain

of the power of coordina-

who explain

lesion

;

a delusion by dis-

the brain

;

who

explain

feeble-mindedness by hereditary influence

;

who


76

Astrology in Medicine

explain hysteria entertained in middle age

some sexual

irregularity

committed

in

youth

by ;

or

who

explain an hypothetical increase of appendi-

citis

by an hypothetical increase

tion

of meat.

despise those

Surely

who

we have every

attributed

all

the influence of the moon, and to the influence

in the

consumpright to

acute diseases to

all

chronic diseases

of the sun, for

we know with

assured knowledge that acute diseases are in fact

produced by

due

diseases are

words

intestinal

stasis,

and that chronic

to that blessed combination of

—alimentary

toxaemia.

ASTROLOGY IN MEDICINE. To

—

the Editor

o/The Lancet.

that with your well-known love of fair play permit me to make a few remarks on this subject and to ask Dr Mercier a few questions of public Sir,

you

I trust

will kindly

interest.

With all respect for the learned doctor, and with due acknowledgment of his candid admission that astrology was believed in and seriously studied 'by the rarest intellects of their time, some of them, like Roger Bacon and Albertus Magnus, the rarest intellects of all time,' I wish to ask Does Dr Mercier think that such rarest intellects were incapable of distinguishing truth from error, and could have accepted the superstitions associated in their day with astrology ? Surely not. They accepted astrologia sana as Bacon (Lord Verulam) accepted it, as a part of physics and discarded superstition. One might as reasonably proclaim medicine nowadays to be :


77

Correspondence

ground of the superstitions connected with it formerly, as Dr Mercier condemns astrology and proofficially. Dr Mercier's only argument nounces it as dead against astrology on scientific gi'ounds is the worn-out and utterly unfounded assertion that it was overthrown by Coper'tomfoolery,' on the

'

nicus

'

—

!

Dr Mercier ridicules the belief of that eminent man Guy de Chauliac that the outbreak of the Black Death in the middle of the fourteenth century was due to the great conjunction of Saturn, Jupiter, and Mars in Aquarius on '

'

March

1345.

24th,

that time

—a

planet

Neptune was also in the same sign at unknown then. Such a doryphory of

great planets in Aquarius, a sign which

found to relate

is

to epidemic diseases, certainly foreshadowed the outbreak of

a pandemic

;

and

Dr Mercier

if

will

of great conjunctions in Aquarius

he

will

find that great

Dr Mercier had the immense difference made by the

epidemics always coincided therewith. directed attention to

compare the periods If

discovery of Uranus and Neptune, he would have recognised

that

many mistakes

due to

their being

and mediaeval astrologers were unaware of the existence and relative

of ancient

positions of these distant planets.

hope Dr Mercier will forgive me for directing attention I am sure that he meant to be as fair as to the above points. possible in his dehneation of mediaeval astrology in fact, he proved this intention by the last paragraph but one of his second lecture. I should be happy to meet Dr Mercier in friendly debate on this important subject before any learned I

;

society or private assembly. I

am,

Sir,

yours faithfully,

Alfred

J.

Pearob.

Dec. 3rd, 1913.

Mr Pearce makes an appeal for publication which we have not been able to resist, but the view that the operations of nature are mysterious until they are understood cannot be advanced as a complete defence of mysticism. Ed. L.


78

Astrology in Medicine

To

the Editor of Tk-eLa^scet.

yourself, I am unable to withstand the appeal Pearce makes to me. He asks me whether I think that Roger Bacon and Albertus Magnus were incapable of distinguishing truth from error. I hasten to assure him

Sir,— Like

that

Mr

my

men were as incapable of myself The experience of mankind throughout the ages shows that clever men never make that in

opinion these eminent

making a mistake mistakes.

No

as I

am

clever general has ever been defeated in battle

no clever judge was ever upset on appeal no clever counsel no clever theologian ever held an erroneous opinion, or at any rate an opinion that was held to be eiTone;

ever lost a cause

;

ous by other clever theologians

wrong

;

no clever doctor ever made a

diagnosis; no clever schoolboy ever needs to have his

exercises corrected ; in fact ability

same

and

infallibility

mean the

thing.

Mr Pearce is certainly right in pouring contempt upon my argument that Copernicus overthrew astrology; at least, he would have been right if I had made the statement, or if I had called it an argument. I should be most happy to accept Mr Pearce's challenge to

debate this important subject before a leanied society

were it not that I am at present immersed in a much more important investigation, which absorbs my whole time and That Saturn, Jupiter, and Mars, in conjunction attention. in Aquarius,

must have produced the Black Death in the is patent to everyone and needs no demon-

following year

but it required the insight of genius to discover that of York Minster was due to the superabundance burning the of snails in a certain back garden early in the same year. It is the peculiar merit of the adept, be he an astrologer or stration,

merely an haruspex, to recognise the significance of such coincidences. It seems to have escaped altogether the observation of the vulgar that this year of grace 1913 has been


Correspondence

79

characterised no less by the superabundance of snails in back

gardens than by the number of conflagrations initiated by suffragettes. The causal nexus needs no proof but if it did, ;

proof would be found in the fact that in Ireland, from which

were banished by the beneficent action of St Patrick, and where there are no back gardens, the backs of the houses being in front, there has been no suffragette incendiarism. I will not pursue the subject further in this place, but if Mr Pearce wants any further information he will find it in my

snails

forthcoming book, 'De Conflagrationibus et de Multitudinibus

HeUcidarum

in Hortulis Posticis.' I am, Sir, yoiu-s faithfully,

Chas. Mercibr. Dec. I3th, 1913.


AND SIGNS

SAINTS

(Part of a third Lecture, which was not dehvered, but was

read to the Casual Club, Nov. 1912)

It used to be a point of honour with me, and I

members

believe with other

to read

of this Club, never

up the subject of the evening's

discussion.

So to do would be to deprive the discussions of that casual character which

charm, and which gives is

with regret that

I

is

name

its

their

distinctive

to the Club.

have noticed of

late years

signs that this honourable understanding

maintained, and therefore

paper a

title

I

have chosen

is

not

for this

which will have rendered impracticable

any attempt to acquire information of fipom outside sources.

been trying to looking up the

adduced

It

steal

If

its

subject

any member present has

a march upon the rest by

literature

of miraculous

signs,

in evidence of the truths of Christianity

by the heroes or the victims of

canonisation,

I

have the pleasure of informing him that he has been wasting his time

;

and

I

may

further inform


81

Peculiarities of the Sovereign

members who have made

those

me

as to the scope of the subject indicated

by

my

answers, while of course strictly

were intended to mislead, and have,

truthful,

I

served their purpose.

trust, I

my

that

title,

have here a specimen of a metallic token,

which,

any of you have never seen one,

if

be glad to hand round I

direct inquiries of

I

wish

I

I shall

had more, so that

might present one to each of you as a memento

of this joyful occasion, but the Chancellor of the

Exchequer

seizes

upon every specimen with such

avidity that they are

becoming more and more

scarce and difficult to obtain

—a

metallic token

which serves in this country as the standard of value,

and If

sterling.

known

is

you

view survey

it

as the sovereign or

will let observation

on both aspects, you

on the obverse or the reverse is

which

it

bears

superscription, of St

the

I

pound

with extensive will find that

never know which

image, though not

the

George of Cappadocia, who

has abandoned the more lucrative occupation of

army contractor

in

order to

honourable calling of patron

He

is

follow the

more

saint.

engaged, you will observe, in his cus-

tomary avocation of slaying the dragon, an operation M.

6


82

Saints

which he performs

and Signs

in a rather surprising

Chastely attired in a helmet

much

manner.

too large for

him, the weight of which has dislocated his neck,

and mounted on a pony many him, the saint

is

sizes too small for

in the act of kicking the dragon

in the neck with his bare foot, while the

pony

simultaneously kicks the animal on the head with his off fore,

and treads on

near hind.

The

its

abdomen with

triple assault so

his

confounds the

dragon that instead of biting the leg of the saint or of the pony, both of which are within easy reach, he retaliates

by swearing, which any

gent dragon must know would avail

little

intelli-

against

a Welsh pony (unless indeed the dragon should

swear in Welsh, of which there

would be quite

is

no evidence) and

ineffectual against a saint, especially

a saint who had had as long an experience in the

army

as St George of Cappadocia.

George of Cappadocia was a commercial man,

and a very successful commercial man, and no doubt

it is

to place

meet and right and our bounden duty

upon the standard of value

in this

com-

mercial country the effigy of a successful commercial

man.

But

it is

not on account of his success in

commerce that the

effigy of

George appears on the


Patron Saints fi'onts

— or

typify

backs

—of our

coins.

83 If

we wanted

to

upon our coins the highest development of

the commercial

spirit, I

suppose we should stamp

them with the image of Lord Rothschild, or of

Mr

Rockefeller

;

but we do

not.

We

stamp them

with the image of St George of Cappadocia, not

because he was a prosperous and successful commissary, but because, for

some unknown reason,

he subsequently became a

saint.

know when

time, I do not

At some remote

or why, George

was

chosen as the patron saint of this country, and is

because he

is

it

the patron saint of England that

image appears on those useful tokens that are

his

collected with such avidity

Mr

the Exchequer. eligible,

because he

is

by the Chancellor of

Rockefeller would not be

not a

saint.

Patron saints were in past times much more highly valued and

much more

than they are now. in St Louis.

but

I

I

believe I

common

France

frequently employed has, or had,

a patron

speak without accurate knowledge,

am

correct in saying that, in the

phrase, he has joined the ranks of the

unemployed.

Scotland placed

itself

under the

patronage of St Andrew, Ireland of St Patrick,

Wales of St David, Spain of St James; and

6—2

if I


84

and Signs

Saints

cannot adduce any other examples, these are the only nations—if

Scotland

is

a nation

—that

because

it is

we can allow

that

remain as they were

before the modern redistribution of the

map

of

Europe.

But nations were not the only things patron

Every family that aspired

saints.

rank, and indeed, every person

who

that had

to

county

aspired to be

Nor

of consequence, had his or her patron saint.

was

this

sion

and

all,

as they say in Oxford.

calling

had

its

patron

saint.

of medicine was St Luke.

saint

patron saint of lawyers

I

Every profes-

The patron

Who

do not know, but no

doubt they chose a very powerful one,

need was

gi'eat

;

was the

for their

or perhaps no saint would consent

to act for them, for of all the Inns of Court

curious that not one

is

named

after a saint.

it is

As

to

other callings, the sailor-men had a patron saint in »

St Botolph, ferrymen in St Christopher, fishermen in St Peter,

shoemakers

in St Crispin, butchers in

St Bartholomew, huntsmen in St Hubert and so on.

I

need not remind you that to

church has

its

patron

saint,

that every part of the

ailment of the

this

day every

but you may not know

human

human body had

body, and every its

patron saint


85

Patron Saints The head was under the patronage of St

the body,

neck acknowledged St Blasius;

the

St Lawrence; the legs and

St John

;

feet,

Ottila;

St Rochus and

and thereby hangs a curious

tale, as

we

shall see presently.

Except

countries

for

saints are not

now much

and churches, patron

utilised

;

but

it is

evident,

from their universal employment in former times,

At the

that they were once of great importance.

present

day,

a patron

He

personage.

is

a merely ornamental

gives his name,

and he

is

usually

expected to give a subscription, but beyond his only function is to confer respectability.

former times, however, his functions were

more

active.

Patron,

I

may remind

you,

is

lative with client, as father with child, or

with servant.

and without a

this,

In

much corre-

master

A child necessarily implies a father, father can no child be. A master

implies a servant, and where there

there there must be a master.

a servant,

is

And

similarly,

patron and client are correlative.

There can be

no patron without a

client without

a patron.

For

client,

and no

this reason, I object to

and resent

the custom that has recently arisen, of tradesmen calling their customers clients, especially as in the


86

Saints

same breath they ask age.

A

and Signs their customers for patron-

master might as well ask his servant for

orders, or a father expect a tip

from his

child, as

a patron ask his client for patronage.

The

relation

of

patron

relation of protector

and

was the

client

and protected.

I

don't

know

whether those who placed themselves under the patronage of a saint called themselves his

clients,

but undoubtedly they invoked and expected his protection

;

and

it

was for the sake of protection

that they provided themselves with patron saints.

We

must remember that

in the days

provided themselves with patron

when men

saints,

could afford to be without protection.

no one

We

have

only to pay attention to the litany to realise

The

urgent was the need. for protection. evil

We

litany

is

how

one long prayer

pray to be protected from

and mischief, from the

crafts

and assaults of

the devil, from the wrath of God, from lightning

and tempest, from plague, pestilence and famine, from battle and murder, and from sudden death.

We pray

for protection for all that travel

or by water, for

all

by land

prisoners and captives, for

sick persons (against their doctors I suppose), for all sorts

and conditions of men.

all

and


Functions of Patron Saints

87

In those days, the modern conception of the reign of law, in the sense of the inexorableness of

natural

causation,

had not yet been

attained.

Things happened in those days, not in obedience to natural laws, but according to caprice,

and

to

whether the devil got a chance when God was not attending, or

when the

saints, his ministers,

pre-occupied with other

affairs.

was too august to be approached it

were

The Almighty

directly.

Indeed,

seems to have been assumed that he occupied

the position of

a constitutional sovereign, and

acted only on the advice or the intercession of his ministers, the saints, so that it

was of the

first

importance to have the protection and favour of a powerful and influential saint.

When

clans or nations joined battle, their war-

cry was the

name

of their patron saint,

who was

expected to fight on the side of his votaries or clients, to see that

out top dog.

Not

they had

and

it is

the luck and came

infrequently, the

down on purpose, and to the attack.

all

in bodily presence led

Many such

worth notice

saint

that,

came them

instances are on record,

whoever the saint that

thus interpreted his obligations, he was always

mounted on a white

horse.


88

Saints

and Signs

Although wars were very frequent times,

would

it

be

a

mistake

in mediaeval

suppose, as

to

historians before the present generation

seemed

to suppose, that the whole time of the whole male

population of the world was occupied in fighting,

and

No

in nothing else.

doubt, in times

when

there were no newspapers, no novels, no theatres,

no

cricket,

court,

no

football,

no

suffi-agists,

no divorce

no kinematographs and no parliamentary

debates, people

must have suffered

terrible bore-

dom, and would have been driven now and then to do a little wholesome fighting from sheer vacancy

of

mind

and no doubt, when there were no motor

;

and no municipal tram-cars,

buses, no taxi-cabs

the

normal increase of population must have

required some other check to keep

bounds of the means of subsistence

;

it

within the

and so people

plunged into war to save themselves from famine

but

the laity did not live wholly on acorns

still,

and beech-mast, nor the clergy on Greek

roots,

and therefore some industrial occupations must have been followed fact that

;

and we know as a matter of

some were followed; and whatever a

man's occupation might be, whether of war or peace,

it

was necessary,

if

he was to have any luck,


89

Specialist Saints that he should have a patron saint

and hence

;

it

was that a patron saint presided over every trade

and

Not even thieving could prosper

calling.

except under the patronage of St Nicholas.

My own

occupation had not then reached the

perfection that

now

has

it

and

attained,

in those

days there were maladies that baffled the resources of medical art as

it

then was, and defied

all

the

drugs in the pharmacopoeia, reinforced as that

then was by many potent and valuable remedies that the ignorance and indiflference of a later age

has sufiered to

worms, ants' eggs,

Pounded

into disuse.

fall

asses'

earth-

dung, the urine of a bull

—strange alternative—of a

or

virgin, vipers' fat, the

water that had been used for washing a corpse appears, sometimes failed

all these,

incredible as

to cure

and then there was no resource

;

it

to go to the celestial Harley Street,

a specialist

saint.

had as many successor has

For the

celestial

of specialists

not altogether saintly.

Harley Street

who

mundane

are, perhaps,

St Apollonius was the

leading authority on toothache;

St Avertin ap-

propriated

my own specialty of lunacy

practised

in

stone

but

and consult

saintly specialists as its

now

left

;

St Benedict

and other diseases of the


90

and Signs

Saints

St Hubert specialised in hydrophobia;

bladder;

St John in epilepsy; St Vitus in chorea; St

Maur

in

gout

it

was not to be expected that everyone should

know

;

and St Anthony

Of

in erysipelas.

course,

the right saint to go to in any particular

malady, any more than the

man

knows at the present time

precisely the best

specialist,

who

is

not a

saint, to consult for

malady with which he may happen It

would have been as absurd

to

be

the

afflicted.

to go for one's gout

to St Apollonius, the President, it,

the street

in

if

one may so put

of the celestial College of Dentists, as for the

toothache to St Maur, whose specialty was gout. In cases of difficulty,

a priest, as one

it

now

was necessary to consult

consults a general practi-

tioner.

Of

course, in those days as in these, the fee

had to be considered. coined,

Guineas had not then been

and payment was usually made

burnt at the shrine of the

muneration

that, for

my own

say has been abandoned.

was rather of

saint,

a

part, I

in candles,

mode

am

of re-

glad to

This method of payment

after that of the sister profession than

modern medicine.

The

saint

candles marked on his brief, as

it

had a number of were, and unless


Surgeons and Mental Disease

91

the retainer was satisfactory, he refused to look at

No

the papers.

doubt there were needy

saints,

not too scrupulous, who would undertake any case for a candle or two,

whether they were qualified

or not; just as

to treat

it

doctors,

and surgeons who

mental disease; but

instance,

who

there are sixpenny

will

undertake a case of

to

be hoped that the

it is

leaders of the profession

that a saint

now

had more conscience, and on blindness, for

specialised

would no more undertake a dislocation

or a fracture than a Chancery leader would under-

take the defence of a prisoner at the Old Bailey,

would treat a patient

or a reputable surgeon suffering

So

from mental disorder.

far,

then,

our mediaeval ancestors were

thoroughly well provided with patrons.

was scarcely any occasion

in life

a saint who had specialised in

and was ready to supply them

—for

its

There

that had not

requirements

for a consideration

a sufficient number of candles.

But

it is

evident that such a complete equipment of saints

could not have been suddenly, nor even rapidly constituted.

It

must have been the growth of

years and of generations

;

and moreover, we must

remember that there was a

time, at the beginning


92

mid Signs

Saints

of the Christian era, when, though sins were very

many, saints were very few, and additions

made

to the noble

until the large

army of martyrs

in

the reign of Diocletian, there could not possibly

have been saints enough to go round; and

if

we

go further back, and recede from the penumbra of early a.d. to the outer darkness of

B.C.,

we enter

a benighted world in which there were no saints at

all.

We

The prospect appals!

might almost

as well contemplate a world in which there were

no

barristers.

presses

The question presents

upon us with

irresistible force

and

itself,

—What did

our unhappy ancestors do in a world in which there were no saints ? protectors of

It is clear that

patrons or

some kind they must have had,

in pre-Christian,

no more than

in

for

mediaeval times,

was there any conviction or knowledge of the

How

operation of natui-al laws.

We have

it

temporary

do we know this?

on unexceptionable authority. writer,

who

is

have been inspired, asserts

A

con-

generally believed to *

He

hath not dealt so

with any nation, neither have the heathen any

knowledge of

his laws.'

Consequently, there was

the same lack of any rule or governance in the

happening of events.

Everything went by chance,


93

Saints Unnecessary

according as the devil or the saints were paying attention, or got the

But there were no

upper hand at the moment.

Hence

saints.

that the devil must have had

and that the

affairs of

man

survived.

men must have been

He

But they were

He

subject to mighty kings.

cities,

and were

Egypt, Mneveh, Babylon,

the Empire of

Persia,

increased and

Men organised themselves

into great nations, built great

Assyria,

uni-

not only survived, but

he prospered and flourished. multiplied exceedingly.

own way,

his

it all

formly and invariably unfortunate. not, for

would appear

it

India

and the

greater Empire of China, all attest that, long before

there were saints to interest themselves in him,

man

succeeded,

somehow

or other, in antagonising

the devil and getting the better of him.

It is of

the utmost interest and importance to discover

how he

did

employed song,

;

this,

and

and what were the means that he

and the second part

done with

Saints.

It is clear that

as indispensable as they

and

—

I

say

it

me to the middle of my of my paper. I am now

this brings

they were not

made themselves

—

with reluctance, but

I

out;

have grave

doubts whether they did not lay claim,

if

not to

powers they did not possess, at any rate to the


94

and Signs

Saints

exclusive possession of powers by no means peculiar to them.

We

occasion, St

know, indeed, that on one historical

Dunstan did

nose with a pair of tongs

;

seize the devil

by the

and we are

on

told,

unimpeachable authority, but we are

less

told, that

St Nicholas kicked him on a place which is described as being near the spot where the

the small of the back

tail

joins on to

but with these exceptions,

;

though he was constantly outwitted, and indeed

he appears to be a kind of Simple Simon,

easily

gulled by the most transparent device, and no

more astute than the victims of the confidence trick if

—with

these exceptions,

there are few,

any, records of personal encounters with the

devil

till

we come down

to Martin Luther;

Martin Luther was not a I

I say,

saint.

understand, canonised, and

good authority,

I

He was never, am informed on

in reply to inquiry

made

highest quarters, that any application to his canonisation

would have

and

little

in the

Rome

for

or no chance of

success. Still,

exist at

whatever unaccountable prejudices may

Rome

against the canonisation of this

great and good man,

I

cannot see that we are any

nearer a solution of the most

important, and


95

The Great Discovery indeed vital question,

What

did

patrons before they had saints to

gentlemen, that

I

is

fly

This

is

this

This

is

I

memorable

the golden fruit of

a hfetime of very insufficiently rewarded I

This,

to?

the brilliant result of years of

laborious research.

should

for

the great and epoch-making discovery

have to announce to you on

evening.

men do

Why

toil.

repine that the paltry metal counters that

exhibited at the beginning of this address are so

scarce and rare,

rewards so

do

when I have garnered so abundantly

much more

for patronage

precious?

did.

did

men

and protection before they had

saints to place themselves

what they

What

Not

to

under?

Why,

this

was

keep you in suspense any

longer, I will at once reveal that they sought the

protection of the Signs of the Zodiac and of the

Planets

;

and as

far as it is possible to judge, the

protection they obtained therefrom was as ample, as efficient, and as abundant, as that of all the saints in the calendar.

Many

centuries before a single saint

had been

canonised, the system of patronage by the heavenly

bodies was completely organised

put

it,

in full

swing

;

and

all

—was,

if I

may

so

the Christian hagiology

did was to adopt this system, ousting the heavenly


96

Saints and

bodies,

and Signs

filling their

Long

places with saints.

before St Louis, or St Andrew, or that successful

commissary St George, was born or thought every nation and city of antiquity had Sign.

Every calling had

Planet

;

Planet

:

its

patron

its

own patron Sign

every part of the body

and every

of,

its

or

patron Sign or

had a double process of

illness

cure, being remediable not only

by

certain drugs,

but according to the position and movement of the Planets

among

the Signs

when the drugs were

and when they were administered.

collected

series of saints

a complete

and the

parallel,

and

The

series of Signs present

it is

evident that in this

as in other things Christianity took advantage of

a pre-existing organisation and adapted

own

uses.

It

periodical festivals

and

to its

took the institution of patronage by took the institution of

celestial personages, as it

contents,

it

;

filled

emptied them of their previous

them with Christian matter,

leaving the pagan form unaltered.

the great annual winter

festival,

Thus

took

it

and altered

arbitrarily to Christmas day, pretending that

it

it is

the anniversary of the birth of Christ, for which there

is

not one

tittle of

not, or did not, alter the

evidence; but

minor weekly

it

could

festival


and

Priests which

still

Planets.

has

its

97

Astrologers

name from

the greatest of the

In these cases the supersession was either

complete or none at

all,

but in other matters, and

especially in the matter of patronage

and protection,

the struggle was very prolonged, and for ages the

two systems of patronage existed side by side alongside the priests,

who were experts

and

;

in advising

as to the appropriate saint to invoke, were the astrologers, experts in advising the proper con-

junction or disposition of the heavenly bodies to wait for

before

beginning any undertaking or

altering any course of action,

and

also for the

purpose of determining whether a course of action

was or was not successful.

judicious,

and calculated to be

Between the two

sets of practitioners

there was a natural jealousy.

The Church forbad

recourse being had to the aid of Astrology, and

threatened excommunication to anyone

who con-

sulted the rival expert, just as at present the

orthodox physician boycotts the homoeopath.

On

the other hand the astrologer,

an

infidel,

often a

who was

Jew or an Arab, despised and

ridiculed the pretensions of the saints. faith,

Whatever

or want of faith, either sect had in

ministrations, neither M.

often

its

own

was without an uneasy feeling 7


^8

and Signs

Sai7its

that the other might, after

The

it.

have something

all,

astrologers were not above invoking the

aid of the saints in their

own

personal

and the very Popes who issued against Astrology and their

own

on the

in

difficulties,

bulls fulminating

its practitioners,

whom

private astrologers,

yet kept

they consulted

In spite of their mutual antagonism,

sly.

however, the two systems existed side by side for

many centuries, and neither can boast

of a complete

triumph over the other.

is

true,

Astrology

dead,

it is

but in Protestant countries the invocation of

saints perished long before its rival,

and the

in-

fluence of the heavenly bodies was consulted by very

many who would have Very many days saints,

and

chronicles

those

know

scorned to invoke a

in the year

who

had their patron

famihar

are

saint.

with

old

that the date of an event was

never signalised by the day of the month, but always by the

saint's

day that

it fell

upon,

or, in

the few cases in which the day had not been appropriated by some saint or other, the date was signalised as being on the eve of the day following,

which was sure to have

its

patron

morrow of the previous

day.

every day of the week had

its

saint, or the

Correspondingly,

patron Planet.

The


Planets

and Gods

number seven was chosen no doubt because

for the days of the week,

in seven days the

moon completes

a quarter, and in 28 days completes

By a

curious coincidence, the

known hence

to the ancient world it

99

its

revolution.

number of Planets

was also seven, and

was natural that to every Planet should

be assigned one day in the week. transition,

made

By an

easy

at a time that I have not been

able to identify, but

that;

was certainly very

early,

the powers of the Planets and those of the gods

became

and with the powers the

transferable,

names, so that only three of the seven days of the week, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, are known

by the names of

Planets, the remaining four being

called after the corresponding gods.

As with

days, so with other things.

We

have

seen that to some saint or other every part of the

body was apportioned

;

and similarly the body was

carved up and portioned out among the Signs of the Zodiac, as

we

de Villanova,

De

find in the chapter of Arnaldus

quolihet signo

corpore respicit, and as

is

quod membrum in

set forth in the first

lecture in this book, so that

it is

heathen had as good a choice of ists

as ever the Christians had.

clear that the

celestial special-


100

faints

Time

fails

me

is

carry out the parallel in

but just as the patron Sign of

further detail,

England

to

and Signs

St George, and the eflSgy of St George

appears upon our coins, so the patron Sign of Syria was Aries, and the effigy of the

on Syrian

coins.

Similarly,

Ram

appeal's

Palmyra was under

the patronage of Libra, and on the coins of Palmyra

appears the Balance. their

Similarly, individuals

had

patron Signs before ever they had their

patron saints.

The patron Sign of Augustus was

Capricorn, of

Pythodeia Queen of Pontus, the

Balance.

times

The custom continued well

and

into

Christian

into medieeval

countries,

and King-

Stephen of England adopted and placed on his coins the patron Sign of Sagittarius.

CAMBRIDGE: FEINTED BY JOHN CLAY, M.A. AT THE UNIVEESITY PRESS


f


\

41


m iiiih.

Astrologia na medicina  

A posição da Astrologia entre as Ciências É bastante original. Sua origem é tão remota quanto Todos os registros escritos: ele formou um Uma...