AFTER due attention to the preceding instructions, the doctrine of genethliacal prognostication should be separately and distinctly considered, for the sake of order and perspicuity, in its first, second and successive divisions or heads of inquiry. It will thus be found to present a mode of investigation, at once practicable, competent and agreeable to nature.
One division is applicable only to certain circumstances established previously to the birth; as, for instance, to those which concern the
parents; another to circumstances, which may be established both before and after the birth; as those respecting brothers and sisters; another to circumstances actually occurring at the very time of birth, and immediately consequent thereupon: and this head of inquiry embraces various points, and is by no means simple: and the last division relates to events liable to take place after the birth, at various periods, earlier or later; and it involves a still more diversified theory.
Thus, the questions to be solved, in regard to the actual circumstances of the birth itself, are, whether the production will be male or female; twins, or even more; whether it will be monstrous; and whether it will be reared.
The questions of the periods subsequent to the birth relate first to the duration of life (which is distinct from the question of rearing), then to the shape and figure of the body, to the bodily affections, and to injuries or defects in the members. After these, further inquiry is instituted as to the quality of the mind, and the mental affections; then, as to fortune, in regard to rank and honours as well as wealth. In succession to these, the character of the employment or profession is sought out; then, the questions relative to marriage and offspring, and to consentaneous friendship, are to be considered; then, that concerning travel; and, lastly, that concerning the kind of death which awaits the native. The question of death, although depending, in fact, upon the same influence as the question of the duration of life, seems yet to find its proper situation in being placed last in the series.
On each of the foregoing points of inquiry, the doctrine and precepts to be followed shall be thoroughly and succinctly detailed; but all idle conceits, promulgated by many persons without any foundation capable of sustaining the test of reason, shall be utterly avoided, in deference to the only true agency, which is derived from primal Nature herself. It is only upon clearly effective influences that this treatise is established: and all matters, which are open to an authorized mode of inquiry by means of the theory of the stars, and their positions and aspects with regard to appropriate places, shall be fully discussed here; but the divination by lots and numbers, unregulated by any systematic causation, must remain unnoticed.
The brief remarks, immediately following, are applicable to all cases, generally, and are now at once stated, to avoid the repetition of them under each particular division or head of inquiry.
Firstly, notice must be taken of that place in the zodiac which corresponds, according to the scheme of the nativity with the particular division of inquiry; for example, the place of the mid-heaven is adapted to questions comprised under the head of employment or profession; and the Sun's place to those relative to the concerns of the father.
Secondly, after the proper place has thus been duly ascertained, the planets holding right of dominion there, by any of the five prerogatives hereinbefore mentioned, are to be observed; and, if any one planet be
found to be lord by all these prerogatives, that planet must be admitted as the ruler of the event liable to happen under that particular head of inquiry. If, however, two or three planets hold dominion, that one among them, which may have most claims to the place in question, must be selected as the ruler.
Thirdly, the natures of the ruling planet and of the signs, in which itself and the place which it thus controls may severally be situated, are to be considered as indicating the quality of the event.
Fourthly, the proportionate vigour and strength, or weakness, with which the dominion is exercised, as exhibited either by the actual cosmical position of the ruling planet, or by its position in the scheme of the nativity, will point out to what extent and with what force the event will operate. And a planet is found to be cosmically powerful when in one of its own places, 1 or when oriental, or swift in course; and it is strong in the scheme of the nativity, when transiting an angle or succedent house; especially those of the ascendant, or of the mid-heaven. But it is cosmically weaker, when not in one of its own places; or when occidental, or retarded in its course; and in respect to the scheme of the nativity, it is weak when cadent from the angles.
Lastly; the general time, about which the event will take place, is to be inferred from the ruling planet's matutine or vespertine position, in regard to the Sun and the ascendant, and from the circumstance of its being situated in an angle, or a succedent house. As, if it be matutine, or in an angle, its influence operates earlier and more promptly; but, if vespertine or in a succedent house, later and more tardily. And, in reference to this point, the quadrant which precedes the Sun, and that which precedes the ascendant, together with the quadrants opposite to these, are oriental and matutine; and the other quadrants, following the former, are occidental and vespertine.
77:1 In House, Triplicity, Exaltation, Term or Face.