Alternatively Anthracomancie, Anthracomanzia, Anthrakomancy, Anthrakomancie, and Anthrakomanzia.
Derived from the ancient Greek word for coal, it is a form of divination by means of coals, or charcoals.
This is a form of prognostication many can relate to, if they have grown up with coal fires rather than wood-fueled fires.
In the most ancient method of Anthracomancy, the diviner stares at the burning coals until he or she reaches a state of divinatory trance and commences prophetic utterances.
This method has been practiced since Neolithic times, possibly from the time when fire was discovered and fire making formulas were developed, enabling people to stare at the burning embers. Later on, more complicated techniques were developed and incorporated to these basic divinatory procedures and rituals. Anthracite, a hard, glossy-surfaced coal that burns without much smoke, is the preferred medium for this form of Anthracomancy.
In another form of Anthracomancy, which in this case is closely related to Scrying, the diviner stares at the burning coals until prophetic visions appear. In a variation of this method, related to Hydromancy and Catoptromancy, the diviner observes the burning coals in a reflection, either from a consecrated mirror or a sacred pool.
This ancient mode of divination is still practiced in some areas of the United States and on some islands by the native tribes. But there are many ways to read the coals. . .
The traditional and most popular method of Anthracomancy involves pounding the coals up and mixing them into a bucket with water, preferably seawater. The mixture is then poured onto a flat surface and resulting patterns are interpreted by the diviner, possibly after some prayers and/or invocations are pronounced.
In an often remembered story about Anthracomancy, an Orphir girl on the Orkney mainland was told to choose a burning coal and to place it into a bucket of cold water. She would have to leave it overnight. The next morning, she would break the coal in two and see if any hairs fell from the cinders. If it did, the color of the hair was supposed to be the color of her future husband's hair.
Anthracomancy, like most divinatory systems, is quite ancient, and has been practiced since time immemorial.
See Stoichomancy, Cleidomancy, Augur, Dowsing, Tarot, Heptameron, Demonology, Demonomancy, Heptameron, Sortilege, Idolomancy, Tephramancy, Anemoscopy, Eromancy, Austromancy, Chaomancy, Roadomancy, Capnomancy, Pyromancy, Meteormancy, Ceraunoscopy, Zoomancy, Mystic Gifts and Charms - New Age Gift Shop & Wicca and Pagan Supplies, Love Spells -- Use these powerful love spells to help you find and keep your true love, The Tarot Store, The Chakra Store, Divination & Scrying Tools and Supplies, Unique Amulets, Talismans, Good Luck Charms, and Love Tokens, Powerful Witch Doctor Spell Kits, Powerful Spells - Cast by Andreika the Witch, Webmasters Make $$$, AzureGreen - Celebrating All Paths to the Divine, ISIS - Tools for Your Soul's Journey, and The Pyramid Collection - Myth, Magick, Fantasy and Romance.
Sources: (1) Morwyn, The Complete Book Of Psychic Arts, Llewellyn Publications; (2) Walker, Charles, The Encyclopedia of the Occult, Random House Value; (3) Dunwich, Gerina, A Wiccan's Guide to Prophecy and Divination, Carol Publishing Group; (4) Buckland, Raymond, The Fortune-Telling Book: The Encyclopedia of Divination and Soothsaying, Visible Ink Press.
| || |