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ISLAMIC Astrology And Astronomy

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Author Topic: ISLAMIC Astrology And Astronomy  (Read 8734 times)
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« Reply #15 on: August 19, 2007, 07:17:38 am »

The table below summarises the lists of the Mansions of the Moon given in a Latin translation of ĎAlÓ ibn abi ír-Rij‚l, Albohazen Haly Filii Abenragel libri de iudiciis astrorum, summa cura ... latinitati donati, per Antonium Stupam, published in printed form by Henricus Petrus in Basel in 1551 (pp. 342-46; an earlier version was published in Venice in 1503). The topics are rearranged slightly and kept in semi-note form for brevity. The focus is almost entirely on Ďcatarchicí astrology, that is the selection of propitious times to begin things and, with respect to what is favoured by the Moonís position in the various Mansions, Abenragelís list is a summary of Indian and Hellenistic traditions rather than an exposition of Arabian astrology or any ideas of his own. The enterprises involved vary from the important to the trivial, from marriage to when to put on new clothes, and Dorotheos also comments on the outcome of processes started involuntarily under a particular Mansion, such as captivity. Certain enterprises are favoured and others particularly cautioned against depending on the Moonís position, though, for good fortune in the ventures favoured by a Mansion, the Moon must also be free from bad aspects from other planets (see Astrology). Some elements seem to be influenced by the Zodiac sign (interestingly Virgo seems to favour marriage with non-virgins), and characteristics often repeat for two or more consecutive Mansions. It is interesting that in European adoption the practice seems to have moved away somewhat from the deciding when to start a venture to focus more on magical operations and the making of talismans (see the Mansionsí Images), although the matters favoured may be similar. This seems more superstitious in some respects, but it also takes the burden off waiting for the appropriate time to do something, as long as the talisman has been made at the right time. The lists here are incidentally a fascinating side-light on the possible pre-occupations of their period, though probably more the time of the original sources, than of ĎAlÓ ibn abi ír-Rijal himself, or of the Latin translators. Certain things like when to have a haircut and put on new clothes seem strangely unimportant, while Dorotheosí terms of reference, in particular, are very much those of a male, slave-owning soldier, in danger of capture.
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