The Ancient Library
 

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CHAPTER X

KLEROMANCY

the appeal in cases of doubt or uncertainty to the fall of the lot is familiar in modern life. In the Lower Culture, where the mathematical doctrine of chances is unknown, the arbitrary decision of the lot is more than a practical convenience; it is a solemn and mysterious ordinance. Among the Masai a number of magic stones are thrown into a buffalo horn and shaken. Medicine - men know what is going to happen by the number which fall out.1 Exactly analogous were the Urim and Thummim of the Jews. They were simply two stones which were put in the pocket of the priest's ephod, having respectively a negative and a positive significance. One of the stones was taken out, and the question thus answered.2

1 Hollis, Masai, p. 324.

2 Witton Davies, p. 75. He adds that probably wherever we have the phrase "to inquire of," e.g. I Sam. xiv. 37 or xxiii. 2, the appeal to Urim and Thummim is meant.

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