Chapter X

of mercury, and his signification, nature, and property.

Mercury is the least of all the planets, never distant from the Sun above 28 degrees; by which reason he is seldom visible to our sight.

Colour and Motion.—He is of a dusky silver colour ; his mean motion is 59 minutes and 8 seconds, but he is sometimes so swift, that he moves above 1 degree and 40 minutes in one day. He is stationary one day, retrograde twenty-foor days. His year is 87 days and 23 hours.

* These observations are retained from respect to our author; but we most repeat, that it is 8 and the houses of ? , which govern these countries.

Latitude. — His greatest south latitude is 3 degrees 35 minutes, greatest north latitude 3 degrees 33 minutes.

Nature.—We may not call him either masculine or feminine, for he is either the one or the other as joined to any planet; for if in (J with a masculine planet, he becomes masculine: * if with a feminine, then feminine; but of his own nature he is cold and dry, and therefore melancholy: with the good he is good, with the evil planets, ill; he is author of subtlety, tricks, devices, perjury, &c.

Manners when well dignified.—Being well dignified, he represents a man of a subtle and poHtical brain and intellect, an excellent disputant or logician, arguing with learning and discretion,'and using much eloquence in his speech; a searcher into all kinds of mysteries and learning, sharp and witty, learning almost any thing without a teacher; ambitious of being exquisite in every science, desirous naturally to travel and see foreign parts; a man of an unwearied fancy, curious in the search of any occult knowledge, able by his own genius to produce wonders, given to divination and the more secret knowledge. If he turn merchant, no man exceeds him in way of trade, or invention of new ways whereby to obtain wealth.

Manners when ill dignified.—A troublesome wit, a kind of phrenetic man, his tongue and pen against every man; wholly bent to fool his estate and time in loquacity and trying nice conclusions to no purpose, a great liar, boaster, prattler, busybody; false; a tale-carrier, addicted to wicked arts, as necromancy, and such like ungodly knowledges; easy of belief, an ass or very idiot, constant in no place or opinion, cheating and thieving everywhere ; a newsmonger, pretending ' all manner of knowledge, but void of true or solid learning;

* This applies to aspects also; but, of course, only in horary questions.

introduction to astsoloor.

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