Alternatively Spatulamancy, Scapulomancy, Scapulimancy, and Scapulamancy. In the Highlands of Scotland it was known as Slinneineachd.
A form of augury or divination by examining the patterns of cracks, fissures and marks on the burned (after being roasted over an open fire) shoulder-blade bones of an animal, usually one that has been properly sacrificed. The shoulder-blade bone is called scapula, hence Scapulamancy.
Scapulomancy, like most divinatory systems, is quite ancient, and has been practiced since time immemorial. J. Grahame D. Clark, in World Prehistory (1961) said:
"It will be recalled that the practice of scapulomancy . . . can be traced back to the late 'Neolithic' Lung-shan culture."
Some diviners boiled the scapula, instead of roasting. Giraldus Cambrensis (1146-1223), archdeacon of Brecon, tells that Scapulomancy was a common practice in 13th-century Wales. He wrote that the bone typically used was the right shoulder of a ram, boiled, not roasted.
This type of divination was widely practiced in both England and Ireland in the 12th-century, in Wales in the 13th-century, in ancient Babylon, among the Mohammedan diviners and in ancient China where, in addition to oxen shoulder bones, tortoise shells were also used.
In the method using turtle shells, the shell's plastron — the nearly flat part which is the bottom, or "belly," of the animal — was of special divinatory importance.
See Diviner, Astrology, Acutomancy, Agalmatomancy, Divination, Coscinomancy, Cleidomancy, Augur, Stoichomancy, Dowsing, Tarot, Heptameron, Demonology, Sortilege, Idolomancy, Demonomancy, 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) Walker, Charles, The Encyclopedia of the Occult, Random House Value; (2) Spence, Lewis, An Encyclopedia of Occultism, Carol Publishing Group; (3) Dictionary of the Occult, Caxton Publishing; (4) Pickover, Clifford A., Dreaming the Future: The Fantastic Story of Prediction, Prometheus Books; (5) Dunwich, Gerina, A Wiccan's Guide to Prophecy and Divination, Carol Publishing Group; (6) Buckland, Raymond, The Fortune-Telling Book: The Encyclopedia of Divination and Soothsaying, Visible Ink Press.
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