The history of astrology includes not only a chronological list of texts, events and astrologers, but also an investigation of the techniques used in astrological practice. These reflect historical circumstances and the philosophical underpinnings of the discipline of astrology itself. In examining the doctrine of lots and its use in astrological practice, both of these items are critical. This talk will give the background on the history of lots and their creation based on both the use of lots in culture and on the philosophical connections associated with lot doctrine. The talk will include the mechanics of lots and case studies to show the use of lots in astrological practice.
Dorian Gieseler Greenbaum is a historian who teaches postgraduates at the University of Wales Trinity St David. Her book based on her PhD thesis (Warburg Institute, 2009) is The Daimon in Hellenistic Astrology: Origins and Influence (Brill 2016). Recent articles include ‘Porphyry of Tyre on the Daimon, Birth and the Stars’, in Neoplatonic Demons and Angels (Brill 2018) and, with Alexander Jones, ‘P.Berl. 9825: An elaborate horoscope for 319 CE and its significance for Greek astronomical and astrological practice’, ISAW Papers 12 (2017). More recently, she has written two articles for the edited volume Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in Its Contexts, Brill 2020. Her article ‘Divination and Decumbiture: Katarchic Astrology and Greek Medicine’, in Divination and Knowledge in Greco-Roman Antiquity (ed. Crystal Addey) was published in June 2021 by Routledge.