It gives me great pleasure to send a few introductory words to this notable work,
for such it is.
It is a considerable time since a new text-book on astrology has appeared in
Great Britain. On examination the reader will appreciate that this is, in the best
sense, an ambitious work, designed to set a fresh and higher standard of astrological
achievement in text-books. I can bear personal witness that neither trouble nor
expense has been spared to produce completeness; but I believe equally that
padding has been rigorously excluded. Thus, if the price is, necessarily in these
days, high, the purchaser may know that he is paying for substance and not for mere
verbiage, of which there is none.
The diagrams merit special mention for their clarity and beautiful workmanship.
A glance at the Index will serve to show that much is included that is highly
interesting to anyone studying astrology with the background of a wide general
culture, but which has never before appeared, to my knowledge, in an English work
of this kind. Chapter XVII, , The Historical Background,' is a case in point.
Naturally, in a subject such as astrology, there are many differences of opinion
even on fundamentals, and differences, too, as to how the art should be taught. As
for this latter, much must depend on the intelligence of the pupil, and his or her
previous studies. Hitherto most students, it is to be feared, have learnt their
methods largely by rote, with only a limited understanding of the reasons for what
they did. In this book the authoress has sought to correct this common defect and
to lead the student to technical proficiency in a manner that will enable him to
understand not only what he is doing but also why.
Another feature that merits commendation is the lack of dogmatism that characterizes the work. Varying opinions are given fair play, and Mrs. Hone does not force
her own views down the reader's throat in the somewhat arrogant manner employed
by less fair-minded writers, especially in the old days.
Yet another point to be applauded is the inclusion of carefully worded definitions;
and similarly the key-word system is used in a way that is both practical and
One may in fact assert that a student will need no other library than this book
for some considerable time; and he might indeed be wise if he confines his reading to
it for several months, thus gaining a comprehensive basis for his astrological investigations before adding to his library. When he feels ready to take this step, he will
find guidance in the Appendix,
The authoress has generously acknowledged the help she has received in compiling this work, a matter which, it has been said, natives of Leo are sometimes
prone to overlook. But the book bears throughout the stamp of her own vivid and
comprehensive mentality. It will unquestionably be a guide and help to many-
and not only to beginners.
This book is written after many years of astrological practice, during which a
system of teaching has been built up.
The experience of contact with successive classes of students who have tried to
teach themselves from books has shown that, while all can theorise on the planets,
the signs and the houses, few can be systematic in their lay-out of work preparatory
to a lucid and comprehensive interpretation of a natal chart, or arrange for an
over-all survey of several years of a life, so as to indicate its trends.
With the aim of improving and facilitating the work of those who wish to use
astrology either as their main or their subsidiary profession, or to use it as an interesting spare-time occupation, more detailed teaching and more examples of work done
in actual practice have been given than has been customary in text-books of the
Experience of partly-taught students has also brought to light the fact that few
have any understanding of either the astronomical or historical backgrounds of
their study. Therefore a change in presentation has been made in that much in-
formation about both of these has been included in chapters on working methods to
which they are relative.
It has been found that a teaching period should be divided into an informatory
and theoretical part, and a practical part, the student thus remembering the un-
accustomed facts more easily because they are relevant to the work done.
By such tuition, taken either in class or in horne study, it is hoped that the
notion that " learning astrology II consists of the immediate acquisition of a fragmentary idea of chart construction and an unrelated series of delineations of factors
will be completely eradicated from the minds of modem students.
Such knowledge is only part of a great whole, which should be the steadily
accumulated store of the properly grounded and informed student. .
I should like to express my grateful thanks for the help and friendly criticism
which has been given by those who have read this book for me, Mr. Charles E. O.
Carter, B.A., Brigadier R. C. Firebrace, C.B.E. and Mr. R. M. Trotter; also to
Mr. J. M. Filbey for the checking of computations and planetary significators.
**Book's Contents and Sample Pages**
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