First published in 1647, as Christian Astrology, this is one of the best kwn post-classical works on Astrology. the present edition, heavily edited by 'Zadkiel, ' was released under the current title in 1852. As the planet Uranus ('Hershel'), discovered in 1781, is mentioned throughout, and Neptune, discovered in 1846, is t, we can bracket the date of composition of the revised edition to the mid-19th century. Horary Astrology, the subject of this book, interprets planetary positions to answer a wide range of questions, from lost dogs and stolen fish, to the death of kings. While there is a basic repertoire of interpretations, (e.g., Saturn bad, Venus good), the horoscope is used as a jumping off point for the astrologer's intuition
William Lilly, was a famed English astrologer and occultist during his time. Lilly was particularly adept at interpreting the astrological charts drawn up for horary questions, as this was his speciality. Lilly caused much controversy in 1666 for allegedly predicting the Great Fire of London some 14 years before it happened. For this reason many people believed that he might have started the fire, but there is no evidence to support these claims. He was tried for the offence in Parliament but was found to be innocent. William Lilly was born in 1602 in Diseworth, Leicestershire, where his family were long-established yeomen. He received a basic classical education at the school of Ashby-de-la-Zouch, but makes a point of saying that his master never taught logic. At the age of seventeen, his father having fallen into poverty, he went to London and was employed in attendance on an elderly couple. His master, at his death in 1627, left him an annuity of 20; and, Lilly having soon afterwards married the widow, she, dying in 1633, left him property to the value of about 1000. He began to dabble in astrology, reading all the books on the subject he could fall in with, and occasionally trying his hand at unravelling mysteries by means of his art. The years 1642 and 1643 were devoted to a careful revision of all his previous reading, and in particular, having lighted on Valentine Naibod's Commentary on Alcabitius, he seriously studied him and found him to be the profoundest author he ever met with. About the same time he tells us that he did carefully take notice of every grandaction betwixt king and parliament, and did first then incline to believe that as all sublunary affairs depend on superior causes, so there, was: a possibility of discovering them by the configurations of the superior bodies. And, having thereupon made some essays, he found encouragement to proceed further, and ultimately framed to himself that method which he ever afterwards followed.