Intro to Geomancy: Geomantic Signs

In Geomancy, we use sixteen signs that are interpreted to give indications. These signs are made up of four lines in which there are either one or two dots. It is essentially like binary code, in that you could consider the single dot indicates something as being “on” or active and the two dots is the equivalent of “off” or “inactive”.  This combination of dots shapes the figures.
The four lines are considered like a body, with a head line, neck line, body line and feet line. That is top line, second from the top, the second from the bottom, and the bottom line.These are also associated with the elements, with the head/top line equated with fire, the neck/second from the top is Air, the body/second from the bottom is Water, and the feet/bottom line is Earth. 

This combination of active and inactive lines in the four sections creates the sixteen signs of geomancy. 

These combinations have given values to certain signs, interpreted in various ways. One of these ways is elemental. Depending upon the active elemental lines, the figure has been assigned a certain element correspondence.
These same signs have also been assigned to the seven classical planets of astrology, which has also given them an additional set of elemental correspondences. While the elemental values given upon the active lines in the figure are fairly consistent, the addition of the planet qualities are not as consistent, and so this elemental quality changes depending upon the author. This variation between elements caused the planetary elemental quality to be considered the outer elemental quality, while the more consistent elemental value is considered the inner elemental quality.
The arrangement of the figures also creates several more categories of signs. A stable and mobile sign, entering and exiting signs, and partial and impartial signs.
A stable sign is one that indicates long term influences, and events that aren’t changeable.
A mobile sign is one that indicates short term influences, and events that are more changeable.

An entering sign is similar to a stable sign, while an exiting sign indicates a mobile sign. Some signs are neither exiting or entering, and need to be considered in relation to the signs around them.
Because these signs are made of combinations of one or two dots, some of these signs have even numbers, and some are odd numbered. The even numbered signs are considered impartial, and these numbers are the only ones that become judges. If you get an odd numbered sign as a judge, it means that you have miscalculated the shield chart and should go back. It makes it a kind of failsafe, knowing that an error has been made. That is why the even numbered signs are considered impartial, representing objective, factual conditions that are apparent to anyone. All the odd numbered signs are thus considered partial, and represent subjective and emotional states.

The sixteens signs are as follows:

Puer (Latin for Youth, or a Adolescent Male) – Inner element Air: Outer element: Fire Planet: Mars Sign: Aries Mobile Exiting, Partial

Puella (Latin for Maiden or an Adolescent Female) – Inner element: Air Outer Element: Water Planet: Venus Sign: Libra Stable Entering Partial

Albus ( Latin for White) -Inner Element: Water Outer Element: Air Planet: Mercury Sign: Gemini Stable, Entering Partial

Rubeus (Latin for Red) – Inner Element: Air Outer Element: Water Planet: Mars Sign: Scorpio Mobile, Exiting, Partial

Amissio (Latin for Loss) – Inner Element: Fire Outer Element: Earth Planet: Venus Sign: Taurus Mobile, Exiting, Impartial 

Aquisitio (Latin for Gain) – Inner Element: Air Outer Element: Fire Planet: Jupiter Sign: Sagittarius Stable, Entering, Impartial

Populus (People or Crowds) – Inner Element: Outer Element Water: Planet: Moon Sign: Cancer Stable, Both, Impartial

Via (The Way or Road) – Inner Element: Outer Element: Water Planet: Moon Sign: Cancer Mobile, Both, Impartial

Carcer (Latin for Prison) – Inner Element: Earth Outer Element Earth: Planet: Saturn Sign: Capricorn Stable, Both, Impartial

Conjunctio (Latin for Conjunction) aka a Meeting or Crossroads – Inner Element: Air Outer Element: Earth Planet:Mercury Sign: Virgo Mobile Both Impartial

Fortuna Major (Latin for Greater Fortune) – Inner Element:Earth Outer Element: Fire Planet: Sun Sign: Leo Stable, Entering, Impartial

Fortuna Minor (Latin for Lesser Fortune) – Inner Element: Fire Outer Element: Fire Planet: Sun Sign: Leo Mobile, Exiting, Impartial

Laetitia (Latin for Joy) – Inner Element: Fire Outer Element: Water Planet:Jupiter  Sign: Pisces Mobile, Exiting, Partial

Tristitia (Latin for Sadness) – Inner Element: Earth Outer Element: Air Planet: Saturn Sign: Aquarius Stable, Entering Partial

Caput Draconis (Latin for Head of the Dragon) – Inner Element: Earth Outer Element: Earth Planet North Node of the Moon: Sign: Virgo Stable, Entering Partial

Cauda Draconis (Latin for Tail of the Dragon) – Inner Element: Fire Outer Element: Fire Planet: South Node of the Moon Sign: Sagittarius Mobile, Exiting, Partial

You will also notice another pattern with the signs, based upon how I presented them above. The combinations above show opposite pairings. Youth and Maiden, White and Red, Gain and Loss, etc… You will also notice that these signs are either Reversions or Inversions of each other. This expresses a relationship between these signs that when they are found together may influence your reading.

One of the practices done in generating a chart (which we will cover in another post) is the adding of the signs together. This creates a third sign from their combination, creating new active and inactive lines. It also expresses a relationship between those signs that is a little tongue and cheek. For example, Puer and Puella when added together creates Conjunctio or Meeting. This could be interpreted as literal meeting of a man and woman, or as “sexual union”, depending upon the reading.

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