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Apotelesmatics Book III: On Inceptions


Hephaistion of Thebes’ Apotelesmatics (5th Century AD) is an important record of ancient doctrines on general principles, natal, and electional astrology, largely drawn from the work of Ptolemy and Dorotheus.

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Book III: On Inceptions is based largely on Dorotheus and focuses on inception charts taken broadly: elections, thought-interpretation and analysis, event charts, and even proto-horary questions. In addition to lengthy instructions on crafting strong elections, typical inceptions include forming business deals, getting married, finding lost property, founding cities, farming, asking for favors, travel, surgery and medical treatment, and even the astrological reading of entrails. Event charts include analyzing the truth of rumors, the return of missing spouses, and more. Hephaistion also includes thought-interpretation techniques, using twelfth-parts and other methods.

Book III is also the most important source of authentic Greek verses of Dorotheus, complementing the Arabic translation by ‘Umar al-Tabari. This edition includes numerous Dorothean Excerpts and Fragments identified by Pingree and others, which supplement and enhance the material in Hephaistion. Along with Choices & Inceptions: Traditional Electional Astrology (2012), Hephaistion’s Book III provides the most complete picture of Hellenistic and medieval inceptional astrology. (206 pages)

EDUARDO GRAMAGLIA is an award-winning translator of Greek and professor of musical analysis in Argentina. He has translated Paul of Alexandria, Serapio, and other Hellenistic astrologers into Spanish, and is co-Principal of the Collegium Astrologicum. For more, see www.astrologicum.com.ar.