The subject of Talismans and Gems of the Zodiac covers a wide area, and the difficulty of arriving at a definite conclusion is increased because of the varying opinions between writers on these subjects as to the stones referred to, or intended by the Ancients, complicated still further by the different languages from which these records have been translated, and where Month or Zodiacal gems are referred to many of the writers are obviously unacquainted with Astrology or Astronomy.
The present volume, being the result of many years of study and research, it is not easy in all cases to specify the original source of our information, which has been collected, not only from ancient and modern writings, but also from personal experience and experiments, noted at the time they occurred, long before this book was contemplated. Again, we find that many, and more especially modern authors, quote from one another in places, and the original source of the information is obscure; we have, therefore, endeavoured to give as far as possible our authorities, although, owing to the antiquity of the subject, much is necessarily left to deduction and conjecture; and it is more than probable there may be unintentional omissions, to remedy which we give a list of books that we have at different times consulted and studied with advantage.
We have endeavoured throughout to make the subjects dealt with as interesting as possible, believing that the symbols expressing the faiths of bygone days form the basis of occult forces, a proper understanding of which is becoming more and more recognised by scientists as necessary in the interests of progress at the present day.
It will be noticed that many of the gems have similar qualities attributed to them which, according to the ancient authorities, were specifically arranged for the benefit of those types whose planetary aspects brought them into harmony with the particular stone specified.
With regard to characteristics dealt with in the second part of the book, this must be regarded as general, and liable to variation according to the remaining Planetary influences, which would be indicated in a horoscope. With this proviso, the information given will be found reliable and very helpful in giving a knowledge of our own dispositions and those of our friends and associates and should pave the way to a sympathy and understanding impossible without this knowledge. It will also afford a simple and easy means of at least proving there is something in Astrology, and if interest is aroused the fullest information may be obtained by a study of the books mentioned, dealing with the subject.
We have greatly benefited from the assistance given us by Mrs. G. M. Walker in lending us scarce and valuable books for reference, and by G. H. Greenop, Esq., kindly translating many old Greek and Latin writings; we should also like to acknowledge our obligations to the Directors of the British Museum for the facilities given in obtaining information, and their permission to make drawings from the actual Talismans in their collections.
WM. THOS. PAVITT
17 Hanover Square, London, W. yd August, 1914