Thursday, 14 May 2020

Crystal Balls

I’m catching up on a little reading today inspired by Crystal Week over at and thought I’d share some Crystal Ball facts.

A modern crystal ball is known as an orbuculum, and is made from glass or crystal. Early crystal gazers - or specularii - used a polished sphere of beryl, well known varieties including Emerald and Aquamarine.

Crystal gazing was commonly practised by the people of Yucatan, the Persians, the Egyptians, the Chinese, and the Incas, to name but 
a few.

The mythical Merlin supposedly carried a beryl sphere to provide King Arthur with readings whenever he needed them.

Crystal gazing, crystal seeing, crystallism, crystallomancy, gastromancy, and spheromancy are all terms to describe the method of ‘seeing’ by gazing at a crystal, which is a form of Scrying.

As well as being popular in the Middle Ages, and made more visible by travelling Roma, the Crystal Ball became a favourite of stage magicians and ‘Mentalists’ in the early 20th Century.

The Crystal Ball is iconic and has appeared in books and films - off the top of my head I can think of Labyrinth, The Lord of the Rings, and the Wizard of Oz. The Crystal ball has also featured in artwork; most notably The Crystal Ball (1902) by John William Waterhouse.

Do you have a Crystal Ball? Give me your favourite Crystal Ball films and books n the comments.

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