When Sparry was writing, even the most devout Christians believed in astrology. Priests and wise men spent their days searching for the secret to turn lead into gold, fortune-tellers, alchemists and divines were commonplace and fear of witches was everywhere.

Sparry himself, among his many talents, was skilled in the practice of geomancy. A means, it was thought, for insight into future events from a study of the earth, its elements and the universal forces.

Chapter 1 – Caput Draconis