The Temples and Gods of Athens
Laches's friends, however, all regularly consult the omens when they have any important enterprise on hand—a voyage, a large business venture, a marriage treaty, etc. There are several ways, not expensive; the interpreters are not priests, only low-born fellows as a rule, whose fees are trifling. You can find out about the future by casting meal upon the altar fire and noticing how it is burned, by watching how chickens pick up consecrated grain, by observing how the sacrificial smoke curls upward, etc. The best way, however, is to examine the entrails of the victim after a sacrifice. Here everything depends on the shape, size, etc., of the various organs, especially of the liver, bladder, spleen, and lungs, and really expert judgment by an experienced and high-priced seer is desirable. The man who is assured by a reliable seer, "the livers are large and in fine color," will go on his trading voyage with a confident heart.
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