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Alphitomancy (from Greek ἄλφιτον alphiton, 'barley', and μαντεία manteia, 'divination') is a form of divination involving barley cakes or loaves of barley bread.[1]

When someone in a group was suspected of a crime, the members of the group would be fed barley cakes or slices of barley bread. Supposedly, the guilty party would get indigestion, while all others would feel well.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Georg Luck, Arcana Mundi: Magic and the Occult in the Greek and Roman Worlds (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1985, reissued 2006), p. 495.
  2. ^ "Alphitomancy". the MYSTICA. Retrieved 3 August 2015.