Laurie Taylor Column

April 13, 2007


Report from the external examiner: Professor J. K. L. Anonymous

This was another very successful year for the department of palmistry.

There were 36 first-class papers, 22 upper seconds and only one marginal failure.

There were, however, a small number of lacunae evident in the papers that I would like to bring to the attention of the course organisers.

1. I noted the occasional unfortunate failure to distinguish between the general science of palmistry (cheirosophy) and the specific practices of cheirognomy (the study of hand lines) and dermatoglophics (the study of skin patterns). Confusion between these elements would constitute a serious barrier to the professional career advancement of postgraduate palmists.

2. I was disappointed to find no extended mention of recent research breakthroughs in index finger analysis. Although there were references to the manner in which those with long index fingers were more likely to lead and make decisions, there were no complementary references to the likelihood of those with short index fingers pursuing careers as writers or artists.

3. I was surprised to find several references to the work of "Gypsy" Petulengro. This is not now an acceptable term and should be replaced by the more acceptable phrase "person with predilections for travel".

4. A minor terminological point: although it has been traditional to describe the line running up from the base of the palm towards the middle finger as the Line of Destiny, most serious researchers in the field now favour the more scientifically neutral term, the Line of Saturn.

5. A small reservation about your method of resolving disputed marks: although it has proved effective in the past, there is now growing professional concern about the practice of establishing genuine failures by throwing the disputed candidates into the deep end of the university lake.

Overall, I am happy to say that the future of the palmistry course at Poppleton University is in good non-spatulated well-looped hands, and I am happy to give a thick top-jointed "thumbs up" to all those who currently contribute to its success.

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