The usual prognostication of future distinction is attributed in the case of More to Cardinal Morton, " who would often tell the nobles sitting at table with him, where young Thomas waited on him, whosoever liveth to trie it shall see this child prove a notable and rare man."
On the other hand, it is urged that, though Guyon and Du Verdier were in a sense contemporaries, they wrote long after the events, and that the testimony of the former is vitiated, not merely by its extreme vagueness, but by the fact .that it occurs in a plaidoyer, tending to exculpate physicians from the charge of unorthodoxy; that Du Verdier in another place assigns the Pantagrueline Prognostication to this same unknown student of Valence, and had therefore probably confused and hearsay notions on the subject; that the rasher and fiercer tone, as well as the apparent repetitions, are sufficiently accounted for on the supposition that Rabelais never finally revised the book, which indeed dates show that he could not have done, as the fourth was not finally settled till just before his death; and that it is perfectly probable, and indeed almost certain, that it was prepared from his papers by another hand, which is responsible for the anachronous allusions above referred to.
His tribe of paltry, rapacious and embarrassing Corsicans; his admirably subservient generals; his selfish ministers, docile agents, apprehensive of the future, who for fourteen long years felt a prognostication of defeat and discounted the inevitable catastrophe.
Thus if on a certain occasion the rise of the new moon in a cloudy sky was followed by victory over an enemy or by abundant rain, the sign in question was thus proved to be a favourable one and its recurrence would be regarded as a good omen, though the prognostication would not necessarily be limited to the one or the other of those occurrences, but might be extended to apply to other circumstances.
Besides this, 1 533 saw the publication of an almanac, the first of a long series which exists only in titles and fragments, and of the amusing Prognostication Pantagrueline (still, be it observed, Pantagrueline, not Gargantuine).
Greek and Roman authors have much to say about Apis, the marks by which the black bull-calf was recognized, the manner of his conception by a ray from heaven, his house at Memphis with court for disporting himself, the mode of prognostication from his actions, the mourning at his death, his costly burial and the rejoicings throughout the country when a new Apis was found.