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Rumpology, also known as butt reading, is the art of reading the lines, crevices, dimples, and folds of the buttocks to divine the butt owner's character and get a glimpse of what lies ahead by analyzing what trails behind.

According to Jacqueline Stallone, a foremost American rumpologist, rump reading is an art that was practiced in ancient Babylon, India, Greece, and Rome. She claims that the ancient Greeks thought the butt was the key to health and fidelity. She says the Romans used butt prints the way some people use graphology today: to determine potential talents and future success.

She does readings by mail. Just send her a digital photo of your rump and she will analyze it for a fee ($125, and she takes major credit cards and PayPal). Her website includes examples of appropriate rump shots, including one of "a male action hero movie star," "a Jewish princess," and "a Fortune 500 CEO." She'll not only give you a butt reading for your money, but she'll send you an 8 1/2 x 11 glossy color print of your butt, suitable for framing.

Stallone has not been tested by Dr. Gary "The Validator" Schwartz at his psychic-testing clinic at the University of Arizona, but her son Sylvester says that his mother's greatest talent is her ability to see the future.* It is likely, though, that were she tested by The Validator her clients would rate her accuracy at 75%-80% due to the Barnum and Forer effect.

Stallone claims that the left and right butt cheeks reveal a person's past and future, respectively. She says she has a degree in chemistry, but she must not have studied anatomy or physiology. She claims any doctor will tell you that the body is like a warehouse which stores everything. She thinks that the right buttocks represents the left cerebral hemisphere of the brain, while the left buttocks represents the right hemisphere. Her rump report, she says, can tell you "whether you are going ass-backwards (into that little closet called the left brain)" or are going forward with the right brain.

She even teaches others how to read the future by looking at behinds. José Miranda, for example, learned rumpology from Stallone. The Little Havana (Miami) soothsayer became a hit on the "phenomenally popular and raunchy late-night talk show 'La Cosa Nostra' on Spanish-language WJAN-TV Channel 41."*

Miranda says that rump reading is "no different than reading a palm or someone's eyes." That's no exaggeration. Rumpology works the same way as astrology, cartomancy, metoposcopy, palmistry, and getting messages from ghosts. Although Miranda's live readings of scantily clad models adds a new dimension to the expressions cold reading, subjective validation, and sympathetic magic.

Ulf Buck (left) is a Rump Reader from Meldorf, Germany. He's also blind, yet he claims he can read people's futures by feeling their naked buttocks. (Ivan Kelly calls him an asstrologer.) Buck says he spent many years training his fingers to do the reading, a practice he started on a small circle of friends but which has grown to include many prominent people, including a stockbroker who apparently invests depending on his butt bumps. Buck says that rumps "have lines like those on the palm of the hand, which can be read to reveal much about character and destiny. An apple-shaped, muscular bottom indicates someone who is charismatic, dynamic, very confident and often creative. A person who enjoys life. A pear-shaped bottom suggests someone very steadfast, patient and down-to-earth." Ulf has no comment on those whose rumps are on their shoulders. (Tattersall 2003)

You can't deny that you can tell a lot about a person by looking at his or her hindquarters and a person who has his or her butt read exposes a great deal about themselves. Having the benefit of hindsight, however, I think I can safely say that this ancient art should have been left in the can.

However, for those who would like to pursue a career in this potentially lucrative field, I have posted my essay "Rumpology for Dummies."

See also papyromancy, stichomancy, self-deceptionand the rumpology hoax.

further reading

books and articles

Christopher, Milbourne. (1970). ESP, Seers & Psychics. Thomas Y. Crowell Co.

de Givry, Grillot. (1931). Witchcraft, Magic & Alchemy. Reprint.  (New York: Dover Books, 1971).

Dickson, D.H., & Kelly, I.W. (1985). "The 'Barnum effect' in personality assessment: A review of the literature," Psychological Reports, 57, 367-382.

Hyman, Ray. (1977). "'Cold Reading': How to Convince Strangers That You Know All About Them," The Skeptical Inquirer, Spring/Summer.

Kelly, Lynne. (2004). The Skeptic's Guide to the Paranormal. Thunder's Mouth Press.

Marks, David and Richard Kammann, (2000). The Psychology of the Psychic. 2nd ed. Prometheus Books.

Mackay, Charles. (1841). Extraordinary Popular Delusions & the Madness of Crowds. Crown Publishing, 1995.

Pickover, Clifford A. (2001). Dreaming the Future - the fantastic story of prediction. Prometheus.

Randi, James. (1982). Flim-Flam! Prometheus Books.

Randi, James. Video. "Secrets of the Psychics." James Randi reveals the secrets of the psychics and self-deceptive workings of the human mind.

Rowland, Ian. (2000). The Full Facts Book of Cold Reading, 3rd. ed.

Steiner, Robert A. (1989). Don't Get Taken! - Bunco and Bunkum Exposed - How to Protect Yourself. Wide-Awake Books.

Steiner, Robert A. (1996). "Fortunetelling," in The Encyclopedia of the Paranormal edited by Gordon Stein. Prometheus Books, pp. 281-290.

Swanson, Diane. (2009) Revised and updated. Nibbling on Einstein's Brain - The Good, the Bad, & the Bogus in Science. Annick Press.

Zusne,  Leonard and Warren Jones. (1989). Anomalistic Psychology: A Study of Magical Thinking. 2nd edition. Lawrence Erlbaum Assoc.


Blind Psychic Gropes Buttocks to See Future by Nick Tattersall, Reuters, July 9, 2003

Your future is behind you - Botswana Guardian

John C McLachlan, a professor of medical education, may have read this article. He certainly knows how to present rumpology as science, at least to those whose standards aren't too high. See Integrative medicine and the point of credulity

homunculus rumpology graphic








"...I have discovered a new version of reflexology, which identifies a homunculus represented in the human body, over the area of the buttocks."---John C McLachlan

Last updated 27-Oct-2015

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