Palmistry has been practised for several thousand years, starting in Hindu Astrology.
According to classical palmistry, each area of the palm of the hand and the fingers can be "read" to give clues about a person's life and future. There are differences between individual palmists as to which hand to use for a reading.
The basic premise is that the hand a person writes with represents the conscious mind, while the other hand relates to the subconscious.
Whichever hand a person uses most is also indicative of the future, while the other hand - often called the minor, or inner hand - shows what one is like on the inside.
Separately, the right hand is held to show an individual's realised personality, while the left is assumed to show a person's potential.
Other theories suggest that the left hand shows the past, and the right hand the future, or that the significance is gender - read the right hand for a man, the left for a woman.
Science has shown that the two sides of the brain control the opposite parts of the body, and palmists generally hold that this affects the hands. The theory contends that the right hand is controlled by the left brain, which is the centre of logic, language and reason. The left hand, controlled by the right brain, reflects lateral thinking and the person's natural self.
Just like astrology, palmistry divides people according to elements - fire, water, earth and air.
Those people with a rectangular or square palm, pink skin and shorter fingers are said to have fire hands. Water hands are those with short palms, and long, flexible fingers.
Broad, square palms and fingers are indicative of earth hands, while air hands have square or rectangular palms with long fingers and often dry skin.
Of all the features of a person's hands, it is the three lines on the palm that are given most weight by palmists.
The heart line - towards the top of the palm, under the fingers - represents emotional living and is thought to give clues to how we will fare in matters of the heart.
Starting at the edge of the palm under the index finger, the head line is interpreted as representing a person's mind including the way we learn and communicate.
A newcomer to palmistry may have been led to believe that the life line - from the edge of the palm above the thumb, running in an arc towards the wrist - foretells how long we will live. But this is a myth, and instead it is believed to represent an individual's physical health and general well being.
There are other lines used in palmistry, including the Sun line, the Mercury line, the Fate line and the Girdle of Venus.
The hand features seven mounts, or segments, which are held to affect our lives. For instance, the largest of these, the Mars negative between the thumb and index finger, relates to one's energy.