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Planets in astrology

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Planets in astrology have a different meaning to the modern astronomical understanding of what a planet is. Astrology utilises the ancient geocentric model of the universe in its calculations and thus employs the term in its original geocentric sense. Before the age of telescopes, the night sky was observed to consist of two very similar components: fixed stars, which remained motionless in relation to each other, and wandering stars, (in ancient Greek: asteres planetai) which appeared to shift their positions relative to the fixed stars over the course of the year. To the Greeks and the other earliest astronomers, this group comprised the five planets visible to the naked eye and excluded the earth. Although strictly the term "planet" applied only to those five objects, the term was latterly broadened, particularly in the Middle Ages, to include the Sun and the Moon (sometimes referred to as "Lights"), making a total of seven planets. Astrologers retain this definition today.

To ancient astrologers the planets represented the will of the gods and their direct influence upon human affairs. To modern astrologers the planets represent basic drives or impulses in the human psyche. These drives express themselves a) with different qualities through the twelve signs of the zodiac, and b) in different spheres of life through the twelve houses. How the planets manifest themselves also depends on the aspects (or angles) that they form with each other in the sky as seen from Earth.

Modern astrologers differ on the source of the planets' power. Some hold that the planets exert their influence directly through gravitational or some other unknown power. Others hold that the planets have no direct influence in themselves, but are mirrors of basic organising principles in the universe. In other words, the basic patterns of the universe repeat themselves everywhere, in fractal-like fashion, and 'as above so below'. Therefore, the patterns that the planets make in the sky reflect the ebb and flow of basic human impulses. The planets are also associated, especially in the Chinese tradition, with the basic forces of nature.

Listed below are the specific meanings and domains associated with the astrological planets since ancient times, with the main focus on the Western astrological tradition. The planets in Hindu astrology are known as the Navagraha or 'nine realms'. In Chinese astrology the planets are associated with the life forces of yin and yang and the five elements, which play an important role in the Chinese form of geomancy known as Feng Shui. The Hindu and Chinese astrological traditions are mentioned here, but are discussed in greater detail in their own articles.


Planetary symbolism

Main article: Astrological symbol


This table shows the planets of the solar system and the Greek and Roman deities associated with them. In most cases, the English name for planets derives from the name of a Roman god or goddess. Also of interest is the conflation of the Roman god with a similar Greek god. In some cases, it's the same deity with two different names.

Planet Roman deity Greek deity Meaning
Mercury Mercury ʽἙρμῆς (Hermes) Messenger God
Venus Venus Ἀφροδίτη (Aphrodite) Goddess of Love
Earth Terra Γαία (Gaia) Goddess of the Earth
Mars Mars Ἀρης (Ares) God of War
Jupiter Jupiter Ζεύς (Zeus) Leader of the Gods
Saturn Saturn Κρόνος (Kronos) God of Time
Uranus Uranus Ουρανός (Ouranos) God of the Heavens
Neptune Neptune Ποσειδῶν (Poseidon) God of the Sea
Pluto Pluto Ἅιδης (Hades) God of the Underworld


Treatises on the ptolemaic planets and their influence on people born "under their reign" appear in block book form, so-called "planet books" or Planetebücher from about 1460 in southern Germany, and remain popular throughout the German Renaissance, exerting great iconographical influence far into the 17th century. A notable early example is the Hausbuch of Wolfegg of ca. 1470. Even earlier, Hans Talhoffer in a 1459 manuscript includes a treatise on planets and planet-children.

These books usually list a male and a female Titan with each planet, Kronos and Rhea with Saturn, Eurymedon and Themis with Jupiter, Hyperion and Theia with Sol, Oceanus and Tethys with Venus, Koios and Metis with Mercury, and Atlas and Phoibe with Luna.[1]

The qualities inherited from the planets by their "children" are as follows: From Saturn, melancholy and apathy; from Jupiter, hunting; from Mars, soldiering and warfare; from Sol, music and athleticism; from Venus, amorousness and passion; from Mercury, money and commerce; from Luna, association with water and travel.[2]

Classical planets


The seven classical planets are those which can easily be seen with the naked eye and were thus known to ancient astrologers before the advent of the telescope. They are Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn (as mentioned previously, the sun and moon were considered by the ancients to be planets). Sometimes the sun and moon were referred to as "the lights" or the "luminaries". Uranus can also just be seen with the naked eye, though no ancient culture appears to have taken note of it. The astrological descriptions attached to the seven classical planets have been preserved since ancient times. Astrologers call the seven classical planets the seven personal planets, because they are said to represent the basic human drives of every individual. Jupiter and Saturn are sometimes called the transpersonal planets as they represent a transition from the inner personal planets to the outer modern, impersonal planets The following are the characteristics of each of the seven classical planets. [3]


Main article: Sun (astrology)

  The Sun ()is the planetary ruler of Leo. In Roman mythology the sun was represented by Apollo, the god of light. The Sun is the star at the centre of our solar system, around which the Earth and other planets revolve, and which provides us with heat and light. The portion of the sky (or arc) that the sun travels in every year, rising and setting in a slightly different place each day, is therefore in reality a reflection of the Earth's own orbit around the Sun. This arc is larger the further north or south from the equator the latitude is, giving a more extreme difference in day and night and in the seasons during the year. The sun travels through the twelve signs of the zodiac on its annual journey, spending about a month in each. The Sun's position on a person's birthday therefore determines what is usually called his or her 'star' sign, this makes sense, because the sun itself is a star.

Astrologically the sun is usually thought to represent the conscious ego, the self and its expression, personal power, pride and authority; leadership qualities; and the principles of creativity, spontaneity, health and vitality; the life force. The sun also involves creative enterprises that are a projection of the person, from art and business to having children and parenthood (especially fatherhood). It also rules the fun side of life from sport and recreation to holidays and social events. In short, any occasion that 'allows us to shine'. The first-century poet Marcus Manilius in his epic, 8000-verse poem, Astronomica, described the Sun, or Sol, as benign and favorable. In medicine the sun is associated with the heart, circulatory system and the thymus. It was considered benignly hot and dry in nature, co-ruled the choleric humour, and symbolised the vital spirits. In modern astrology, the sun is the ruler of the 5th house. In the tradition, the sun ruled the 4th and 11th houses - the 4th house of the father/paternal ancestry and the 11th house of goals; it had 'joy' in the 9th house of philosophy and travel.

The Sun is associated with Sunday. Dante Alighieri associated the Sun with the liberal art of music.

In Chinese astrology, the Sun represents Yang, the active, assertive masculine life principle. In Indian astrology, the Sun is called Surya and represents the soul, kingship, highly placed persons, father.


Main article: Moon (astrology)


The Moon () is the ruling planet of Cancer. In Roman mythology the Moon was represented by Diana, the hunter goddess. The Moon is the earth's companion satellite, though some astrologers believe that it approaches being a planet in its own right. The Moon is large enough for its gravity to affect the Earth, stabilising its orbit and producing the regular ebb and flow of the tides. The Moon is familiar to us for its different phases, waxing and waning in appearance in an unchanging cycle. The Moon orbits the earth in about 28 days, spending a fleeting 2.33 days in each of the signs of the zodiac. By a strange coincidence, the lunar day syncs up with its orbit around Earth in such a manner that the same side of the moon always faces the Earth and the other side, known as the "dark side of the moon" faces towards space.

Astrologically the moon is associated with a person's emotional make-up, unconscious habits, rhythms, memories and moods, and their ability to react and adapt to those around them. It is also associated with the mother, maternal instincts or the urge to nurture, the home, the need for security, and the past, especially early experiences and childhood. The first-century poet Manilius, described the Moon or Luna, as melancholic. In medicine the moon is associated with the digestive system, stomach, breasts, the ovaries and menstruation (which does occur on a monthly cycle), and the pancreas. Despite Manilius' assignation, the moon was commonly associated with the phlegmatic humour; it ruled the animal spirits together with Mercury. In modern astrology, the moon is the ruler of the 4th house; traditionally, it ruled the 7th house, the house of partnership, and had 'joy' in the 3rd house of neighbours (associated with lunar themes of accommodation, change and the clan). The Moon is associated with Monday. Dante Alighieri associated Luna with the liberal art of grammar.

In Chinese astrology, the Moon represents Yin, the passive, receptive feminine life principle. In Indian astrology, the Moon is called Chandra or Soma and represents the mind, queenship, and mother. The north lunar node (called Rahu) and the south lunar node (called Ketu) are considered to be of particular importance, and are given an equal place alongside the seven classical planets as part of the nine navagraha. Also unique to Indian astrology is the system of 27 (or 28) lunar stations or 'mansions' called nakshatra which are believed to be of major importance in indicating the life path of the individual.


  Mercury () is the ruling planet of Gemini and Virgo. In Roman mythology Mercury was the messenger of the gods, noted for his speed and swiftness . Echoing this, the scorching, airless world Mercury circles the sun on the fastest orbit of any planet. Mercury takes only 88 days to orbit the sun, spending about 7.33 days in each sign of the zodiac. Mercury is so close to the sun that only a brief period exists after the sun has set where it can be seen with the naked eye, before following the sun beyond the horizon.

Astrologically Mercury represents the principles of communication, mentality, thinking patterns, rationality and reasoning, and adaptability and variability. Mercury governs schooling and education; the immediate environment of neighbours, siblings and cousins; transport over short distances; messages and forms of communication such as post, email and telephone; newspapers, journalism and writing, information gathering skills, and physical dexterity. The first-century poet Manilius described Mercury as an inconstant, vivacious, and curious planet. In medicine Mercury is associated with the nervous system, the brain, the respiratory system, the thyroid and the sense organs. Traditionally, it was held to be essentially cold and dry, but variable in temperament according to its placement in the zodiac and any aspects to other planets. It was linked to the animal spirits, alongside the Moon. Today, Mercury is regarded as the ruler of the 3rd and 6th houses; traditionally, it ruled the 6th house, and had joy in the 1st house (the house of 'I' or 'we': Mercury facilitates self-expression here).

Mercury rules over Wednesday. In Romance languages the word for Wednesday is often similar to Mercury (mercredi in French and miercoles in Spanish). Dante Alighieri associated Mercury with the liberal art of dialectic.

In Chinese astrology, Mercury is ruled by the element water which is diplomatic, kind and intuitive. In Indian astrology, Mercury is called Budha, a word related to Budhi ("intelligence") and represents communication.


  Venus () is the ruling planet of Taurus and Libra. In Roman mythology Venus, was the goddess of love and beauty, famous for the passions she could stir among the gods. In the same way, the calm, beautiful surface of white clouds that the planet Venus presents hides its hot, dense atmosphere and intense volcanic activity![4] Venus orbits the sun in 225 days, spending about 18.75 days in each sign of the zodiac. Venus is the second brightest object in the night sky, the moon being the brightest.

Astrologically Venus is associated with the principles of harmony, beauty, balance; the feelings and affections, and the urge to sympathize and unite with others. It is involved with the desire for pleasure, sensuality, personal possessions, comfort and ease. It governs romantic relations, marriage and business partnerships, sex (the origin of the words 'venery' and 'venereal'), the arts, fashion and social life. The first-century poet Marcus Manilius,described Venus as generous and fecund, and the lesser benefic. In medicine Venus is associated with the lumbar region, the veins, parathyroids, throat and kidneys. Venus was thought to be moderately warm and moist, and was associated with the phlegmatic humour. Venus is the modern ruler of the 2nd and 7th houses, but traditionally ruled the 5th and 12th houses - the 5th house of play and the 12th house of self-undoing! Unsurprisingly, Venus was said to have 'joy' in the 5th.

Venus is the planet of Friday. In languages deriving from Latin, such as Spanish and French, the word for Friday often resembles the word Venus (viernes and vendredi respectively). Dante Alighieri associated Venus with the liberal art of rhetoric.

In Chinese astrology, Venus is associated with the element metal (or gold), which is unyielding, strong and persistent. In Indian astrology, Venus is known as Shukra and represents wealth, pleasure and reproduction.


  Mars () is the ruling planet of Aries and, for many astrologers, Scorpio. Mars was the Roman god of war and bloodshed, whose symbol was a spear and shield (from which its glyph is derived). Both the soil of Mars and the hemoglobin of our blood are rich in iron, and because of this they share its distinct deep red color.[5] Mars orbits the sun in 687 days, spending about 57.25 days in each sign of the zodiac. It is also the first planet that orbits outside of Earth's orbit making it the first planet that doesn't set along with the sun.

Astrologically Mars is associated with confidence and self assertion, aggression, sexuality, energy, strength, ambition, and impulsiveness. Mars governs sports, competitions and physical activities in general. The first-century poet Manilius, described the planet Mars as ardent, and as the lesser malefic. In medicine Mars presides over the genitals, the muscular system, the gonads and adrenal glands; it was held to be hot and excessively dry, and ruled the choleric humour. It was associated with fever, accidents, trauma, pain and surgery. In modern astrology, Mars is said to rule the 1st and 8th houses; traditionally, however, Mars ruled the 3rd and 10th houses and was said to 'joy' in the 6th house of servants, chores and ill-health (all of these houses are associated with labour and energy expenditure: 3rd - schoolchild, 10th - worker, 6th - servant).

Before the discovery of Pluto, it was universally considered the ruler of Scorpio. Most modern astrologers consider Pluto the ruler of Scorpio, but many regard Mars as a co-ruler, while all traditional astrologers still regard Mars as the only ruler of Scorpio.

Mars is associated with Tuesday, and in Romance languages the word for Tuesday often resembles Mars (in Spanish, martes and in French, mardi). Dante Alighieri associated Mars with the liberal art of arithmetic.

In Chinese astrology, Mars is ruled by the element fire, which is passionate, energetic and adventurous. In Indian astrology, Mars is called Mangala and represents energy, confidence and ego.


  Jupiter () is the ruling planet of Sagittarius, and, for many astrologers, also the ruler of Pisces . In Roman mythology Jupiter was the ruler of the gods (having overthrown Saturn) and their guardian and protector, and his symbol was the thunderbolt. In the same way, the planet Jupiter is the king of the other planets, a giant in size with spectacular, brightly coloured clouds and intense storms. Astronomers believe that it plays an important protecting role in using its massive gravity to capture or expel from the solar system many comets and asteroids that would otherwise threaten Earth and the inner planets.[6] Jupiter takes 11.9 years to orbit the sun, spending almost an earth year (361 days) in each sign of the zodiac.

Astrologically Jupiter is associated with the principles of growth, expansion, prosperity and good fortune; and a person's inner sense of justice and morality and their ideals and higher goals. Jupiter governs long distance and foreign travel, higher education, religion and the law. It is also associated with the urge for freedom and exploration, humanitarian and protecting roles, and with gambling and merrymaking or 'joviality'. The first-century poet Manilius described Jupiter as temperate and benign, and the greater benefic. It was regarded as warm and moist in nature, and therefore favourable to life. In medicine Jupiter is associated with the liver, pituitary gland and the disposition of fats; it governed the blood / sanguine humour. In modern times Jupiter is said to be the ruler of the 9th and 12th houses, but traditionally Jupiter was assigned to the 2nd and 9th houses (the house of values and the house of beliefs, respectively) and had 'joy' in the 11th house of friends and aspirations.

Jupiter is associated with Thursday, and in Romance languages the name for Thursday often comes from Jupiter (for example, jueves in Spanish or jeudi in French). Dante Alighieri associated Jupiter with the liberal art of geometry.

In Chinese astrology, Jupiter is ruled by the element wood, which is warm, generous and co-operative. In Indian astrology, Jupiter is known as Guru or Brihaspati and is known as the 'great teacher'.


  Saturn () is the ruling planet of Capricorn and, traditionally, Aquarius. In Roman mythology Saturn was the god of agriculture (hence the scythe-like glyph), founder of civilisation and of social order and conformity. The famous rings of the planet Saturn that enclose and surround it, reflect this principle of man's limitations. Saturn takes 29.5 years to orbit the sun, spending about 2.46 years in each sign of the zodiac.

Astrologically Saturn is associated with the principles of limitation, restrictions, boundaries, practicality and reality, crystallizing and structures. Saturn governs ambition, career, authority and hierarchy, and conforming social structures. It concerns a person's sense of duty, discipline and responsibility, and their physical and emotional endurance during hardships. Saturn is also considered to represent the part of a person concerned with long-term planning. The Return of Saturn (Saturn return) is said to mark significant events in each person's life. According to the first-century poet Manilius, Saturn is sad, morose, and cold and is the greater malefic. In medicine Saturn presides over the skeletal system, skin, teeth, gall bladder spleen and vagus nerve. Saturn symbolised processes and things which were dry and extremely cold, and was therefore inimical to life. It governed the melancholic humour.

Before the discovery of Uranus, Saturn was universally regarded as the ruling planet of Aquarius. Many astrologers still use Saturn as the planetary ruler of both Capricorn and Aquarius; in modern astrology it is accordingly the ruler of the 10th and 11th houses. Traditionally, however, Saturn was associated with the 1st and 8th houses (1st house = incarnation, 8th house = death; Saturn being the planet of mortality, and hence, why the Grim Reaper carries a scythe). Saturn was also said to 'joy' in the 12th house of self-undoing.

Saturn is associated with Saturday, which was named after the deity Saturn. Dante Alighieri associated Saturn with the liberal art of astronomia (astrology and astronomy).

In Chinese astrology, Saturn is ruled by the element earth, which is patient, hard-working and reliable. In Indian astrology, Saturn is called Shani or "Sani", and represents career and longevity. It is also the bringer of bad luck and hardship.

Planetary traditions compared

Main article: List of astrological traditions

The three astrological traditions share a large amount of common ground in their conceptions of the planets. Despite differences in tone and emphasis, the Western and Indian traditions are essentially similar. This reflects the fact that despite centuries of separate development, they share a common ancient origin. In addition, despite surface differences, the Chinese conception of the planets also has a common core with the other traditions.

The Chinese elements have a clear correlation to their Western and Indian counterparts in the case of fire -Mars; earth -Saturn; and wood -Jupiter combinations. Also, despite the fact that the Chinese linkage of Mercury with water is alien to Western astrology, this combination too has much in common with Western and Indian ideas. The qualities associated with the Water-Mercury combination contains much that is thought to be 'Mercurial' in Western thought (such as intellect and communication).

The only element where there appears to be a fundamental difference is the metal -Venus combination, where Western notions of love and romance are entirely absent. The Chinese element of metal indicates a person who is unyielding and forceful, set in their ways and reserved. The metal person is also sophisticated and enjoys the good things in life. Yet this Chinese notion of Venus contains much that is similar to the traits of the fixed-earth sign of Taurus, which is ruled by Venus in Western astrology. This suggests that the common ground between Western and Chinese ideas of Venus may be greater than appears at first sight.

Modern planets

Since the invention of the telescope, Western astrology has incorporated Uranus, Neptune and Pluto into its methodology. Indian and Chinese astrologies have tended to retain the ancient seven-planet system. Meanings have had to be assigned to them by modern astrologers, usually according to the major events which occurred in the world at the time of their discovery. As these astrologers are usually western, the social and historical events they describe have an inevitable western emphasis.Even though these planets were not existing to the romans or the greeks Astrologers have given these planets roman and greek signs and given them horoscpe signs that are fake. So Geo was totally WRONG. Astrologers consider the 'extra-saturnian' planets to be 'impersonal' or generational planets, meaning their effects are felt more across whole generations of society. Their effects in individuals depend upon how strongly they feature in that individual's birth-chart. The following are their characteristics as accepted by most astrologers. [7]


For some modern Western astrologers, the planet Uranus () is the ruling planet of Aquarius. In Greek mythology Uranus was the personification of the heavens and the night sky. The planet Uranus is very unusual among the planets in that it rotates on its side, so that it presents each of its poles to the sun in turn during its orbit, so that one hemisphere is bathed in light, while the other lies in total darkness. Its mysterious blue, green clouds are so dense that they have revealed nothing to modern astronomers.[8] These strange traits reflect its astrological significance as the breaker of convention. Uranus takes 84 years to orbit the sun, spending about 7 years in each sign of the zodiac. Uranus was discovered only in 1781 by Sir William Herschel.

Astrologically modern interpretations associate Uranus with the principles of genius, individuality, new and unconventional ideas, discoveries, electricity, inventions, and the beginnings of the industrial revolution. Uranus governs societies, clubs and any group dedicated to humanitarian or progressive ideals. Historically it was associated with the principles of the Enlightenment and radical political ideas of equality and freedom, among other things. Around the period of its discovery in 1781, the idea of democracy and the human rights was prevalent, with the breakaway of the American colonies from England and a few years later in 1789, the French revolution. In art and literature, the discovery of Uranus coincided with the Romantic movement, which emphasised individuality and freedom of expression. In medicine Uranus is believed to be particularly associated with the sympathetic nervous system, mental disorders, breakdowns and hysteria, spasms and cramps. Uranus is considered by modern astrologers to be co-ruler of the 11th house with Saturn.


  For some astrologers, Neptune () is the ruling planet of Pisces. In Roman mythology Neptune was the god of the sea, and the deep, ocean blue colour of the planet Neptune reflects this. Its glyph is taken directly from Neptune's trident. Neptune takes 165 years to orbit the sun, spending approximately 14 years (13.75) in each sign of the zodiac. Neptune was discovered in 1846.

Astrologically modern Western astrologers associate the planet Neptune with idealism and compassion, but also with illusion, confusion and deception; with religions, spirituality and mysticism, the mass media, creativity in art and music, drugs, extreme sensitivity, fantasy and imagination, psychic phenomena and altered mental states. Neptune governs hospitals, prisons, mental institutions, and any place, such as a monastery, that involves a retreat from society. Its appearance coincided with the discovery of anesthetics and hypnotism . In political terms Neptune was linked to the rise of nationalist movements throughout Europe in countries like Germany, Italy, Hungary, Ireland and Serbia, seeking independence for their nations inspired by an idealised past of legend. It was also linked to the rise of socialism and the beginnings of the welfare state. Neptune also coincided with the utopian ideals of Communism, when Marx and Engels first published 'The Communist Manifesto' in 1848. In art, the impressionist movement began a trend away from literal representation, to one based on the subtil, changing moods of light and colour. In medicine Neptune seems particularly associated with the thalamus, the spinal canal, and severe or mysterious illnesses and neuroses. Neptune is considered by modern astrologers to be co-ruler of the 12th house with Jupiter.

Prior to the discovery of Neptune, Jupiter was considered the ruler of Pisces, and some modern astrologers consider Jupiter a co-ruler of Pisces. Some astrologers do not believe that Neptune rules any particular sign, even though they may use the planet in interpretation.


  To most modern Western astrologers, Pluto () is the ruling planet of [[Scorpio (astrology)|Scorpio]. In Roman mythology Pluto was the god of the underworld and of wealth, hence the coin-and-chalice glyph. Pluto and its moon Charon form a unique pairing in the solar system because Charon is so massive relative to Pluto. This means that they revolve in a 'dumbbell' formation around a common point in space lying between them, permanently locked in a 'power struggle' for dominance.[9] This is symbolic of the role Pluto has come to represent astrologically. Pluto takes 248 years to orbit the sun, spending on average approximately 21 years (20.6) in each sign of the zodiac. However, Pluto's orbit is so eccentric that this can vary dramatically, from 25 years in Cancer (1913 - 1938) to a mere 12 years in Scorpio (1983 - 1995), when its orbit was actually closer to the sun than Neptune's. In 2006 Pluto was reclassified by astronomers as a "dwarf planet" and therefore is no longer considered a planet in astronomy, although this has not reduced its astrological significance to astrologers who had previously considered Pluto important.

Astrologically Pluto is called "the great renewer", and is considered to represent the part of a person that destroys in order to renew, through bringing buried, but intense, needs and drives to the surface and expressing them, even at the expense of the existing order. A commonly used keyword for Pluto is "transformation". It is associated with power and personal mastery and the need to co-operate and share with another, if each is not to be destroyed. Pluto governs big business and wealth, mining, surgery and detective work, and any enterprise which involves digging under the surface to bring the truth to light. Pluto is also associated with the day Tuesday along with Mars.

Pluto is also associated with extreme power and corruption; the discovery of Pluto in 1930 coincided with the rise of fascism and Stalinism in Europe, leading to the Second World War. It also coincided with the Great Depression and the major proliferation of organized crime in the United States. Its entry into Cancer in 1913, the sign in which it was later discovered, coincided with the First World War. It is also associated with nuclear armament, which had its genesis in the research of the 1930's and 40's. Later on, it gave rise to the polarised nuclear stand off of the Cold War, with the mass consumer societies of the United States and other democracies facing the totalitarian state socialism of the USSR. The discovery of Pluto also occurred just after the birth of modern psycho-analysis, when Freud and Jung began to explore the depths of the unconscious. In art, movements like Cubism and Surrealism began to deconstruct the 'normal' view of the world and reassemble it in new and sometimes disturbing ways. In medicine Pluto seems to be associated with regenerative forces in the body involving cell formation and the reproductive system. Pluto is considered by modern astrologers to be co-ruler of the 8th house with Mars.

Many traditional astrologers do not use Pluto as a ruling planet, but do use the planet for interpretation and predictive work, obliquely making reference to projections of influences from higher to lower dimensional spaces.

Other solar system bodies

See also: Asteroids in astrology, Trans-Neptunian objects

Some asteroids can be seen with the naked eye, such as Ceres (), Pallas () and Vesta (), but were not recognized as planetary, and perhaps not even noticed, until the early 1800s. In the early 1800s, 4 asteroids were scientifically recognized as planets, Ceres, Pallas, Juno () and Vesta. They qualify as minor planets by some definitions. Although asteroids have been known to both astronomers and astrologers for more than 200 years, they are often ignored by astrologers. The tradition of some astrologers casting minor planets originates with these four asteroids.

Since the 1970's, and the discovery of Chiron (), some astrologers have been casting the new "planet", although astronomers consider it a comet.

In the 21st century several new planet-sized bodies, including Sedna, Quaoar, and Eris, have been discovered but not yet incorporated into mainstream astrological predictions, although some more avant-garde groups attempt to incorporate them see

Comets and novae have been observed and discussed for several thousand years. Comets in particular were portents of great interest to ancient people and given various astrological interpretations. Comets are not planets but they are planetary bodies. Both phenomena are rarely visible to the naked-eye, and are ignored by most modern astrologers.

Hypothetical planets

Various hypothetical planets in unmapped parts of the solar system have been proposed over the centuries by astronomers. For example, the idea of a planet called Vulcan (named after the Roman god of fire) that orbited closer to the sun than Mercury was popular for years with many astronomers. As much of the outer reaches of the solar system remain unmapped, astronomers continue to speculate about the existence of yet undiscovered planets.

Some astrologers have also hypotheticized about the existence of unseen or undiscovered planets. In 1918, the respected astrologer Sepharial proposed the existence of Earth's "Dark Moon" Lilith, and since then some astrologers have been using it in their charts. The twentieth century German school of astrology known as Uranian astrology also claimed that many undiscovered planets existed beyond the orbit of Neptune, giving them names such as Cupido, Hades, Zeus, Kronos, Apollon, Admetos, Vulcanus and Poseidon, and charting their supposed orbits. These orbits have not coincided however, with more recent discoveries by astronomers of objects beyond Neptune.

Other astrologers have focused on the theory that in time, all twelve signs of the zodiac will each have their own ruler, so that another two planets have yet to be discovered, namely the 'true' rulers of Taurus and Virgo. The names of the planets mentioned in this regard by some are again, Vulcan (ruler of Virgo) and also Apollo, the Roman god of the sun (ruler of Taurus). [10] Another version of this theory states that the modern planets discovered so far correspond to the elements known to the ancients: i.e., Air (Uranus, god of the heavens), Water (Neptune, god of the sea), and Fire (Pluto, god of the underworld), which leaves the elements earth and Ether (the fifth element of the fiery upper air). In other words, it is claimed that the two planets to be discovered will be named after an Earth god or goddess (probable 'true' ruler of Taurus) and after Aether, the Roman and Greek god of the pure, upper air and stars (probable 'true' ruler of Virgo).


Ruling planets of the astrological signs and houses

Main article: Domicile (astrology)

In Western astrology, the symbolism associated with the planets also relates to the zodiac signs and houses of the horoscope in their various rulerships. For instance, the description of Mars is masculine, impulsive, and active. Aries is ruled by Mars and has a similar description, representing an active, masculine archetype. Similarly, the first house is also ruled by Mars and deals with a person's physical health and strength, and the manner in which they project themselves.

Table 1: Modern signs, houses and planetary associations

SignHouseRuling planet
Ruling planet
Asteroid/Other possible
modern ruler
Aries1st HouseMars
Taurus2nd HouseVenusJuno
Gemini3rd HouseMercury
Cancer4th HouseMoonCeres
Leo5th HouseSun
Virgo6th HouseMercuryPallas Athena/Vesta
Libra7th HouseVenusJuno
Scorpio8th HouseMarsPluto
Sagittarius9th HouseJupiter
Capricorn10th HouseSaturn
Aquarius11th HouseSaturnUranus
Pisces12th HouseJupiterNeptune

N.B.: The Planets in the table rule the signs on the same row, and the houses do correspond with the signs on the same row (i.e. Mars rules Aries; Aries and 1st House share some correspondences, e.g. both can denote the head in medical astrology). However, it is only modern astrology that links the planets to the houses in this order. The bulk of the tradition assigns planetary rulerships according to the ancient Chaldean astronomical order of the planets[citation needed] (Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, Moon; the former order of the planets in distance from Earth geocentrically.):

Table 2: Traditional houses and planetary relationships.

Traditional Ruling planetPlanetary Joy
1st HouseSaturnMercury
2nd HouseJupiterN/A
3rd HouseMarsMoon
4th HouseSunN/A
5th HouseVenusVenus
6th HouseMercuryMars
7th HouseMoonN/A
8th HouseSaturnN/A
9th HouseJupiterSun
10th HouseMarsN/A
11th HouseSunJupiter
12th HouseVenusSaturn


  1. ^ B. A. Fuchs, Die Ikonographie der sieben Planeten in der Kunst Italiens bis zum Ausgang des Mittelalters, Diss. Munich 1909; E. Panofsky, F. Saxl, Saturn und Melancholie, Frankfurt 1990.
  2. ^ A. Hauber, Planetenkinderbilder und Sternbilder, Straßburg 1916; E. Baer, Representations of "planet-children" in Turkish manuscripts, in: Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 31, 1968
  3. ^ Jeff Mayo, Teach Yourself Astrology, pp17 - 28, Hodder and Stoughton, London, 1964; Sasha Fenton Understanding Astrology, pp106 - 112, The Aquarian Press (Harper Collins), London, 1991; Derek and Julia Parker, The New Compleat Astrologer, pp86 - 99, Crescent Books, New York, 1971; Maritha Pottinger Astro Essentials, pp11 -14, 17-18, ACS Publications, San Diego, 1991
  4. ^ Nigel Henbest, "The Planets" Penguin Books,London, 1992 (the planets in astronomy)
  5. ^ Henbest, ibid
  6. ^ Henbest, ibid,
  7. ^ Jeff Mayo, Ibid, pp 28 - 33, 1964; Sasha Fenton Ibid, pp 112 - 115, 1991; Derek and Julia Parker, Ibid, pp 100 - 105, 1971; Maritha Pottinger Ibid, pp 15-19, 1991
  8. ^ Henbest, ibid
  9. ^ Henbest, ibid
  10. ^ Linda Goodman, Sun Signs, p226, Pan Books, London, 1982

10. Houlding, D. The Houses - Temples of the Sky The Wessex Astrologer, Bournemouth, England, 2006.

11. Ptolemy, C.trans Ashmand, J. Tetrabiblos Astrology Classics, Maryland, USA, 2002.

See also

  • Naked-eye planet
  • Astrological progression
  • Astrological symbols
  • Astrological transit
  • Astronomical symbols
  • Astrology and astronomy
  • Astrology and alchemy
  • Planetary hours
  • Western astrology
  • Horoscope
  • Indian astrology
  • Chinese astrology
  • History of astrology
  • History of astronomy
  • Classical planets
  • Asteroids in astrology
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Planets_in_astrology". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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