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The Widow Maker

Ever since the studio, I have maintained an interest in very old school astrology, less for prediction and more for sheer stories. I remain fascinated by constellations and patterns that seem to echo what one wants/fears/expects. How does that happen? And because there has been so much talk everywhere of a possible war with China, I decided to follow the way of William Lilly, the 17th astrologer who specialised in this stuff, and cast an horary chart for whether or not the US would go to war with China.

William's charts are indecipherable to me and always have questions like 'Will My Lord of Marlborough be victorious against his enemies at Essex and meet preferment, or come to grief on account of their many vexations?' It is said that he forecast the King's demise. I would not take credit from the man if it is due, but would say he cast enough charts to wallpaper his house.

No point me discussing the outcome of the chart itself,for all these things are tales, and I pick the one most interesting. When you start with any chart, the first point you look at is called the Ascendant, the rising influence. It begins at the point which, on a watch face would look like 9 am and on a compass face due West. The first thing I saw on that very point was a Behenian fixed star; These are stars considered magically potent by medieval European and Arabic astrologers, there's about 15 of them,and the maths has to be pretty exact. The one that sits at the start of the chart sent a story-recognising shudder through my wee bones. Epsilon Virgo, known as Vindemiatrix, Arm of the Virgin (Not Mary; Erigone or Astraea) the Second General, the Son Who Comes Forward, the Gatherer of Grapes also called the Widow Maker.

It would not presage a peace-loving environment, but environment is just that, and these are long discarded dreams of old bones. Admittedly if William Lilly was beside me he might well say 'Aye, taketh that popcorn which is thine and avail thyself of a seat, but best be it for thee if that seat be far far away...'

For the interest of mallorys_camera

Besides, the virgin's arm doesn't stretch so very far. In real life, the friend who was my Best Lady is getting married in Autumn, and my cleaner will be tying the knot in December. There now, real life!


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 17th, 2017 01:22 pm (UTC)

Back in the Jurassic Era when I was young -- and yes, please do envision me preening in a dusty and cracked mirror as I cackle those words -- I supported myself as an astrologer for 14 months while I was learning a useful trade. I must have been good at it. Either that, or my wild narrative imagination managed to connect the dots in some kind of sparkly three-dimensional arc that extended a ways out from my clients' present tenses. I was very popular. My clients despaired when I told them I was giving it all up.

Horary astrology was my absolute favorite!

I personally do not think the U.S. will go to war with China. Trump doesn't have the requisite Messianic complex for something that daft.

Jan. 17th, 2017 01:56 pm (UTC)
I'll try to send/add the chart if you can muster the interest, though I don't know how to add an image to these comments!

It doesn't fulfil Lilly's specific criteria - hard aspect between Lord of the 1st and 7th in angular houses. However, they are in hard aspect - conjunction,5th and 6th - and that's taken by other star worriers of yore as an indication of battle.

I do not think the world is so daft or cruel. Widow maker belongs locked in a story...
Jan. 17th, 2017 02:03 pm (UTC)
Couldn't work out how to send it privately so just added it to the post for you!
Jan. 17th, 2017 05:46 pm (UTC)

First thing that catches my eye is that moon in the 12th house opposite Mars... Definitely a martial aspect -- except the 12th house is obfuscation, right? The public won't really hear about it.
Jan. 17th, 2017 06:14 pm (UTC)
Secret enemies, the boys in the back room...and that position of saturn squaring it would bear you out re obfuscation/info lack. But of course in horary, the moon's a major shaker. And it is opposite both significators, though the orb's pretty loose with Venus. If they weren't already conjunct, the moon would be a 'translator of light' connecting one to the other. It's been a very long time, though, since I really paid attention to this sort of thing. Interested to hear your thoughts, of course, if anything occurs to you - hope it entertains you!
Jan. 18th, 2017 03:09 pm (UTC)
Totally entertaining! Though it's been years and years and years since I did this kind of thing regularly, so I'm not sure what useful insight I can bring to bear.

Rising sign would either be the querent or the question, yes? So, Libra, balance -- makes sense given the question.

I keep coming back to that Moon/Saturn/Mars T-square. Saturn blockages & difficulties, in the third house makes me think short-term communications. Cyber-tamping? Shooting down satellites out of the sky? Of course, Aquarius is more what I think of when I think of the Internet, but it's untenanted. I get a sense of projected frustration, too, with that Moon/Mars 12th house/6th house opposition, that affects health, daily routines etc.
Jan. 18th, 2017 06:44 pm (UTC)
Your thoughts and perceptions show a different approach...Thank you!

Yes, first house would be question and questioner. But in a question like 'Will America go to War with China?' Lilly, Bonati and a whole bunch of medieval wagglebeards would look to the first house to mean 'Our side,' or nearest to it, and the 7th to mean the other side. So, with the astrologer as a Brit, because of shared language, culture etc, that would usually make the US first house,China 7th.

To answer a war question, strictures notwithstanding, the lord of the first house and the lord of the seventh must be making a hard contact; And they should be making that contact from angular houses, 1,7, 10,or 4. Venus rules the US, China Mars. They are indeed making a hard contact, a conjunction. Lilly would call this an indicator of very likely confrontation.

But they aren't angular, in fact, each is in the House of its 'joy,' Venus in the 5th,pleasure and opulence, Mars in the 6th, the good surgeon. And of course, Venus and Mars should be more than friends! So though it does indicate a face-off, the lack of angles and basic amity might soften it/shorten it/confine activities/mitigate harm.

But beyond the significators, the biggie in horary is the Moon. Here,from the twelfth, it's opposite both significators and seems to be triggering a lot...if you count inconjuncts and semi-sextiles, the only things it leaves alone are Neptune and the North Node.

As well as the elements you bring to light, here's what Deborah Goulding partially plagiarises from Lilly about the 12th house as relates to our subject matter: "Its significations include secret, unknown enemies, such men as maliciously undermine their neighbours or inform secretly against them: traitors, spies; witchcraft, malicious hauntings; weakness, infirmity and bondage..."

I am heartened by the fact that it also rules elephants! :-)

What you say about the obfuscation would be a solid interpretation.
The aspects that you mention, the T-square and possible translations are most interesting. Let us hope the chart proves more dramatic than our future...

Edited at 2017-01-18 06:46 pm (UTC)
Jan. 19th, 2017 01:26 pm (UTC)
You are tew, tew ki-i-i-ind. :-)

My thoughts and perceptions show I haven't thought about this intensely for 40 years. It's quite fascinating to watch you put it all together.

What I'm still getting from the chart, though, is short-term disruptions in communications that play havoc with routines and are cloaked in obfuscation. :-)

That elephant symbolism is interesting. Elephants are the symbol of the Republican party here in the States, which ostensibly is the party of Donald Trump.

Edited at 2017-01-19 01:27 pm (UTC)
Jan. 19th, 2017 06:46 pm (UTC)

I don't know if you are aware of this song. It's a long ago fave in Britain, appropriate now, especially the chorus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1F3Uhrj9YVI

Edited at 2017-01-19 06:47 pm (UTC)
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )



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