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The Century Aphorisms written by the famous
Master Astrologer, Astronomer, Geographer & Philomath.
Each Aphorism fully explained and described for the
students in the
ART OF ASTROLOGY
Written By Claudius Ptolemy.
Hermeneutically written by Aaron Brody
At Antiquus Astrology we offer Traditional Astrology texts
which have been modernly rescribed, printed and bound for the
use of students interested in learning Traditional Astrology and
gaining understanding of the complete system. Each book offered
has been rescribed in an easy to read typeface making
understanding the text a lot simpler. Many of these books also
include illustrations and diagrams which may have sustained
damage due to age or weathering, these have been expertly
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damage. While each book is scoured for errors, if you should
happen to find an error in editing or based on the material, please
give us the details concerning this error by emailing us through
the website listed at the bottom. Some other works offered by
Antiquus Astrology are;
An Astro‐Physical Compendium – Richard Ball
A Learned Astronomical Discourse of the Judgment of Nativities
Blagrave’s Introduction to Astrology – Joseph Blagrave
& Many More!
To the Reader.
This work was compiled and written for all the students in Astrology
to gain a deeper understand of this Art and Science. One of our masters,
Claudius Ptolemy has blessed us with certain rules or aphorisms which
have been used over the centuries by many other master Astrologers and
they are therefore passed to us in our modern time for our use and
application. However because these rules are the foundation of all forms of
Astrology, they are sometimes quite hard to understand, especially for the
industrious tyro. Therefore I have taken the liberty of making this work not
only available for all to read but also have hermeneutically covered each of
the points of Ptolemy so that each student whether novice or master may
advance their knowledge by this Centiloquium of Ptolomeaus. Some of
these Aphorisms have confused even the most adept Astrologers
throughout the centuries and I do not claim immunity to ignorance
however my opinion concerning their meaning is based off my experience
and practice in Astrology and that is what I offer here before you. I hope
that this work is helpful to all those who seek to understand Astrology on a
Ptolemy, unfortunately, is not consistent in observing the ordering of
the classes of Astrology, not making it very clear to the tyro Astrologer
what class of Astrology he is speaking about (as some rules will apply to
one class and not to another). Therefore in order to avoid confusion, I have
clearly labelled before my description the class so as they are not to be
confused. This is a glossary of the abbreviations and their meanings
throughout this book;
[G] – General Astrology – This Aphorism is for all classes.
[N] – Nativity or Genethliacal – for Nativities only.
[H] – Horary – A rule for Horary.
[T] – Terrestrial – Mundane Astrology reference.
[M] – Medical – A rule for Medical Astrology.
[P] – Predictive – A rule covering predictive Astrology.
[E] – Electional – A rule for Elections.
To complete my brief introduction, I feel it appropriate to thank
Henry Coley and John Partridge for providing these aphorisms for us in
our native language to help further the advancement of Astrology into the
future. For further information on learning and understanding traditional
Astrology, please refer to the link at the bottom of this page.
Teacher & Student of Astrology
Or Ptolemy’s Hundred Aphorisms.
I. A te & Scientia; from thy self and learning; for it cannot be, that he who is
skilful should pronounce the particular forms of things; nor can the fancy
undertake a particular, but general notion of the sensible matter; in such
things we must use conjecture. None but those endued with Divine
Inspiration predict particulars.
[G] – This Divine Inspiration that gives Astrologers their talents and
ability to predict and see the future events from the Celestials is a gift
from God, bestowed from the stars into the body of man. For
Astrologers are born and not made. Therefore anyone skilled in this
Science and Art should have such indicators in their chart.
II. When he that consults shall better consider of it; he shall find there will be
small difference between the thing propounded, and the form thereof. The
meaning of Ptolemy is no more than thus; viz. the sympathy of one shall
observe that propounds his question, betwixt the matter intended, and the
position of the heavens at the time of it’s proposition.
[G] – The latter statement is the work of Henry Coley which suffices
for the explanation of this rule.
III. He that is inclinable to any Art, without doubt in his Nativity had some star
of the same nature very well fortified.
[N] – An Astrologer will be described by his own Nativity, this
primarily is the work of Mercury. However sometimes Mercury is not
enough, as Mercury will add the studious drive to the Astrologer, but
either the ninth House or Jupiter also must play a role in this. This is
because Jupiter and the ninth House have rulership over the Arts and
Sciences. If Mercury is found below the Earth, it shows that the
Natives intellectual focus is towards Arts and Sciences but if above the
Earth, the Native focuses more on oratory and linguistic skill. If
Mercury is found in the Terms or House of Jupiter, or in the ninth or
Lord of the ninth, these are testimonies to the Native becoming an
IV. A natural inclination to any knowledge, attains more perfection therein, than
one that shall take hard pains by learning to obtain it.
[N] – Those who have Nativities with many testimonies of success and
skill, will always prove more successful and skilful then those who do
not, even if they work twice as hard to achieve the same result.
Whether or not this is agreeable is debatable but Astrology does
bestow some with talent, and others not and therefore the judgment is
in fact accurate. This statement clearly proves the usefulness of
Nativities, for once talents are discovered through them, they can be
applied and time not wasted on futile efforts of success when it is not
V. He that is skilful may divert many effects of the stars when he knows their
natures, and will prepare himself before their event or coming.
[N][P] – A very famous aphorism which illustrates that one who is
ignorant is always slave unto the stars, like animals, whose nature will
always remain the same. They will act without reason or justification.
But man has the inborn holy power of intelligence, in which he can
reason and thus, when he discovers a negative effect caused by the
stars, whether in his Nativity or in the future, he may avoid disaster by
either avoiding the actions that lead to disaster or by preparing for the
event that will unfold.
VI. The Election either of day or hour shall then advantage when it is constituted
from the Nativity; otherwise, though the Election be well made; it will not
[E] – An Election, without the use of a Nativity (when there is one) will
prove unsuccessful because it has no relation to the Native. This
means that if one were to obtain money, the best time would be to take
the Radical (Natal) Lord of the second House, when he is in a
benevolent aspect with the Lord of the Ascendant. During this time, if
the Native were to go about any means of making money, he will be
successful. This type of Election is called a Particular Election. The
other form of Electional Astrology is Universal, wherein a Nativity is
not needed (as their may not be one), as for example, the planting of
seeds or plants.
VII. None can discern the mixture of the stars, unless he first know their natural
differences and mixtures one amongst another.
[G] – It is important for all Astrologers to completely understand the
complexion and temperament of the Planets. For when you must mix
their influences you must understand the origin of what is produced.
For example, the effects of a Saturn and Jupiter conjunction, will be
displayed most differently than a Saturn and Mercury conjunction. For
we know that Saturn is cold and dry, melancholic, earthy & etc. We
know also that Jupiter is hot and moist, sanguine, airy, completely
opposite to that of Saturn. Therefore their mixtures will give conflict
between themselves because their natures conflict with one another.
The most dignified Planet is therefore considered the strongest and his
influence is thus more apparent than the weaker, who will submit to
his power. Now, the conjunction between Saturn and Mercury is thus
different because they agree both in complexion and temperament.
They are both cold and dry, melancholic and earthy, therefore their
conjunction is not detrimental nor conflicting and they agree well
together. Mercury is often said to be naturally malevolent because of
his sympathy with Saturn.
A good rule to understand is if two Planets joined (primarily through
conjunction) are of the same quality (Hot/Cold & Dry/Moist) they will
agree with each other and their influence together (especially in
conjunction) will be benevolent. If two Planets join sharing one quality
(for example one is hot & dry and the other is cold & dry) they will
agree, but only partly. Now if they share no qualities (as Saturn and
Jupiter) they will not agree at all and therefore their mixtures will be
like that of fire and water. Ptolemy makes it clear that this is the
relationships we need to understand of the Planets in order to correct
mix the influences of the Planets.
VIII. A judicious man helps forwards the Celestial operations, even as the discrete
husbandman assists nature in his ploughing and preparing the ground.
[G][P][N][E] – All those who practice Astrology or go to seek the
wisdom of those who do, should always implement their testimonies
of strength in any given area. To waste this knowledge and skill is
unprofitable and can sometimes prove detriment to the Native.
Ptolemy is saying that the husbandman or farmer knows the times in
which to plant his crops so that they will come in before the frosts, one
who is knowledgeable of Astrology or of his Nativity should take
celestial opportunities provided to him and plant his seeds for success.
IX. In generation and corruption, earthy forms are subordinate to the Celestials;
wherefore they that frame Images, do then make use of them, by observing
when the Planets do enter into those Constellations or Forms, & etc.
[E] – All sublunary creatures are subject to the influences of the Planets
and Celestial bodies and their rays. These Celestials are infinite in life
but those that are sublunary are finite. The Celestials control over the
generation and corruption of all things which are sublunary. Ptolemy
is here describing that in order to make magical images, we must
create them during times which are favourable to our desired result.
These images contain the influence of the Celestials which are
imprinted into them. When these images are used, they will grant the
power that is bestowed in them until they are destroyed.
X. In Election of days and hours, make use of two malevolent Planets ¹ and d;
for even so doth the expert Physician use poison moderately for cure of a man.
[E] – The Planets Saturn and Mars can be very fortunate if they are
found in their own dignities and strong. This is called Essential
Benevolence. Even though a Planet may be naturally a malevolent,
being fortunate and happy in its own places, will make it benevolent
and provide benevolent results. If you are looking to obtain the
significations of either Saturn or Mars, they may both be used but be
watchful that they are essentially dignified or else the results will be
XI. Make no Election either of day or hour, before you know the quality of the
[E] – If you intend to take on business of love or courtship, you must
know before you look for an Election the significators and qualities of
this request. For this example, you would take the significators of
Venus (for the woman), Mars (for the man) for the general significators
and the Lord of the Ascendant and the Lord of the Ascendant of
whom you wish to court to be in trine aspect together. By
understanding the significators of every matter, you can easily make a
XII. Love and hatred cause error in judgment; for affection magnifies even trifles,
and envy as much depresseth weighty things.
[G] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward, you should be judging
those to whom you have no affection towards or against. If you judge
those you are close to, you will be at more chance to error because you
will favour to give them better results that may be demonstrated or
you may neglect the negative for fear of their unhappiness.
XIII. When the position of Heaven shall signify anything to come to pass, make use
in the business as assistants of the malevolent Planets, though in the question
they were not friendly.
[H][E] – When the malevolents prove unfriendly in any question one is
asked, but they are fortunate in the Heavens at a current time, you are
to use their power to correct the malevolency created by them in the
XIV. The Astrologer plunges himself into many errors, when the cusp of the
seventh House, and Lord thereof are unfortunate and afflicted.
[H] – The reason for this error and danger is because the 7
Horary questions represents the Astrologer (or Doctor with regard
unto Medicine), therefore if the 7
House is unfortunate, so will the
Astrologers ability to interpret the question correctly and accurately.
Reading a chart whose 7
House is afflicted by the malevolent, will
cause the Astrologer to gain a bad name for himself because the
Astrologer will be seen as a liar or cheat, simply looking to take the
money from the Querent. This is especially true if the Dragon’s Tail is
involved, which will bring scandal to the Astrologer.
XV. The Ascendants of the Kingdoms enemies, are those Signs which decline from
the Ascendant of the Kingdom; the Ascendant of the Kingdoms friends are the
Signs of the Angles, and of the Signs succeeding those angles; the same is
considerable in the rising or beginnings of sects and schisms.
[T] – The Signs and Houses found in cadent or abject places of the
figure represent the enemies of any State. The friends of the Kingdoms
are shown by the angles (excluding the 7
) and the succedent places of
XVI. When benevolent planets have dominion in the eighth House, & are ill
dignified, he that is then born shall receive damage from honest men; but if
those Planets be well affected, the contrary shall happen.
[N] – Benevolent Planets always represent honest men, especially
XVII. Being demanded of the length of an old mans life, be not rash to give your
judgment before you have considered or measured according to his Nativity,
how long he may live according to Nature.
[P] – Do not invest your time in interpreting predictive charts that
promise a short life to the individual. For if they show a short life, your
predictions will be in vain and will come to nothing.
XVIII. When the O and î are in one and the self same degree and minute at the
time of any ones birth, and a benevolent Planet is Lord of the Ascendant, the
Native that time born, shall be fortunate in all his actions; the same shall
happen if the two Lights be in opposition, the one in the Ascendant, the other
in the seventh House, so qualified as before; but if an infortune be placed in
the Ascendant, you may well judge the contrary.
[N] The Sun and Moon are both considered bestowers of fortune as
well, when they are joined with a benevolent Planet, this increases
their fortune bestowing qualities and it will bring honor and dignity to
the Native. Their conjunction or opposition, while in some cases can be
detrimental is sometimes benevolent because of their relationship
between each other.
XIX. A purging medicine shall not operate so effectually when the î is o with 4.
[M] – The Moon is phlegmatic, and Jupiter sanguine, therefore the
purging of either of these temperaments will be inhibited. In order to
purge correctly, you need to either do so by sympathy or antipathy,
neither of which Jupiter and Luna possess towards each other.
XX. Draw not blood from that member, whilst the î is in a Sign representing the
same. The meaning whereof is thus, that if you find at any time the î in J
(which signifies the arms) to be unfortunately afflicted of ¹ or d in Z, 5, or
÷, it’s not then, says he, so good to let blood at that time, as when she hath
made her progress out of that Sign; many expert Physicians now living know
the truth hereof.
[M] – This aphorism is clearly explained. Its primarily focused towards
the subject of Phlebotomy but can also be useful for when planning
XXI. When the î is in ³ or ÷, and the Lord of the Ascendant in aspect to the
Planet under the Earth, it’s good to give purging medicines; but if the Lord of
the Ascendant apply to the Planet above the Earth, it’s probable the sick shall
vomit up his portion.
[M] – When the Moon is below the earth, she pushes purging
downwards therefore all medicines meant to purge downwards will
be effective. When she is above the earth the opposite effect happens
and it is a useful time to use medicines which purge upwards
(vomiting & etc.). The Moon in watery Signs is good for purging,
especially fluids choleric. Scorpio is best for poisons or rotting things.
XXII. Neither cut out, or first put on a new garment whilst the î is in the Sign O;
if she then be unfortunate, if so much the worse; this pertains to Elections. Mr
Lilly, saith, once casually, without inspection to the position of the î, he put
on a new suit, the î being in O, and ill dignified, and tore many holes in the
suit going a Nutting, within a fortnight after; nor did that suit ever do him
any service; yet we must not be superstitious but modest in our Elections,
only use them as natural helps.
[E] – The Moon has no dignity in Leo, and Leo’s rulership over 5
House matters will cause any fabrics or things which are used as
ornaments will prove defective or not fit. In some cases, they may
never be worn or used.
XXIII. The aspect of the î, or her o with the Planets inclines the Native to be
moved in his disposition; if the Planets be strong, they show him to be active
or full of spirit; but if they be ill fortified, they incline to sluggishness.
[N] – Since the Moon rules the brain and body, any aspects made by
the Moon unto other Planets, she will adopt their actions as her own.
The stronger dignified the Planet, the more these actions and
behaviours will show. The more benevolent the aspect, the better and
more honest these actions are. The weaker the Planet, the less active
and more detrimental these actions will be to the Native, as with the
worse the aspect.
XXIV. An Eclipse of the O or î in the angles of a Nativity or yearly Revolution, is
obnoxious; but we take the time thereof from the distance which is between the
degree Ascending and place Eclipsed; and as in a Solar Eclipse we give or
allow for each hour one year; so for the every hour in a Lunar Eclipse, we
admit one month for the effects continuance.
[N] – An Eclipse found in an Nativity is an almost certain signifier of
death or debility to the Native. An Eclipse in the Nativity of a child
shows that they will not be long lived unless some fortune bestows its
benevolent rays upon it. Here Ptolemy gives instructions to determine
the length of influence of the Eclipse which is as follows; each degree
from the Ascendant unto the position of the Eclipse is counted for one
year of influence upon the Native if it be a Solar Eclipse, if Lunar, one
month for every degree. Ptolemy uses the term “Hour” which is 60
minutes or 1 degree.
XXV. Direct the Medium Cœli of a Nativity by the Table of Right Ascension, but
the Ascendant by the oblique Ascensions under the elevation of the pole where
the Native was born, & etc.
[N][P] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward for those who still use
the traditional method of creating their charts by hand.
XXVI. The matter of any question is obscured when the Planet signifying it, is
either under the Earth, or joined to the O in an obscure House; but is
manifest, when a Planet is brought out of his depression into his altitude, and
posited in his proper Sphere or Element.
[H] – When a Planet is under the earth it is considered darker or
obscure, the darkest point in a chart is the 4
House, often called the
dark cave. When it is next unto the Sun, the Sun with its powerful
beams blocks the influence of that specific Planet and the Planet is thus
muted or hidden. When the Planet goes above the Earth, and outside
of the influence of the Sun, its influence is then freed and the matter is
brought to the open.
XXVII. Venus demonstrates that member to be neatly formed or shaped, in which
she is posited at the time of birth; the like do the other Planets.
[N] – Venus found in Aries, or in the Ascendant, will make the Natives
face comely and beautiful, as with all of the other parts signified by
that House and Sign. Mars found in Aries or the Ascendant gives a
scar on the face, a red face & etc. according unto the Planets influence.
Saturn’s placement gives deformity unless he is made benevolent in
the chart as with the Dragon’s Tail.
XXVIII. In Elections, if you cannot fortify the î by her joining to, or aspecting of
two Planets, see that she be near some fixed stars of that Nature your Planet
ought to have been of, & etc.
[E] – The Moon is the condenser of all the Planets influences and she
disperses their influence to the Earth. When planning to carry out any
action, using the proper significator, she must be joined to that
significator in some way as well. If this cannot happen, Ptolemy tells
us to place the Moon on a fixed star of the nature of the significating
XXIX. The fixed stars do design immeasurable and admirable preferment’s, not
withstanding determine in unusual calamities, unless the Planets concur in
judgment or be in o with them.
[G] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward, when a Planet, point or
cusp is placed by a certain fixed star of a great magnitude (no less than
3), it bestows great favour (if the stars be of Solary, Lunary, Jovial or
Venereal quality) or destruction (if they be of Saturn or Mars). This
favour or destruction is far stronger than the Planets alone can
promise because the fixed stars are placed in a sphere that is above
that of the Planets and therefore are considered more powerful and
closer to God.
XXX. Consider well the time of the coronation or creating the first King of any
Kingdom; for if the Ascendant of his or their coronation concur with the
Ascendant of the King’s Son, he shall then be successor to his father.
[T] – This aphorism may be quite difficult to follow unless the country
is new in origin. But if possible, it is fairly straightforward showing the
chances of succession of any future King. It may be possible to use this
Aphorism with current Kings or Rulers during their coronation as well
but I have not attempted it therefore cannot verify its accuracy.
XXXI. When the principle significator of a Kingdom shall come to his climacterical
year, either then the King of that Kingdom shall die, or some of the most
eminent heroes of that nation; this was verified in the death of a valiant
worthy person, and true lover of his country, that deceased some years since
[T] – There are many significations of how the a King or Kingdom will
fall. Ptolemy simply states that the significator of a King or Kingdom
placed in an abject place, or the appearance of a Comet or Great
Conjunction can destroy Kings power or Kingdoms.
XXXII. An amicable aspect of the stars doth conduce much to the friendship of two
persons; but if you will know the quality of the thing wherein they shall agree,
you must observe that from both their Nativities.
[N] – When an individual is represented by one Planet, whom has its
influence strong in his chart, he may agree or befriend one who is
represented by another Planet (being strong in their chart) if both
Planets happen to be in sextile or trine aspect with each other at that
current time. In order to understand more deeply their relationship,
the Nativities of both individuals must be compared. For those two
Planets in sextile or trine to each other in both individuals charts
XXXIII. From the benevolent or malevolent positure of the O and î, and each
others ascending Sign at time of birth is discerned the love or hatred betwixt
any two; those Signs which we call obedient, do increase unity and friendship.
[N] – For if one individual has the Ascendant of the others Midheaven,
the individual with the Midheaven will be a master over that
individual, or someone of higher dignity and standing. It may also
represent that an individual introduces the other into his profession or
bestows honours upon him.
XXXIV. That Planet who hath most dignities in the degree wherein the î changes,
if he be cardinal, viz. in an angle, he doth demonstrate the principle actions of
that month; this is of most force in the change of weather, & etc.
[P][T] – Look to the exact degree and Sign that the Moon changes in
and see which Planet has the most dignities (through a table of
dignities) in that position. If it is placed in an angle during this time,
this Planet will hold rulership over the month.
XXXV. When the O by Transit shall come to the degree of the Zodiac, wherein any
principal significator, viz. Planet is, he makes that Planet more active in such
things as concern change of air or weather.
[P][T] – The influence of the Sun activates Planets when he passes over
their radical positions. The influence that is activated is determined by
the significators of the Planet which it passes. If by chance in a
Nativity the Lord of the second House was Jupiter, and the Sun passed
over that very position in its transit through the Zodiac, during that
passing, the Native may bring in more wealth, especially from Jovial
persons or activities.
XXXVI. In the new construction of any city, make use of the adjuvant fixed stars;
in building houses take the Planets; those cities that in the time of their
foundation have d culminating, their Princes usually die by the sword.
[T] – When starting a city is it more profitable to use benevolent fixed
stars, when raising houses, it is more profitable to use the Planets
themselves as significators.
XXXVII. Who hath the Sign of 5 or ÷ in their Horoscope they shall attain
preferment by their own industry and worth; but they who have T or = their
Ascendant, shall wilfully or innocently be the cause of their own deaths.
[N] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward therefore there is no
need to comment on it.
XXXVIII. When Þ shall be well fortified or placed in either of the Houses of ¹ in
any ones Nativity, the Native hath a divine soul, and is capable of prying far
into matters; if he be placed in the House of d, especially in T, he inclines to
[N] – Mercury has rulership over those ingenious, and Saturn has
influence over deepness and involvement, therefore when you find
Mercury under the influence of Saturn he grants what is aforesaid.
When Mercury is found in Aries, he tends towards quickness and
XXXIX. If the eleventh House be unfortunate, at what time a King is crowned, it’s
an argument his domestical servants shall thrive little by him, or will that
King grow rich; but if the second House of the figure be afflicted it shows his
subjects shall be impoverished under his government.
[T] – The succedent Houses rule over those who are our friends or
companions which we may rely on, help and assistants. It is clear that
if the 11
House is unfortunate during this time, the King shall not
receive help from his assistants, nor receive any financial benefits
(being his second House).
XL. When the Sign ascending is besieged or infortunated by the malignant
Planets, he who is then born will delight in course actions, and in his sense
smelling shall take pleasure in filthy odours.
[N] – Since the Ascendant and his Lord (especially) rule the actions
and behaviours of the Native, besiegement by the Infortunes (Saturn &
Mars) will cause the Native to have such actions which are likened to
the qualities bestowed by Saturn and Mars. This aphorism is especially
true with Scorpio ascending, ruling filthiness.
XLI. When thou settest forth upon any journey, beware that the eighth House and
Lord thereof be not unfortunate; when you return, in the same manner have
regard to the second House and his Lord.
[E] – The eighth House represents death, but it is also the 12
House which rules travel. This means that imprisonment and death
are ruled by the 8
House when one is traveling. If it happens to be
unfortunate during this time, the Native may come upon a lot of
damage if not fatal. The 2
House is 6
from the 9
represents disease and sickness to the Native during his travels. It also
represents the Natives financial situation and therefore if he expects to
gain from such a journey he should fortify that House.
XLII. A disease or sickness first beginning, whilst the î is in a Sign wherein a
malevolent was in the Nativity, or in O or - thereunto, will prove very
grievous; and if at that time she is in ill aspect of an Infortune, it will be very
dangerous; but if at the first Decumbiture she do possess the degree where a
Fortune was, there’s little danger.
[M] – This aphorism is fairly clear but it simply states that in a
Decumbiture chart (the time taken from when one first lays down with
sickness to their bed), we find the Moon possessing the same Sign and
degree of an Infortune in the Nativity, or in quartile or opposition unto
it, the disease will be very dangerous. The reverse is true for when the
Moon possesses the location of a radical Fortune, or in trine or sextile
to it. It is more dangerous if at that time the Infortune sends her an ill
aspect as well.
XLIII. The Infortunate Planets do impede those matters which they performed
according to natural existence, as matrimony; but what things are acted
according to Nature, and not unto Laws or Customs; or those affairs which
neither are performed naturally, or according to laws; as such things receive
destruction from the Fortunes.
[G] – Saturn being a slow Planet impedes matters by tediousness in
their action. Mars being an overly active Planet, causes rashness in
actions. Jupiter and Venus are significators of laws and customs
therefore, when matters which are not ruled by customs or laws they
will be impeded by them.
XLIV. When the Figure erected at the beginning of any sickness is contrary to that
of the Nativity, if no propitious thing be then in force, the sick party is like to
be in great peril.
[M] – Because of the difference between the Nativity and Decumbiture
chart, it is seen that there is no help unto the Native for recovery.
XLV. Whosoever hath not the predominant Planets of his Nativity in humane
Signs, will be little sociable, and not very humane.
[N] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward. These Planets and parts
of a Nativity Ptolemy talks about are the Ascendant, Lord of the
Ascendant, Lord of manners and behaviour, Almuten of the Figure
and the Moon. The Signs which are humane or human are Gemini,
Virgo, Libra, the first half of Sagittarius, and Aquarius. The others are
bestial and therefore those with greater bestial signs are more inclined
to take on those mannerisms.
XLVI. Excellent prosperity is designed in men’s Geniture from the fixed stars, and
from the Angles of the preceding Lunation’s, and from the degree of the Ð,
when the degree ascending at the birth chances to be the same.
[N] – By casting a chart for the preceding new or full Moon in any
Nativity, we can determine by the angles and their placement on fixed
stars, whether a Native will be prosperous or not. If the Part of Fortune
happen to be in the previous chart at the same degree that the
Ascendant is at birth, it promises the same effect.
XLVII. When in any ones Nativity a malignant Planet is placed where a Fortune
was in another’s Geniture, he who hath the Fortune so placed, shall receive
prejudice from him that had the Infortune so posited.
[N] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward and needs no further
XLVIII. When the Medium Cœli of a King’s Nativity is the Horoscope of a subject,
or the principal dominators are in benevolent configurations, they shall
continue inseparable; judge the like when a servants sixth House is the
Ascendant of his Master.
[N] – Make reference to Aphorism 32 for clarification of this aphorism.
Sympathy or antipathy between charts can conjoin or divide people.
XLIX. When the Ascendant of a subject shall culminate in his Princes Nativity,
his Lord shall so entrust him, that he will be ruled by him. This must be
understood of such of the nobility or gentry that have offices or commands in
[N] – As with the previous aphorism, it declares relatively the same
L. Forget not in general judgments that one hundred and nineteen conjunctions;
in well considering these, you shall understand what will be done in the
World both of generation and corruption. What the conjunctions are, and how
to understand them, you may have recourse to Mr. Lilly’s Prophetical Merlin.
[G] – This aphorism is slightly cryptic, but it is simply making
reference to all the conjunctions that each of the Planets can possibly
make with each other.
LI. In what Sign the î is at the time of birth, make that Sign the Ascendant in
conception; and in what Sign she is found at conception, make that or its
opposite the Sign ascending at the birth.
[N] – This concept is used to determine the true time of birth of an
individual, or rectification of the birth time.
LII. The Lord of the Geniture’s of men of tall stature are in their sublimities, and
their Horoscopes in the beginning of Signs; but the Lords of their Nativities
who are of short stature, are found in their falls; together with this, enquire
whether the Signs be of right or oblique ascension.
[N] – The Lords of the Geniture’s in their Exaltations show tallness of
the Native. Tallness is also a product of the Ascendant falling in the
first 15 degrees of a Sign. The Falls of the Planets show shortness as do
their latter degrees ascending.
LIII. The Lords of the Geniture’s of lean men have no latitude, but of fat men they
have; if the latitude be south, the Native will be nimble; if North, more
[N] – This aphorism needs no clairification.
LIV. When the principle Lords in buildings are joined unto a Planet under the
earth, they hinder the erection of the building.
[E] – When a Planet is under the earth, it is hindered in its function
somewhat unless it is in its joy under the earth (as feminine Planets
are). When that Planet goes above the earth, the hinderance is stopped
and the production continues.
LV. The malicious influence of ¹ against ships is lessened when he is neither
placed in the tenth or eleventh House of Heaven; in either of those places, he
destroys the ship, thieves surprising the possessing her by force; but the ship
will be fired if the Ascendant be afflicted by any fixed star of the mixture of d.
[G] – Saturn generally leads to shipwrecks, where as Mars leads to
violent takeovers of ships (pirates) or fires onboard. Its important to
make sure that these Planets are in no ways involved with ships or any
means of transportation.
LVI. When the î is in her first quarter, that is, from the time she is receded from
the O‘s conjunction, the moistures of bodies do flow, until her second quarter,
at other times they decrease.
[G] – When the Moon is waxing, she causes an excess of moisture to
flow. When she is waning moisture decreases. Waxing is from
conjunction unto opposition of the Moon unto the Sun. Waning is
from opposition unto conjunction.
LVII. Change your Physician when you shall see the seventh House and his Lord
afflicted in any sickness.
[M] – As aforementioned, the 7
House rules over Physicians (as
Astrologers). If the 7
House or Lord is afflicted by evil Planets, then
his work shall be impeded.
LVIII. Consider the place of the o, in which part of Heaven it falls to be from the
Ascendant of the year; for when the Profection shall arise unto that part of
Heaven, then shall the event appear.
[T][N] – I believe in this aphorism Ptolemy makes reference to Major &
Minor conjunctions. He states that when the Profection comes to the
point of that conjunction, the events promised by that conjunction will
happen. This may also make reference to Nativities and considering
when the events promised by a Revolution may fall out.
LIX. Pronounce not rashly that the absent party shall die, before thou considerest
whether he be not drunken; or say that he hath received a wound, before you
have enquired whether he were not let blood; or do you judge that he shall find
treasure, before you have searched out, whether perchance he took nothing to
pledge of late, seeing the Figures of all these demands are alike.
[H] – Ptolemy is simply stating that the Astrologer when asked
regarding the state of a person, they should look for Signs of illness
before those of death. Never be too rash in giving judgments without
seeking out the alternatives before the definates.
LX. In consideration of the sick, behold the critical days, and the peragration of the
î by the angles of a Figure well affected, it will fall out well to the sick party.
On the contrary, it will fall out ill if you find them afflicted.
[M] – The Moon is a general indicator of acuteness in diseases, if she is
well posited and placed, the sickness will soon pass. However if she is
ill dignified, especially in fixed Signs, she can denote a long drawn out
sickness. The Moon is one of the most important Planets considered in
Medical Astrology. The angles also denote a quickness of recovery, the
cadent a slowness.
LXI. The î signifies those things which appertain unto the body, as what have
resemblance unto her in regard of her motion.
[G] – Since the Moon has rulership over the brain, she has control over
the body and thus her influence and patterns in the Heavens also
translate down towards the bodies of men. Its no coincidence that
when there is a full Moon, the base people say that the lunatics are
coming out (lunatic deriving from a condition of Luna, or the Moon).
LXII. When you shall make a minute of a o your Basis or Radix, you may give
judgment of the change of the weather in that month; for your judgment shall
be framed according to the principle dominator of the angle of every Figure,
for that Planet overcomes in the Nature of the Air; assuming together with
these things the quality of the present time, viz. the season of the year.
[T] – The conjunctions of Planets (especially the superiors) can cause
diverse alterations to happen unto the air, changing the quality and
temperature of the air. When a conjunction happens Ptolemy instructs
us to create a radix from that exact moment in time. From that we may
judge of the weather for the entire month.
LXIII. When ¹ and d make their o, see which of them is most elevated, and
pronounce judgment according unto his nature; do the like upon all the
conjunctions of the other Planets.
[G] – The more elevated Planet is usually master or superior over the
lower one. This has to do with the fact that the higher in Heaven a
Planet is placed (or the closer to the 10
House – the House of
Masters), the greater dignity and power over others it produces. The
lower the Planet, the more servile it is.
LXIV. When thou hast considered the Lord of the Question, see what Essential
Dignity he hath in the Querent’s annual Revolution, or in the Ascendant of
the new î preceding, give judgment accordingly.
[H] – By seeing how much dignity it has in the aforementioned charts,
we can analyze whether or not the event will come to pass that year.
The Lord of a question is the ruler of the matter that is propounded.
For example, if the question were to be about a contract, the Lord of
House will be defined as the Lord of the Question.
LXV. In the least conjunction the difference of the middle, and in the middle
conjunction the difference of the greatest. Lat. In minima Conjunctione,
differentia media conjunctionis, & in media maximæ conjununctionis,
[G] – This aphorism has puzzled many adept Astrologers as to its
meaning as it is fairly cryptic with no other supporting information. I
have included both the English translation by Partridge as well as the
original Latin. I believe personally however this has something to do
with the Major and Minor conjunctions of the superiors.
LXVI. Use not Profection alone, but also the agreement of the interficient and
benevolent Planets and their aspects. This Aphorism hath relation unto
nativities and is for discovery of the true time of the Natives death.
[P] – The latter commentary is provided by Henry Coley who clarifies
the context of the Aphorism. Ptolemy makes it clear that we should
not rely on one method of prediction to predict the death (or any
event) but must determine it by multiple testimonies that support it,
usually other predictive charts.
LXVII. The years of the Native are diminished and made much shorter, by reason
of the imbecility of the Giver of Life.
[N] – When we find the Giver of Life having malevolent aspect to
malevolent Planets we must subtract the Small Years of that afflicting
Planet from the years promised by the Giver of Life. This must be done
for all Planets afflicting. The reverse is also true, that we may add the
Small Years of any benevolent planet benevolently aspecting the Giver
LXVIII. A malevolent Planet when he is Matutine, signifies a fall; when
Vespertine a disease.
[M] – By “a fall” Ptolemy makes reference to damage done to the
body. Here Matutine means a Planet which rises before the Sun, or is
oriental. Vespertine makes reference to a Planet that is occidental, or
rises after the Sun. Therefore this aphorism means that if a malevolent
Planet is afflicting for example, the Lord of the 6
House, and he be
oriental from the Sun, he signifies an external damage will be or has
been done to the body. Whereas if that same Planet is occidental, the
distemper is a disease which is internal.
LXIX. There will be a blemish in the Native’s sight when the î is in - to the O,
and is near the Nebulous or cloudy fixed stars; or when the î is in the seventh
House, and both ¹ and d in the Horoscope; but if together with this the O be
angular, the Native will quite lose his sight.
[M][N] – The Sun and Moon rule each eye respective to the sex of the
individual. When they are conflicted through opposition & in hazy
(Ptolemy terms Nebulous) stars, the Native will be hard of seeing. If
the Moon is afflicted by the malevolent, especially in the 1
rulership over the face and head) it can lead to blindness.
LXX. Þ is not in o with the î in their Nativities, who divine by a kind of fury of
things to come, or is either of them in the Ascendant of those who are
Demonic, in such a kind of a Figure in the night time ¹ shall possess that
angle, but in the day time d, especially in 3, ³ or ÷.
[N] – This aphorism has little use in our time therefore I will pass over
LXXI. In men’s Nativities, when born the O and the î shall be in masculine Signs;
their actions shall appear according to the Nature thereof; but in the
Nativities of women, these very actions are augmented. Judge the same thing
of d and 9, or being Matutine, they incline to be more manly; but Vespertine
they are effeminate.
[N] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward. The Sun and Moon
being significators of actions and manners, being found in masculine
signs, degrees, in masculine Houses & etc. produce more masculine
Natives, (whether male or female). The opposite is true when these
significators are found in feminine places of the figure, as they
produce more feminine women and more effeminate men. Mars, the
general significator of men, and Venus the general significator of
women found oriental produce masculine traits, where occidental they
produce more feminine traits.
LXXII. Require such things as concern the Native’s education from the Lords of the
Triplicity of the Ascendant; what may concern life, must be delivered from the
Lords of the triangularity of the conditional luminary.
[N] – This aphorism may hold some confusion because this technique
was rarely used by traditional authors let alone those of our modern
times, however it simply states that the Triplicity Planets also rule over
certain significations in a specific House. For example, when we find
that Aries is found in the Ascendant, we judge that the Sun rules over
the nature and life of the Native and also the beginning of life. Jupiter
rules over the force and strength of the body & the midst of life and
Mars rules over the end of life. We are also told that the Lord of the
Triplicity in the place of the Temporal Light (Sun for diurnal Nativities
and the Moon for Nocturnal) also dictates about the life of the Native.
LXXIII. Whether the O is found to be with Caput Algol if then he is neither
aspected by a benevolent Planet, or that a benign Planet doth govern the
eighth House, and the Depositor of the temporal Light shall be in - to d, or
afflicts him with a O aspect, he that then is born shall be beheaded. But if the
light shall culminate, or be in the tenth House, his body shall be wounded; if
this copulation be in J or ÷, his hands and feet shall be cut off.
[N] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward. If we find that the Sun is
placed over the fixed star Algol (which is also termed the Head of
Medusa), being Lord of the eighth (the House of death), and the
depositor (or ruler of the placement) of the temporal light (for example
if the Nativity is diurnal, the temporal light is the Sun, the Sun placed
in Taurus, the depositor is Venus) in opposition or quartile with Mars
(violence), then the Native will be beheaded. Gemini rules over the
arms, shoulders and hands, and Pisces the feet.
LXXIV. Who hath d in the Ascendant of his Nativity will not fail to have a scar in
[N] – This aphorism is clear. Mars represents violence and iron,
therefore the scar will be a result of either.
LXXV. When the O is joined unto the Lord of the Ascendant in O, or that d hath
no prerogative in the Ascendant, or no benevolent Planet is placed in the
eighth House, he that is born under such a constellation shall be burned, viz.
shall die by fire.
[N] – The Sun being joined unto the Ascendant gives his significations
to the body of the Native. Therefore a fiery Planet placed in a fiery
Sign denotes fire in some matter towards the Natives body.
LXXVI. When ¹ possesseth the tenth House, viz. is posited therein, and the
temporal Light of the time is in his -, and an earthy Sign is in the fourth, he
who is then born shall perish by the ruin or fall of houses or buildings; if the
Sign of the fourth be a watery Sign, he will die in the water or by water, viz.
he will be drowned; if the Sign of the fourth be humane, he will die by the
hands of man, viz. will either be hanged or strangled, & etc. but if a
benevolent Planet is posited in the eighth, he will be near to death by such
accidents or casualties as aforesaid, but shall evade and not die thereby.
[N] – This aphorism is fairly clear therefore no explanation is needed.
LXXVII. Make use of, or direct the Profection of the Ascendant for such things as
concern the body; direct the Ð for external or outward things; the î for such
things as concern both the body and the mind; the M.C. for the actions,
magistry or professions, & etc.
[P] – This aphorism is making reference to the Art of Directions. By
directing the Ascendant unto its Promittors (other places in the chart
that promise an outcome), we will see what goodness or damage will
come to the body of the Native. For the Part of Fortune we see what
fortune or material goods will be provided or taken away. Since the
Moon rules over the brain, and the brain has control over the body, her
Directions control over both of those parts. The Midheaven will show
us any fortune or misfortune that may come from our public standing,
profession, masters and the other significations of the 10
LXXVIII. A Planet doth many times exercise his influence in that part of the
Heaven wherein he hath no Essential Dignity, bringing unto the Native
unlooked for wealth. This hath relation unto the Antiscions of the Planets
[N][P] – When a Planet comes to his Antiscion through Direction or
other means, he brings upon himself his significations.
LXXIX. When d is in the eleventh House of Heaven, he that hath him so posited,
shall not have dominion over his Master or Lord.
[N] – The eleventh House rules over help or assistance of a master or
Lord, those he is close to. However unless Mars is the Lord of the
Ascendant or Lord of the Geniture, I see no reason as to why Mars in
particular would indicate this as such. This is especially true if the
Lord of the 10
was placed below the earth, making his master more
inclined to servitude of the Native than mastery.
LXXX. When 9 is joined unto ¹, and he hath any dominion in the seventh House,
he that is then born will be sordidi coitus.
[N] – Sordidi coritus translates as “dirty heart” therefore indicates one
of vile or filthy intentions or actions. However I believe this is only
true when Venus and Saturn are both debilitated as well.
LXXXI. The times of the events of things are discovered seven manner of ways;
first, for the interval or distance of the two Lords or Ruler; secondly, from the
distance of their configuration each unto other; thirdly, by their access each
unto other; fourthly, from the interval betwixt themselves, or the one of them,
from the place signifying the thing desired or looked after; fifthly, from the
setting of that star which gives assistance or impediment; sixthly, from the
mutation of the principle significant Planet; seventhly, from the access of a
Planet unto his own proper place.
[P][N] – This aphorism gives us seven rules we are to follow when
judging the time of any event that is promised to unfold by predictive
methods. They are fairly straight forward and clear.
LXXXII. When the Figures of a new and full î are equal, behold the Ascendant,
which if that be also equal, then defer your judgment for that time.
[G] – This aphorism does not give enough details as to the class of
Astrology it belongs to (although I would assume Horary) therefore I
cannot give a correct judgment on its meaning.
LXXXIII. The time of craving anything at the King’s hands, doth show the
affection betwixt the King and the Petitioner; viz. the time when the
Petitioner receives the dignity granted him, shall show the quality of action
depending upon the preferment, & etc.
[E] – This aphorism makes reference for creating an Election to see
someone of dignity or high standing. You must make sure that
significators of the Petitioner and King are in good aspect with each
other in order to obtain that favour.
LXXXIV. When d is Lord of the Ascendant at that time of taking any possession,
and doth also govern the second House, or is in o with the Lord of the second,
he brings much damage or loss.
[E] – Mars, ill dignified, always brings loss or damage when involved
with any matter. Mars also indicates things of hastiness or quick
action. Therefore anything obtained under Mars will be lost just as
quickly as it was obtained.
LXXXV. When the Lord of the Ascendant is in configuration with the Lord of the
second, the Prince or Lord shall willingly consume much treasure. This hath
relation to the two preceeding Aphorisms.
[T] – This aphorism is fairly straight forward, I assume though that it
is making reference to Figures of the World than to any other class.
LXXXVI. The O is the Fountain of Vital Power, the î of Natural.
[G] – The Sun is the giver of life, while the Moon is the maintainer of
life. From the Sun flows the vital energy that everything possesses,
from the Moon comes the functionality and control of this power.
LXXXVII. Monthly conversions consist of twenty eight days, two hours, and
about eighteen minutes; but some there are who judge them from the
peragration of the O when he is equated Partilely unto the degree and minute
he was in the beginning of the month.
[G] – This is basically stating there are two ways to judge the times of
the month; one lunar, coming from the complete revolution of the
Moon; and one solar, proceeding from when Sol possesses the same
degree of the following Sign he was in at the beginning of the month.
LXXXVIII. When we direct the Profection of the Ð for the whole year of a
Revolution, we take it from the O to the î, and project it only from the
[G] – This aphorism shows the calculation to obtained the Part of
Fortune. An easy to remember rule to find the Part of Fortune is
simply to find the distance between the Sun unto the Moon and add
that distance found onto the Ascendant, from that you will have the
true placement of the Part of Fortune.
LXXXIX. Require what concerns the grandfather from the seventh House, but the
uncle from the sixth House.
[H][N] – The grandfather (of the father) is taken from the 7
because that House is 4
from the 4
, therefore the father’s fathers
House when we make the 4
House the Ascendant of the father. The
same is applied to the 6
ruling uncles or the fathers brother (being the
House from the 4
XC. When the Lord of the Ascendant doth behold the Ascendant, the thing which
lies undiscovered is of the nature of the Ascendant; if he behold not the
Ascendant, its quality shall be according to the nature of the place where the
Lord of the Ascendant is; the Lord of the hour demonstrates the colours, but
the place of the î the times; if that place of the î be above the Earth, the thing
or matter is new; if under the Earth, old. The Ð shows its quantity, whether it
be long or short;; the Lords of the Terms of the fourth and tenth Houses, and
of the î, show its substance.
[H] – I believe this aphorism makes reference to questions regarding
lost goods. However rather than dealing with the Houses which
signify these lost goods, the aphorism deals specifically with the
Ascendant which is confusing. Therefore I cannot give a correct
judgment on this aphorism.
XCI. It’s an ill sign when the Lord of the sick party is combust, especially if the Ð
[M] – The combustion of any Planet in Medical Astrology associated
with the sick party denotes danger. The Lord of the sick party is
almost always the Lord of the Ascendant.
XCII. ¹ being oriental, doth not so much oppress the sick body, nor doth d when he
[M] – Saturn joys in an oriental position and is thus dignified when he
is so posited. However, Ptolemy clearly states earlier that an occidental
Planet gives disease, and Mars does not joy in an occidental position,
in fact it debilitates him (for he joys being oriental). Therefore I do not
understand how Mars, debilitated by his occidental position, is not as
oppressive. Unless he is considering that a debilitated afflicter is easier
on the patient and if this were true, he would state the same for Saturn
which he does not. Whether or not this is a translation error I don’t
XCIII. In Questions do not pronounce judgment before you consider the next
subsequent new î; for the first beginnings are varied in every o, wherefore
mix both together, and you shall not err.
[H] – Ptolemy tells us here that we should consider the next new Moon
before we give judgment to a question. The reason for doing this
however eludes my judgment.
XCIV. The place of Heaven wherein the principle and most powerful significator is
posited, doth declare such things as are in the thoughts of the Querent to be
[H] – This is fairly clear but to clarify more, it states that the Houses
which possess the strongest Planets in the chart, will show what the
Querent thinks of.
XCV. Those Images which do arise with several Decantes, they declare the
inclination of the Native to that profession he handles. What these are, see
Scaliger upon Manilius or Johannes Angelus.
[N] – The Faces of the Signs describe also the Natives profession and
XCVI. The significations of an Eclipse shall be most apparent when the Eclipse is
near unto an Angle; consider also the nature of the Stars in configuration to
one another, as well of the erratical Planets as of the fixed stars; so also the
Images co‐arising with the Signs ascending and pronounce judgment
accordingly. By Images he means Asterisms, of which see Maginus,
Origanus, and Argol.
[T] – If an Eclipse falls into an angular House or is near it by 5 degree,
its influence is much stronger and more apparent and whatever it
signifies will also be more pronounced.
XCVII. The matter or thing in question which is demanded, will be performed in a
short time, when either the Lord of the New or Full î is cardinal.
[H] – Cardinal signs represent things of soon completion. Fixed signs
indicate that the events will take a while to unfold. While common
signs show that the events will change and convert into something
XCVIII. Blazing stars, and shootings of the stars in the air (or prodigious
apparitions therein) have a second signification in mundane affairs; viz.
Eclipses are in the Heavens, but apparitions in the air, therefore events
portended by Eclipses are first preferred.
[T] – Eclipses are deemed more important because they come from a
higher place in the Heaven than blazing stars (which were believed to
come from the air which is a layer under the Fire and Celestial
XCIX. Fiery apparitions show want of rain, or a dry air, which if they are carried
or moved unto one part of the Heaven, they declare wind to come from that
quarter of Heaven; but if those apparitions are carried diversely, or into
sundry parts, they show scarcity of rain or waters, the Elements are often
troubled, and the incursions of armies.
[T] – The differences seen in the air can predict the pattern of weather.
C. Comets, whose distance is eleven Signs from the O, if they appear in angles,
the King of some Kingdom, or one of the principle men of the Kingdom will
die; but if they appear in a succedent House, his treasures are like to do well,
yet shall the King or Kingdom change their Governor; if they appear in a
cadent or obscure House, diseases, and sudden death will succeed; if they
move from the West to the East, a foreign enemy shall invade several
Kingdoms and Countries; if the Comet move not, the enemy shall be
[T] – Being eleven Signs from the Sign of the position of the Sun gives
it unto a similar effect that the signification of the 12
House has. The
Sun represents that Monarch or Ruler of a country. The Comet shows
destruction unto that leader or kingdom.
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