Anima Astrologiae





Considerations of Guido Bonatus (6-10)

  1. The 6th Consideration, Is to regard another manner whereby planets are dibilitated or weakened and afflicted, not much different from the former, which comes to pass Ten ways. The 1st when a planet is Cadent from Angles or from the Ascendent, so that he does not behold the same. The 2nd when the Planet is Retrograde. The 3rd if they be combust, that is, within 15 degrees before or after the Sun; the lower Planets are more debilitated, being behind the Sun, and the less before him, when they are direct; but when retrograde the contrary. 4th When any of them is in Opposition, Corporal Conjunction, or Square of either or both the Infortunes without Reception. 5th when any of them are besieged by the Infortunes, so as to separate from one and be joined to another, without perfect reception of House, Exaltation, or two of the smaller Dignities, which are Term, Triplicity and Face. when a Planet is joined to another in his Declension or Fall, that is, in Opposition to its own House or Exaltation. 7th when it is joined to a Planet Cadent from the Ascendent, or separates from a Planet that did deceive him, and is joined to another that doth not. 8th when a Planet is Peregrine, that is, in a place where he bath not any Dignity: or being one of the Superiours is followed by the Sun, or being of the Inferiours when it follows the Sun. 9th when a Planet is with the Head or Tail of the Dragon, without Latitude. 10th when a planet weakens itself, that it, when it is in the seventh house from its own, Freal, or not in Reception. These are the Impediments of the Planets, that cause Hindrances, delays, and mischiefs in Nativities, Questions, Elections, etc.: all which thou oughtest to be well acquainted with. There are some more that seem necessary to be known, but to avoid tediousness and confusion I shall at present omit them.
  2. The 7th Consideration, is to beware of those cases wherein the Astrologer is subject to err and mistake; of which the learned have named four: 1st When the Querent is so silly that he knows not how to ask, nor what he would have. 2nd When the time for which the figure is erected is mistaken. 3rd When the Artist knows not whether the Sun be gone off the line of the Mid-Heaven, or still upon it: or be behind or before it. 4th When the Fortunes and Infortunes shall be of equal strength; at which time thou therefore oughtest not to receive any question. But, in my opinion, there mat well be added yet three ways more, wherein the Astrologer will subject to err: When the Querent comes only to try him, or put a trick upon him, as many do, saying, ‘Let us go to such an Astrologer, and ask him such a thing, and see if he can tell us the truth or not.’ Just as the Jews propounded questions to our Lord Jesus Christ, not so much to be resolved, as to tempt and ensnare Him. 2nd Wherein the Artist will be liable to err, is when the Querent does not ask out of a serious or settled intention, as some do when they meet an Astrologer by chance or go to him on other business: on a sudden they think of something, and so ask, as it were by-the-bye; wherein ‘tis a thousand to one but mistakes happen. But thou mayest be ready to say, ‘How shall I know whether the Querent come out of a solid intention, or only to try me?’ To which I answer, That it seems a very abstruse and difficult point, perfectly to find out; but this I have often experienced and found true, viz., I observed the hour of the Question, and if the Ascendant then happened very near the end of one sign and beginning of another, so that it seemed as between both; I said they did not ask seriously, or that they came to try me; and I have had many that have there upon confessed what I said to be true, and began to think that I knew more than before they believed. For in such cases I used to say, ‘Pray, Friend, do not trouble me unless you ask seriously, for I suspect that you would put a trick upon me, by not proposing this Question as you ought: however, if you will give me trouble for your pleasure, be pleased to give me likewise satisfaction for my pains’; and immediately, if there were and deceit intended, away they went. Another, viz., a way whereby an Astrologer may err, is when the Lord of the Ascendent and the Lord of the Hour are not the same, nor of the same Triplicity, or be not of the same complexion with the Ascendant; for then the Question is not Radical, as I have frequently found by experience. And this I have recited, that thou may’st know for what persons thou shouldst undertake to give judgment; for as one says, “The issue of the thing is according to the solicitude of the Querent, and as he comes in necessity, as sad, thoughtful, and hoping, that thou art able and knowest how to satisfy him the truth of the matter; and in such cases thou may’st securely venture upon the question.”
  3. The 8th Consideration is, to mind how many of the aforesaid manners or points necessary to be used and heeded in giving Judgments thou hast to consider; and they are Thirty, that is to say, sixteen impediments of the Moon, ten of the other Planets; as hath been said, and besides all those the Planets’ several joys, which are four. Of which the 1st is the House which each Planet does delight in, as Mercury in the Ascendant, the Moon in the Third, Venus in the fifth, Mars in the sixth, the Sun in the ninth, Jupiter in the eleventh, Saturn in the Twelfth. The 2nd is, when a Planet is in a sign he delights in, as Saturn in Aquarius, Jupiter in Sagittary, Mars in Scorpio, Sol in Leo, Venus in Taurus, Mercury in Virgo, and the Moon in Cancer. The 3rd is when Diurnal Planets, as Saturn, Jupiter, Sol, and Mercury, are in Diurnal Houses in the East and Oriental of the Sun near the Horoscope; and the Nocturnal Planets, as Mars, Venus, Luna and Mercury, are in Nocturnal Houses in the West and Occidental of the Sun; especially near the cusp of the seventh. The fourth is when the three Superiors, Saturn, Jupiter or Mars, are in Masculine Quarters; which are counted from the cusp of the Tenth House to the cusp of the Ascendant, and from the cusp of the fourth house to the cusp of the seventh house; and when the Feminines, viz., Venus or the Moon are in Feminine Quarters, which are from the cusp of the Ascendant to the cusp of the fourth house and from the cusp of the seventh to the cusp of the tenth. As for Mercury, he delights when with Masculine Planets in Masculine Quarters, but with Feminine Planets in Feminine.
  4. The 9th Consideration is to take notice of the several wayes, as well secret as manifest, good and evil, whereby things are helped or hindered to be done or not done, and of these there are one and twenty in number. 1. A most strong secret helper. 2. A very strong secret Helper. 3. A strong secret helper. 4. A weak secret Helper. 5. A weak secret Helper. 6. A most weak secret Helper. 7. A most strong manifest Helper. 8. A very strong manifest helper. 9. A strong manifest Helper. 10. A weak manifest Helper. [11. A weaker manifest Helper.] 12. A most weak manifest Helper. 13. A most strong secret Hinderer. 14. A very strong secret Hinderer. 15. A strong secret Hinderer. 16. A weak secret Hinderer. 17. A weaker secret Hinderer. 18. A most weak secret Hinderer. 19. A most strong manifest Hinderer. 20. A very strong manifest Hinderer. And 21. A strong manifest Hinderer. All which we shall treat particularly, the same being a secret of secrets. In the judicial part of Astrology which the ancients did not regard, nor have said anything plainly of it that I find, save only that Haly seems to have touched a little upon it in his Exposition of the 23th of Ptolomy’s Centiloquium; nor do I believe they omitted those things out of ignorance, but rather through disuse or fear of being too tedious, or burdening the minds of their Readers or Auditors; For they were wont to judge, according as they found the Planets disposed in Houses and Signs, their Fortitudes and Debilities, together with the Part of Fortune, and some few other things. But thou oughtest to consider in thy judgments, not only what they did, but also all other circumstances that thou canst; for when thou dost erect a figure, thou should’st first fine the Significator of the thing enquired after, or to be undertaken, and see if any of the fixed stars of his own Nature being either of his Houses, or in his Exaltation, or in conjunction with him to a minute; for then such star shall so far help the significator, that the thing shall be accomplished and effected, even beyond the Querent’s hopes, and this is a most strong secret Helper: For the Querent may well wonder how it comes to pass. Now, if the same star should be in the same degree with the Significator from one minute to 15’ before him or 5’ behind him, it will still help him, but not so much: and this we call a very strong secret Helper; but if it be with him in the same degree, but above 16 minutes distance and within 50’, it will somewhat help, yet this less; and this we call in the Positive degree only a strong secret Helper. If it be in the same degree with the Significator, in a place where he has two of his smaller Dignities, in the very same minute, or within 16 minutes, it will help him yet less, and then ‘tis a weak secret Helper; from 16’ to 50’ still less, and then ‘tis a weaker secret Helper; but if it be with the Significator in a place where he has no dignities at all it will still help, but as it were insensibly; and this we call a most weak secret helper. The like we may say on the contrary of those things that prejudice, frustrate, and hinder business: For if a Planet which is Significator of anything, being in a place where he has not any Dignities, shall be joined with one of the Fixed Stars of a contrary nature, it will weaken him and not suffer the thing to come to pass; although otherwise by the Figure it seemed never so probable; so that, for want of heeding this, the Artist often gets discredit, and raises a scandal on the Art itself amongst the ignorant: and this is a most strong secret Hinderer; whereas if the same Star be remote above 16 minutes from the Significator, it will weaken him, but not altogether so much; whence it may be called only a very strong secret Hinderer. And so downwards through all degrees in the same manner as we said of the Helpers or Assistant causes respectively. Of the several twenty-one Modes aforesaid, which are most strong Helpers, &c. and which strongest obstructs. The several Modes before mentioned are thus to be known and distinguished: A most strong manifest Helper or Adjuvant cause, is when the Planet which is Significator of a thing, is in his own House; in an Angle on the very minute of the cusp, direct, swift of course, in reception, and free from all affliction and impediment; which most seldom happens. A very strong manifest Helper, is when the Significator is in his House or Exaltation in an Angle within a degree or two of the Cusp, free from impediment, and in Reception, which very seldom happens. A strong manifest Helper, is when the Significator is in an Angle in his House or Exaltation, within 3 degrees before the Cusp, or 5 degrees after it. A weak manifest Helper, is where a Planet is in two of his lesser Dignities in an Angle within 5 degrees before or 15 degrees after it; or is in his House, or Exaltation, in a succedent House free from affliction. A weaker open Helper, is when the Significator is in his own House or Exaltation, or two of his lesser Dignities, but in a cadent House of the Figure, yet beholding the Ascendant. A most weak open Helper is when the Significator is in some of his greater Dignities, or two of his lesser, not beholding the Ascendant; or in one of his lesser Dignities; only beholding the same, or joined to a Planet that beholds the same, and has some Dignities therein. A most strong open Hinderer is when the Significator is in a place where he hath no Dignity, no delight, is not received; besieged by the Two Infortunes, Cadent from an Angle, and from the Ascendant: and so much the worse if joined with any of the Fixed Stars, of a mischievous nature, &c. There may be other both adjuvant and obstructing causes, besides what we have mentioned, both open and secret: proceeding from the conjunctions of Planets and their Aspects, too tedious here to discourse of. Nor shall I here enlarge on all those before mentioned, but most assure thee that this ninth consideration, carefully observed, will be of great use in raising a true and wary judgment; especially if thou hast always a diligent eye to the Moon; for she of all the Planets has the greatest similitude and correspondence with inferior things, both in general and particular: as well the species of the kinds as the individuals of the species; with winds; to pass by her daily effects which she causes in all things here, and frequent revolutions about the Elements and Elementary Bodies by reason of the nearness of her Orb to the Earth, and smaller circle than any other Planet; so that she seems a Mediatrix between Superiour and Inferious Bodies. And as we see that in the New Moon she appears small and thin, and little, but afterwards her light gradually increases, till all that part of her body towards us becomes replenished with lustre: and then again it decays by insensible degrees till she totally disappears: just so do all bodies both of things Rational, Irrational, and Vegetative: as men grow until they are completed to their determinate stature, and then droop and decline continually till their life is ended; and so of all other things. Hence ’tis necessary to make the Moon concerned in the Signification of every Question, Nativity, Enterprise and Business, and her good condition to show the good issue of the thing: and so on the contrary. For her Vertue and Power is such and so great, That if the Lord of the Ascendant or other Significator of a business be so weak and afflicted that he cannot bring it about and complete it as he ought: if she be but strong it shall, notwithstanding, be accomplished. For she is the School-mistress of all things; the Bringer-down of all the Planet’s influences, and a kind of an Inter-nuncio between them; carrying their vertues from one to the other, by receiving the disposition of one planet and bearing it to another. And some have thought that she does this at all times, of which opinion was that Tyrant Cylinus de Romano, viz., That when she separates from one Planet, she takes the vertue and carries it to another, committing the same to the first that she can meet with. And some have imagined that “Zael” said the same; but his meaning was not absolutely so; for he believed, That the Moon did bear what was committed to her; but if it were not so given or committed to her, she could not carry anything to any; to which I assent: for when the Moon is joined to any planet that receives her, then that planet commits its disposition to her, who carries it with her and bestows it on that planet whom she first meets with any of her dignities, and not to another: according to that Aphorism, “A Planet gives nothing in a place, where he has promised nothing.”
  5. The 10th Consideration, Is warily to observe what Fixed Stars may either help or hinder the matter in question; for they have oftentimes great power, and lead the Astrologer sometimes into error; and let the Artist be sure to consider the places of the Fixed Stars, as they are in the present age carefully reduced.