© 2006 James H. Holden Updated: January 4, 2009
Republished with the permission of the American Federation of Astrologers and the translator.
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Accidental Significators (Lat. significatores accidentales) Planetary Significators that are only valid in a particular Chart. They are the Planets in the Celestial Houses of that Chart and the Planetary Rulers of those Houses, such as in a Nativity the Ruler of the ASC for life, the Ruler of the 7th house for the spouse, the Ruler of the 10th house for profession and honors. Morin rejects the Universal Significators (q.v.) and says that the Accidental Significators are the primary Significators to be used in interpreting a Chart.
Accidents (Lat. accidentes) Happenings or occurrences, either good or bad, affecting the native, e.g. an illness, a promotion, marriage, death, etc.
Action (Lat. actio) The doing or performance of a Planet.
Actions (Lat. actiones) The deeds or accomplishments of a Native. These are signified by the 10th House.
Afflicted (Lat. laesus ‘hurt’) The situation of a Planet when it receives a bad Aspect from Mars or Saturn. A Planet is also said to be Afflicted by being posited in an unfavorable House or by being Retrograde.
Alchabitius System The House System named for the 10th century Arabian astrologer Alchabitius (Al-îî), but devised much earlier during the classical period. It divides the right ascension arcs of the MC/ASC and ASC/IMC quadrants into 3 equal parts. It was commonly used during the middle ages, but was denounced by Morin.
Anaereta (Lat. from Grk. anairetês ‘destroyer’) The Promissor that signifies the native’s death when the Apheta comes to it by direction.
Analogy (Lat. analogia from Grk.) The characteristic Influence of a Planet aside from its specific signification in a particular chart. For example, Jupiter has an Analogy to wealth and dignity. (See also Universal Significators.)
Angle of Earth (Lat. angulum terrae) An old name for the 4th house.
Angles (Lat. anguli) The four Houses, ASC, MC, DSC, and IMC are said to be Angles. These are the strongest Houses.
Angular (Lat. angularis) Said of Houses 1, 10, 7, and 4 and also of a Planet in one of those Houses. The strongest House position for a Planet.
Annual Revolution an older term for the Aries Ingress (q.v.).
Antiscion (Lat. antiscium from Grk.) Antiscion – the point in the Zodiac that is equidistant from another point on the opposite side of either the summer solstice or the winter solstice in the same hemisphere.
Apheta (Lat. from Grk. aphetês ‘starter’) The Prorogator of life in a Nativity.
Arc of Direction (Lat. arcus directionis) The angular distance required to rotate the prorogator to the promissor in a primary direction.
Aries Ingress The modern term for a chart set for the moment each year when the Sun enters the Sign Aries. Morin called it Solar Revolution or the Annual Revolution or the Mundane Revolution of the Sun.
Aspect (Lat. aspectus) The angular distance between two points in the Zodiac. Morin recognized seven: conjunction, semi-sextile, sextile, square, trine, quincunx, and opposition, all of which (except the conjunction) were multiples of 30 degrees. He rejected others (including the semi-square) that had been proposed by Kepler. The Aspects are discussed in detail in AG Book 16.
ASC (Lat. horoscopus from Grk. ‘ascendant’) The Latin word is used by Morin as a name for either the Ascendant as a whole or the ASC Degree. Horoscopus was the ancient name, but today the word horoscope refers to the whole chart, not just to the Ascendant, so it is translated as ASC to avoid confusion.
ASC Degree The exact degree of the Zodiac that is rising on the eastern Horizon at the time of birth of a Native or at the time for which any Chart is set. Aspects to it are important.
Ascendant (Lat. ascendens ‘rising’) The first and most important House of an astrological Chart. (See also ASC and ASC Degree.)
Autumnal Equinox A point of intersection of the Ecliptic and the Equator. The Autumnal Equinox is the first point of the Sign Libra. (See Equinox.)
Benefic (Lat. beneficus ‘good-doing’) A Planet that produces a good Effect. The two Benefic Planets are Jupiter and Venus. Also, an Aspect that is Benefic.
Cadent (Lat. cadens ‘falling’) Said of the Houses 3, 6, 9, and 12 because they are “falling away” from the Angles. They are the weakest House position for a Planet.
Caelum (Lat. ‘sky’) Frequently used to refer to the actual appearance of the Celestial Sphere at a particular place and time; that is, the orientation of the Signs of the Zodiac and the positions of the Planets. It of course refers to both the hemisphere above the Horizon and the one below it.
Campanus System The House System devised by Campanus of Novara in the 13th century. It divides the prime vertical into 12 segments of 30º each. Denounced by Morin.
Celestial House. (Lat. domus caelestialis) One of the 12 spaces in the astrological Chart.
Celestial Sphere (Lat. sphaera caelestialis) The supposed sphere in the sky surrounding a particular spot on the Earth’s surface.
Centiloquy (lat. Centiloquium) A collection of one hundred astrological rules often attributed to Ptolemy (but not by Morin), but actually by an unknown medieval author. There are other medieval Centiloquies attributed to Hermes and Bethen.
Characteristics of the Planets. These are discussed in detail in AG Book 13.
Chart Generic term for an astrological diagram. It can be a Nativity (a natal horoscope), a Revolution (or Return), a mundane Figure (Aries Ingress, Eclipse Chart, etc.), a Horary Chart, or an Election Chart.
Circle of Position (Lat. positionis circulum) A celestial circle that is drawn through a Planet or a house Cusp in the Regiomontanus System of House Division.
Co-ruler A Planet that shares the Rulership of a House. See Ruler.
Condition (Lat. conditio ‘mode’) Another name for Sect (q.v.).
Configuration (Lat. configuratio) An aspect or a group of aspects.
Constellation (Lat. constellatio) A group of stars recognized as forming a named pattern in the sky. Twelve of them have the same names as the Signs of the Zodiac, but they are of different lengths and do not coincide with the Signs of the same name.
Constitution (Lat. constitutio) As a technical term, Morin uses it for the positions in a particular chart. Sometimes it is merely short for Universal Constitution (q.v).
Converse Directions (Lat. directio conversa) Directions calculated by rotating the Celestial Sphere counter-clockwise.
Corporal (Lat. corporalis ‘bodily’) The corporal or bodily presence of a Planet in the House of an astrological Chart. Morin says that it is more significant than an absent Planet’s Rulership of that House.
Co-ruler A Planet that shares Rulership with another Planet. (See Rulership.)
Cusp (Lat. cuspis ‘point’) The initial Zodiacal degree of a House. It has no Latitude.
Debilities (Lat. debilitates ‘weaknesses’) Positions of a Planet in a sign that hinder or corrupt its characteristic action. Morin recognizes Exile (or Detriment), Fall, and Peregrine. These are discussed in AG Book 15. Being Retrograde is also usually reckoned to be a Debility. (See also Afflicted.)
Decans (Lat. decani) Subdivisions of the signs into thirds, an original feature of Horoscopic Astrology, but one denounced as valueless by Morin.
Declination (Lat. declinatio ‘digression’) The vertical distance of a point on the celestial sphere from the equator. It can be north or south of the equator.
Derived Houses Houses counted from another House in the counter-clockwise direction. For example, the 12th house of a Nativity is the 2nd House of the Native’s friends (ruled by the 11th House). This is an ancient technique.
Determination (Lat. determinatio) The field of action of a Planet as determined by its Celestial House. The fundamental principle of the Morin Method. AG Book 21 is devoted to Determinations.
Detriment (Lat. detrimentum ‘harm’) The Sign opposite the Domicile of a Planet; and therefore a Sign of a contrary nature, in which the Planet is poorly placed. It is a Debility.
Dexter (Lat. dexter ‘right’) The direction of an Aspect to the right side as seen from the center of the Chart.
Dignities (Lat. dignitates) Positions of a Planet in a Sign that strengthens its Action. The Dignities that Morin recognizes are Domicile, Exaltation, and Trigon (Triplicity). These are discussed in detail in AG Book 15.
Dignity (Lat. dignitas) Morin uses this word in the sense of Rank or Title or Position (a 10th House matter). (See also Dignities.)
Direct (Lat. directus ‘straightforward’) Said of a Planet when it is moving forward in the Zodiac, or of a Direction when it is formed by rotation in the clockwise direction.
Direction (Lat. directio) The calculated rotation of a Planet or house Cusp on the Celestial Sphere. Morin uses the term to refer to what we call Primary Directions.
Dispositor (Lat. dispositor ‘disposer’) A Planet that rules the Sign that another Planet is in.
Diurnal (Lat. diurnus ‘by day’) Said of a chart in which the Sun is above the Horizon. And also said of a Planet that is of the Diurnal Sect, namely the Sun, Saturn, and Jupiter. (See Sect.)
Dodecatemorion (Grk. dôdekatêmorion ‘twelfth’) Morin’s term for a Sign of the Zodiac. Sometimes translated as Twelfth, but more usually translated as Sign.
Domicile (Lat. domus ‘house’) The Sign ruled by a Planet. It is translated this way to avoid confusion, since the Latin domus can also refer to a Celestial House. A Planet’s position in its own Domicile is a Dignity. (See also Dignities.)
Doryphory (Grk. doryphoros ‘bodyguard’) A
Planet appearing in the east before
DSC (Lat. descensus ‘the way down’) The Descendant of a chart, either the 7th House or the DSC degree.
Earth (Lat. terra or tellus) Conceived by Morin, following Tycho Brahe, as the center of the Universe. It was immovable. The Primum Caelum rotated about it, carrying along the signs of the Zodiac and the lower spheres containing the Planets. The Moon rotated about the Earth. The Sun also rotated about it, and the Planets Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn rotated about the Sun.
Ecliptic (Lat. ecliptica) The great circle on the Celestial Sphere that represents the Sun’s path. That circle is divided into the Signs of the Zodiac. (See Zodiac.)
Effect (Lat. effectus) The Action or result of a Planet’s Action.
Election (Lat. electio) A Horary Chart set for a future time chosen to be favorable for a particular undertaking. Elections are discussed in AG Book 26.
Elements (Lat. elementa) The four material elements are Fire, Earth, Air, and Water. These are characteristics of the Signs of the Zodiac.
Elemental action. The Action of a Planet as determined by its position in the Caelum.
Elemental Nature. The inherent nature of a Planet due to its physical constitution.
Equal House System The second of the classical House Systems. It divides the Ecliptic into 12 segments of 30º each beginning from the ASC Degree. It was vigorously denounced by Morin in AG Book 17 and elsewhere.
Equator (Lat. equator) The great circle on the Celestial Sphere that represents the plane of the Earth’s rotation.
Equinox (Lat. aequinox ‘equal night’) A point on the Ecliptic where it intersects with the Equator. There is a Vernal Equinox (the first point of Aries) and an Autumnal Equinox (the first point of Libra).
Essential Nature See Nature.
Ether (Lat. aether from Grk.) It was conceived to be a rare, fluid, and tenuous substance through which the Planets move. This was Kepler’s hypothesis.
Exaltation (Lat. exaltatio ‘elevation’) The sign in which a Planet’s characteristic Action is said to be increased. It is a Dignity.
Exile (Lat. exilium) The Sign opposite a Planet’s Domicile. In it the Planet’s Influence is contrary to that of its Domicile Sign. An older term for Detriment.
Extrinsic (Lat. extrinsecus) Said of Influences that are external to a particular Planet.
Face (Lat. facies) Another name for Decan (q.v.)
Fall (Lat. deiectio ‘downcast’) A sign in which a Planet’s characteristic Action is said to be hindered. It is the Sign opposite to the Sign of the Planet’s Exaltation. A Planet’s position in its Fall is a Debility.
Feral (Lat. feralis ‘wild’) Morin defines it (AG Book 16. Section II, Chapter 2) as a Planet that is neither applying nor separating from any other Planet. Morin also calls it Isolated.
Figure (Lat. figura) Another name for an astrological Chart.
Fortified A Planet is said to be Fortified when it is strengthened by its Sign or House position or by the Aspects that it receives.
Horary Chart A Chart set for the moment when someone asks a question or when an event occurred (a Chart set for a time certain). Morin says in Book 26 that these are only valid if a king asks the question.
Horizon (Lat. horizon from Grk.) The great circle on the Celestial Sphere that represents the horizontal circle visible at a particular point on Earth.
House (Lat. domus ‘house’) One of the 12 Houses of a celestial Figure. See Celestial Houses. AG Book 17 is devoted to the Astrological Houses.
House System A mathematical procedure for establishing the Cusps of the 12 Celestial Houses of an astrological Chart. Morin favored the Regiomontanus system.
Humors (Lat. humores) Four bodily fluids postulated by Hippocrates. They were Yellow Bile, Black Bile, Blood, and Phlegm. If one of these became predominant, they affected the personality of the person, and he became bilious (choleric), melancholy, sanguine, or phlegmatic. They were associated with the Four Elements: fire, earth, air, and water respectively.
Impedited (Lat. impeditus ‘hindered’) An obsolescent term describing the condition of a Planet that is Afflicted (q.v.).
Inferior things (Lat. res inferiores) Things on the surface of the Earth – humans, animals, plants, minerals, etc. (Here, the word inferior merely means lower.) AG Book 13 contains extensive lists of such things with their Planetary Rulers or Analogies under the heading Universal Rulerships.
Influence (Lat. influentia) The astrological Action of a Planet.
Influential action. The type of action of a Planet as determined by its house position.
Influential Nature. The effective nature of a Planet; that is, how it acts astrologically in a particular chart.
Intrinsic (Lat. intrinsecus) Said of natures and Influences that are characteristic of a Planet.
Isolated See Feral.
Lord (Lat. dominus) An older term for Ruler (q.v.).
Malefic (Lat. maleficus ‘evil-doing’) A Planet that produces an evil Effect. The two Malefic Planets are Saturn and Mars. Also, an Aspect that is Malefic.
MC (Lat. medium caeli ‘middle of the sky’) Abbreviation for the Midheaven, either for the 10th House itself or for the MC degree.
Morinus System The House System devised by Morin for use in the polar regions of the Earth, since the Regiomontanus System fails in those regions. He gives one example of its use, but he never used it in practice. (See AG Book 17.)
Mundane Position (Lat. in mundo) The actual position of a Planet on the Celestial Sphere taking both its Longitude and Latitude into account. Its coordinates are often stated as its Right Ascension and Declination.
Mundane Revolution of the Sun An older term for the Aries Ingress (q.v.).
Mutual Reception The relationship of two Planets, when each is in a Domicile of the other (or when each is in the Exaltation of the other).
Naibod Measure A measure of time used to equate Arcs of Direction to years, months, and days at the rate of 59′08″ per year. It is named after the 16th century mathematician Valentine Naibod. Convenient conversion tables are given in AG Book 22.
Nativity (Lat. nativitas or genesis or thema) A Natal Horoscope, usually called Nativity in the translations.
Nature (Lat. Natura) Nature (usually capitalized).
Nature (Lat. natura) The nature and Quality of a Planet that define its characteristic Action. See AG Book 13. See also Elemental Nature and Influential Nature.
Native (Lat. nativus ‘born’) The person whose Nativity is being discussed.
Nocturnal (Lat. nocturnus ‘by night’) A Chart in which the Sun is below the Horizon. It is also said of a Planet that is of the Nocturnal Sect, namely the Moon, Venus, and Mars. (See Sect.)
Obliquity of the Ecliptic (Lat. obliquitas eclipticae) The angle between the celestial Equator and the Ecliptic. It varies very slowly, but in Morin’s time it was about 23º30′.
Orb (Lat. orbis ‘circle’) The allowable deviation from exactitude of an Aspect in which the Aspect is still valid. See AG Book 16.
Parallax (Lat. parallax from Grk.) The shifting of a Planet’s Longitude and Latitude from the ephemeris positions to a Topocentric Position (q.v.). The effect on a Planet’s Longitude is less than 1 minute of arc, but the effect on the Moon’s Longitude can be as great as 1 degree of arc. Recommended by Morin, but never used by him. (See AG Book 17.)
Partile (Lat. partilis) Said of an Aspect when it has an Orb of 1 degree or less, and especially if the two degree numbers are the same.
Part of Fortune (Lat. pars fortunae ‘degree of fortune’) A calculated Significator in a chart. Morin calculates it according to Ptolemy’s rule: by day and night, subtract the Longitude of the Sun from the Longitude of the Moon and add the result to the ASC Degree.
Peregrine (Lat. peregrinus ‘foreign’) A Planet in a Sign in which it has no Dignity is said to be Peregrine.
Places (Lat. loca) Usually used for locations in the celestial Figure; sometimes simply a synonym for Celestial Houses.
Planet (Lat. Planeta from Grk.) One of the 7 moving bodies seen in the Caelum, namely the Sun, the Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. These are discussed in detail in AG Book 13.
Platic (Lat. platicus ‘wide’ from Grk.) Said of an Aspect when it is within Orb, but not partile.
Pole (Lat. polus) An auxiliary circle that is used to calculate a House Cusp in the Regiomontanus or Campanus House Systems. For the ASC it is the geographic latitude of the place. For the other house Cusps it is a diminished pseudo-latitude.
Placidus System The House System devised by the 17th century mathematician Placidus de Titus. It uses fractional semi-arcs to determine the House Cusps. Denounced by Morin, but now in common use by most Western astrologers.
Porphyry System The House System named after the 3rd century philosopher Porphyry, but actually devised a least a century earlier by the astrologer Orion. It divides the zodiacal arcs of the quadrants MC/ASC and ASC/IMC by 3. Morin denounced it.
Prepollent (Lat. praepollens ‘very powerful’) Said of a Planet that is stronger than the others being considered.
Primary Direction (Lat. directio) The rotation of the Caelum required to bring one point to the position of another point.
Prime Vertical (Lat. circulus verticalis) The great circle on the Celestial Sphere that passes through the east and west points on the Horizon and the Zenith of a particular place.
Primum Caelum (Lat. for First Sky) The outermost sphere of the Universe as conceived by early astronomers and adopted by Morin. It contains the Zodiac of twelve Signs.
Primum Mobile (Lat. for First Moving) Another name for the Primum Caelum, indicating that it was thought to be in daily motion about the Earth and to be the prime mover that caused the inner spheres to rotate.
Profection (Lat. profectio ‘going away’) The calculated motion of some point in a celestial Chart using an arbitrarily assigned motion, such as 1 degree per year. Morin rejected these because they were not based on actual astronomical motions. They are now called Symbolic Directions.
Progression (Lat. progressio ‘going forth’) Morin’s term for Profection. Note that Progression in his usage is not a synonym for Direction.
Promissor (Lat. promissor ‘promiser’) A Planet to which a Significator is directed.
Promittor Alternate spelling of Promissor.
Prorogator (Lat. prorogator ‘dispenser’) A Planet that is a Significator in a Direction, e.g. the Apheta (q.v.).
Quadripartite (Lat. Quadripartitus ‘Four-part’) The title of the Latin translation of Ptolemy’s Tetrabiblos (Greek ‘Four-book’).
Qualities (Lat. qualitates) The four Qualities of matter are heat, cold, moistness, and dryness. These Qualities are assigned to the Planets and the Signs of the Zodiac.
Radical (Lat. radicalis ‘having roots’) Pertaining to the Radix.
Radix (Lat. radix ‘root’) The Nativity or Natal Horoscope, or the original Chart.
Rational System An alternative name for the Regiomontanus System.
Regiomontanus System The House System devised by Johann Müller (called Regiomontanus in Latin), who lived in the 15th century. It divides the Equator into 12 equal segments of 30º each. It is often called The Rational System. Morin adopted it as his standard system. See Book 17. It was also used by Zoltan Mason.
Retrograde (Lat. retrogradus ‘going backward’) Said of a Planet (but not of the Sun or the Moon) when it is moving backwards through the Zodiac.
Return A modern name for Revolution (q.v.)
Revolution (Lat. revolutio) A Chart drawn for the moment when a Planet returns to its original place in the Zodiac. Nowadays usually called a Return.
Revolution of the Years of the World A Chart set for the moment each year when the Sun comes to 0 Aries. Nowadays called an Aries Ingress.
Right Ascension (Lat. ascensio recta) The distance of a point on the Equator from the Vernal Equinox. Often abbreviated as RA.
Ruler (Lat. dominus) A Planet that is the principal Significator for a particular Sign or House, which it is said to rule. In older English usually called Lord. (See also Rulership, Accidental Significators, Universal Significators, and Dispositor.)
Rulership A Planet is said to rule a Celestial House if it is the Ruler of the Sign on the Cusp of that House. If the House has one Sign on its Cusp and also a portion of another Sign is in the House, the Ruler of that other Sign is said to be a Co-ruler of the House.
Sect (Lat. secta ‘party’) There are two Sects – Diurnal and Nocturnal. The Planets are assigned to the Sects like this: the Sun, Saturn, and Jupiter belong to the Diurnal Sect, while the Moon, Venus and Mars belong to the Nocturnal Sect; Mercury is variable.
Secundum Caelum (Lat. for Second Sky) Another sphere located immediately within the Primum Caelum. It was thought to contain the Milky Way and the Fixed Stars.
Sign (Lat. signum ‘sign’) One of the twelve 30-degree divisions of the Zodiac. The Signs are discussed in detail in AG Book 14.
Sign-House System The original system of House Division devised by the Alexandrian astrologers in the 2nd century B.C. and commonly used during the classical period. It simply numbers the Signs, beginning with the ASC Sign, in the counter-clockwise directions and calls them Celestial Houses. Unknown to Morin.
Significations (Lat. significationes ‘indications’) The persons, things, or situations that are characteristic of the Action of a Planet or the nature of a Sign. Elaborate tables of the Significations of the Planets are given in AG Book 13 under the heading Universal Rulerships.
Significator (Lat. significator) A Planet or point in a Celestial Chart that signifies a particular thing. (See also Accidental Significators and Universal Significators.)
Sinister (Lat. sinister ‘left’) The direction of an Aspect to the left side as seen from the center of the Chart.
Spaces (Lat. spatia) Sometimes used as a synonym for Celestial Houses.
State (Lat. status) The condition of a Planet resulting from its location. (
Sublunar things (Lat. sublunaria) Things on the Earth. A synonym for Inferior Things (q.v.).
Substantial (Lat. substantialis) Referring to the physical Substance of a Planet.
Succedent (Lat. succedens ‘following after’) Said of Houses 2, 5, 8, and 11 because they “follow” the Angles. A position of middle strength for a Planet.
Superior Planets (Lat. Planetae superiores) The Planets Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. Here the word
Synod (Lat. synodus from Grk.) A conjunction of two Planets, especially of the Moon and the Sun.
Syzygy (Lat. syzygia from Grk.) Morin’s frequently used term for a Conjunction or Opposition of two Planets. And sometimes for a square or even a trine of those Planets.
Terms (Lat. termini) The fivefold subdivisions of the Signs that were much used by astrologers from the earliest times, but were denounced as valueless by Morin.
Topocentric Houses A 20th century House System. It is similar to the Placidus System in moderate latitudes. It was the favorite system of Gerhard Houwing.
Topocentric Positions Planetary positions as they would appear at a particular point on the Earth’s surface. They are affected by Parallax (q.v.), which causes a shift in the Planet’s Longitude and Latitude from the ephemeris positions, which are calculated for the center of the Earth. In AG Book 17, Morin says that the Topocentric Positions should be used, but he never followed his own advice.
Transits (Lat. transitus ‘passages across’) The passages of Planets at a later date over Radix positions in a particular Chart. These are sometimes significant. See the discussion in AG Book 24.
Trigon (Lat. trigonum ‘triangle’ from Grk.) Morin’s usual term for Triplicity (q.v.).
Triplicity (Lat. triplicitas ‘three-fold’) A set of three Signs of the same Element, or a set of three Celestial Houses that form a triangle in a Chart – such as the ASC, the 5th, and the 9th. Being in a Triplicity of Signs is a minor Dignity for a Planet.
Twelfth (Lat. dodecatemorion from Grk.) Frequently used by Morin as a name for a Sign of the Zodiac. Usually translated as Sign to avoid confusion with the 2½ degree subdivisions that are twelfths of the Signs.
Unfavorable Houses Houses 6, 8, and 12 are considered to be Unfavorable Houses because they rule servitude, death, and illness.
Universal Constitution (Lat. constitutio universalis) A configuration of significance for Mundane Astrology, e.g. An Aries Ingress, the Chart of an Eclipse, etc.
Universal Rulerships (Lat. ) Things that are ruled or signified by the Planets. Extensive tables of these Rulerships are given in AG Book 13.
Universal Significators (Lat. significator universalis) Planetary Significators that in standard astrology are supposed to be valid in any chart, such as the Sun (or Saturn) for the father, Venus for love and the wife, etc. These have been commonly used by most astrologers from the earliest times, but Morin calls them Analogies and denies that they are the primary Significators in a specific horoscope. (See also Accidental Significators.)
Vernal Equinox A point where the Ecliptic intersects the Equator. It is the first point of the Sign Aries. (See Equinox.)
Virtue (Lat. virtus) The characteristic strength and nature of a Planet.
Void of Course (Lat. vacuus cursu) Said of a Planet that applies to no other Planet within its orbs (even with one in one sign and the other in the next sign).
Zenith (Lat. zenith from Arabic) The point on the Celestial Sphere that is directly overhead at a particular spot on the Earth’s surface.
Zodiac (Lat. zodiacus from Grk.) The circle of twelve Signs that are located on the Ecliptic.
Zodiacal Position (Lat. in zodiaco) The position of a Planet referred to the Zodiac. Its coordinates are its Celestial Longitude and Latitude. In discussing Primary Directions, the position of a Planet in zodiaco is construed to mean its zodiacal position without latitude.
© 2009 James H. Holden
Updated: January 4, 2009
Republished with the permission of the American Federation of Astrologers and the translator. Visit the AFA's website for other astrological texts by Morin
1. This Glossary is in progress. Additional terms will be added from time to time.
2. The definitions in this Glossary refer
specifically to the English translations of Morin’s Astrologia Gallica. And I
would like to acknowledge the assistance of Bette Starr of
3. Morin was a devout Roman Catholic, so he was reluctant to embrace any theory that seemed to conflict with the Bible. For this reason, he adopted Tycho Brahe’s concept of the central position and immovability of the Earth, rejecting Copernicus’s concept of the Sun as the center of the solar system. Morin also retained the old theories about matter; hence, he speaks of the four elements and the four qualities. From a modern point of view, the elements earth, air, and water can be considered as types of matter – namely solid, gas, and liquid – while the element fire can be considered as a transient quality, since it can be the combustion of one of the three types of matter. And the four qualities are also conditions of matter.
4. It is sometimes asked why the orientation of an astrological chart is reversed to the orientation of geographical maps. That is, why is the left side of a chart east, while the left side of a map is west, etc. The reason is that the Alexandrian astrologers, who invented horoscopic astrology in the 2nd century B.C., drew the astrological chart the way geographic maps were drawn in their day, with east on the left, south at the top, etc. It was Claudius Ptolemy in the 2nd century A.D. who reversed that orientation and drew his maps with west on the left and north at the top, the way they are still drawn today. So, it is the maps that have changed their orientation, not the astrological charts.
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