Jun 3, 2020

Astro-Notes: the Personality of Edouard Manet


Astro-Notes on Edouard Manet: A genius (Sun Aquarius) in Art (Libra Moon)

by Jude Cowell

As you know, it's common in Natal Astrology that studying the natal horoscopes of long-ago figures, no matter how prominent, is frustrated by the fact that no exact birth time is known and often 'noon' is chosen to set up their charts but without the input of a correct Ascendant (Self) and Midheaven (The Goal). Plus, knowing a correct birth time allows the placement of natal planets in their houses (departments of life) so obviously, these two chart angles are important for gaining a fuller picture of the native.

Well, fortunately, this is not an issue with the natal horoscope of the artist many historians have called, "the first modern painter," Edouard Manet for his birth data is rated AA for accuracy! Follow the link for a view of his natal chart if you wish but a few details are included below concerning Manet's double Air Sun Aquarius-Moon Libra personality blend. Now many moons ago when I attended art school in Atlanta, Georgia, Manet was a favorite artist of mine so this post is a labor of love and curiosity!

Edouard Manet born January 23, 1832 7:00 pm LMT Paris, France to a prominent family and under the influence of Sun Aquarius-Moon Libra, an intellectual, cultured, and independent blend of energies (Saturn-Uranus; Venus). In fact, this blend's airiness can tend the native toward an overly abstract approach to life, if not to Art. As you know, Manet has been termed "the first modern painter" and counted several Impressionist painters among his friends. Developing the all prima painting technique ('all at once' - wet layers of paint applied upon wet layers), Manet is also known as "a genius of modern art" which can be seen by his Sun and Uranus in Aquarius! His "innovative realist" style of painting is identifiable via his Aquarian Uranus, the genius and innovator, and natal Saturn, planet of realism, in the practical workaholic sign of Mercury-ruled Virgo.

For as you know, Uranian genius needs a Saturnian vessel to pour into otherwise ideas remain without practical application in the real world and expression of this ability depends upon the aspect between the two planets. In Manet's natal chart we find a Saturn-Uranus inconjunct which suggests a resistance to change so it took some attitude adjustments before he could adopt new techniques in his work. Plus, this inconjunct can lead to conflict in relationships as well and hints that others could 'see' or appreciate his talents more clearly than he could - at least early on in his career.

And regretfully I must add that a Saturn-Uranus inconjunct (or, quincunx; 150 degrees) can denote the development of arthritis and/or a "sudden loss of limbs/amputation" (Ebertin) - and Manet suffered both!

For on August 30, 1883, at age 51, he died from rheumatism and untreated syphilis contracted during his 40s (natal Moon conjunct Lilith, the seductress). Sadly his final years were spent partially paralyzed and, as we can see from his age at death (51), Manet's Chiron in Taurus (in Astrology the Christ archetype of the Wounded Healer, often depicted as lame) may have been involved since he expired only 11 days after his left foot was amputated due to gangrene.

Further more, it's worth noting that the orbit of centaur Chiron (approximately 50 years in duration) passes between the orbits of planets Saturn and Uranus which symbolically forms a bridge between our earthly and spiritual natures!

And this creates an uplifting note on which to close this astro-tribute to one of my favorite artists of all time, and provides a chance for me to say, May Edouard Manet R.I.P.


For more information, here are biographical notes on Edouard Manet including a few views of his paintings, plus, the Royal Academy of Arts recently published an don't-miss video presentation of Manet: Portraying Life.

May 5, 2020

David Hamblin's The Spirit of Numbers

May 5, 2020: Here's master astrologer David Cochrane (see his videos in the sidebar) in 2016 sharing with us The Spirit of Numbers, a book on the topic of Harmonics in Astrology authored by David Hamblin which reveals his latest research in this fascinating branch of Astrology.

And as you know, David Hamblin's previous book Harmonic Charts: A New Dimension in Astrology, first published in 1983, is a classic:

And here, in his own words, David Hamblin explains that he has reached conclusions about the "spirit' of numbers up to 31!

Feb 27, 2020

Heredity, Environment, and Character as Destiny: Alan Leo

February 27, 2020: You know how 'they' say that character is destiny and how Astrology says that how we begin is how we end? Well, here are some interesting notes quoted from The Progressed Horoscope by 'the father of modern astrology' Alan Leo (1860--1917) on the soulful issues of heredity, environment, and character as destiny--all of which can be determined through astrological principles:

"Heredity supplies the vessel,--pure or impure according to past causes in previous lives,--by an affinity of physical particles, like attracting like.

Environment gives conditions in which expression may be made of the latent qualities inherent in the soul, and it harmonises with the actual needs and requirements of the soul in order that the latter may obtain its freedom from the fate of other previous lives by paying off old debts it has incurred and by developing those traits of character for the lack of which the continued evolution of the soul, at the point then reached, would be delayed.

Character is that inherent quality of the soul which it brings with it as a asset , and is the 'root of merit' through which it is either susceptible and conformable to the environment, or rises above and dominates, alters or changes it.

In this sense Character becomes Destiny." - Alan Leo.

Perhaps here I should state that yours truly is a Saturnian astrologer so to me, "past lives" always refers to the DNA found in natal charts - to our ancestors and their "old debts" and issues handled well or poorly during their lifetimes and passed down through the generations as our inherited traits and issues which we can either flub, or deal with successfully (which leads to karmic progress). Also, my belief is that when our Creator breathed the breathe of Life into His creations "man became a living soul" (KJV) - not that we 'have' a soul that can 'bargained with' - but that we are souls! Therefore, in many instances when authors refer to 'the soul', I take it to mean the spirit for we are souls (persons) gifted with the Spirit of Life which, at death, "returns to God who gave it." Now you may disagree as you wish, but there it is!

For the curious, here's a view of the B-rated natal horoscope of Alan Leo (nee William Frederick Allan) born August 7, 1860 5:49 am GMT Westminster, England (chart also seen, below) with Sun, Mercury Rx, Jupiter, South Node, Saturn (rising), and Ascendant in Leo, and Midheaven ('MC') in wealth-loving Taurus conjunct his 9th house Pluto in Taurus ('the urge to acquire'--Ebertin). A different birth time is available as well--6:10 am GMT with 00Virgo rising which makes his 12th house Mercury in Leo his chart-ruler rather than his Leo Sun (at 5:49 am = ASC 27Leo03 with Saturn upon it--see chart, below).

Either way, royal Regulus rises with Saturn, ruler of Astrology, and his 5th house Mars @20Capricorn (a critical degree) is Rx, out-of-bounds (acting out of the mainstream: Astrology as a profession!), and leads a Locomotive shape of his planets suggesting a ruthless, high-powered executive determined on success, particularly during his Mars stage of life (25 to 35 years of age or so). Born during a Disseminating lunar phase, Alan Leo tended to spread information to the world through writings and consultations.

Dual Image: lower left, Alan Leo Natal Horoscope (5:49 am GMT); upper right, the same natal chart progressed to the date, hour, and location of his death; please enlarge the image to read my messily scribbled study notes:

Also we may wish to consider the Prenatal Solar Eclipse Saros Series ('PE') that Alan Leo was born into, the 6 South which for him perfected on July 18, 1860 @26Can05 in natal 11th house of Group Associations. A PE in Moon-ruled Cancer suggests karmic family ties, imagination, sensitivity, receptivity, and possibly psychism--and reveals that emotional extremes can block karmic progress (R. Lineman). 6 South themes are: 'manic energy; being forceful and taking power; great force or strength manifesting in relationships; sudden events may occur; exerting huge effort in some group activity' (paraphrasing Brady's Predictive Astrology).

Credited with the concept of 'destiny is character', death arrived for Alan Leo, the legendary astrologer and Theosophist, on August 30, 1917 at 10:00 am GMT, Bude, England. And curiously, as you see in his SP chart, above, there are midpoint pictures in the chart but there are no aspects between his SP planets at all, may he R.I.P., for his work on Earth is done.

Feb 23, 2020

Mars-Nemesis and Dorothy Kilgallen


As a young but avid TV viewer in the mid-1950s onward, I remember reporter and TV show panelist Dorothy Kilgallen but it was only years later that I discovered her death had been ruled a suicide from a mixture of alcohol and barbituates. Looking back on the 1960s at this late date, the circumstances of Miss Kilgallen's demise seem suspect due to the criminal cases she reported on including the assassination of John F. Kennedy, who was her friend.

Now for the curious, a view of her natal horoscope is available but with no known birth hour (noon is shown), plus, a rectified hour of 9:18 pm CST (by Starkman) is noted (ASC 15AQ59; MC 5Sag18).

Born in Chicago, Illinois on July 3, 1913, Dorothy Kilgallen's natal Sun (11Can10 at noon with ASC 10Lib35; MC 12Can25 which positions her natal Jupiter Rx at IC) was paired by either a Gemini Moon or a Cancer Moon. Now Gemini, sign of the writer, seems appropriate to me yet both the noon and 9:18 pm horoscopes show natal Moon in its own sign of Cancer.

And if born during a Balsamic lunar phase (just prior to a New Moon), Miss Kilgallen may have been something of a prophet which would resonate with her Prenatal Solar Eclipse Saros Series ('PE') in Aries--in 1913 the 5 North, which gifts its natives with prophetic insights, correct hunches which may be reliably acted upon, and flashes of intuition. A useful talent for an intrepid reporter and journalist but one which may very well have contributed to the tragic death of The Reporter who Knew Too Much. Additionally, people born under the influence of an Aries solar eclipse are not easily intimidated and tend to confront issues and people directly and fearlessly. Unfortunately, for a lady delving into the activities of organized crime figures and/or other criminals (ex: assassins), such courage may lead to unintended consequences.

For on the afternoon of November 8, 1965, the day the lady's remains were discovered in her Manhattan condominium, the Moon in Taurus conjoined her natal Mars (12Tau07) and her natal Nemesis (12Tau04). As you know, malevolent Mars-Nemesis is a dangerous combination of energies and on that day perhaps the Moon acted as a timing agent (3:42 pm est NYC with her natal Jupiter Rx at MC, often an angular factor in death horoscopes--although she must have died at some earlier point). Plus, Taurus rules the throat and can signify the ceasing of one's voice in a death chart. Significant? My suspicion is that it very well may be, yet without accurate birth and death hours to go on, that's all I can say about her Mars-Nemesis combination at the present moment.

However, at least one book written about Dorothy Kilgallen reveals that she was found "in the morning" so in my files I have included a horoscope for November 8, 1965 at 9:24:42 am est NYC--only because this moment is "in the morning" and places her noon birth chart's Ascendant (ASC = physical body) @10Lib35:27 at Midheaven ('MC'), the most visible point in any horoscope. Of course, this hour creates yet another speculative horoscope to work with, however, I recommend the chart to you if you're interested in this particular tragic event whether an 'accidental overdose' or not.

In closing, I'll add that the PE prior to her death perfected on May 30, 1965 @9Gem13 in the 3 North Saros Series with themes of 'news that transforms a situation and causes worry or obsession' (paraphrasing Brady's Predictive Astrology). Sounds about right for a very curious lady communicator during the crime-laden 1960s who was known to be a bulldog-with-a-bone type of newspaper reporter. The daughter of a reporter, Miss Kilgallen would not let go of a story and may have discovered new information concerning one of the crimes she was investigating for a book she intended to write. Needless to say, the book did not get written.

And so if you, dear reader, are aware of any details concerning this tragic matter which some would call a 'cold case', or have studied the horoscopes yourself, please let me know your thoughts either in an on-topic comment with this post, or at my contact address judecowell at gmail dot com.

Naturally, confidentiality is assured and remember - your Shares of my posts are always much appreciated! jc

Update March 1, 2020: here's a PDF of a recent letter from author and Kilgallen advocate Mark Shaw on the topic of opening the Kilgallen murder case--not re-opening the case because there wasn't one whe there should have been. I hope you can open the document and read it. jc

Feb 14, 2020

Horoscope: St. Valentines Day Massacre

February 14, 2020

A Bullet-Riddled Historical Horoscope: Capone vs Moran 1929

If you'd been there in a certain Lincoln Park garage the morning of February 14, 1929, say about 10:30 am, you could have witnessed the infamous Valentines Day Massacre. Chicago mobster Al Capone was and is assumed to have been the perpetrator against Bugs Moran, head of Chicago's North Side Gang, but Bugs had retreated from approaching the garage when he spied police officers entering the building. Yes, some of the culprits were only disguised as police officers (see Neptune, planet of disguises, in the chart, below) but Bugs Moran managed to escape Capone's machine guns that day by ducking into a coffee shop.

Al Capone: Sun Capricorn-Moon Aries, a Mars-Saturn combo

The natal horoscope of Alphonse Capone is quite interesting if you care to take a look. Born January 17, 1899 at 9:30 am est in Brooklyn, NY (King's County; RR: C), the 1929 Massacre's gun-toting Mars (@22Gem53 conjunct US natal Mars) conjoined Capone's natal Neptune suggesting a period when his physical efforts were undermined by deception and/or confusion - or, he missed his target--in this case, he missed killing Bugs Moran, the Prohibition gangster who first came up with the bright idea of drive-by shootings. (A 'bright' idea America could've done without.)

In addition, Al Capone's natal Saturn (19Sag27) conjoined the 8th cusp in the 1929 chart, and as you know the 8th is the house of Death. Then there's Al's natal Mars Rx @29Can16, a critical-crisis 29th degree, which conjoined the Massacre's 10:30 am IC of Endings and the Basis of the Matter. From these transits and other chart indicators too numerous to mention in a brief post, I'd say that suspecting that Al Capone was responsible for the murders makes more than a little sense. And under the influence of his Mars-Saturn personality blend, we know that this frustrated planetary pair contains destructive energies unless channeled into positive pursuits. Unfortunately, Alphonse did not use the energies positively.

So is it curious that disruptive, shocking Uranus @5Taurus conjuncts the 12th cusp of Karma and Self-Undoing at 10:30 am? This makes me wonder if at some point, someone involved in this heinous crime uttered the immortal words, they had it coming.

In the End: Al Capone died of a cerebral hemorrhage on January 25, 1947 at 7:25 pm in Miami, FL; George 'Bugs' Moran died of lung cancer on February 25, 1957 in Leavenworth Prison, Kansas, and is buried there.

An Image of Crime Family Quarrels and Conflicts circa 1929

So as you see in the chart, vicious Algol of Medusa fame, star of rage and fury, rises with the karmic North Node, and karmic planet Saturn @28Sag12 in the 8th house leads a Locomotive shape of the planets which denotes a ruthless executive demanding success. Plus, a high-flying Kite pattern is evident with disguising Neptune at a critical-crisis degree - planet of deception, fraud, and lies, acts as the 'tail' of the Kite with the Sun (25AQ31) as its 'nose' - success (Kite) through tricks and deceit (Sun opposing Neptune). Plus, the Sun shines upon Tisiphone, asteroid of retaliation and although I don't know the full history of the Capone-Moran relationship, my suspicion is that the 1929 Massacre must have been part of an ongoing gang war for power and control--see Cupido ('The Family'; 'The Syndicate') conjunct South Node and Descendant; Sun-Pluto = Jupiter: urge to expand and acquire wealth, and successful striving for power; Moon-Mars = ASC: establishing rights or privileges within The Family, and taking over leadership; Uranus-Pluto = North Node: an immense task accomplished with others--Ebertin).

Also notable is chart-ruler Venus @12Ari07 but the planet of jealousy and revenge makes no applying Ptolemaic aspects in the chart so her sign (Mars-ruled Aries) and house (Behind-the-Scenes 12th) denote how things proceeded. My guess: revenge taken in a behind-the-scenes location with Venus at the critical-crisis degree of 12 Aries.

Virgo-Pisces: the Victim-Savior Polarity

So there's Icarus @7Pis47, asteroid of assassination and/or of 'flying too high' which is karmically intercepted in the 11th house of Groups; meanwhile, in the 6th house of Work and Service (murders in a garage or warehouse, a mechanic working on a truck was killed, plus 6 more) the Massacre's PE (Prenatal Solar Eclipse Saros Series), the 2 South, indicates a theme of 'joining a new group that offers a better deal' (Brady).

And so my question has to be: was it an offer that couldn't be refused?

Jan 29, 2020

Astro-Notes: First Lady Louisa Adams


There she is, our quite neglected First Lady Louisa Catherine Adams (nee Johnson), spouse of President John Quincy Adams in the famous portrait by Charles Bird King. As you know, Louisa Johnson married John Quincy Adams, son of Founding Father John Adams, so rarefied social and political circles, both foreign and domestic, were her due. She served as First Lady while her husband was in office from March 4, 1825 until March 4, 1829, a one-term president. However, Mr. Adams served in other governmental positions including the US House of Representatives from 1830 to 1848.

Now one curious item in relation to Louisa is revealed in her own writings, via an entry for 9 February 1821, "One of the greatest taxes I have to pay is that of concealing that I am a travelled lady." This revelation opens the book A Travelled First Lady: Louisa Catherine Adams yet her troubled sentiment seems quite antiquated nowadays, doesn't it? Why would it matter? Well, Louisa was the first first lady born outside the US and with a US presidency involved, questions concerning the topic of a foreign first lady must have circulated around Washington DC as gossip, there, if nowhere else. She apparently considered Washington to be provincial, an attitude she may have shown in all the inconvenient places! And yet her salon was often full of very important guests. As a world traveler, she would naturally consider the young city of the 1800s to be provincial, perhaps even a 'backwater'.

See What Did Washington DC Look Like in 1825?

So for fun, let's briefly examine a noon natal horoscope for First Lady Louisa Adams to check for any travel-related clues in the planetary department and we may stumble upon her known propensity toward illness, migraines, and fainting spells while we're at it.

Her birth hour unknown, below is the 'noon' natal horoscope of Louisa Catherine (Johnson) Adams set for February 12, 1775 NS London, England; please enlarge the chart if you entertain any hope of being able to read my scribbled study notes; the Moon remained in subjective Cancer for the 24 hours of her birth date:

Since we have no known birth time, house cusps, houses, and chart Angles will not be used, only planets and their conditions. First we cannot fail to see that marked upon the chart are several references to illness. Moon represents the physical body, emotions and feelings, and of course we know these days of the mind-body connection with emotional shocks, difficulties, and torment affecting one's health (ex: adrenal exhaustion). Asteroid of health and hygiene, Hygeia, is prominent for its conjunction with Uranus, planet of sudden shocks. Loss of babies and children was a major issue of her era--no less traumatic now, but we're talking about Louisa who bore a child in 1811 and lost the baby in 1812. In her chart we see the conjunction of two asteroids of melancholy, Orpheus and Niobe (the grieving partner, and grieving mother in saddened Pisces).

Then there's the YOD pattern (penned on the chart, upper right) which can suggest health issues and/or crisis or turning point. Yet with the fast-moving Moon involved, we may wish to discount the midpoint picture the YOD provides but I list it here anyway for your consideration:

Moon-Neptune (a weak or feeble woman) = Sun (vitality; life force--Ebertin) with potentials for: 'a delicate and sensitive physique; illusions and deceptions' (Ebertin). Also affecting her health and constitution, Louisa Adams' Prenatal Solar Eclipse ('PE') @13Vir28--in Virgo, sign of Health--denotes medical conditions that may be rooted in the past (R. Lineman). On the chart (lower left) I penned, 'genetic? from Mother?' 'Mother' because the eclipse is in feminine sign Virgo, ruled by thinking Mercury which can become over-stimulated with anxiety and worry. Here I should add that Uranus and Hygeia in late Taurus conjoin one of the Dark Moons (W'Mat2, a hypothetical point, if memory serves) which to me suggest a tendency toward depression. My suspicion is that sudden shocks via electrical, unpredictable Uranus had something to do with her debilitating conditions--falling into a faint, nervous irritation, and other physical expressions.

A last mention in the realm of poor health has to be how Louisa's PE is snugged between a health-related pairing, Mars and Neptune, which together can lead to contagion and infection--here in Virgo that, along with its opposite sign of Pisces, forms the victim-savior axis.

It's revealing to note that there are two midpoint pictures with weakening Neptune as apex planet:

Mars-Saturn (health threat; muscle paralysis; craving for drugs; sick people) = undermining Neptune: 'weakness; self-torment; a grave loss' (Ebertin). Plus, Saturn (skeletal system, skin, loss, death, etc)-North Node (direction; destiny) = eroding Neptune: 'feeling neglected, misunderstood, or lonely' (she did!); 'emotional suffering through deception, falsehood, fraud, separation, or illness' (Ebertin again). Together the Saturn-NN pair denotes potentials for isolation, disadvantages through others; teamwork that becomes more difficult in time; relationship inhibitions; and/or death of blood kindred.

As for Louisa's life of foreign travel, I spy only her Sun and speedy Mercury (the traveler) in Aquarius, a sign which tends toward restlessness and a widened world view. Perhaps you see more travel implications (Jupiter and Uranus are both in fixed Taurus with a 19-degree orb) and if so, feel free to leave your on-topic comments with this post, and please Share if you Care for it will encourage more JCAstro posts. Thanks! jc

Jan 22, 2020

Top Things to Expect from a Saturn Return - The Scottish Astrologer

With karmic Saturn, the lesson-bringing planet of authenticity, authority, maturity, accountability, and wisdom so active and strong in its own sign of Capricorn these days, I suspect a JCAstro reader or two may wish to check out The Scottish Astrologer's presentation, Top Things to Expect from a Saturn Return!