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The 12 Astrology Houses:

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The First House

Second House


Third House

1. Planets: the actual energies, the What: go to the 10 planets in 12 planetary houses.

Fourth House

2. Signs: the type of energy a planet has at its disposal, or needs, for proper functioning.
    Signs qualify or color the energy of planet(s) in them: go to the 12 signs here.

Fifth House

Sixth  House

3. Houses: where in your life a planet's energy operates or is released; the particular
    arenas/circumstances a planet operates in: go to the 12 houses to the left.

Seventh House

12 astrology houses: eighth house text glyph


Ninth House

Tenth House

Use the links to the left to visit your houses. Below you'll be introduced to the houses
as a whole. Houses are more individually significant to each person than are the signs.

Eleventh House

Twelfth House


12 astrology houses small celestial sphere by author

        Above is a 3D astrological chart: a rotating celestial sphere. The sphere with stars and the the zodiac on it is the sky. The more familiar 2D chart is a cross section of this sphere sliced through the zodiac. The houses (1-12 above) begin at their clockwise border (cusp) and extend counter-clockwise to the next house cusp. The 12 houses arise by first quartering the local sky with the "The local horizon plane" and that "Meridian plane" that passes through the local zenith (the vertical brown-labeled plane above). If each of the resulting quarters is then trisected, 12 houses result.

        There are many ways, known as house systems, to trisect these quarters of the local sky. Named after medieval monks and others, some are the Ptolemy/Equal, Porphyry, Neo-Porphyry, Regiomontanus, Meridian, Koch, Campanus, Placidus, Alcabitius, Morinus, Zariel and Topocentric house systems. Placidus is the most popular due to an historical serendipity in its publishing, not to any intrinsic virtue. This book uses the Campanus house system that trisects the quarters of the local sky spatially as shown above, as opposed to trisecting the time it takes a planet or other ecliptic point to go from the horizon to the midheaven, known as "culminating."

        For the rest of this discussion we will also use the second picture of the model shown below; it's not as pretty, but it has more colors and labels. In the Campanus house system the quarters of the local sky are trisected by planes (whose edges are accentuated with colors below) perpendicular to the prime vertical. (The bottom half of the prime vertical is visible in the upper and labeled in the lower photograph "holding up" the horizon plane and is parallel to the surface of this page.) Each house begins at an intersection of the ecliptic and one of those planes with colored edges that emerge out of the page. The beginnings (or cusps) of the angles—the first (ascendant), tenth (midheaven), seventh (descendant, and fourth (nadir) house cusps—are labeled below. Remember, the house cusps are the points where these 6 planes intersect the zodiac/ecliptic, for it is only on the zodiac/ecliptic that the planets travel.


Table-top Celestial Sphere 2nd version

        The planets move through the signs under their own steam at differing rates, but due to the Earth’s rotation they move through all 12 houses every day. This is why one’s birth time is so important. Every four minutes each house cusp moves to the next degree of the zodiac. After two hours all 12 house cusps will be in the next sign, causing each planet to be in the preceding house (the houses are numbered in a counter-clockwise direction). The time and place of birth individuates, or distinguishes, one human being from another by this unique, continually rotating 12-fold framework known as the houses.

        Houses represent the Earth in a horoscope. House numbers increase in a counter-clockwise direction in an astrological chart. The influence of a house is much stronger at its beginning (the clockwise side of its sector known as its “cusp”) than at its end (its counter-clockwise border). In fact, a house’s influence extends backwards into the preceding house. This extended domain of influence just preceding a house is called its “dark side,” and is most pronounced just before the first, fourth, seventh and tenth house cusps (the angles) where the zodiac intersects the horizon and local meridian (see “ dark side” and “angles” in glossary).

        Imagine the Earth oriented in space with you on the top. An infinite flat surface balanced on top of the Earth right where you are is your horizon plane. As it extends out into space, some planets and stars are above it, and some are below. Since your distance to the planets is millions (and to the stars trillions) of times greater than your distance to the center of the Earth, your horizon plane would intersect essentially the same planets and stars if it passed through the Earth’s center instead of through you on the surface. This relocated horizon plane, parallel to the original but passing through the Earth's center, intersects the path of the planets (ecliptic/zodiac) to your east at your first house cusp, or ascendant. It intersects the ecliptic/zodiac to your west at your seventh house cusp, or descendant.

        The plane passing through your zenith and the North Pole perpendicular to your horizon is your meridian plane, brown and purple-edged in the photo above. It intersects the ecliptic directly above you at your 10th house cusp, or midheaven, and directly beneath you at your 4th house cusp, or nadir (see those intersection points in the photo above). The horizon and meridian planes quarter the sky and intersect in your horizon’s north-south line. The intersection points of the ecliptic with your horizon and meridian planes and the four additional planes through that N-S line that trisect those quarters are your 12 house cusps.

        An important difference between signs and houses is that, precession aside (pages 42–44), the signs are relatively fixed to the stars. The houses, however, are a framework fixed to each person’s particular location on Earth. The scaffolding of the 12 houses constructed on each locality’s horizon intersects the sky in a unique manner for every location on Earth. And as the Earth rotates, everyone’s eastern horizon or Ascendant sweeps through one sign every two hours, and through the entire zodiac every day. And the whole framework of the houses sweeps through the entire zodiac once a day as well.

        This Twelve Astrology Houses page and much of this 550-page website are excerpted from the personalized Fine Art Book You and the Universe.


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Home page for the 12 houses with 3-D models & links table

Pages 2 and 3 from your Astrology Reading in the Fine Art Book You and the Universe





personalized, fine art astrology book covers  

Covers for the personalized Fine Art Book You and the Universe.







© Carl Woebcke: Twelve Astrology Houses in your Astrology Book, 1991-2014. All rights reserved.