One of the most important of the five essential dignities of a planet. Each of the seven traditional planets has its exaltation in one zodiac sign. Historically, some specific degrees have been recorded for each planet in its sign of exaltation, but exaltation is generally held to extend throughout the sign.
Ezra, Abraham ibn - astrologer (a.k.a. Avenezra: c.1092-1167)
Born in Spain, Ezra spent much of his life travelling, including visits to Egypt, Baghdad, Rome, and London. A Jew, he wrote a series of astrological texts In Hebrew which together offer a comprehensive treatment of its various branches. Principum Sapientiae (L: ‘Beginning of Wisdom’) is his ‘Introduction’ and the best known of his works. It was translated into English in 1939, and more recently by Meira B. Epstein (1998). Epstein has an ongoing project to translate further works. Several texts, including Ezra’s Book of Interrogations, which specifically details the principles of horary astrology, have also been made available in English translation by the respected Jewish scholar Shlomo Sela.
Also known as ‘decans’; divisions of the signs into
10° sections, each of which is governed by one of the traditional planets. These appear to be based upon the Egyptian division of
the year into 36 ten-day periods, each presided over by a particular stellar
deity. The 4th century astrologer Firmicus Maternus is among many who placed
great emphasis on their use, saying that a planet in its own decan is as good
as in its own sign. Like Manilius before him, he attributed decan rulership to
the signs of the zodiac, but most authors, including Ptolemy, gave them to the
planets in descending order towards the earth, (i.e., Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, Moon). Their order reflects planetary
rulership over the days of the week.
A planet is in fall when placed in the sign opposite to its sign of exaltation.
The signs of the water triplicity: Cancer, Scorpio and
Pisces, defined as fruitful because of their moist influence which is conducive
to fertility. Unless afflicted, they
show (amongst other things) a propensity for large
families, many children or easy pregnancy. Scorpio is the least promising in
this regard because where it is afflicted it can indicate many pregnancies that
Five degree orb for house cusps
Many traditional authorities claim that a planet
within 5 degree of a house cusp should be considered to have its influence
within that house. For example, if Mars is at 3° Taurus, and the 2nd
house cusp at 7° Taurus, Mars would be considered an essentially ‘3rd
Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius.
See ‘benefic planets’.
Where two significators are applying towards conjunction, but before it perfects the slower planet has already caught up with and perfected a conjunction with another planet. This third planet can interfere with the promise of the contact between the two significators.
In this example, the Sun strains to meet with Mars but is frustrated