Libra (astrology)

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Zodiac symbol Scales
Duration (tropical, western) September 23 – October 23 (2018, UT1)[1]
Constellation Libra
Zodiac element Air
Zodiac quality Cardinal
Sign ruler Venus, Eris* (minor planet rulerships are questionable)
Detriment Mars, Pluto (rare)
Exaltation Saturn
Fall Sun

Libra (♎) is the seventh astrological sign in the Zodiac. It spans the 180–210th degree of the zodiac, between 180 and 207.25 degree of celestial longitude. Under the tropical zodiac, Sun transits this area on average between (northern autumnal equinox) September 23 and October 22, and under the sidereal zodiac, the sun currently transits the constellation of Libra from approximately October 16 to November 17.[2][3] The symbol of the scales is based on the Scales of Justice held by Themis, the Greek personification of divine law and custom.[4] She became the inspiration for modern depictions of Lady Justice. The ruling planet of Libra is Venus.[5][6] Libra is the only zodiac constellation in the sky represented by an inanimate object. The other eleven signs are represented either as an animal or mythological characters throughout history.[7]

Libra is one of the three zodiac air signs, the others being Gemini and Aquarius. The sign of Libra is symbolized by the scales. According to the Romans in the First Century, Libra was a constellation they idolized. The moon was said to be in Libra when Rome was founded. Everything was balanced under this righteous sign. The Roman writer Manilius once said that Libra was the sign "in which the seasons are balanced". Both the hours of the day and the hours of the night match each other. Thus why the Romans put so much trust in the "balanced sign".[7] Going back to ancient Greek times, Libra the constellation between Virgo and Scorpio used to be over ruled by the constellation of Scorpio. They called the area the Latin word "chelae", which translated to "the claws" which can help identify the individual stars that make up the full constellation of Libra, since it was so closely identified with the Scorpion constellation in the sky.[7]

According to the Tropical system of astrology, the Sun enters the sign of Libra when it reaches the southern vernal equinox, which occurs around September 22.



Works cited

  • Astronomical Applications Department (2011). Multiyear Computer Interactive Almanac. 2.2.2. Washington DC: US Naval Observatory.  Longitude of Sun, apparent geocentric ecliptic of date, interpolated to find time of crossing 0°, 30°....
  • Atsma, Aaron J. (c. 2015). "Themis: Greek Titan goddess of divine-law, custom & prophecy". Retrieved February 6, 2015. 
  • "The Constellations IAU". The International Astronomical Union (IAU). 2010. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  • "Geocentric Positions of Major Solar System Objects and Bright Stars". United States Naval Observatory. 2015. Retrieved April 3, 2016. 
  • "Horoscopes, Tarot, Psychic Readings". Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. Retrieved August 4, 2015. 
  • "Libra Nature - Libra Ruling Planet". 2015. Retrieved August 4, 2015. 
  • "My Libra Profile". 2016. Retrieved April 14, 2016. 
  • Ridpath, Ian (n.d.). "Star Tales – Libra". Retrieved March 8, 2016. 

External links

  • Warburg Institute Iconographic Database (over 300 medieval and early modern images of Libra)
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