The Evening Star hemicycle of Venus begins at the superior conjunction
of Venus and the Sun, while Venus is moving at or near its maximum velocity. In the Venus cycle, the superior conjunction corresponds to the opposition and the Full Moon. It is a moment of fulfillment of Venusian values and goals - or the beginning of a realization of failure to integrate new Venusian qualities into the fabric of personality. In the first instance, the second half of the Venus cycle symbolizes the distillation of meaning and purpose from prior experience. In the latter instance, the cycle tends to become a closed circuit of devolution, repeating past failures and shortcomings. But inevitably there is both partial success and partial failure, a blend of the two.
If your natal chart features Venus Hesperus Direct, your feeling nature tends to be mature and outwardly reserved. Yet in spite of your tendency to withhold public displays of emotion, you may be emotionally intense under the surface, and even explosively expressive in your private life. In another sense, while Venus Lucifer denotes an outgoing emotional nature, Venus Hesperus suggests a more deliberate and reflective emotional nature that tends to feel after the act
Venus Evening Star direct people are guided by the distillation of experience and a highly refined and often elaborate set of guiding values, ideals and goals. They take in the big picture and base their judgements and plans on personal and historical precedents
. They are more given to formulating and executing long-term plans with deferred incentives and rewards than Venus Morning Star types, who tend to let their immediate feelings, emotions and desires guide the way.
Venus Evening Star direct types are inclined to evaluate and react to situations after they take place
, and their post facto judgements tend to rest on a set of values and expectations based either on a cultural tradition and its morality or on one's own past experience and observations. In any instance, as a Venus Evening Star type your strong sense of values and ideals tend to temper your emotions and feelings. In other words, for Venus Hesperus people, their Venusian qualities tend to be most visible in large ideas and systems. The world knows them for their big ideas, schemes and successes, but to their lovers and family they are loved and feared for their big emotions. Their emotions are intense, and displayed on a large canvas because they tend to internally process, replay, elaborate and amplify their emotional experiences.
Whereas Venus Morning Star types tend to release their emotions in a more immediate fashion, letting them out and often forgetting about their content, Venus Evening Star types internalize
their emotional experiences, both the pleasant and the unpleasant. So when their emotions do fully surface, they often erupt with pent-up force. When such eruptions occur, family and lovers might feel overwhelmed or think the expression is out of proportion, that the Venus Evening Star person is "over-reacting" or perhaps becoming too emotionally involved in relationship. This is especially the case when a Venus Evening Star makes a big reaction to a seemly minor incident or disagreement. It is not the single, isolated event she is reacting to, but to a long series of similar incidents which she has been internalizing and feeling uneasy about for some time. Feelings of frustration or resentment might have been exaggerated if the Venus Evening Star person had attempted to discuss her hurt feelings in a "rational" manner, yet unable to succeed because her partner, perhaps a Morning Star type, didn't recall a particular incident, or thought it not worth discussing, or avoided addressing the issue.
The tendency of Venus Evening Star types to internalize
emotional disappointment or abuse gives them much in common with Venus Morning Star retrograde people, but theirs is generally a larger perspective, with greater patience and reliance on precedents.
During the first several weeks of its Evening Star phase,
the light Venus is lost in solar brilliance. It is only when an arc of about ten zodiacal degrees separates the Sun and Venus that the Evening Star may be actually seen by the unaided eye in the early evening sky just after sunset. In astrological symbolism, the period between superior conjunction and Venus' first visibility in the evening sky suggests an integration of solar will with new Venusian visions and ideals developed during the Morning Star hemicycle. Whereas those born during the closing period of the Morning Star hemicycle tend to be more concerned with personal or individual goals and creative fulfillment, those born during the Evening Star phase tend to place more focus on social values and in making a creative contribution to their society. But in a less integrated personality, the superior conjunction might represent proud egohood, a "do what thou will" attitude. As with every astrological factor, however, one needs to be careful not to make too much of the Venus type. The whole chart needs to be considered, and any particular astrological symbol stands not on its own but as a part of a whole picture. The chart as a whole is the ultimate astrological symbol.
People born at the beginning of the Venus Evening Star phase may dazzle us with their solar brilliance, but behind their solar will often stands strong Venusian vision, values and goals. For example, novelist and social satirist George Bernard Shaw, prototype superstar Franz Liszt, and editor Helen Gurley Brown were born just after the superior conjunction of Venus and the Sun.
George Bernard Shaw
, one of the most intellectual men of his age, was a penetrating wit and an insightful satirist of Victorian society. His birthchart shows Venus at the Nadir, rising immediately after the Sun. A Promethean Mercury rises much ahead of the Sun, suggesting his avant-garde views and mental orientation.
, who in the nineteenth century achieved unprecedented fame and notoriety as a concert pianist, was born when Venus rose three degrees after the Sun - the mirror image of his friend, composer Frederic Chopin
, who was born just before the superior conjunction. In the instance of Lizst, Mercury rises before the Sun and forms a productive sextile aspect to Neptune (the planet of music), and Venus is trine Jupiter in the eleventh house. Although Lizst is best known as the first superstar performer, his musical compositions are now becoming recognized as precursors to twentieth century music. Additionally, Lizst brought to musicians a new social standing, elevating them above the status of "servants," to which they were designated before his time. Indeed, he was the first musician to enter through the front door.
During the middle part of the twentieth century, Helen Gurley Brown
, editor of Cosmopolitan magazine and author of Sex in and Single Girl
, played a tremendous role in re-defining gender roles and liberating female sexuality. Though she was not as outspoken as edgy feminists of the time, as an editor her influence was deep, enduring and ubiquitous, and she never sacrificed her femininity in realizing her vision of a "new woman." Her chart shows Venus in Pisces rising three degrees after an Aquarian Sun. A visionary Promethean Mercury retrograde in Aquarius rises before the Sun. The Sun and Venus form bi-quintiles to Saturn retrograde in the ninth house very near the Midheaven, as well as squares to a twelfth house conjunction of the Moon and Mars in Scorpio. The edgy and revolutionary planet Uranus rises soon after Venus.
It is important to note that the three above examples feature Mercury Prometheus - that is, Mercury rising before then Sun - which in a sense can "masquerade" as Venus Lucifer. Mercury Prometheans let their minds - or their rationalizations - and thinking guide the way, and when born during Venus Evening Star, they tend to seem mentally proud, egotistic and judgmental. Often maintaining a degree of restraint in the relationships, they do not easily give themselves completely.
After Venus becomes visible in the early evening sky,
it continues to distant itself from the Sun for about six months, rising later, and remaining visible longer, each evening until it reaches maximum elongation from the Sun 216 days after superior conjunction. During this period values become more defined, longer term incentives are pursued, and perspective deepens. A greater reliance is placed upon traditions and systems
because they are required to integrate experience, to give meaning to existence, and to serve as a foundation for judgement. Emotions and feelings become tempered (or conditioned) by morality and tradition.
Johann von Goethe
, author of Faust
and one of the greatest intellects of all time, was born midway between the superior conjunction and maximum elongation. His natal horoscope shows a Full Moon, and the Sun and Venus are in the tenth house, Virgo, with Sun at the Midheaven. Mercury is in the ninth house, Leo, rising before the Sun and opposite Uranus. Saturn is at the Ascendant.
The birthchart of Wolfgang Amedeus Mozart
shows Venus in the sixth house rising twenty-two degrees after the Sun. Both are in Aquarius and the Sun is in the fifth house conjunct Mercury, rising one degree after the Sun. Saturn, rises four degrees before the Sun. The Sun, Mercury and Saturn are opposite Neptune retrograde. The Moon and Pluto form an exact conjunct in the fourth house, Sagittarius, and they in turn form a square to Uranus on the Descendant (and south lunar node) and a sextile to Jupiter in the second house, Libra. The chart features a rather large number of quintile and decile based aspects, including a quintile linking Venus and the Moon. Mars retrograde in the tenth house is trine Venus.
The natal horoscopes of Mohandas Gandhi
, liberator of India, and poet Paul Verlaine, both feature Venus Evening Star conjunct Mars. In Gandhi's instance, Venus rises thirty-eight degrees after the Sun, with Mercury in Scorpio just below the Ascendant, rising between Venus and the twelfth house Libra Sun. Venus is in the first house, Scorpio, with a Scorpio Mars rising two degrees behind it. The Venus-Mars conjunction is involved in a tight and powerful fixed T-square - Venus-Mars is opposite a conjunction of Jupiter and Pluto, both retrograde in Taurus and in the seventh house, and both sets of conjunctions form squares to a Leo Moon in the tenth house of politics and the public life. Additionally, the Venus-Mars conjunction trines Uranus in the ninth house. A conjunction of Venus and Mars is always significant in a birth chart, and it generally tends to figure into the sexual life, either directly or indirectly. In his younger years, Gandhi was hypersexual, turning celebrant in his later years as a social activist. Additionally, Venus rising before
Mars suggest Gandhi's Martian nature was bridled and guided by Venusian values and principles, and this symbol is reinforced by the fact that the two bodies are in autumnal signs.
In the instance of Paul Verlaine
, the sexual symbolism is even clearer and more revealing. His birthchart shows a seventh house Taurus Venus rising forty-one degrees after the Sun in the sixth house, Aries. Pluto rises twelve degrees after the Sun, and Mars rises three degrees before Venus. A conjunction of Uranus and Mercury rises soon before the Sun. The conjunction of Mars-Venus, Taurus, in the seventh house of relationship and others is at the apex of a very tight fixed T-square, forming squares to both ends of an opposition between Moon in Leo in the tenth house near the Midheaven and Neptune in the fourth house near the Nadir. Verlaine was an outstanding poet and writer of the mid-nineteenth century, but he is today most remembered for his tumultuous homosexual liaison with Arthur Rimbaud
, a relationship which culminated with a gunshot wound inflicted upon Rimbaud and a prison term for Verlaine. While in prison, Verlaine embraced Catholicism, though his reform seemed short-lived and he spent much of his remaining life drinking and consorting with prostitutes.
The horoscopes of Gandhi and Verlaine are examples of another sort of Venusian dualism, a dualism other than the fundamental and obvious duality of Morning Star and Evening Star. While Verlaine was born while Venus and Mars were in the vernal sign Taurus, the two planets were in the autumnal sign Scorpio, during the birth of Gandhi. Additionally, Gandhi was born with Venus rising before
Mars - signifying Venusian values, principles, goals and incentives guiding Martian action - while Verlaine was born with Venus rising after
Mars, suggesting a more macho, dominate approach to life and relationships.
Ideally, Venusian values and principles guide Martian action. But astrologers today have all but lost sight of the fact that there is a fundamental difference between Venus in the vernal signs (Aries, Taurus and Gemini) and Venus in the autumnal signs (Libra, Scorpio and Sagittarius) - just as there is a fundamental difference between Venus' "rulership" of Taurus and its "rulership" of Libra.
In An Astrological Study of Psychological Complexes
, Dane Rudhyar writes that symbolically, Venus as a "behavior-determining factor in man's inner life, is related mainly to the zodiacal sign Libra (her 'day house') and to the fall equinox, the symbolic time at which the mature seed is released from the planet that bore it. Venus a ruler of the spring sign Taurus (her 'night house') is, on the other hand, subservient to the positive Mars-in-Aries, the energy at the core of the vernal equinox period. Venus is then that which gives substance to the Martian impulse and outward initiative. It is the woman who 'bears children to' her man and concretizes his desire for self-extension into progeny. Thus, generally speaking, Venus in the early vernal signs of the zodiac is largely dependent upon the Mars function which gives it direction and purpose; it is Venus as an instinctual power of fertility. But when placed in autumnal signs, Venus acquires a very positive determining energy which dominates, for good or bad, the emotional life."
As we move toward the maximum elongation of Venus as Evening Star,
we encounter a group of personalities inspired by big ideas. They possess the vision, evaluative abilities and long-term motivation required to successfully integrated large bodies of knowledge and experience into important theories and systems of philosophy, science and religion.
The natal horoscope of J. Krishnamurti
features a see-saw pattern suggesting a fundamental dualism of personality. Venus Evening Star rises thirty-eight degrees after a third house Taurus Sun. Mercury, Pluto and Neptune rise before Venus, and Jupiter and Mars rise after Venus. The Sun is opposed Uranus in the ninth house and Venus opposes an eleventh house Moon. While still a boy, Krishnamutri was promoted by Annie Besant and C. W. Leadbeater as the vehicle of the coming Maitreya, and a large number of devotees gathered around him and joined the many worldwide organizations he "headed," such as the Order of the Star of the East. Later, he went his own way and eventually K. become identified as a philosopher of "Wholeness" and "non-dualism," yet his philosophy remained essentially dualistic because it was deeply rooted in denial.
, the premier philosopher of Wholeness who has given Wholeness its fullest formulation, was born a few weeks before Krishnamurti. His chart features Mercury Prometheus and a number of quintile aspects and no planets between the Sun and Venus Evening Star. Rudhyar's multi-dimensional philosophy of Wholeness is founded in a "total affirmation of being."
The natal horoscope of Charles Darwin
shows a number of planets between the Sun and Venus Evening Star. Born about six weeks before maximum elongation, when Venus was forty-four degrees behind the Sun, Darwin was able to formulate a vast and revolutionary scientific hypothesis. Additionally, his horoscope also features a conjunction of Saturn and Neptune in Sagittarius on the Ascendant, which ties in with the authoritarian, almost religious, foundation and zeal of Darwinism
, founder of the Mormon Church of the Latter Day Saints, formulated and promoted a grandiose religious system, one of the first modern religions. Born less than two weeks before maximum elongation, Mars, Mercury and the Moon rise between a Sagittarian Sun and an Aquarian Venus in the seventh house. His chart also features a conjunction of Uranus and Saturn in the fourth house Libra.
was one of the very first promoters of the women's movement of mid-twentieth century, and her The Feminine Mystique
was as revolutionary and as important in its day as the work of any leader in science and religion. Friedan's natal horoscope shows Mercury, Uranus and Mars rising before Venus, and it is notable that Mars is in Pisces and Venus in Aries, both in the third house of communication. Her birth chart features a strong see-saw pattern, comprising one group in the first quadrant (first to third house) opposite another group in the third quadrant (seventh to ninth house). All of the planets in the latter group - consisting of Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune and Pluto - are retrograde (because they roughly oppose the Sun). Notably, Venus and Mars oppose Saturn retrograde in the ninth house Virgo, which is near Jupiter.
What happens when there is a breakdown or devolution of Venusian values following the superior conjunction? Marquis de Sade
was born about twelve days before maximum elongation, into a class and family background which allowed him, at least for a time, to more or less freely act out his anti-social values. Jupiter, Neptune and Saturn rise between the Sun and Venus. Most notably, Venus is conjunct Saturn and both are in the twelfth house, along with Neptune (a planet often associated with sadism and sexual aberration). Mercury Prometheus rises immediately before the Sun, suggesting, in terms of the whole picture described here, emotional detachment and de Sade's undeniable talent as a writer. The planetary package is led by a powerful Mars in Aries, elevated near the Midheaven, which squares Venus and Saturn. The Moon in the second house Virgo, Pluto retrograde in the fourth house Scorpio and Uranus in the sixth house Capricorn (significantly conjunct the south lunar node) are found below the horizon, and they each seem to stand alone.
Born shortly before maximum elongation, Werner Heisenburg
is the formulator of one of the most important and far-reaching principles of physics - the principle of indeterminacy, which bears his name. In his horoscope, Uranus rises soon after a Sagittarius Sun, followed by Mars, Saturn, Jupiter, and finally Venus. A first house Scorpio Mercury rises before the Sun, and it forms a productive sextile with Venus.
Long before the women's movement of the 1960s-70s started changing the world, Marie d'Agoult
was a liberated woman, the paramour of Franz Liszt
and, writing under the pseudonym Daniel Stern, one of the most important French social commentators and philosophers of her time. Born three days before maximum elongation
, her birthchart features Sun in Capricorn on the Nadir, conjunct the north lunar node. Mars and Mercury retrograde rise soon after the Sun, and much later, Venus, which is in the fifth house, Aquarius. Additionally, Neptune is square Venus and decile Mercury, and Venus is trine a conjunction of Saturn and Uranus in the first house.
At maximum elongation Venus' speed of daily motion matches the Sun,
and slowing. The Evening Star period following maximum elongation is much shorter than the span leading up to it, and Venus turns retrograde seventy-two days after maximum elongation. After maximum elongation, Venus' velocity of daily motion rapidly decreases, leading to its station seventy-two days later.
Individuals born between maximum elongation and Venus' retrograde station tend to be more involved with their emotional life than those born before maximum elongation. People born while Venus is moving toward its Evening Star retrograde phase may possess big ideas, expansive vision and long-term goals similar to those born earlier in the Venus Hesperus hemicycle, but they tend to be more easily hurt emotionally - and they register emotional pain and trauma deeply, taking a long time to get over it. More than other Evening Star direct people, they tend to feel, emote and evaluate after
Helena Petrovna Blavatsky
was born twelve days after the maximum elongation of Venus. A powerful Leo Sun in the second house, opposite a conjunction of Jupiter and Uranus, rises forty-five degrees before Venus, which is in the fourth house Libra. The Moon, which is opposite Pluto, rises six degrees after Venus and a third house, Virgo conjunction of Mars, Saturn and Mercury rises between the Sun and Venus. HPB was one of the most important and influential women of the late-nineteenth century, and her Secret Doctrine
is the most all-embracing metaphysical work ever published. It was (and remains) as influential as any modern scientific theory or religious work. While Blavatsky, like the earlier examples, was successful in formulating a vast system of thought, she was also famous for her highly emotional nature, symbolized by a Leo Sun - perhaps frustrated by an exact conjunction of Mars and Saturn.
The natal horoscope of contemporary poet and writer Jim Carroll
shows a bright Venus
in the sixth house, Virgo, close to the south lunar node, rising thirty-seven degrees after the Sun. Saturn in Virgo and Neptune in Libra are also seen in the sixth house, and Pluto and Mercury rise between the Sun and Venus. Mars and the Moon are exactly conjunct in the third house, near the Nadir, and they are also conjunct Uranus, which rises seven degrees earlier. The triple conjunction is the apex of a T-square, being linked by squares to both ends of an opposition between a twelfth house Jupiter and Neptune in the sixth house. Additionally, Jupiter stands alone in the twelfth house, a singleton above the horizon. Outwardly calm, Carroll's dairies shows another side.
A bright Venus Evening Star is also featured in the birth chart of Catherine the Great
, Empress of Russia. Her birthchart features Mars rising shortly before a first house Taurus Sun, with an exact conjunction of the Moon and Venus rising forty-two degrees later (Moon rising immediately before Venus). Neptune is situated between the Sun and the Moon-Venus conjunction, and it is trine Pluto in the seventh house of relationship. One of the most unusual women of all time, Catherine the Great is often regarded as hypersexual. Although the number of her for love affairs might have been inflated by early biographers, a Taurean Sun is certainly one of the most sexual and sensual configurations for a woman, and in the instance of Catherine the Great, an exact conjunction of the Moon and Venus in Gemini suggest a promiscuous approach to relationships, perhaps exaggerated by Pluto in the seventh house and Uranus Scorpio retrograde in the eight house. But Catherine the Great had a stern side, symbolized by Saturn in the first house, just below the Ascendant.
Finally, a self-actualized creative
, one of the most successful, unique and truly resilient women of Rock, Stevie Nicks
, was born at the end of the Evening Star direct phase, one week before the retrograde station of Venus. Her natal horoscope features a Aries ascendent (proactive, independent and strong-headed self-determination) and a loose see-saw pattern with all planets below the horizon except the Moon in Capricorn, in the tenth house near the Midheaven (symbolizing her public life), and Jupiter retrograde in the ninth house Sagittarius (symbolizing her metaphysical outlook and the significant internalized, compensative influences of her parents and grandfather). The massing of planets below in horizon is contained by a trine linking the Sun in the second house, Gemini, and Neptune Libra retrograde in the sixth house just below the horizon (the latter planet symbolizing her poetic and musical talent, her "love found and lost" themes and her attraction to the mystical, and a predisposition to drug use). Neptune forms a very significant square to the Moon and another square, this one exact, to Venus in Cancer conjunct the Nadir, which in turn completes a cardinal T-square with an opposition to the Moon across the meridian
(the one of the most challenging configurations for a woman, yet it also signifies her mother's strong influence and support and Stevie's remarkably passionate, powerful and projective/compelling feminine energy). A Gemini conjunction of Mercury and Uranus in the third house is situated between the Sun and Venus (symbolizing her songwriting talent, her youthful quality, and the character and action of her drug of choice — cocaine). The Mercury-Uranus conjunction is opposite Jupiter retrograde (bringing it all back to the big picture and Stevie's faculty for seeing and understanding her life-experiences holistically).
The gestalt pattern and containments of Stevie's chart, and her signature T-square, are key factors in considering the chart as a whole, but there are many more factors operative here. For instance, Neptune is linked by bi-septile to the Mercury-Uranus conjunction, and Saturn (which forms a loose conjunction with Pluto) is seen at the midpoint, forming septile aspects to both Neptune and the Uranus-Mercury conjunction, comprising a septile-based triangular formation. Additionally, Venus and Mars are septile, and Pluto is linked to both ends of the opposition between Jupiter and the conjunction of Uranus and Mercury by octile-based aspects (forty-five and one-hundred and thirty-five degree aspects).
Stevie has always been very close to her parents (Jesse and Barbara) and family. In additional to her chart's strong focus on Venus, Cancer and the Nadir, there are several significant contacts between the three charts. Jesse's and Barbara's synastry is significant — Jesse's Sun is in Cancer, Moon in Scorpio; Barbara (whom Stevie resembles) has a Scorpio Sun, Cancer Moon. Jesse's Sun-Pluto conjunction is right on Stevie's Venus and I.C., and his retrograde Jupiter is conjunct her tenth house Capricorn Moon — the very close contact with Stevie's Venus and I.C. signifies her father's profound influence on her personal integration, her strong sense of personal values and loyality, Stevie's tenth house Capricorn Moon is strongly suggestive of her father's (and grandfather's) influence, as well as symbolizing her ability to adapt to and survive success and superstardom. Barbara's Sun, Mercury and Mars are trine Stevie's Venus, and conjunct her dauther's seventh house Scorpio south node. It is perhaps here, and to Stevie's seventh house Scorpio south node (which is very near Pluto's 1989 perihelion) and Part of Fortune, and to her Venus-Mars septile, that we should seek symbols of Stevie's Scorpionic side. Additionally, Stevie's Gemini Sun is opposed by her mother's Saturn, and the mother's Pluto opposes the daughter's Moon.