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Skyscript Astrology Forum

Mercury as a diurnal or nocturnal planet

 
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astralwanderer



Joined: 20 Dec 2012
Posts: 155
Location: Southwest England

Posted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:53 am    Post subject: Mercury as a diurnal or nocturnal planet Reply with quote

Hi there - I am trying to sort through some of the information that is around about how to identify whether Mercury is considered a diurnal or nocturnal planet. I am aware that Mercury can take either condition, depending on its relationship to the Sun.

If Mercury rises before the Sun, it is considered oriental; if Mercury sets after the Sun, it is considered occidental. I think I've got this straight in my mind.

However, after that it seems there is conflicting information around. Some sources (e.g. Rob Hand in his book on sect), seems to suggest that it is sufficient for Mercury to be considered diurnal if it is oriental, and nocturnal if it is occidental (leaving aside the planet's placement above or below the horizon, and whether it is in a nocturnal or diurnal sign).

This seems to be how Solar Fire 8 works the sect of Mercury too.

However, I've noticed in Curt Manwaring's programme, Delphic Oracle 6, Mercury is considered diurnal in some cases when it sets after the Sun (occidental). One factor that seems to be considered in DO6 is the speed of Mercury. In the example chart that I am looking at (Albert Einstein), Mercury is occidental but moving away from the Sun at quite a rate, so it is increasing its longitudinal distance from the Sun.

I can see some logic in considering Mercury diurnal in the case, as it is rising 'from' the Sun (moving away from the Sun) in the evening sky as the Sun sets. However, there is also a case for arguing that Mercury is becoming more nocturnal, because in Einstein's case, the planet will become more visible in the evening sky in the days after his birth.

Sun = 23 PI 30
Mercury = 03 AR 08

Is the fact that Mercury is under the Sun's beams relevant here?

Einstein's data is as follows:

14 March 1879, 11:30AM (-00:40), Ulm, Germany (48N24, 10E00)

I couldn't find anything this topic on the site with a quick search. However, if anyone can assist with further advice, I would be very grateful.

Thanks. Ed
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lihin



Joined: 14 Dec 2009
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Location: Mount Kailash

Posted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 12:25 pm    Post subject: Sect and Hayiz Reply with quote

Good day,

As far as i remember one distinguishes between

a) Mercury's belonging to the diurnal or nocturnal sect depending, as Mr Astral Wanderer has reported, on his rising before or after the Sun;

and

b) Hayiz, an honour recognised in Mediaeval astrology depending, again as mentioned at least partially by Mr Astral Wanderer, on the cumulative fulfilment of

i. being in sect, ex. gr. of the diurnal sect by day;

ii. posited above the horizon if of the diurnal sect by, below by night, vice-versa if of the nocturnal sect; and

iii. posited in an active (masculine) sign if of the diurnal sect, in a passive one if of the nocturnal sect.

Concerning iii., there are differences of opinion amongst Mediaeval authors concerning Mars who is active (masculine) but of the nocturnal sect.

Here an example of Hayiz for Mercury, posited in Gemini, assumed to have risen 20 ecliptical degrees before the Sun and 12h00 local time:

- Since he rose before Helios, he is of the diurnal sect in a diurnal chart;

- Since he has not yet set (geocentrically always relatively close to the Sun), he is above the horizon;

- Since he is also in a positive sign, he fulfils the conditions of 'Hayiz'.

However, i may have forgotten or misstated something.

Best regards,

lihin
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Mark
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Posted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Ed,

I discussed this topic in an old thread:

http://www.skyscript.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=5465&sid=84268784f19fb7f6f422c8ffb0d2e06b

There is a lot of confusion around this topic because the terms 'oriental' and 'occidental' have been used in several different ways in the astrological tradition.

Here is a quote from Benjamin Dykes explaining the different uses of the terms:

Quote:
1.Planets are ‘oriental’ if they rise visibly before the Sun, and ‘occidental’ if they set visibly after him. This is similar to the modern understanding, since to rise visibly before the Sun means at least to be in an earlier degree. There were differing opinions on the longitudinal interval a planet had to be in, and whether the intervals were of equal significance.

2.Planets are ‘oriental’ if they are in the ‘eastern’ quadrant between the Ascendant and Midheaven ( i.e., where the Sun rises) or the one opposite to it, and ‘occidental’ if they are on the ‘western’ quadrant between the Midheaven and the 7th ( i.e.,when the Sun sets) or the one opposite to it.

3.Planets are ‘oriental’ if they currently , or within 7 days before or after the nativity , are rising out of the Sun’s beams and will become visible at sunrise or sunset; they are ‘ occidental’ if they currently , or within seven days before or after the nativity, are sinking into the Sun’s beams and will become invisible at sunrise or sunset. In Hellenistic astrology this is an example of of what is called ‘making a phasis’ , and the distance from the Sun at which this arising or sinking would happen, was standardised at 15 degrees. According to this definition , the inferiors can be ‘oriental’ ( or pertaining–to-arising) on either side of the Sun, since they can arise both while going direct and on their retrograde path.
(Book of Astronomy, Guido Bonatti, translated by Benjamin Dykes, 2007, page Ixxxii-Ixxxiii)


The third method is found in Paul of Alexandria. Its seems to be where the medieval division of combustion and under the beams came from. Although, in ancient astrology there was only under the beams.

The method of Ptolemy for determining the sect of Mercury (based on Mercury rising before/after the Sun) became the mainstream view in medieval astrology.

Its worth noting that Vettius Valens adopts a different method in determining the sect of mercury which relies on the sect of the planets that aspect Mercury in the chart.

Mark
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astralwanderer



Joined: 20 Dec 2012
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Location: Southwest England

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 7:10 am    Post subject: Mercury and heliacal rising Reply with quote

Hi - many thanks for your responses. This has helped to clarify this for me. It seems clear that Mercury is diurnal if he rises before the Sun, and nocturnal if he rises after the Sun. Thanks also for the piece from Ben Dykes which makes the sense of occidental and oriental clearer too.

I would be grateful for further thoughts on Mercury's condition if heliacally rising. I am fairly sure that Mercury is heliacally rising if diurnal, oriental and at least fifteen degrees from the Sun (i.e. visible). However, would Mercury be heliacally rising if setting with the Sun, separating in longitude (i.e. moving faster than the Sun), but nocturnal and occidental in the sense we have set out in the previous posts. My sense is that this is a case of the heliacal setting of Mercury, even though the planet might be considered to be rising away from the setting sun (escaping the Sun's beams).

Thanks for your input so far.

Ed
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margherita



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Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 7:35 am    Post subject: Re: Mercury and heliacal rising Reply with quote

astralwanderer wrote:


I am fairly sure that Mercury is heliacally rising if diurnal, oriental and at least fifteen degrees from the Sun (i.e. visible). However, would Mercury be heliacally rising if setting with the Sun, separating in longitude (i.e. moving faster than the Sun), but nocturnal and occidental in the sense we have set out in the previous posts. My sense is that this is a case of the heliacal setting of Mercury, even though the planet might be considered to be rising away from the setting sun (escaping the Sun's beams).

Thanks for your input so far.

Ed


No. Mercury as Venus can rise both vespertine (when it is direct) and matutine (when it is retrograde). And obviously it is true the contrary it can set vespertine (retrograde) and matutine (direct). Meaning according the proper phase

margherita
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astralwanderer



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Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Margherita - thank you for your response. If I have understood you correctly, the key to identifying whether Mercury is judged to be heliacally rising (or setting) is to work out whether the planet is increasing its longitude with respect to the Sun.

So, if, for example, Mercury appears from the Sun's rays at sunset, and is increasing its longitudinal distance from the Sun through rapid direct motion, it would be considered to be rising (vespertine).

In the other case, matutine, Mercury would be considered to be heliacally rising if it was moving retrograde and increasing its longitudinal distance from the Sun through that retrograde motion, with the Sun, of course, maintaining its direct motion. So, in this case of Mercury's heliacal rising, Sun would rise with Mercury oriental in the morning sky, with Mercury in motion backwards through the zodiac.

Please correct me if I am wrong.

Thanks for your help.

Ed
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Mark
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Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This article might be of help:

http://www.skyscript.co.uk/mercuryorbit.html

Mark
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astralwanderer



Joined: 20 Dec 2012
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Location: Southwest England

Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 5:19 pm    Post subject: Thanks for link Reply with quote

Hi Mark - many thanks for identifying this link. It looks like a very clear and helpful summary of the various permutations of Mercury's rising/setting etc.

Ed
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zoidsoft



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Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Mercury as a diurnal or nocturnal planet Reply with quote

astralwanderer wrote:
However, I've noticed in Curt Manwaring's programme, Delphic Oracle 6, Mercury is considered diurnal in some cases when it sets after the Sun (occidental). One factor that seems to be considered in DO6 is the speed of Mercury. In the example chart that I am looking at (Albert Einstein), Mercury is occidental but moving away from the Sun at quite a rate, so it is increasing its longitudinal distance from the Sun.


Actually I had hard coded Mercury's conjunction to Jupiter/Saturn or Mars/Venus in that algorithm. Schmidt would consider Einstein's Mercury to be nocturnal because it sets after the Sun in the evening. When Mercury applies to within 3 degrees of a diurnal planet the program considers it allied with the closest application (by conjunction). I have not allowed modification for the Sun or Moon. There is now an update that addresses this issue (on the Hellenistic tab) there is a checkbox to allow this modification of sect by Mercury's association with a planet of the sect in favor (or to disregard it). Related to this I have also included the medieval definition of sect that Rob Hand wrote about many years ago (Hayz, Ex Conditione, and Mixed sect status) will be displayed as a hover over hint in the chart display. This is what Schmidt calls rejoicing conditions related to sect.
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astralwanderer



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Posted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:34 am    Post subject: Thanks Curt Reply with quote

Hi Curt - many thanks for adding to this thread. I was just about to come back to you directly about the nocturnal/diurnal question in Einstein's chart. This now makes sense that you have explained what is going on.

Your change to DO6 is the obvious one - to allow people to experiment with each definition. I've also sorted out the rising/setting question, with the pointers from the other Skyscripters. Joseph Crane's section in his Hellenistic book is also very helpful. The reference is on p. 179 of his Astrological Roots book, published in 2007.

Thanks very much.

Ed
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