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Who Invented Solar Arc Directions?
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Tom
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Location: New Jersey, USA

Posted: Fri Sep 28, 2007 12:56 pm    Post subject: Who Invented Solar Arc Directions? Reply with quote

What Follows is not strictly traditional in the pre-1700 sense, but it is a legitimate inquiry into astrology’s history, so I’m posting it here.

Who “invented” solar arc directions? I have an idea that is only partly supported by historical facts, and in fact, is probably pretty wobbly. I thought a little research might be fun, and of course any definite knowledge is always welcome, even if it blows my idea out of the water.

First, what are solar arc directions? Like secondary progressions the Sun is moved forward in the horoscope using its daily motion. Each planet, the ASC and the MC are also moved forward, regardless of whether the planet is direct, stationary or retrograde at the time of birth, the same number of degrees. Each day’s motion is equal to one year of life. For example, if the native is born with the Sun at 10 Aries, Mars at 15 Taurus and Saturn at 25 Leo, and the Sun moves at one degree per day, in ten days the Sun will move 10 degrees, so we move all the planets ten degrees. Mars will then be moved to 25 Taurus and therefore in square to natal Saturn. The square will occur at age ten and an appropriate prediction is made.

Unlike primary directions and even secondary progressions, the only planet that is moved naturally in this technique is the Sun. For this reason many traditionalists don’t bother with it, but it has many adherents. The purpose here is to find the origin not determine its value. That is a separate issue.

So where did they come from? What follows is from the works that I have access to. It is by no means exhaustive. Noel Tyl (1936 - ) a strong advocate for the use of solar arc directions, lays some groundwork in his book, Prediction in Astrology (1991). Unfortunately, Tyl’s work does not help us much. His “history” is little more than a case for using the degree for a year or day for a year symbolism, which he correctly traces back to Ptolemy. He also mentions Naibod and his work with the Sun’s mean motion and after teasing the reader with others uses of a fixed value for the Sun’s motion equaling a year, then arguing for the use of the Sun’s actual motion. he only tells us that it is only natural to apply the Sun’s motion to every planet. Why this would seem natural is a bit of a mystery to me, but to be fair Tyl is writing a book on prediction not astrological history. At least he made the effort to make a philosophical case for the technique.

We are now pretty much where we started: where did they come from? Several years ago someone on a forum similar to this, and it may have been Noel’s, asked if Evangeline Adams (1868 – 1932) “invented” Solar Arc Directions. I don’t recall much about the discussion, but I do recall thinking that was an odd question. Why Adams? I read Karen Christino’s book, What Evangeline Adams Knew, an investigation into her techniques. Adams did not leave, that we know of, a body of work for students or practitioners. Her well-known books are strictly for beginners and for self promotion. We also know that the typical Adams consultation only lasted about 15 minutes - rarely longer than a half hour. She wouldn’t have time to do complex primary directions for each client, although she claimed to be heavily predictive. There is no evidence that she was a technical astrologer in the mode of, say, A.J. Pearce or her closer contemporary, Sepharial. So solar arcs, which can be “eyeballed” easily, would fit into her consultation style quite well.

Adams learned her astrology first from one Dr. Herber Smith (1842 – 1914?). In her book The Bowl of Heaven, she relates an incident, not dated, where Smith cast her chart and after a brief examination asked her if she broke her leg at age 9. She recalled breaking her leg, but did not recall her age at the time it happened. When she asked her mother, the age of nine was confirmed. Smith was working with a chart based on a time Adams gave her, which later turned out to be about two hours off. After asking about her leg Smith decided her birth time was off because if it were right, she would be very beautiful. The guy was a real charmer. He rectified the chart and this is what is usually used for Adams today. Christino tells us this event happened when Smith was in his mid-forties. He would be 45 in 1887, and Adams would have been 19.

Adams was born on February 8, 1868, in Jersey City, New Jersey, USA. The time she gave Smith put the Sun at 19 Aquarius near the ASC. Mars was at 10 Aquarius. Christino believes Smith did a rough solar arc direction of Mars (accidents) in Aquarius (legs) to her Sun near the ASC (the body). The accepted birth time of 8:30 AM LMT just moves these planets to different houses. If he did use solar arcs, a logical deduction by Christino, where did he learn them? In fact where did he learn astrology? Question: wouldn’t the change in times change the observation about the broken leg? The Sun would no longer be on the ASC.

Christino tells us that Smith lived in Philadelphia at about the same time Luke Broughton (1828 – 1899) was practicing there. Although there is no documentation, given that there was very little astrology in the USA at this time, Smith probably picked up at least some of his astrology from Broughton or, more likely, all of it.

There was very little in the way of American astrology until Luke Broughton, and his brothers, Matthew and Mark (not kidding) came to the US from England in the 1850s. Broughton was a homeopathic physician who learned astrology from his father and used it in his practice. He became so accomplished and enamored of his subject that he taught and frequently lectured on the subject, sometimes to his detriment. He more or less predicted the death of Abraham Lincoln, which resulted in his Philadelphia offices being ransacked by what was called “an anti-astrology mob.” He would later be jailed for his astrology in New York and even sued over it. Broughton once boasted that when he came to the US not more than twenty people could cast a horoscope but after 40+ years in the US, many thousands could. Boast or not, while perhaps not literally true (about the 20) it was close. He was also right about the scope of his influence. Broughton would teach many, and at least two of his pupils became famous in their own right: Catherine Thompson, and W.H. Chaney.

Broughton’s book The Elements of Astrology had a second edition published shortly after his death in 1899. I can’t find confirmation for a publication date of the first edition. I’ve seen the date 1898, but a second printing, not a second edition would seem a more appropriate description one year later. In the second edition Broughton is discussing a chart and various predictive methods. He writes:


Quote:
In addition to those aspects (a peculiar use of the word, but previously in this section, he was referring to aspects formed by secondary progressions - tc) there are what are termed Primary Directions, which we have to notice. These are reckoned by every degree in the longitude of the planets, as being equal to one year in the child’s life. For instance, Uranus is four degrees from a square of Mercury’s place, therefore at four years of age, it would be an evil period for the child, and there being a evil secondary direction that came up for that year would intensify that secondary evil direction. Those primary directions are reckoned both by what are termed Direct, and also what are termed Converse Directions, that is they are both noticed when the planets are applying to the aspect, and also when they are leaving any aspect. For instance, Jupiter is one degree past a square of the Moon, and by converse directions, it would be an evil period for the child at one year of age as Jupiter will come to a square of the Moon, the co-significator, by converse directions, it being very near one degree from that aspect.


These are probably not primary directions. We shall discuss, later, whether or not they are solar arc directions. Primary directions are determined by the primary or diurnal movement of the planets. It is that arc of direction that that is measured. Longitude is measured in the opposite direction. Diurnal motion is clockwise; motion in longitude is counterclockwise. Put aside for the moment the discussion of direct and converse motion. That muddies the waters a bit. Broughton is a bit vague (if not outright mistaken) when he says Uranus is four degrees from a square of Mercury implying (but not stating) that Uranus is applying to Mercury. Mercury is a lot faster than Uranus and therefore Uranus, unless it is retrograde, cannot apply to Mercury. But it is more likely that he is stating that Uranus is four degrees earlier in longitude from Mercury. We have to note that he does not give specific longitude or motion in his example. It should be noted that primary directions “in zodiac,” i.e., measured along the ecliptic, can be eyeballed that easily for aspects that occur earlier in life. The accuracy of degree of longitude for a year drops as the native gets older. This is not a clear example. So what is he saying?

Based on the use of the words “in longitude” I think he is saying this: If Uranus is at 5 Pisces and Mercury is at 9 Gemini, and we move Uranus forward four degrees in longitude to 9 Pisces it is square natal Mercury in longitude (same is true if Mercury is at 9 Sagittarius). The four degree “movement” is equal to four years of life. But this is a solar arc direction not a primary direction. We are measuring in longitude not by diurnal arc. See above.

If we want to bring Uranus to the square of Mercury by primary direction we would advance Uranus by diurnal motion to a point where it makes a 90 degree angle to natal Mercury. This can be done “in mundo,” using the true position of the planet or “in zodiac,” measuring along the ecliptic. However, Uranus would not reach 9 Pisces from 5 Pisces in a few hours after birth; it would still be at 5 Pisces. We would be moving “in zodiac” not “in longitude” and we would be moving in the opposite direction, i.e. clockwise instead of counter clockwise as we would with a solar arc.

Unless there either an earlier citation or someone who never heard of Broughton specifically suggested the technique, this may be the earliest reference to solar arc directions mistaken or otherwise. If Broughton actually taught this method (he did say we have to take notice) either in his lectures or in his magazine, Smith and others may well have used it, and passed it on to Adams. We know that Smith left all his papers to Adams upon his death. Adam’s library survives in tact, owned by a private collector of whom I am insanely jealous. Not that I could afford to buy it should it come on the market. There could be something in there. If Broughton did not teach this method, then we have to ask if Smith invented it, or someone else not connected to Broughton specifically developed it.

It is interesting that this technique lends itself perfectly to Adams’ style of practice. She could eyeball a chart with the best of them, and she was gifted at putting the symbols together in order to predict. She may not have been technically advanced, but clients don’t pay to see the math, and she was getting $50 per 15 minute session – a princely sum in the 1920s USA.

To confuse things a bit more, we will return to Broughton and a remark he makes on page xi in Elements. Referring to his older contemporary J. W. Simmonite (c.1800 – c. 1862) he states:


Quote:
Dr. Simmonite simplified the long calculations and made many improvements.



The “long calculations” are primary directions and they are called “long calculations” for good reason. And what, precisely, are those “improvements?” Did Broughton learn about primary directions from Simmonite’s work? Did Simmonite develop solar arcs? I do not have any of his work.

What about Broughton’s pupils? Christino tells us that Broughton and Chaney used primary directions. I doubt Broughton used them. Based on the above quote he did not seem to understand what they were, or at least he couldn’t explain them very well or chose not to since his book is a primer. Chaney, on the other hand, may have been a vagabond and ne’er do well, but he was a legitimate professor of mathematics. He published an astrology book in 1890, which was really a binding of previously published pamphlets. He called it Chaney’s Primer of Astrology. I have an original and it is not in great condition and doesn’t lend itself to flipping pages back and forth. I was not able to find a definite reference to either primary or solar arc directions. He does seem to rectify charts by using primary directions. Given his math ability and some references in his book, I find it very likely that Chaney used primary directions. The book was also a primer and therefore, it is understandable that he did not go into great detail about the more advanced techniques.

I do not have anything published by Catherine Thompson, but it should be noted that Thompson was once a teacher of Evangeline Adams. Adams never mentioned her, but we have a witness to support Thompson’s claims, and, we note, in apparent fit of pique, Thompson told the world that Adams was ten years older than Adams stated indicating a cat fight of long standing. Thompson’s accusation proved to be inaccurate. Could Thompson have taught Adams this technique and called them “primary directions?” Did Thompson get the idea from Broughton?

Skipping a generation, one of Chaney’s more famous pupils is a name we are probably familiar with, Llewellyn George. I have George’s 1985 edition of the ubiquitous A to Z Horoscope Maker and Delineator. That work, an edition published long after George died, does not mention solar arc directions. Well, hells bells somebody had to be teaching them. They didn’t invent themselves! Let’s check some references.

In 1819 Wilson published his Dictionary of Astrology, this predates Broughton’s birth by 9 years. I couldn’t find any kind of reference to anything resembling solar arc directions.

Moving along from 1819 all the way to 1947 and the publication of Nicholas DeVore’s Encyclopedia of Astrology we find a reference to the “Radix System of Directing.” This system is similar, but not identical to contemporary solar arcs. In this system, according to Devore, the MC, the Sun and all the planets (except the Moon) are moved forward at the Naibod arc of 59’ 08” per day. The new ASC is measured by oblique ascension, and the Moon is moved forward at her mean rate of 13 degrees 11 minutes per day (= one year of life). Devore highly recommends this system to students. Still it is not solar arcs as we know them or as described by Broughton, but the motion is all in longitude.

A.J. Pearce’s Text Book of Astrology (date uncertain but the first edition predates 1899 as Broughton praised it in his book), praises primary directions, damns secondary progressions, and does not mention anything like solar arc directions. He would have hated them anyway.

The Astrologer’s Companion by John and Peter Filbey (1986) accurately describes contemporary solar arcs which they correctly call Solar Arcs in Longitude. The method is the one we are all familiar with, except the ASC is directed differently. The authors are not too impressed with the method. Neither DeVore nor the Filbeys give a hint as to the origin of the technique, but their different handling indicates the technique is not yet standardized and therefore relatively new (at least to them).

Surely there are more reference books and more books that refer to solar arc directions that may clear this up. I know Tyl wrote one, but I’ve never read it, and he is more interested in practice than historical research. Other “schools” of astrology may use them and their works may provide a clue.

My theory is that Luke Broughton accidentally invented solar arc directions either by misunderstanding the nature of primary directions or his students misunderstanding what he was telling them. The technique has little basis in nature (except the movement of the Sun), and therefore would have raised an eyebrow or two in the mid to late 19th century so it’s possible they were taught quietly, or for competitive reasons astrologers hid the technique from each other (if this is true they must have believed the technique to be valuable). In any case the technique was imperfectly understood, and just as imperfectly spread, but perhaps solar arc directions have their roots in a 19th century English born American resident who gave an awful lot to American astrology.

Tom

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luna



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Posted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 9:54 pm    Post subject: Solar arcs origin Reply with quote

Tom, I really enjoyed your post.
Did you ever find out more about the origin of solar arcs.
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Tom
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Posted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks luna,

No I haven't found out any more, but I haven't looked too hard either. I keep thinking what Broughton might have meant. I also did a quick read of an old article in Deb's old magazine, The Traditional Astrologer. There was a reprint of an old text or article that purported to explain "directions." It seemed to me the author was really writing about secondary progressions. The point is that the word "directions" takes on a variety of meanings. Kolev complained about people who thought they were using primary directions, but were actually using solar arcs. Therefore the development of solar arc direction could easily have been a mistake.

What I need to do is carefully read Chaney's work to see how he does directions. Broughton was his teacher and he was a mathematician, so he should have been able to use the tables anc calculate primary directions. If he used something similar to solar arcs, then the case that Broughton invented But if she did use solar arcs, where did she learn the technique?

I'd also like to get a peek at any papers left by Evangeline Adams. This might provide another link to Broughton, if in fact she used solar arcs. There is no evidence to my knowledge that she did.

Tom
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Philip Graves



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Posted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To second the earlier response above,

Tom, that was an extremely interesting post that completely absorbed my attention!

I'm glad you've been putting your copy of Chaney to interesting use. You mentioned elsewhere that you could do with a working copy in less fragile condition. Well, the truth is that this is still such a rare book that nobody has reprinted it since 1890, so you'll have to make do with your original for now. It would be immensely satisfying to steal a march on Kessinger in putting out a commercial reprint of this book, but I suspect the market would be small. Alternatively, if you think your copy would withstand the rigours of scanning, you might be able to spare it any further abuse thereafter and refer to your scans or print them out for study purposes. Just a friendly suggestion anyway!

Since I haven't had the time to read half the books I've been collecting yet owing to burdensome domestic responsibilities and earning needs, all I can really add to your post for now is a few dates:

Pearce's first edition of 'The Text Book of Astrology' vol. 1, on genethlialogy, was definitely in 1879; the second edition was in 1911.

Also, Broughton's first edition of 'The Elements of Astrology' definitely in 1898 and second edition definitely in 1906. I say this with certainty since I have original copies of both the above. I am not aware of there having been any 1899 printing of Broughton's work at all. 1899 was just the year of his death, then his cousin (?) Ray Broughton reprinted his book in 1906. All original first and second editions of 'Elements of Astrology' are sold out on the used market currently. However, they do come up from time to time at auction on ebay - three copies of the 1898 edition I've seen listed this year alone, of which I bought one; and the seller of one of the others claimed to have found out by research that there were as many as 10,000 copies of the first edition originally printed, so I think there are quite a lot out there, but it's just a case of more collectors seeking originals than originals available for sale causing an effective waiting list for copies, which also suggests that those that have been listed for sale at fixed price have been underpriced.

The Radix method was popularised by Sepharial in his 'The Science of Foreknowledge' (1918) and then by Vivian Robson in his 'The Radix System' (1930). But I don't know whether it was Sepharial's invention or taken from earlier ideas.

Philip
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Tom
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Posted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 1:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Also, Broughton's first edition of 'The Elements of Astrology' definitely in 1898 and second edition definitely in 1906. I say this with certainty since I have original copies of both the above. I am not aware of there having been any 1899 printing of Broughton's work at all. 1899 was just the year of his death, then his cousin (?) Ray Broughton reprinted his book in 1906. All


Hi Phillip,

My copy of The Elements of Astrology is a Ballantine reprint. It says Second Edition on the title page and refers to Dr. Broughton's death as having occured the same year of the edition. At least that is how I recall it. I'm travelling and it's at home.

Broughton published a magazine Broughton's Planetary Reader long before 1898. I thought he published a book as well about the time he was in Philadelphia. I guess not.

I'm going to stick my neck out a bit and say Ray was Broughton's son. I had an interesting correspondence with a descendant of Luke Broughton who was doing geneology research and had no idea who Luke was. She lived in Vancouver BC and was working with a relative in England on the same branches of the family tree. I asked if she knew what happened to his library but apparently she didn't know.

I found a reference to Pearce's Textbook in Astrology citing the same information you gave. The 1911 edition (I have the AFA reprint) seems to be a compilation of three earlier works. Did he publish Textbook in seperate sections before 1911? I prefer Pearce to Alan Leo.

My copy of Chaney's work is frail and would not hold up to scanning Idon't think. It was not a high quality publication when new, and at over 100 years old, it has held better than it should have. I'll have to gingerly handle it.

Thanks for the information. I'll get back to you when I get home regarding Elements.
Tom
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Philip Graves



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Posted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 6:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Tom, and good morning from sunny Stockholm (9 am at the time of completing this post)!

I see John Ballantrae lists his edition as being from 1899 at his website. Perhaps there was indeed a rare 1899 second printing. However, it is not recorded by OCLC which lists only the 1898 and 1906 editions, and these are the only two I've seen for sale second-hand to date.

I have an original copy of Broughton's Monthly Planet Reader and Astrological Journal too, complete in 31 issues, 1860-1869. How original is original is hard to say with this particular publication, however, since as late as the 1906 second edition of 'Elements of Astrology' the complete bound set of back-issues was being advertised by Ray Broughton for sale for the grand price of $1. This would tend to suggest that a large number of surplus copies had been produced over and above those originally sold, and that these had still not sold out some 40 years later, or else that, as was later common practice for 'Modern Astrology' magazine etc., the magazine was reissued as a reprint in the form of a book during the latter part of L D Broughton's lifetime. My copy, however, has the distinct look if the internal paper is anything to go by of being internally a bound copy of the original magazines rather than a book. Fast forward 2006, and you couldn't buy these sets for $100, let alone $1. A copy listed at $500 by Zubal Books (known for their competitive pricing) sold immediately. I had to pay a similar amount for mine (a little more, to be honest) the same year, but it's certainly interesting material and has become highly rare and collectible to Civil War enthusiasts and their ilk, pushing prices skyward, so no great regrets on that front here as it should retain its value.

Regarding Pearce, there was a 19th century trend begun possibly at the end of the 18th century with the frequent publication of Sibly's 'Complete Illustration of the Celestial Science of Astrology' in two volumes for major astrological works to be issued in two volumes. However, in the 19th century the trend only really took hold with Zadkiel's 'Handbook of Astrology' in 1861 and 1863 - this was Zadkiel's major theoretical and practical work on astrology, much lengthier in sum than the 'Grammar of Astrology' he wrote in his youth back in the 1830s. Next to follow this trend was the second Raphael, Robert Thomas Cross, with his 'Guide to Astrology' in two volumes, 1877 and 1879. So Pearce was third in line in the recent bloodline of this trend, and arguably only doing the commercial 'thing to do' (a very British expression that, pardon me) in publishing his Text-book of Astrology in two volumes separated by some years, starting in 1879. Perhaps to lend credence to his more serious scholarship, he elected in contrast to Morrison (ie Zadkiel) and Cross to leave a gap of not two but ten years between the publication of his Volumes 1 and 2, Volume 2 appearing as late as 1889.

Essentially Volume 1 is genethlialogy (Book 1) and Volume 2 is the other four Books that later appeared as Books 2, 3, 4 and 5 in the one-volume 1911 second edition published by Mackie and since reprinted by the National Astrological Library in the 1950s (in two low-quality soft-cover volumes), the AFA in 1970, and latterly the AFA again in 2006.

For some reason that is open to speculation, between 1889 and 1911 Pearce had decided that some of the chapters in his original two-volume work were superfluous to requirement and axed them from the running order in the 1911 edition. This was most notably true of the chapter on Horary and Electional astrology, Pearce having decided apparently by 1911 that his extremely brief treatment of the subject in his then still-available second edition of 'The Science of the Stars' (1898) was adequate, although a possible alternative explanation would be a commercial imperative at the hands of his new publishers - perhaps Mackie told him that they had a strict page limit and forced him to drop a chapter or two. Another possibility is that Pearce felt that horary and electional were not his greatest theoretical or practical strengths and that it was more intellectually honest to leave them to writers who were expert in them, concentrating on sharing his knowledge of techniques he was expert in such as primary directions!

Unfortunately I don't have the two-volume first of Pearce yet, having carelessly allowed myself to be outbid on sets of it no less than twice in the space of a few months early in 2006, since when there has been an 18 month drought without another copy appearing either at auction or at fixed price on the international marketplace. Roll on the next!

Personally I think that for the AFA to have repeatedly reprinted the slightly condensed 1911 second edition and not the first is an historical error, and the ideal reprint would incorporate the two or three missing chapters from the first edition as well as the new material added by Pearce for the second. It may be the case that the AFA themselves don't even have a first edition in their library. I'm tempted to ask Kris Riske if they do, however. With two copies having gone to auction in the space of three months last year, they can't be all that rare, though they are scarce, and besides I know at least one of our friends on this forum has one....

Philip
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Tom
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Posted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll be home tonight and I'll post some details on my copy of Elements. As for all the other really neat stuff you own, I can only add you must have a very understanding wife.

Tom
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Philip Graves



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Posted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 1:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haha, Tom! If only you knew....

Well, she does have her own independent income source and I pay my fair share of the joint living expenses every month, so isn't that fair enough (he said hopefully)?

This said, space has become an issue since the arrival of our Aries-sun daughter April 2006, and currently I'm under orders to pack up everything printed after 1950 (which is the vast majority of what I own, not surprisingly, all reprints of earlier books included) and send it into storage at her stepfather's for the next few years by Christmas, or else... leaving behind just the more antique and thus by their nature fragile and typically valuable books here until we can afford a larger place.

By the way, I was following your comments about Evangeline Adams on another strand with some interest the other day, especially when you drew attention to her birthday, February 8th - same as my wife's, although that probably has more to do with the fact that the Sun in that degree is exactly conjunct my natal Venus than anything else (I also have another very good friend with the same birthday).

The one other thing she has in common with Evangeline Adams is a strong interest in astrology at the more basic levels of planetary sign placements, and while she is not a serious student of astrology beyond this, owing chiefly to the impatience of her Sagittarian Moon by her own testimony, she is quite astute in some of her planetary placement observations, which don't always tally with what the more recent textbooks say, but then she discovers much to her delight that ones written before about 1920 match her impressions to a tee.

Typically independent Aquarian in all, and very admirable for it!

I look forward to your findings on your copy of Broughton.

Philip
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Andrew



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Posted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 4:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The Radix method was popularised by Sepharial in his 'The Science of Foreknowledge' (1918) and then by Vivian Robson in his 'The Radix System' (1930). But I don't know whether it was Sepharial's invention or taken from earlier ideas.


Some extracts from The Radix System by Vivian Robson:

Quote:
The solution of this problem, as of so many others, was put forward by Sepharial when, in 1918, he introduced the fundamental principles of a new system which he called the Radix System, and which it is the purpose of this book to exemplify and expand. Sepharial rightly argued that a consistent method of directing must maintain the radical relations of the planets, for the Radix, or horoscope of birth, is an epitome of the whole life. No direction, however strong, can produce an event denied by the birth horoscope; and, moreover, the action of a planet under direction is governed entirely by its radical strength and signification. In his own words: " ... the detached significance of the planet cannot be rightly judged apart from a consideration of its radical relations and affections ... Nor can a planet that is radically well aspected indicate by malefic direction any serious hurt, for with its direction to the conjunction or opposition it will simultaneously bring up the sextiles and trines by which it was attended at birth."

The only way to maintain the radical relations of the planets is to direct them all at an equal rate, and ignore their own orbital motion after birth, much as is done in the Primary system. The latter generally employs the Ptolemaic measure of one degree of Right Ascension to the year, but the Radix system is concerned with longitude, and Sepharial's choice of the measure of 59' 8" of longitude to the year has been abundantly justified. This measure is based upon the mean motion of the Sun, and was originally advocated by Valentine Naibod in the latter part of the sixteenth century.

The directions involving the Significators, the Midheaven, Ascendant, Sun, Moon, and Fortuna, are by far the most important. In fact the ancient astrologers, and certain modern exponents, notably Sepharial, would never use directions between Promittors alone, arguing that all events are shown by the Significators ... Experiments along these lines show that the Placidean cusps as given in the usual Tables of Houses are the only ones that furnish appropriate directions and respond to transits. The reason that this has hitherto remained unnoticed is that only by the Radix motion can such directions be formed.


As I read the last two lines, I wonder whether this influenced Polich and Page in their development of the Topocentric system?

http://www.astrologysoftware.com/community/astrologer/astrologer_neely.asp?orig=

Quote:
One other little tidbit I had hoped to publish in detail one day, but never got around to it, is a relationship between the Placidus and Topocentric house systems. Actually I put the method into Program 01646A of the HP-65 Users' Library which gives three options for approximations to the Placidus house system. The gist of the matter is this. In a 1968 publication ["Mechanics of Tables of Houses," Golden Seal Research Headquarters, Hollywood, CA], J. Allen Jones outlines approximation methods for computing Placidus cusps. At the time, approximation methods were all we had, for the exact solution to Placidus cusps requires an iterative process since there is no closed form solution to the equations. All Placidian approximation methods are based upon a spatial semi-arc trisection which approximates the temporal semi-arc trisection used in the exact method. The Raphael tables are computed from a trisection of the semi-arc whose declination is equal to the obliquity of the ecliptic (about 26°26'), which is the declination of 0° Cancer. The Dalton tables are computed from a trisection of the semi-arc whose declination is 18°16', which is the declination of 22° Taurus. Other approximations could be made by using any other reasonable declination. But if you take the limit as the declination approaches 0°, which is the declination of 0° Aries, the results are identical to the Topocentric system of Polich and Page. I wrote to Polich about this and he was delighted to learn of the correspondence between his system and the Placidus system.
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Andrew



Joined: 31 Dec 2004
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Posted: Thu Oct 04, 2007 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The effect of a transit over (i.e., by conjunction) the degree of a directed Significator is more effective than an aspect thereto. The effect of a transit by either conjunction or major (Ptolemaic) aspect to the degree of a natal Significator is also noticeable. However, it is also important to take the antiscia of the Significators into account.

Antiscia or solstice points are based on the fact that the Sun occupies the same degree of declination at points equidistant from 0° Cancer (summer solstice point) and 0° Capricorn (winter solstice point). For instance, the Sun’s declination when it is at 15° Taurus and at 15° Leo is the same; both zodiacal points are 45° from 0° Cancer and 135° from 0° Capricorn. Therefore, the equidistant points share a common relationship in respect to the celestial equator on which declination is based.

Although solstice points (antiscia or mirror points) are more commonly used in horary than in natal astrology, they are worth calculating and studying. They indicate turning points in life that manifest when they are conjoined or aspected by directed or transiting planets: a directed or transiting aspect to a natal Significator's solstice point or a conjunction by transit to a directed Significator's solstice point activates the planet to which that point relates. For example, if the directed Sun conjoins natal Mars’ solstice point, Sun/Mars activity manifests according to a Sun/Mars conjunction even though the directed Sun does not actually aspect natal Mars.

This sounds complicated, but it isn't, and in every instance I've seen, it accounts for circumstances that would otherwise be missed by the usual methods.
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Bobby



Joined: 05 Oct 2007
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Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Andrew,

Most interested with what you mentioned. Can you give any example charts where you have seen this work? Or personality/historical charts.

If I understood correctly you have to calculate these points. Can the usual run of the mill software be used to check these points on a chart?

Best Wishes

Bobby
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Tom
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Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lots to comment on here. THank you all for your contributions.

Robson appears to be giving Sepharial credit for the radix system, but (from Robson)


Quote:
The only way to maintain the radical relations of the planets is to direct them all at an equal rate, and ignore their own orbital motion after birth, much as is done in the Primary system.


The primary system does this sort of with the exception of the Moon. I suppose this is what he means by "much as is done." However primary directions move in the opposite direction to what Robson/Sepharial are suggesting and houses are not used they way they would be used in the radix system. So what I'm seeing is a system designed as Robson noted, to maintain the aspects of the nativity and yet be developed over time. The justification for the motion is Ptolemy's degree for a year even though Ptolemy is talking about a degree of right ascension and the radix system and solar arcs are a degree of the zodiac. I'm sensing a bit of a stretch here, but I'm seeing the origins.

Sepharial was expert in the use of primary directions. Unlike Broughton, his understanding cannot be questioned. I have his two books on the subject. The next step would be to see if he originated this idea - certainly possible, or if he developed someone else's.


Quote:
Although solstice points (antiscia or mirror points) are more commonly used in horary than in natal astrology, they are worth calculating and studying.



I would say tha antiscia are used in traditional astrology more than modern, but I've seen quite a bit of natal work with antiscia. They work well in sports charts, too. I agree they are worth studying and using and they are all too often ignored. Solar Fire and Janus both calculate antiscia. Solar Fire's horary chart, which I use for ntatl work, and Janus' traditional chart both list them.

If one prefers to do calculations here is the quick and easy method. Well quick and easy compared to other pen and pencil methods - not as quick and easy as a computer. Memorize the the signs that are on each others' antiscion. Leo - Taurus, Libra - Pisces, Cancer - Gemini etc. Now if you see two planets in those signs, say one in Libra and one in Pisces, look at the degrees occupied by each. If the two numbers add up to 30 (within an allowable orb no more than two degrees usually) then they are on each other's antiscia. For example If Mars is at 10 Libra and Jupiter is on 20 Pisces, the signs are correct and the 10 + 20 = 30. The opposite of the antiscion point is the contra antiscion. So If Mars is on 10 Libra the antiscion point is 20 Pisces and the contra antiscion is 20 Virgo the opposite of 20 Pisces.

These are shadow points and often work behind the scenes. I'll try to look up some examples later on today.

Phillip,

I may have misunderstood the intent of the undated Preface to the Second edition. It starts out this way:

"It is with sorrow the present publisher announces the death of the author of this work, on September 22nd, 1899, in the 72nd year of his strenuous and useful life. ..."

There is no mention of a date for this edition anywhere in the reprint or for this preface. Ballantrae gives the date of 1899, so if we couple this with the page that says Preface to the Second Edition, it is undestandable why a reader would believe the second edition came out one year after the first, whereas a second printing would be more logical particularly since Broughton died in 1899.

Ray Broughton could have modified the original edition and had it reissued in 1906, and I think is this is the Ballantrae edition. John Worsdale's son did this with Celestial Philosophy. The original work was published in 1799 and the Ascella reprint has charts in the text dated in the 1800s. Worsdale died in or about 1828 the approximate year the second edition of Celestial Philosophy was published.

My guess is that Ballantrae goofed and since you have the two editions, that seems to settle it.

Tom
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Mark
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Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 3:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What a well researched thread! Sounds like this could be the makings of an interesting article.

Just one thought to throw into the pot. I seem to remember James Holden in his 'History of Horoscopic Astrology' suggests Kepler might have been the first person to use secondary progressions ( before Placidus de Tito).
This was on the basis that Kepler appeared to use a predictive system moving forward the Sun a day for a year. However, as the Solar Arc and Secondary progressed Sun are identical how do we know this wasn't a system of solar arcs?

I accept this is probably less likely. Another astrologer I know once described Solar Arcs as 'lazy' in the sense of abandoning the actual movements of the Moon and planets. As one of the key pioneers in understanding planetary mechanics it does seem less likely Kepler would have gone for such a mathematically and astronomically simplistic approach. On the other hand his advocacy of a heliocentric system did help put the Sun at centre stage of the cosmos for the first time in western astronomy. In a sense solar arcs are a heliocentric predictive system. Still without more information on Kepler's charts this is pure speculation.
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Tom
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Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
However, as the Solar Arc and Secondary progressed Sun are identical how do we know this wasn't a system of solar arcs?


We don't, but if I were forced to bet, I'd say Kepler went for progressions since solar arcs, except for the Sun, the planets movements are symbolic. With secondary progressions all the planets' movements are natural, the time assigned to those movements is symbolic. Using the planets as they move in nature would be far more likely in the 17th century than using an entirely symbolic technique.
Quote:
Another astrologer I know once described Solar Arcs as 'lazy'


They are and so are secondary progressions. A.J. Pearce complained bitterly that secondary progressions are so easy that they couldn't possibly be accurate. To my knowledge there is no rule in astrology or anywhere else that complexity guarantees more accurate results than simplicity. The techniques should stand or fall on merit, on results, not on complexity.

However the quote from Robson, provided by Andrew is really interesting and to my knowledge hasn't been touted by other advocates of solar arc directions. With solar arcs the aspects in the chart are always in effect. So if we have Mars square Jupiter and we direct Mars to a conjunction of the ASC Jupiter will also square the ASC and the Jupiter - Mars square will manifest as a unit.

This is a modern construct, as modern astrology emphasizes aspects to a greater degree, and in a different way than does traditional astrology, so a modern would naturally want to keep the aspects in place for predictive techniques. Primary directions can do this, when measured in zodiac, to a point. However in the predictive techniques that involve directing or progressing the planets we are usually concerend with aspects that perfect. If the Mars - Jupiter square noted above has a three degree Orb, Mars will precisely conjunct the ASC three years prior to the Jupiter square. But in the moern view, that square is an intregal part of the personality and therefore becomes part of the delineation of the direction or it should if the astrologer uses solar arcs to keep the aspects intact.

The above are just observations, not hard and fast rules established or followed by anyone. Still Robson put his finger on something that I haven't seen elsewhere. I have to admit I haven't devoted a whole lot of time to studying solar arcs so perhaps others have done so, and this is old hat.

Good information. Thanks to all.

Tom
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Andrew



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Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
The primary system does this sort of with the exception of the Moon. I suppose this is what he means by "much as is done."


I ought to have added this extract from Robson:

Quote:
The Sun moves 360° of longitude in 365 days, and therefore its effective motion per diem is not 1° but slightly less, namely 59' 8", which is accordingly a more consistently true time measure to use than 1°. By a similar argument the Moon's mean daily motion of 13° 10' 35" is chosen as the increment for the lunar directions.

We have, therefore, in the Radix system a major series of directions similar in nature, formation, and measure to Primaries; a minor series similar to lunar Secondaries; and a method of working that is even more facile than the latter. Thus it combines the advantages of both systems without the disadvantages, and is more pliable and elastic in use than either.

The major directions in the Radix system are the aspects formed by the planets in the directional chart to their positions in the radical horoscope. The chief points by and to which directions are formed are the Midheaven, Ascendant, Sun, Moon, and Fortuna. There five bodies and points are termed Significators, because each is representative of a definite section of the life, while the remaining planets are termed Promittors and indicate the nature of the influences affecting the significators, and the cause of events.

The addition of the arc to all the positions in the radical horoscope brings the directional planets and cusps to aspects with the radical positions while retaining the same relation with each other as at birth. Therefore we are concerned solely with the aspects formed by the directional planets to the radical ones, as the directional chart itself is a replica of the birth horoscope, and shows the same aspects as at birth.

The minor directions are formed in a similar manner by the yearly addition of the Moon's mean motion, and a series of aspects is obtained to both radical and directional positions. It is customary to apply this measure to the Moon only.

... Calculate the directional chart, major directions, and minor directions of the Moon as already explained, and from these form a forecast for the year month by month ... After having thoroughly mastered this process, apply the additional methods described in the following chapters, using directions only to and from the Significators, and by this means enlarge upon and refine the monthly predictions, finally focusing them to the actual day by the help of transits.


Finally, this:

Quote:
The theory of the minor directional chart is closely in line with that of the major chart. We have seen that to form the major directions we add an annual arc of 59' 8" to each of the radical planets and cusps, this amount being the mean daily motion of the Sun. To form the minor directions we add 13° 11' annually to the Moon, this being the Moon's mean daily motion. But in the former case we add the solar arc to all the positions, and it is somewhat surprising that no exponent has hitherto adopted the same principle and applied the lunar arc to all the positions also instead of only to the Moon ... It must be emphasised that all minor directions are quite subsidiary to the major ones, and on no account must undue prominence be given to them. They must always be interpreted in the light of any major aspects that may exist to the planets affected ... a minor direction from any planet is sufficient to stimulate a major direction, and in addition to this, the minor directions of any planet which is also forming a major direction at the time are of greatly increased power, and should be very carefully examined.


In A Beginners' Guide to Practical Astrology, Robson writes:

Quote:
The lunar directions are of far less importance than the basic ones, and too much stress should not be laid upon them. This is a frequent error made by the beginner, who is apt to predict dire misfortune simply on the strength of, say, a lunar square to Saturn. The function of the lunar aspects is to point out the time when the major directions will work ... Transits fulfill the same function as lunar directions in this respect (as do) eclipses falling in conjunction or opposition to any important planet.


In my own practice, I omit the lunar directions entirely and apply transits and eclipses to the natal and directed positions of the planets and their antiscia. Noel Tyl seems to use tertiary progressions in place of the lunar directions recommended by Robson; Tyl recommends using the mean measurements and solar arc MC, "if given the option."

One distinction between the radix system as outlined by Robson and the solar arc system as outlined by Tyl is that only "hard" aspects are used. For Tyl, the "hard" aspects are the square, semisquare, sesquisquare, opposition, and conjunction. I omit the semisquare and sesquisquare entirely and use all (and only) the Ptolemaic aspects, not just the "hard" ones. For example, when I moved from one side of the North American continent to the other and became a member of a spiritual community that emphasises dreamwork and meditation, the Moon by major ("solar") arc had moved into the ninth house of my horoscope and made an exact trine to my Ascendant, the degree of which is the antiscion of my fourth house cusp (which itself conjoins the North Node and Part of Fortune in my chart).
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