Engraving by C. Lasinio after Raphael, 1516 (source: Welcome Library)

Classical significations

Valens | Firmicus | Abu Mashar

More on Venus

Venus is desire and love. It indicates the mother and nurture. It makes priesthoods, school superintendencies, high offices with the right to wear a gold ring or a crown, cheerfulness, friendship, companionship, the acquisition of property, the purchase of ornaments, agreements on favorable terms, marriages, pure trades, fine voices, a taste for music, sweet singing, beauty, painting, mixing of colors both in embroidery, dyeing, and unguent making. [Venus makes] the inventors and masters of these crafts, as well as craftsmanship or trade, and work in emeralds, precious stones, and ivory. Within its terms and degrees in the zodiac Venus causes men to be gold-spinners, gold workers, barbers, and people fond of cleanliness and toys. It bestows the office of supervisor of weights and measures, the standards of weights and measures, markets, factories, the giving and receiving [of gifts], laughter, good cheer, ornamentation, and hunting in moist places. Venus gives benefits from royal women or from one’s own, and it brings very high rank when it operates in such affairs, Of the parts of the body, it rules the neck, the face, the lips, the sense of smell, the front parts from the feet to the head, the parts of intercourse; of the inner parts it rules the lungs. It is a recipient of support from others and of pleasure. Of materials it rules precious stones and fancy jewelry. Of fruits it rules the olive. It is of the night sect, white in color, very greasy in taste.

Translation by Mark Riley, (informally published in 2010, based on a preliminary translation made in the 1990s) Anthologies, I.I

Venus, while she is by nature cool and moist, is nonetheless temperate so that by her rising in the morning she infuses generative dew into mortals, by which not only are living beings fitted for reproduction in their different ways, but vegetation too is disposed into its various kinds. She signifies all beauty, attractiveness, elegant clothing, adornment with a covering of worked gold or silver, or the Tyrian purple dye that denotes high office. Moreover, baths, dyes, perfumed balsam, grace, fun, poetry, and performance at a dance, plentiful applause. She also signifies beautiful maidens and the beloved; joyful betrothals, loves, elegies, lovers’ outbursts, infidelities, quarrels; and peace restored and reconciliation in love. She furthermore signifies feasts, breakfasts, and sweets; sweet desserts or confectionery, and whatever is sweet and pleasant to taste; moreover, lawful or unlawful sexual intercourse, rapes, incests, adultery and other such things. She also signifies the mutual liking of people for one another, piety, faith, credulity, and the greatest of humanity in all. But in regard to the body, generally, she signifies a certain plumpness, though it is attractively adorned; weak, however, and often worn out by ill health. Among the arts, she signifies painting, perfumed merchandise, and everything that is created by marvellous and subtle craft. But of the parts of the body, together with Mars, she owns the nose.

Translation by Valerie Roebuck, (published in the Skyscript Newsletter, issue 5, 2022), based on the 1533 Aldine Latin translation.

The nature of Venus is cold, moist, phlegmatic, temperate, a fortune. And she signifies women and the mother and younger sisters, also beauty and clothing and ornaments, also gold and silver. And amiability toward friends, and admiration and elation, also pride and boasting, a love of singing and amusement and laughing, ornamentation and joy and happiness, dancing and playing the pipes, singing and plucking the strings of the lute. Even nuptials, and fragrances and what is pleasant, and amiability in the composing of songs, and the games of dice and chess. Also leisure and being dissolute and intoxication, and buffoonery, and resisting the people, and the sons of fornication, and every male or female fornicator or singer or one having fun with different kinds of amusements. And she signifies a multitude of perjuries and lies. Also wine and honey and every intoxicating drink, and a multitude of sexual intercourse of diverse kinds ... And she signifies the love of children and the love of people, and endearment towards them, and trust in everyone. And being dutiful and gracious, and generosity and liberality, and freedom, and the beauty of character, good looks and flirting, and receiving, and light and splendor, and the sweetness of speech, and femininity, and flirting and fondness and ridicule and rejection, and the strength of the body and weakness of the soul, and an abundance of flesh on the body, and multitude of pleasure in every matter. And she rejoices with every thing and seeks every thing and is eager for it. And she signifies types of masteries: the doing of clean and admirable things, also the arranging of wedding ceremonies and their decoration, and the wearing of crowns, and images and colors, and dyers and seamstresses. And houses of worship, and honesty, and adherence to religion, and becoming holy, and justice and fairness, and scales and measures, and the love of shopping and clothing, and commerce in it with pleasant things.

[From Gr. Intr. VII.9.1510-39] Translation by Benjamin Dykes, (extracted from Introductions to Traditional Astrology: Abu Ma'shar & al-Qabisi (2010).
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