Skyscript home page
The Houses, Temples of the Sky - by Deborah Houlding  

The Fourth House

Main Rulerships:
Everything that relates to the foundation and roots of our existence. Parents in general and fathers in particular; grandparents and ancestry. Paternity (inheritance from parents) as well as the psychological parental influence.
This house also rules hidden treasure and the treasures of the earth, such as mines and minerals, gems, oil, wells and water supplies; Lilly notes: "profit out of the bowels of the Earth" ([CA], p.558). It rules land, the quality and nature of the ground, (whether it is fertile, swampy, woody, stony or barren), and all buildings and structures on it - the property of the home as well as the emotional environment.
Farming, agriculture and any occupation that is concerned with tending the land is relevant here. Baigent, Campion and Harvey suggest nationalism, the ideology which represents love of the land ([MA], p.229); this would also embrace patriotism and a strong concern with 'roots', tradition and history.
It is said to indicate the beginning and end of all things, representing early childhood experiences that give rise to an unconscious emotional experience of life, the vulnerability of old age, the process of death, and funerals. Death by drowning is particularly relevant.

In Horary Astrology:
The querent's father.
Property for sale, lease agreements (tenants are shown by the 6th), boundaries, and descriptions of buildings and gardens.
In questions concerning missing persons or lost items, the 4th describes the nature of the surface beneath them and in murder cases can help to describe the location of the body. It is often used to represent the 'end of the matter' and Ivy Goldstein-Jacobson considers the turned 4th from any house to show the conclusion of the business attributed to it (ie., the 3rd house shows the resolution of 12th house matters).

In Mundane Astrology:
Land, the owners of it, workers on it, crops and produce. The farming and mining industry.
Buildings and the property market; Watters notes: "Saturn falling in the 4th house may indicate a housing shortage. Pluto there may indicate vandalism or crime waves affecting property; serious afflictions to the 4th from combinations of Uranus, Neptune and Jupiter may indicate loss of property through storms, floods, earthquakes" ([JoE], p64).
Supplies that feed the nation from beneath the earth - such as the pipes of the water or gas industry: Raphael notes: "Uranus in the 4th is an especially evil influence, denoting serious trouble to water companies and causes mining disasters and explosions in public buildings. It is evil for the government, bringing difficulties to them - land, mining royalties and the taxation of land values are likely to be a source of much trouble under this influence" ([MAR], p.30).
The town or city in question and its governor. As the opposite house to the 10th, those who oppose the government, king, or recognised order. In war charts, any town or city under attack.

In lawsuits or conflicts:
Use the above, related to whoever initiates the action.

In Events:
Use the above, related to whoever initiates the action.

In Medical Matters:
The breast or lung area. Its association with death makes this a poor placement in decumbiture charts.

In Commerce:
Use the above, related to the buyer.


Angular, feminine, nocturnal. A 'dark' house, representing hidden matters, but because it is angular it suggests recovery of lost objects and indicates they may be found close to home or their usual place.


Associated Planets:
Manilius viewed the 4th house as the temple of Saturn. Both are related to ancestry, land, agriculture, mining and death - this relevancy suggests a heightened emphasis on these affairs when Saturn is connected with the 4th house by location or rulership.
Cosignificators are Cancer and the Sun; Lilly notes: "In Nativities or Questions, this fourth house represents fathers, so doth the Sun by day and Saturn by night; yet if the Sun be herein placed, he is not ill, but rather shows the father to be of a noble disposition, &c. " ([CA], p.53).

The Northern Angle, Angle of the Earth, Immum Coeli ('lower midheaven'), Ypogeon ('Below the Earth'). The House of Parents.

12 ESE 3 NNE 6 WNW 9 SSW
2 ENE 5 NNW 8 WSW 11 SSE

previous next

© Deborah Houlding, 1996; Extracted from the 1st edition of The Houses: Temples of the Sky - now available in a revised, expanded edition

House Rulerships

House 1 House 2 House 3 House 4
House 5 House 6 House 7 House 8
House 9 House 10 House 11 House 12