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The Path To Becoming A Serial Killer

DN young photo-3Dennis Nilsen, born Nov. 23, 1943 at 4:00 AM in Scotland, relocated to London, England.

Nilsen is one of England’s more notorious serial murders, killing and dismembering a dozen or more young men over the course of decade.  He grew up in Fraserburgh, Scotland and was a better-than-average but not outstanding student.  He found family life and his surroundings to be very limiting.  His mother had divorced his father when he was quite young.  Dennis was fond of his grandfather, but he passed away, leaving no male figures in his family.  His mother worked very hard to support himself and two siblings; still, life was very hard for the family.  He joined the Army in 1961 to escape an environment which held no promise for him.  He left the Army in 1972 with the rank of Corporal.  He took a job as an assistant Constable with the Police but quit after a year, moving through a series of low-level full and part-time jobs sufficient to pay his way through life.

Let us review his early life.  At the age of twelve he became quite moody, wandering off on his own to get away from his mother’s concerns and restraints.  He loved the town’s harbor area and the fishing boats.  He would spend hours at the sea side watching the crashing waves ebb and flow.  These activities kept him away from home where his mother and other women struggled to work and earn enough to hold the family together without the presence of his divorced father.

At a later date, an older man of the community wandered off.  Many people turned out to search for him.  Dennis and a friend found his corpse at the edge of the River Ugie behind the school.  Dennis was very upset, he was reminded of his grandfather who had been a revered figure in his early childhood.  Dennis could not comprehend the reality of death.  A short time later, at age fifteen, he left school without having had any sexual or romantic contact with girls or an established friend among the boys.  After exploring the local opportunities for work, Dennis decided to join the army.  He left town on a train in early September, 1961, headed for a new life.

As a boy soldier he was immersed into a rigid routine.  He learned to be part of a team.  The physical exercise workouts were particularly difficult for his frail frame.  With persistence he managed to graduate three years later into the regular army.  It was in these early years in the regular army that he realized his attraction to certain other young men.  He came to see himself as ‘bi-sexual’ but took great pains to hide his feelings.  Later in his army career while at the Persian Gulf area, he was given a room of his own as a perk of his job as a cook.  At this time he was able to have a young Arab boy share his bed and satisfy his sexual desires.  The balance of his army career reflected his struggles to find lovers and to deal with the emotional conflicts that were produced.  He left the army in 1972 at age 27.

He had come to recognize his homosexuality but chose to not reveal it to others he knew or worked with.  He did frequent the local pubs and associated with other young men who were gay.  For awhile, that was all that happened; he associated with them.  Then, the date came when he first murdered a man named Stephen Holmes.  Before we start to explore his murderous trail, we need to take a deep look at his natal chart to see what might have contributed to these situations.


This London-based natal chart’s MC and Asc. angles change by only 2 degrees (MC) and 3 degrees (Asc.) from the Scotland birth chart.

Our attention is first drawn to the MC and Ascendant angles; the MC is straddled by Saturn and Mars, the Ascendant angle has Jupiter three degrees above where it conjoins Chiron.  Each planet symbolizes a range of possible expressions.  While Mars-Saturn can be seen as either a disciplined (Saturn) application of effort (Mars) or as an inability (Saturn) to act decisively (Mars), it can be interpreted for a murderer as cold-blooded (Saturn) aggression (Mars).  In this chart the MC is within one degree of the midpoint between Mars and Saturn; overcoming difficulties, suffering of the soul without complaint, experiencing mourning and bereavement.

It will be fruitful for us to utilize these midpoint patterns to better understand what drove this man to kill so many others that he became acquainted with.  The use of midpoints will be explained in depth a little later in this text and in following blog postings.  First, we need to look at a few other factors in this relocated natal chart.

Just above the Ascendant, in the twelfth house we see Chiron (“K” with a circle below it) and Neptune (the trident symbol).  A few months earlier the faster moving asteroid Chiron had conjoined the slower-moving Neptune, beginning a seventy-year-plus cycle at five degrees of Libra.  Research suggests that this cycle relates to those who are sensitive to a wide range of vague social conditions which they seem to collect and associate with the pains and wounds of their own personal life.  These vague pains need some form of focus for an outlet.  Because Jupiter conjoins Chiron and also exactly squares the Moon at 18 Cancer, the Moon-Jupiter pattern becomes the focus of expression.  Moon-Jupiter patterns seek social meetings, pleasures, gains of satisfaction.  However, like all complex symbols (Moon and Jupiter), there can be two sides to consider.

  1. Feelings of kindness, social conscience, an obliging and helpful nature.
  2. Indifference, negligence, inner conflicts with one’s outlook on life.

These statements are derived from Ebertin’s classical standard, the Combination of Stellar Influences, which is the definitive work on midpoints.

Because Nilsen’s Ascendant is so close to Jupiter-Chiron, and Chiron-Neptune are at the start of their many-decades-long cycle, we can therefore summarize the expression of this complex pattern as “Being heavily influenced by his sensitivity to the socially downtrodden plight of young adults struggling with both hand-to-mouth existence and coping with homosexual issues in a society very intolerant of their needs and place.  Nilsen’s own life views relative to his fellow homosexuals is a mixture of needing social contact and an inability to grant them individuality and respect for their living condition.  It is only in their death that his swings from benevolence to indifference-injustice that he can identify his own conflicts and think about how he might resolve his own problems.  The square aspect to the Moon in the ninth house brings mood swings and changes in his outlook of these semi-stranger’s life conditions.  Since the ‘square’ aspect represents a conflicting challenge, it may never actually lead to a solution unless some other event or triggered pattern comes into play.

So, before we have even gotten into a standard set of comments on this natal chart, we have already painted severe complexities which will constantly color our judgment of the chart’s multiple symbols.

Note:  On my other blog site, , I am exploring a very similar natal chart dated several weeks after Dennis Nilsens birth.  In that chart the Moon was also the focus for the Chiron-Neptune pairing, but the Moon was in opposition.  That person also joined the army but became an intelligence officer, married, and had a productive career.

Venus is late into the first house where it squares Pluto in the tenth house.  Venus-Pluto leads to compulsive love, sensual pleasure and great attraction, love fantasies, strains in one’s love-life. This is not an easy pattern, being challenging. wanting to be challenged and then finding that one is tired of the challenge.

There are no opposition patterns in this chart; oppositions tend to provide perspective and a sense of balance or a need to establish balance or moderation.   We can note the trine (120 degree) aspect that lends to an easy assimilation between the Sun and Mars and what they represent.  Sun-trine-Mars suggests an easy use of one’s masculinity and purpose.  By itself, that would be good. But, the Sun has a semi-square (45 degrees or half of a 90 degree square) aspect to Chiron.  This is as difficult to express positively as the square aspect.  How might a second-house Sun work with a twelfth-house Chiron?  One’s sense of self-esteem and confidence (Sun) has to overcome feelings of inadequacy based on his early home life (missing parent, lack of opportunity and frustration over not having a future). 

We have one more factor to consider in this brief look at the natal chart.  A few months earlier from his birth date, on July 9, 1945, there was a Solar Eclipse at 17 Cancer, very near the Moon in his natal chart.  A solar eclipse on one’s natal Moon focuses on which of two opposing energies, the Yin or Yang, the male or female, will become more important in one’s life.  The issue of integrating these two forces, of balancing ones nature, becomes a persistent factor in life. This is one more signification contributing to the homosexual inclinations for Dennis Nilsen. 



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King Henry VII Solidifies The Tudor Family Succession

Henry photo-5Henry’s plans, before he set sail for England, was to raise an army, gain some allies, defeat King Richard, and to marry Elizabeth of York.  This last step was intended to unite the houses of Lancaster and York, thereby ending the drawn-out War of the Roses.

After killing the King at the Battle of Bosworth Hill, Henry celebrated at Leicester and then proceeded to London as the conquering hero.  ‘Hero’ may be a strong word to choose given the many split loyalties among those who subservient to the Crown, no matter who was Elizabeth of York photowearing it.  In any case the newly self-crowned King arrived and began the arduous task of consolidating power, taking over the treasury and receiving the nobility who had to offer their fealty as well as plead or bargain for lands and the share of the wealth that their lands generated for the King.

Following the crowning ceremony King Henry set about proposing marriage to Elizabeth of York.  This may or may not have been personally agreeable to Elizabeth but she knew that her family and the country needed peace and a resolution to this war.  It was a ‘no-brainer.’

The date of their marriage was set for January 18, 1846.  Henry had a t/Moon-to-n/Sun Return on Jan. 16, 1486.  That chart is shown below.


At the start of this blog-series a question was posed about whether the not-yet-discovered outer planets played a role in these charts for several centuries prior to their discovery.  Above, we immediately note n/Pluto exactly on the MC.  Henry’s plan for ending decades of war and of uniting the two warring families is certainly a revolutionary concept, a concept that would alter England’s future.

Fittingly, t/Moon-to-n/Sun is at the IC angle, indicating an ending and a start in a new direction.  Since n/Sun represents Henry, and Henry represents England, it would be the country that would embark on a new course.  Note t/Part of Fortune (t/PoF) in the first house squaring n/Pluto.  This course of action and what it represented was likely to be a shock to some who had built up their alliance with one house while ignoring the other house.   The weaving of palace intrigue must have been something to witness.

n/Moon was in the first house squaring the t/Moon-n/Sun position.  Uncertainty is indicated in how the populace might take this marriage.  Many in either the house of York or Lancaster must have thought this would not work out smoothly.  We can also note t/Venus-n/Venus in the 4th house, promising that the marriage would work out as planned.

The Advanced chart for the date of marriage is shown below.


In the intervening two days time little has changed.  t/Moon has moved ahead to conjoin t/Venus, bring a peaceful conclusion to this tension-filled ceremony.   t/PoF has advanced to contact t/Saturn and approach n/Saturn-t/Neptune.  The swirl of changes due to this union cemented the circumstances and reduced any possibility of unsettlement caused by disgruntled nobles.  

The outer planets have played a role in some of these charts.  Perhaps these charts pertaining to the joining of the warring families can be seen as the best example of bringing widespread social change to England.   Henry went on to rule England until his passing in 1509.   The crown passed peacefully to his son who would be known as Henry VIII.  While Henry VIII caused a lot of problems, they were limited to the family and immediate court.  The country, as a whole, remained free from the upsets of never-ending war.    Dave.



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Henry Tudor Goes To London, Becomes King of England

Henry photo-4This painting depicts King Henry later in life, past the point where he was a young and slender youth-turned-man coming out of hiding in France.   

After sending the former King Richard III’s naked body to Leicester to be displayed in public, Henry Tudor gathered his troops and marched to London.  William Stanley stood in good favor with Henry for having come to his aid in subduing the former King.  Lord Stanley had joined the battle when it was essentially over; he was probably not so well placed in Henry’s favor.  The whole battle had lasted less than two hours.

To recount that battle:  1) Henry’s small forces were at the bottom of a hill near a marshy area, while Richard III’s larger force was at the top of the hill.  2)  Richard let loose a barrage of arrows from his archers as his troops and horsemen charged down the hill.  Henry’s forces arranged themselves in a tight wedge formation.  3)  Henry forces used the shields to diminish the effect of the rain of arrows, while the wedge formation held and split the forces of Richard.  4)  Richard’s forces had to regroup, Henry forces had suffered some casualties.  In time the larger force of Richard would wear down the smaller group of Henry.  5)  Henry left the battle and went over to where William Stanley was waiting with his army.  He begged for Stanley’s help.  Richard saw this movement of Henry and realized he was isolated from his own forces.  He led a group of horsemen to surround Henry.  6)  Henry and his escort retreated into the marsh area where Richard’s horsemen were less effective.  Richard was un-horsed and then killed by spearmen of Henry.  7)  William Stanley entered the battle and the remaining forces of Richard were dispersed.

Henry entered London on Sept. 3, 1485.  Celebrations and the taking over the reigns of power occupied the following days.  His coronation as King of England needed to be planned for as a final sign of the shift in power and the lining up of allegiances.  Henry Tudors t/Moon-n/Sun Return of Oct. 26, 1485 (OS) is shown below.


Fittingly, the t/Sun is on the Ascendant;  Henry’s star-power was evident to all.  This scholarly young noble was well received.  With the two Stanley’s backing him there was no alternative to him to mount a challenge.  The t/Moon-n/Sun was located in the third house, conjoined by the t/PoF.  The theme for this position of t/Moon-n/Sun is “Alertness. . . involved with those around you. . . exchange of information.  Selling yourself . . . agreements. . .”   At the MC angle we find a tight grouping of n/Pluto-n/Uranus-n/Chiron indicating a surprisingly quick transformation fo power to rectify past injustices and hurts.  All in all, a simple and direct Return chart that sums up the period quite well.

On Oct. 30, 1485 Henry Tudor was crowned King in London, taking the title of King Henry VII.  His Advanced chart for this date is shown below.


The t/Sun remains close to the Ascendant with t/Mars catching up.  Henry remains in the lime-light.  We find t/Venus-t/Mercury-t/Saturn in the first house;  agreements, settlements of who pays how much to the crown, and formalities are represented by this grouping.  Since this grouping also conjoins n/Asc. we have to treat all these planets as conjoining the Ascendant:  t/Mars-t/Sun-t/Asc.-n/Asc.-n/Moon-t/Venus-t/Mercury-t/Saturn.  This is a major impact by the personal planets of the natal and Advanced chart.  It is truly Henry’s day.  t/Venus-squares-n/Venus near the IC angle; all is not love and roses, but business is business and a consensus will be arrived at as allegiances are put in place.  Nothing will rain on Henry’s parade on this date.

Speaking of squares, note that t/Sun squares n/Sun in the 3rd house.  For a situation such as this, the Suns in the chart can represent different leaders and opinions.  There is tension here in this ceremony to crown Henry, but that is to be expected.  t/Moon-t/PoF-t/Chiron are in the 5th house — not making major aspects to the other planets except for conjoining the n/S.Node.  Henry is feeling that this is all working out according to his plans and his faith in himself.  He seems to not feel overly beholden to others.

On this date of celebration, Henry had one more step to take in his grand plan for England.  We will address that in the next posting.

The charts for this happy occasion do not depend upon the outer planets for putting meaning into the charts.  It is all about the personal planets for Henry’s taking over as King of England.  We will have to see what happens in the next and final posting in this series. 

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The King is Dead; Long Live the King

Bosworth Field battle photoHenry fights Richard

After resting his troops, Henry advanced toward Bosworth Field at the bottom of AMbion Hill where Richard had arrayed his forces.  As Henry advanced, Richard’s archers began their work.  Henry pulled his forces into a tight wedge at the bottom of the hill.  The many shields blunted the damaging hail of arrows.  Richards horsemen and foot soldiers charged down the hill.  The wedge formation of Henry’s forces held up well against the charging forces of Richard while his horsemen attacked Richards troops from the sides.

Richard remained at the top of the hill watching the fighting.  While his attack had failed to throw Henry’s troops into disarray, their larger numbers would sooner or later wear down Henry’s army.  Henry was dismayed that neither of the Stanley’s were entering the fight to aid him.  Taking a group of bodyguards, he rode off to directly plead for their help.

Meanwhile, Richard’s mind was working hard, trying to reason why the two Stanleys were standing by with their forces and not coming to help him.  He convinced himself that they were going to turn against him.  He ordered the hostage, George Stanley, killed.  In the confusion of the battle, that order was not carried out.  However, from his vantage point he could see that Henry and his bodyguards were now isolated from the bulk of his forces.  He led a cavalry charge against Henry’s exposed position.

Henry and his small group gathered together near a marshy area.  This setting diminished the advantage of Richard’s large group of horsemen.  It was at this point that William Stanley entered the battle, bringing superior numbers against the King’s force.  Richards horse went down, and he sought to fight on foot.  Pikesmen advanced toward the King and speared him repeatedly.  Richard’s forces, upon seeing the King and his banner fall, broke ranks.  The battle was over.

Richard’s gold circlet, which he had worn on his helmut, was found and placed on Henry’s head.  Richard was the last English King to be killed in battle.  That distinction earned him the treatment of being placed over a horse’s back, naked, and carried to Leicester to be publically displayed for two days.

Henry’s t/Moon-opposite-n/Sun Return for August 18, 1485 is shown below.  This Return chart precedes the battle.


t/Venus-t/Sun is just behind the IC angle, while t/Mars is just ahead of the IC angle.  n/PoF is within two degrees of the IC.  This presence of personal planets at the IC indicates that Henry will be facing a period of deep change in his life.  The presence of t/Venus near the IC and n/Venus behind the MC angle suggests a more positive, protective nature.  The presence of t/Mars in the 4th and n/Mars in the 1st points to an assertive participating in coming events.  The placement of the n/MC deep into the 4th house tells of a fresh chapter in his life and career.

Henry’s Advanced chart for August 22, 1485, the date of the battle at Bosworth Field, is shown below.


Not much has changed in this chart over the four days since the Return chart.  The angles and the t/Sun have advanced at roughly the same pace.  We have t/Sun four degree behind the IC along with the n/Part of Fortune.  t/Mars-4th and n/Mars-1st provide a ‘doubled up’ Mars, indicating a pivotal battle and self-exertion to persevere.  If we look at the midpoint between these two Mars, we find t/Mercury-n/Pluto; an overwhelming message of change and intention to use this event to change the warring nature of the country.  (Henry would wed Elizabeth, uniting the two families and ending the War of the Roses.)   Note the t/PoF opposing Henry’s n/Sun and squaring his n/Moon.  This pattern reflects the t/Sun-n/PoF conjunction near the IC angle.  We, in effect have a ‘doubled up’ Sun-PoF pattern which shows a total shift in authority and command.

If we choose to look at King Richard III’s Advanced chart, shown below, for his death in battle, we find his n/PoF at the IC angle and his t/PoF conjoining t/Uranus in the 2nd, soon to oppose his n/Moon.  So, the signs of ‘change’ are also in his chart.  t/Saturn in the first, conjoining n/Venus and squaring t/Venus-t/Sun is far less positive than in Henry’s chart.  The placement of the n/Asc in the 12th and n/MC in the 9th gives us the sense of Richard belonging to the ‘past’.  t/Chiron opposes his n/Sun, an indication of weakness.  Still, it is not a bad chart.  One can’t help but think that better decisions and strategy on his part might have changed the outcome of this day.


So, what role do the ‘unknown-in-1485’ planets have in these historical charts.  For our purposes we are concerned with Chiron, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto.

  • In Richard’s advanced chart for his death, Aug. 22, 1485, t/Moon-n/Neptune points to a dissolution of the spirit, a loss of identity.  t/Chiron opposes this pattern, maybe indicating that basic changes need to be made in his sense of history and place.  Perhaps war is not what is needed at this time.  t/Pluto-n/Mercury might be taken as a destruction of consciousness and thought or a destruction of one’s plans (to capture and kill Henry).  t/Uranus is approaching n/N.Node while n/Uranus opposes n/Moon; upsets in ones alliances or those he associates with (the Stanleys) leads to a distancing of those sympathetic to him. 
  • In Henry’s Advanced chart we find t/Chiron on the n/S.Node (not able to manage everything by oneself) and opposing n/Neptune (unsure as to what choice to make or the risks involved) — (this relates to holding Stanleys son hostage in order to keep Lord Stanley out of the battle.)   t/Pluto-n/Neptune is a generation marker–Richard has to deal with overturning established thought and norms (the long generational war was weakening the country).  This can be seen as being reflected in the t/Mercury-n/Pluto pattern; giving thought to generational needs (the role of the King and the two warring families).

We can find an interpretive role for the yet-to-be-known planets in these charts.  Were they the driving force in interpretation?  Perhaps not.  It would seem that the charts conveyed a sense of dealing with the ‘here and now’ rather than the long view of what was needed for the country.  At this point the ‘middle-ages’ mentality was still in play, the renaissance period had not gotten started in northern Europe.  Columbus had yet to discover the Indies and North America.  Change was still a few generations away. 

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The Final York-Lancaster Family Feud Is About To Begin

Henry photo-2Henry Tudor had managed to slip out of the harbor in France without confronting any ships of King Richard III.  He had landed on the western coast of Wales.  There, his presence was noted and beacon fires spread the news of his arrival.  Yet, all was somewhat tranquil at first.  The relative remoteness from London gave Henry the time to establish himself and advance inland.  While many joined his force, he was not at a sufficient level of followers that would allow a good chance of defeating Richard.  He was looking for allies, particularly William Stanley and Lord Stanley, two leaders with substantial armed forces.  William Stanley had agreed to support him, Lord Stanley had made no commitment.  The t/Moon-n/Sun Return for Aug. 5, 1485 is shown below.

Henry MtoS 8-0501485

t/Moon-n/Sun is in the 7th, opposed by t/Venus-t/Sun-n/Pluto.  The seventh house emphasis relates to his desire for assistance.  When we see significant aspects between the t/Sun and n/Sun in these return charts we can expect that two or more strong-willed people or leaders are involved.  Henry (the 7th house Sun) and others who might help (t/Venus-t/Sun) in his forthcoming battle (n/Pluto) for control over England.   The t/N.Node-MC is emphasized by the opposition to the n/MC; a phase of Henry’s young life was beginning.  Note the n/N.Node in the 4th, a loose mirror to the t/N.Node-MC at the top of the chart — a pattern repeating the Sun-opposition pattern.   t/PoF is closing on the 7th house angle, opposing n/Jupiter just above the Asc.   Past support assurances (n/Jupiter-12th) are still not assured (t/PoF).   We might pick up on t/Sun-n/Pluto and look for t/Pluto — we find it in the fourth house of new starts and resources where it conjoins n/Neptune.  This is not a fully reassuring aspect; revolution and upheaval (Pluto) may be uncertain (Neptune).  

Henry advanced from the coast, heading for Shrewsbury, some 100 miles distant.  This gave him time to gather additional forces and to reach out to the Stanley’s for assistance.  William Stanley informed him that Richard was assembling forces near Leicester, a point halfway between Shrewsbury and London.  Lord Stanley would not be joining Henry’s force because King Richard was holding Lord Stanley’s son captive.  This situation was indicative of the many twists and turns that had been part of the intrigue between these two royal families for decades.  Let us look at an Advanced chart for Aug. 15, 1485 when Henry captured Shrewsbury.  This was not a battle of any magnitude.  What town wished to be destroyed.  The town just opened it doors for the most part.  


When examining Advanced charts we look for angular planets, the t/Sun, t/Moon, t/PoF and any doubled-up planets.   Here, the vertical axis gains our attention with t/Chiron-MC, t/Pluto-n/Neptune-n/N.Node-IC.  The uncertainty of Henry’s forces being sufficient for upsetting Richard is a focal point (t/Pluto-n/Neptune-IC).  Henry’s need for support (n/N.Node-IC) is still evident in this chart at this time.  

t/Moon opposes t/Uranus, mirroring the growing excitement of Henry’s forces as they gain confidence from the capture of Shrewsbury and the addition of new recruits.  t/PoF opposes t/Neptune and n/Saturn; the illusion of growing strength should be a concern of Henry.  He is still quite young, not yet having his first Saturn return, and without much military experience.  He was not a skilled fighter, being more of a figurehead.  

All in all, this is not a ‘high confidence’ chart for a would-be-King.  It was decided that Henry would advance his forces very slowly so as to give Lord Stanley time to think about his situation, and to see what Richard would do regarding his hostage — Lord Stanley’s son.

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The King & The ‘Wannabe’ King

Henry photo-3Can planets discovered centuries later play a role in earlier charts?

This photo is of Henry VIII, while he was still very young and not yet King of England. 

While visiting the local Senior Center I came across a newspaper titled “Old News.”  The headline for this bi-monthly paper was “Henry Tudor Fights King Richard III.”  This newspaper certainly lived up to its title as that event occurred in 1485 in England.  As an astrologer, many stories coming from history are interesting but ignored due to the lack of birth data of those who play a role in the story.  Not so for English Kings.  Their data is often recorded for earlier periods.

  • Richard III was born Oct. 2, 1452 at 9:02 LT, Forthering Castle in England, 52n3128, 000w2615.
  • Henry VII was born Jan 28, 1457 at 3:00 AM LT, Pembroke, England, 51n41, 004w55.

All dates, birth and event, utilize the Julian Calendar (Old Style) that was in effect prior to the 1700’s.

Henry Tudor was a member of a noble English family, the House of Lancaster.  Their political rivals were the House of York.  Both families were engaged in a lengthy conflict for control of England.  Their many battles became known later as the War of the Roses.  In the year 1471, while Henry was a teen-ager, the House of York firmed up its position as holder of the throne by winning a major battle wherein  Lancasterian King Henry VI was captured.  It was a major defeat for Henry’s family and allies.  Henry and members of his family fled to Brittany, across the channel to avoid being killed.

Henry grew up to embody intelligence, patience and caution.  He was analytical and calculating in his nature.  Frequent contact with family who were able to maintain their place in England, and with allies there, fed into his planning to someday return and claim the crown for himself.   The King died in 1483, leaving the country in an uneasy peace.  The former King’s brother, Richard was an experienced military man.  He seized the throne for himself.  An uprising late in 1483 expressed the dissatisfaction of the population with the new King.  Henry Tudor was called upon to return and be proclaimed King.

Uranus, Neptune, Pluto

The Duke of Brittany provided Henry with several ships to carry him and his supporters back to England.  The ships were scattered in a storm.  A key ally, the Duke of Buckingham, was captured and executed, the remaining forces were scattered about the southern areas of England, and the rebellion was put down before Henry could arrive.  Many of those who survived took refuge with Henry in Brittany.  Those rebels in Brittany, on Christmas Day, 1483, swore fealty to Henry.  Henry proclaimed that if he succeeded in winning back the throne that he would marry Ricrad’s niece, Elizabeth.  This would unite the two royal houses, bringing peace to England.

Following extensive preparations in terms of gathering an army, ships, and consulting with allies in Wales, Henry landed in Milford Haven, Wales on August 1, 1485.  His t/Moon-opposite-n/Sun Return chart for July 21, 1485 is shown below.


This is a 2nd house Sun opposed by t/Moon in the 8th.  The theme for this pattern suggests the management of resources. Changes in plans, supporting the needs of others, a personal crises and transformation that reflect on one’s self-esteem.

We can note that there is a “new moon’ taking place in this chart, but this Return predates the actual landing of Henry, so that new moon, in itself, means less.  What is notable is n/Neptune-MC and t/Neptune-Asc.; a ‘doubled up’ Neptune.  Given that this chart predates the actual landing, we can view Neptune as dreams of victory, euphoria over taking action, and as a action-for-a-cause-by-sea.  Note that t/Pluto-MC squares n/Mars; drastic change will require drastic action.  The position of t/Chiron at the IC angle and t/S.Node suggests that Henry’s plans will be of his own making, but that circumstances will require adjustments.  As we have learned from modern battles, the best laid plans often end at the start of the fighting.

The Advanced chart is for August 1, 1485 and the landing of Henry’s forces at Mlford Haven in Wales.  This far west portion of southern England would provide time and distance from any contact with Richard’s forces.  Henry would organize and seek additional allies.


The Ascendant area of this chart takes our notice.  t/Moon-Asc. is the focal pattern; seeking contact with the population along with their support.  n/Saturn, t/Uranus, t/Neptune surround the Ascendant.

In the eleventh house we note t/Saturn-n/Asc. which squares t/Mercury-n/Pof from the 8th.  This is a lot of heavy-outer planet activity for a large group of men sneaking onto a tidal flat in the safest part of Wales.  The landing was not contested, the country was familiar to Henry.  The time and place was designed to provide safety for his small army.  He would find uncontested towns in his path which he could claim to conquer.  This might attract more recruits to his army and also sway the allegiance of those nobels in the area from Richard to his side. 

So, I take note of the outer-planet positioning in this chart but I find the associated meanings and the circumstances to be under-whelming.  The one non-angular pattern I find interesting is t/Pluto conjoining n/Neptune; a time to force an old dream into the forefront of the country.  This seems to empower the Ascendant’s t/Neptune-n/Saturn (dreams, plans, action taken).  We can also take note of the natal T-square of Neptune square Mercury-opp-Mars: “the pursuit of fantastic plans, speaking without acting, not keeping promises.  Hopeless plans, the tendency to harm others through falsehood or underhanded behaviour, the process of undermining another person’s position” — all according to Ebertin.  We can read a lot into this statement from the book, Combination of Stellar Influences.  Was Henry an idealist, and not very practical?  Was his effort to reshape England somewhat misguided?

His armed force was small, too small to defeat Richard.  Was his effort to win allies serious?  Who would put trust in such a small force and commit their own life to his scheme?  We will learn more in the next posting.



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The Inevitable End

Photo Tolkachev at work

This painting by Kathy Krantz Fieramosca can be found at CIA headquarters. It depicts Tolkachev at work in his apartment taking photos of documents during his lunch break.  No spy in our history provided such remarkable and valuable material as he.  The results of his work extended more than a decade after his death as evidenced in the Iraq ‘wars’ when Soviet aircraft and technology proved to be insuficient relative to US technology and pilot training.

On Sept. 24, 1986 Tolkachev was executed.  In the year since his capture he had been closely questioned about his work.  The records of his document removal from the research facility that he headed up were examined.  The extent of his disclosures to the CIA were horrifying for the KGB and government as they grasped the true nature of what he ha done.


The above t/Moon-opposite-n/Sun Return is cast for Sept. 13, 1986.  t/Mercury-MC-opposite t/Part-of-Fortune at the IC immediately grabs our attention.  Mercury is associated with communications, news, short trips, etc. — in this case, relating to his career and public image.  t/PoF-IC indicates changes that end or start something that is at the foundation of his life.  In the context of his situation, his life as a spy was about to end.  t/Saturn was near the Asc., always an indicator of a depressing period as many of us can attest to.  The primary pattern is, of course, the t/Moon-t/Mars-opposite the n/Sun in the 8th house.  His core character would be attacked and be a highly emotional-reactive experience for him.

Let us advance this chart for the date of his execution, Sept. 24, 1986.


The angles tell the story.  t/Mercury-MC-n/PoF points to a total change of consciousness and ability to communicate.  t/Saturn-Asc.-square-n/Saturn in the 9th indicates limitations personally applied to his efforts in working with a foreign government (keeping this in the context of his life and work).   t/Moon-Desc. shows his response on this date to his interaction with others.  Despite his taciturn demeanor during his lifetime, this had to be a terribly upsetting event for him.  He had hopes of avoiding this through the use of his CIA-provided ‘suicide pill’ but that had been discovered and his capture while traveling with his wife had made its use impossible — the pill was back at his apartment.

This t/Moon-Desc. is squaring his natal Saturn-opposite-n/Uranus, the pattern that suggests a life-long effort to disrupt the status-quo.

In Advanced charts we always look to the t/Sun, t/Moon, t/PoF, the angles, and the natal counterparts of Sun-Moon-PoF and angular planets.

  • n/Sun-n/Venus squares n/PoF and t/Mercury-t/N.Node; his disruptive nature is at odds with his environment and his captors.
  • n/Moon is opposed by t/Pluto; an overwhelming situation has to be reacted to; his death.
  • t/PoF-n/Jupiter; changes in the social opportunities open to him.  There are none to be expected
  • t/Neptune-n/Asc.; a dissolution of his personal environment, his death.
  • n/MC-t/Venus.  This links to his n/Sun-n/Venus in the 8th.  His objectives in life have been ‘completed’ and a balance in his values has been achieved due to his commitment to be a dissident.  

I’m not sure that any variation in interpretation of these chart factors can pay adequate tribute to the dedication of this man to the commitment that he made to himself to express his anger at the way his family had been treated by the historic events in Russia.  What he set out to accomplish was achieved.  That is his personal tribute. 





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