12 Zodiac Signs Explained

Zodiac 

The zodiac is one of the oldest universal symbolical languages. Zodiac comes from the Greek Zôè (life) and diakos (the wheel). It can thus be translated as the “Wheel of Life”.

Little is known about the specific origins of the zodiac, but once again its symbolical representation (a wheel divided into 12 equal parts that all have a different name) can be found in every corner of the planet (Egypt, Judea, Persia, India, Tibet, China, North and South America, Scandinavian countries, Muslim countries).

The Moon was the most easily observed, due to its proximity to the Earth. This is why the first zodiacs were based on the Moon, divided into 28 sectors corresponding to the 28 steps of the Moon’s path around the Earth. Afterwards, the zodiac became Sun-based, divided into 12 sectors, one for each step of the Sun’s path around the Earth.

Calendar and Zodiac

Greeks used the divisions of the zodiac to set up their calendar in the 5th century BCE in order to set a standard to measure time.

  • The year = the full 360° path of the Sun around the Earth
  • The months = the 12 sections of the zodiac
  • The days = the division of each section into 30° (because the Sun moves one degree every day)
  • The week = the association of the 7 planets

The name of the days in Latin was connected to each of the various planets in the zodiac:

  • Monday was dies Lunae, the day of the Moon
  • Tuesday was dies Martis, the day of Mars
  • Wednesday was dies Mercurii, the day of Mercury
  • Thursday was Dies Jovis, the day of Jupiter (“Jove”)
  • Friday was dies Veneris, the day of Venus
  • Saturday was dies Saturni, the day of Saturn
  • Sunday was dies Solis, the day of the Sun

For the ancient Greek, each movement of a part of the universe had an effect on everything else, the movement of the planets had an effect on human Destiny like living gods.

The elements, planets, and houses appeared in the zodiac in connection with this conception of the universe.

12 Zodiac Sign Dates, Houses, and Planets

There are a total of twelve astrology houses, which are numbered counter-clockwise from the cusp of the first house.

SignDateHouseRuling Planet
AriesMar 21 – Apr 19FirstMars
TaurusApr 20 – May 20SecondVenus
GeminiMay 21 – Jun 20ThirdMercury
CancerJun 21 – Jul 22FourthMoon
LeoJul 23 – Aug 22FifthSun
VirgoAug 22 – Sep 21SixthMercury
LibraSept 23 – Oct 22SeventhVenus
ScorpioOct 23 – Nov 21EighthPluto
SagittariusNov 22 – Dec 21NinthJupiter
CapricornDec 22 – Jan 19TenthSaturn
AquariusJan 20 – Feb 18EleventhUranus
PiscesFeb 19 – Mar 20TwelfthNeptune

☀ Note: Your zodiac sign is based on the Sun’s position at the time of your birth! If you were born between the 19th and 23rd of a month there is a good chance that you were born on the cusp. To precisely define your zodiac sign you must check an ephemeris to see where the Sun was at the time of your birth.

Zodiac Signs: Astrology Qualities and Elements

Other than the four astrology elements (Water, Fire, Earth, and Air), the twelve signs of the Zodiac are also classified through the zodiac qualities. There are three qualities in astrology; Cardinal, Fixed, and Mutable. These qualities are also called Quadruplicities, and they have a significant effect on a person’s general outlook and attitude and indicate how they function in their daily life. The qualities represent how a sign interacts with their environment, how they respond to particular situations, and how they interact with other people. Every person plays a different role in a team, some are starters or initiators, some are the hard workers, and some are the finishers.

Each zodiac sign in astrology is directly linked with one of the four elements that form the basis of nature. These are earth, fire, water, and air.

Air Element Signs: Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius

Air is perhaps the only element that openly supports freedom, liberty, and individualism by breaking free of all systems to form one unique system for the self. At the first impression, air people may look weak or naive in front of the fire people who embody great energy or the earth people who have rock solid planning and implementation skills, however, the advantage that air people have with them is that of open-mindedness. This not only lets them think with fresher perspectives that nobody could ever imagine but also lets them understand the other person very easily. Air element helps one learn the deeper meaning of life by being open to all kinds of ideas where others might draw a line.

Water Element Signs: Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces

Water is an element that has its own unique, very different set of qualities that make the people identifying with it even more mysterious and difficult to approach, just like foreign life finding it hard to breathe inside water. The people belonging to the water element, however, show clear signs of adaptability and getting out of tough situations, just like water can take the shape of any container and can also flow out of any place, provided it finds the smallest of cracks.

Fire Element Signs: Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius

Since all of the sun signs draw themselves from the sun, it goes to show how important the sun, and subsequently fire is as one of the four elements that make up the earth. Clearly, as it can be seen, fire brings with it huge amounts of energy, and this is exactly what the people relating to fire are. The star signs relating to fire clearly possess huge amounts of energy that let them go about their tasks with a fierce determination of finishing it.

Earth Element Signs: Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn

As it is often called, mother earth perhaps forms the basis for the existence of all the elements. In astrology, the four elements have very high regard, and earth element takes precedence as it is the one that hosts all others in nature. In strictly astrological terms, the earth being the source of energy of all other elements translates to it being the ultimate manifestation of all of a man’s desires.

12 Zodiac Signs: Meanings and Characteristics

Zodiac represents the circle of 12 divisions, one for each step of the Sun’s path around the Earth. Those  divisions are known as zodiac or star signs. The term zodiac comes from the Latin word zōdiacus – which means “circle of animals”.

Here you can also learn more about the 12 ascendant signs.

Aries_icon

Aries Zodiac Sign

People born between the dates of March 21 to April 19 are Aries. While its symbol is that of the ram, it is generally taken to be a rational and straightforward sign. All of this is further explained by its zodiac element, which is fire. Combining fire with the zodiac trait of being rational is a very good combination, which lets the people of this sign see everything clearly and act right in time. More often than not, it saves them the trouble of falling for the wrong people as well as other traps. Topaz and Sapphire are particularly lucky stones for this star sign.

Taurus
Taurus Zodiac Sign

From April 20 to May 20 on the calendar, the star sign of Taurus rules. It is most commonly shown and depicted with the sign of the bull, and it is just what the personalities of its people are. They are generally bull-headed and do not really think twice before making any decisions. Their ruling zodiac sign is earth, which gives them the personality trait of being the settler. These people like to remain settled and do not really like changing places. The compatible job for such people is something that allows them to go through a routine and does not involve surprises or field trips every other day.

Gemini
Gemini Zodiac Sign

Being ruled by Mercury, Gemini is the true sign of communication, as its people know the art of communicating with every kind of person. People born between May 21 and June 20 belong Gemini.

With communication as their primary weapon, they can literally take on any kinds of challenges in their life, as their tongues can help them slide out of any kinds of sticky situations. Their zodiac element is air, which talks of freedom, liberty, and experiencing new things. This can often take them on new adventures as they never think twice before going on any new opportunity that life offers them.

Cancer_icon
Cancer Zodiac Sign

Belonging to the zodiac element of water, the star sign of Cancer covers the dates of June 21 to July 22. The element of water plays a very significant role over here, as it makes this zodiac sign one of the most flexible ones. Just like water can take the shape of any container it is put in; these people can adapt to any situation they are put it.

This is why it does not really matter what kind of living conditions they have or what facilities they get at a place; they can make peace with anything life throws at them. Their ruling planet is the moon.

Leo
Leo Zodiac Sign

Leo talks of pure and raw energy. They radiate it day and night, which is why any task they are entrusted with, one can be sure that they will get it done and in time. People born between the time of July 23 and August 22 are the ones who belong to this sign.

The energy that this radiates is also clear by Leo’s zodiac element, which is fire. It is often said that these people do not even need any determination or conviction for getting tasks done because their raw energy is enough to get it done before they need the motivation to kick in and get them to do stuff.

Virgo_icon
Virgo Zodiac Sign

Emotions are what define a Virgo star sign. It exists on the dates starting from August 23 and ends on September 22. The zodiac element that guides the basic life pattern of people belonging to the sign of Virgo is earth. Like we mentioned beforehand too, signs belonging to the element of earth favor a certain sort of permanence in their life. They like to settle down and despise wandering about in search of life’s purpose. This is why their earliest aim is always to find the meaning and purpose of their life and immediately settle for it. They believe that running constantly is not what life is meant for.

Libra_icon
Libra Zodiac Sign

September 23 to October 22 is the time slot reserved for the star sign of Libra in the calendar. The symbol allotted to this sign is the balancing scales, and they truly represent the actual nature of a Libra person. All their life, a Libra person might be misunderstood for their actions and may be labeled as dishonest or even distrustful.

However, the truth behind this is that they are only trying to find a balance between two conflicting groups of people because they seem to find favor with all kinds of people and can easily connect with them. Their ruling planet is Venus, which can help them a lot in relationships and love.

Scorpio_icon
Scorpio Zodiac Sign

If there is one zodiac sign that is loyal and knows the true value of friendship, it is the star sign of Scorpio. People born between October 23 and November 21 belong to this zodiac sign. They belong to the element of water, which favors being flexible and adaptable. It also goes on to show that a Scorpio person can make a place for themselves in any situation and slide out of anything by making their own path, just like water does so. It is an inherent property of flowing water that it makes its own path, and just like that, the star sign of Scorpio does so too.

Sagittarius_icon
Sagittarius Zodiac Sign

Being the ninth in the list of astrological signs, Sagittarius is a zodiac sign that exists in the zodiac calendar from November 22 to December 21. Generally, if one looks at the trend, Sagittarius people are very creative in terms of music. A lot of popular musicians currently belong to the sign of Sagittarius too. The star sign of Sagittarius belongs to the zodiac element of fire, which speaks of energy and power. These people know that the only way forward is by pushing right through, and they make the most out of it. The ruling planet of Sagittarius is Jupiter.

Capricorn_icon
Capricorn Zodiac Sign

Capricorn is a sign that starts on December 22 in the Christian calendar and ends on January 19. Its ruling element is earth. This can tell us a lot about this zodiac sign. For starters, the people belonging to Capricorn favor permanence in their lives and want to settle before everyone else. They do not consider wandering and discovering the world a very good or worthwhile activity.

In addition to that, the personality of a Capricorn person is such that they favor rationality over all other kinds of impulses. This often gets them out of trouble because they are clearheaded and think things through before making any actions.

Aquarius_icon
Aquarius Zodiac Sign

The second last sign in the zodiac signs list is that of Aquarius. People born between January 20 and February 18 belong to Aquarius. These people tend to be all-stars, and good at everything they put their hands in. If one tries to analyze the technical side of this, the element that Aquarius belongs to is that of air, which encourages its people to try out new stuff every single day. They are aroused by newer adventures, and this lets them easily discover what their true passion is. The ruling planet of Aquarius is Uranus, giving it all guidance, while the stone that is lucky for this zodiac sign is Hematite.

Pisces_icon
Pisces Zodiac Sign

The last sign in this list is that of Pisces. It marks the end of the calendar by claiming the spot from February 19 to March 20. People born within this time period are known to be very flexible and easy-going in all kinds of situations. Such people know that the world is a constantly evolving scenario and that they need to change with it if they need to survive.

With that being said, the sign of Pisces is ruled by the planet Neptune, which further develops these habits. The element that this zodiac sign belongs to is water, again signaling at the flexible and adaptable nature of these people.

13th Astrological Sign

Modern astronomy records 88 constellations covering the southern and northern hemispheres of our sky. 13 of these constellations cross or touch the ecliptic – the trajectory of the Sun’s apparent path across the sky as seen from Earth.

These include the constellations that inspired the names of our 12 zodiac signs plus a thirteenth – Ophiuchus sign (Oaf-ih-YOU-kus).

Is Ophiuchus the thirteenth astrological sign?

In astrological terms would only be meaningfully significant if Tropical (western) astrology was still tied to the position of the constellations. It isn’t, and your zodiac sign, also known as your sun sign still stands, both as it is and where it is, based on the principle and according to the system on which it was first described.

Western (tropical) astrology, with its 12 associated zodiac signs is a static, modeled system based NOT on the constellations themselves, but on the wheel of the seasons which also accord the signs of the zodiac their personalities and the idea of the ‘missing’ thirteenth sign is nothing new.

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