The precise Gregorian times and dates vary slightly from year to year as the Gregorian calendar shifts relative to the tropical year. Except for and , the vernal equinox has started on 20 March since , and is projected to until Because the Earth's axis is at an angle, some signs take longer to rise than others, and the farther away from the equator the observer is situated, the greater the difference.
Thus, signs are spoken of as "long" or "short" ascension. The zodiac system was developed in Babylonia , some 2, years ago, during the " Age of Aries ". Contemporary use of the coordinate system is presented with the choice of interpreting the system either as sidereal , with the signs fixed to the stellar background , or as tropical , with the signs fixed to the point vector of the Sun at the March equinox.
Western astrology takes the tropical approach, whereas Hindu astrology takes the sidereal one. This results in the originally unified zodiacal coordinate system drifting apart gradually, with a clockwise westward precession of 1. For the tropical zodiac used in Western astronomy and astrology, this means that the tropical sign of Aries currently lies somewhere within the constellation Pisces " Age of Pisces ". The sidereal coordinate system takes into account the ayanamsa , ayan meaning transit or movement , and amsa meaning small part , i.
It is unclear when Indians became aware of the precession of the equinoxes, but Bhaskara 2 's 12th-century treatise Siddhanta Shiromani gives equations for measurement of precession of equinoxes, and says his equations are based on some lost equations of Suryasiddhanta plus the equation of Munjaala.
The discovery of precession is attributed to Hipparchus around BC. Ptolemy quotes from Hipparchus' now lost work entitled "On the Displacement of the Solstitial and Equinoctial Points" in the seventh book of his 2nd century astronomical text, Almagest , where he describes the phenomenon of precession and estimates its value. The principle of the vernal point acting as the first degree of the zodiac for Greek astronomers is also described in the 1st century BC astronomical text of Geminus of Rhodes.
Geminus explains that Greek astronomers of his era associate the first degrees of the zodiac signs with the two solstices and the two equinoxes, in contrast to the older Chaldean Babylonian system, which placed these points within the zodiac signs. Ptolemy also demonstrates that the principle of the tropical zodiac was well known to his predecessors within his astrological text, the Tetrabiblos , where he explains why it would be an error to associate the regularly spaced signs of the seasonally aligned zodiac with the irregular boundaries of the visible constellations:.
These events can be useful, for example, to estimate the cross-sectional dimensions of a minor planet , or check a star for a close companion.
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The Sun's placement upon the vernal equinox, which occurs annually around 21 March, defines the starting point for measurement, the first degree of which is historically known as the " first point of Aries ". Zodiac signs have never been used to determine the boundaries of astronomical constellations that lie in the vicinity of the zodiac, which are, and always have been, irregular in their size and shape. The use of the zodiac as a means to determine astronomical measurement remained the main method for defining celestial positions by Western astronomers until the Renaissance, at which time preference moved to the equatorial coordinate system , which measures astronomical positions by right ascension and declination rather than the ecliptic-based definitions of celestial longitude and celestial latitude.
The word "zodiac" is also used in reference to the zodiacal cloud of dust grains that move among the planets, and the zodiacal light that originates from their scattering of sunlight. In Unicode, the symbols of zodiac signs are encoded in block "Miscellaneous Symbols": . From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This is the latest accepted revision , reviewed on 5 October For the East Asian zodiac based on the Jovian orbital cycle, see Chinese zodiac.
For other uses, see zodiac disambiguation.
Further information: Former constellations. Further information: Babylonian star catalogues and MUL. Main article: Astrological sign. Further information: Axial precession , Epoch astronomy , Sidereal and tropical astrology , Astrological age , and Ayanamsa. Astronomical symbols Chinese zodiac Circle of stars Cusp astrology Elements of the zodiac. Oxford Dictionaries. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 19 September The Signs of the Zodiac. Wilcox, London, p. See also Lankford, John; Rothenberg, Marc History of Astronomy: An Encyclopedia.
Translated and annotated by G. Toomer ; with a foreword by Owen Gingerich. The introduction of the uniform zodiac", Archive for History of Exact Sciences , 64 6 : —, doi : The Mesopotamian traditions. Astronomical Data Service. Page Lennart Geminos's Introduction to the Phenomena.
Princeton University Press. Ptolemy's Tetrabiblos. Astrology Classics. Project Hindsight. Retrieved 4 July Hinduism: An Alphabetical Guide. Penguin Books India. London: Board of Longitude, Patrick Grim ed. Philosophy of science and the occult. Ptolemy's Catalogue of Stars: a revision of the Almagest. Carnegie Institution of Washington, Catesby Taliaferro ed. Ptolemy refers to the constellation as Septentarius "the serpent holder".
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October The Observatory. Bibcode : Obs He later issued a statement to say he had not reported that the zodiac ought to include 13 signs instead of 12, but was only mentioning that there were 13 constellations; reported in Mad Astronomy : Why did your zodiac sign change? International Planetarium Society. Retrieved 21 March The date in other time zones may vary. The Unicode Standard.
History of the Zodiac. Sophia Academic Press. Lee T. Random House, Inc.
Retrieved 21 May Retrieved 7 May Retrieved 6 March Rubie Zodiac category. If looking for work you may get a breakthrough you were not expecting. It is likely you will meet new and unusual people and have more involvement with friends and groups. This transit will be felt directly by those born from June 21 to 26 this year.
Those born from June 27 to July 1 have this transit in This eclipse will improve your home and family life in small but significant steps. Shared interests and mutual respect will foster new and beneficial friendships. However, this lunar eclipse could bring unexpected events and news that are likely to cause anxiety and uncertainty about the future. Life may seem more hectic and fast-paced than before. Patience, self-control, adaptability and an open mind will help you take advantage of the new opportunities that arise from the changing conditions ahead.
July 2 to December 25 — The July 2 Solar Eclipse is in Cancer which gives your birthday special significance this year. This refreshingly optimistic solar eclipse stays active in your solar return chart for twelve months. You can confidently set ambitious goals for the year ahead. You can rely on increased vitality and initiative. This solar eclipse brings good health, honor, and riches.
It brings people together and is a good omen for ending conflict through compromise and negotiation.
You can make your dreams come true through patience, open-mindedness, and hard work. December 1, , to January 17, — Jupiter opposite your decan can be a time of confronting excessive behaviors like greed. Taking more than you really need will affect other people and could cause some relationships difficulties. Take care not to expect too much of others while not giving them enough in return. Taking these things into consideration you can enjoy good luck, growth and material success.
But unless you turn inwards for happiness and find fulfillment in the things which are free, you could be left feeling unsatisfied. Generally, though, you should not expect any serious problems from this transit. This is more of turning point where you reflect on what you have, and what you need to make you truly happy. December 7 to 23 — Jupiter trine Uranus exact on December 15 brings lucky breaks and exciting encounters. This is a good time to try something new and different, from a new hairstyle to an overseas adventure.
You can take risks and feel optimistic about success. You will have the extra freedom and willingness to push the boundaries and explore new territory. This is an especially good phase of life if you feel your life has stagnated. You may already have anticipated something exciting on the horizon and been growing restless. Unexpected opportunities will offer a new path forward, satisfying your need for positive change. Your Cancer Horoscope is based on planetary transits to Cancer Decan 1, not to houses, zones or sectors. January to March — Neptune trine your decan brings increasing interest in spirituality for up to eighteen months depending on your birth date.
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It makes you more compassionate, imaginative and idealistic. You can follow a more spiritual path without giving up material comfort and security. Increased imagination is perfect for following creative or artistic pursuits. You can transform abstract or intangible images and ideas into something others can see or understand. You can connect more deeply at the spiritual level with your partner.
If single, you could meet your ideal partner, a soul mate you can really connect with.
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Those born from July 5 to 11 will feel this transit most strongly during December 12, , to December 28, — Saturn opposite your decan can bring challenges and barriers to progress. At times you may feel a heavy sense of responsibility and restriction of your freedom or self-expression. This can lead to frustration as you struggle on through boring routines when you just want to break free. The delays you experience are probably happening for a reason.
Perhaps your ambitions are being held back because the time is not right. There may be more lessons or skills to learn so you are ready to take full advantage of new opportunities in the near future. Facing any adversity head on will strengthen your character and give you more self-confidence. January 5 to July 1 — The January 5 Solar Eclipse in your opposite decan in Capricorn means you may face opposition to your goals if you are too assertive. Others will feel threatened and make things difficult for you if you push your agenda too forcefully or become too assertive.
However, this solar eclipse is ideal for creative, musical and artistic projects and encourages acts of kindness and charity. With integrity and good intentions, you can succeed.