• Document: CLAUDIUS PTOLEMY: TETRABIBLOS
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CLAUDIUS PTOLEMY: TETRABIBLOS OR THE QUADRIPARTITE MATHEMATICAL TREATISE FOUR BOOKS OF THE INFLUENCE OF THE STARS TRANSLATED FROM THE GREEK PARAPHRASE OF PROCLUS By J. M. ASHMAND London, Davis and Dickson [1822] This version courtesy of http://www.classicalastrologer.com/ Forword It is fair to say that Claudius Ptolemy made the single greatest contribution to the transmission and preservation of astrological and astronomical knowledge of the Classical and Ancient world. No study of Traditional Astrology can ignore the importance and influence of this encyclopaedic work. It speaks not only of the stars, but also of a distinct cosmology that prevailed until the 18th century. Ironically, it is easy to jeer at someone who thinks the earth is the cosmic centre and refers to it as the sublunary sphere. However, our current knowledge tells us that the Universe is infinite, as far as we know. It seems to me that in an infinite universe, any given point must be the centre. Sometimes scientists are not so scientific. The fact is, it still applies to us for our purposes. It practical terms, the Moon does have the most immediate effect on the Earth which is, after all, our point of reference. She turns the tides, influences the vegetative growth and menstrual cycles. In fact, she influences the weather itself. What has become known as the Ptolemaic Universe, consisted of concentric circles emanating from Earth to the eighth sphere of the Fixed Stars, also known as the Empyrean. This cosmology is as spiritual as it is physical. It is a decideley moral cosmology. No apologies are made for political incorrectness. Ptolemy was first and foremost an anthologist. This knowledge came to him from Egypt, Greece, Chaldea, Babylonia and beyond. More to the point, he was in the enviable position of being in Alexandria during the peak of its eminence. Alexandria was in intellectual and spiritual foment. Ptolemy is clearly drawing from a wide range of sources in Tetrabiblos. His articulated cosmology has become known by his name. Whatever your thoughts on the status of Ptolemy, he remains required reading for anyone interested in the history of the celestial arts. His influence on Renaissance astrologers was profound in and of itself. Editorial Policy: As with any text, there are always arguments regarding which translation is definitive. This 1822 edition has previously been difficult to find in a practical, readable, digital format. The style is at times eccentric; but for anyone interested in the subject, this will be quickly forgiven. Typographical errors were legion in the original, numbering in the hundreds. These errors have been corrected where there been no doubt as to the intended word. Archaisms have been left intact. Some grammatical errors, such as placing a period, rather a comma, when the next word is not capitalized have been edited for sense, but not content. Missing words have been added in brackets to indicate they are not in the original. I have made no attempt to maintain the original pagination in this format. Whenever the intended meaning was unclear I have left the sentence as is. One example of this is the use of the word “lang” which may mean either ‘long’ or lung’ in reference to Saturn and illness. This is left to the discretion of the reader. In every other respect the text is unchanged. This edition and format was primarily intended for my on-line students of the Traditional Astrology Course To that end, it serves well. You are invited to distribute this e-book freely, with the understanding that the text, including credits, remain intact. Check for updated versions on my website from time to time. Victoria, British Columbia, February 2006 Prof. Peter J. Clark, http://www.classicalastrologer.com/ ADVERTISEMENT THE use recently made of Astrology in the poetical machinery of certain works of genius (which are of the highest popularity, and above all praise), seems to have excited in the world at large a desire to learn something of the mysteries of that science which has, in all former ages, if not in these days, more or less engaged reverence and usurped belief. The apparent existence of such a general desire has caused the completion of the following Translation, and its presentation to the public; although it was originally undertaken only in part, and merely to satisfy two or three individuals of the grounds on which the now neglected doctrines of Astrology had so long and so fully maintained credit. TABLE OF CONTENTS Book I BOOK I - Introduction Knowledge by Astronomical Means That it is also Beneficial Power of the Planets Beneficent and Maleficent Planets Masculine and Feminine Planets Diurnal and Nocturnal Planets Power of the Aspects to the Sun Power of the Fixed Stars Effect of the Seasons and of the Four Angles Solstitial, Equinoctial, Solid, and Bicorporeal Signs Masculine and Feminine Signs Aspects of the Signs Commanding and Obeying Signs Signs which Be

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