So, you’re getting into astrology and hearing all this talk about houses and sun signs. You’re figuring out most of the meanings in all the jargon but can’t quite figure out what a house is in astrology and how to identify your own in your chart. Sound familiar?
So let’s start with the basics.
What is a house system in astrology?
A house system is a way in which astrologers divide up the 360 degrees of the zodiac into twelve sections (or houses) that each corresponds to different areas of life.
There are twelve sections in a Natal Chart called “houses.” These houses show different parts of your life. How these houses are divided up depends on the house system used by you or your astrologer.
The Eight Major Houses In Astrology
There are eight different significant systems used to calculate houses around the world. The three most commonly used in the United States are Placidus, Koch (pronounced “coke”), and Equal. These three systems result in the same Ascendant (Rising Sign) but have different Midheavens and house cusps.
The Placidian system is named after its 17th-century inventor, Placidus de Titus. It is used by at least 80% of astrologers in the U.S. because it is the most widely known system and its house tables are readily available in most areas.
The Koch system is the second most commonly used house system in the U.S. It originated in Germany and is named for its first publisher, Dr. Walter Koch. Both Placidus and Koch systems result in the same Ascendant, which is always the cusp of the first house.
The Midheaven is always the cusp of the tenth house, but each system results in a different sign (or the same sign at another degree) on the Midheaven. Placidus and Koch are “unequal” house systems that can result in interceptions.
What is an Interception?
Intercepted signs in a chart depend on which house system you are using. Koch intercepts different signs than Placidus does. An interception occurs when a sign is “cut off” by the cusp of a house and doesn’t appear in that house at all.
The Equal House System In Astrology
It’s what it says. On each cusp, all the dwellings have the same level of magnitude, and there are no interruptions. People born in the northernmost or southernmost latitudes may benefit from equal house systems, which is why this is the most popular system outside of the United States.
No given house system is better than another, only different. Astrologers select the systems they feel work best for them and their clients.
They also select systems that best suit the kinds of astrology they practice, giving them the desired interpretive results. For example, those who practice Astro psychology are often inclined to use Placidus, and those who practice Uranian astrology are more likely to select Koch.
Placidus Astrological System
The Placidus house system is the most common in use today. It was developed by Placidus de Titius in the 17th century and is still used by many astrologers today.
Unfortunately, the Placidus system is an unequal house system that results in interceptions. As a result, some signs are not found in their natural houses, but are found intercepted between two houses.
Placidus is considered an accurate house system for horary astrology and electional astrology because it feels the proper motion of the planets as they move through the zodiac.
It is also suitable for psychological readings because it emphasizes the personal planets (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, and Mars).
Uranian Astrological System
The Uranian system is an unequal house system developed in the early 20th century by Adolf Weiler and Karl Schlag. It is based on the idea of “whole sign houses” used by ancient astrologers. Whole sign houses are based on the principle that each planet is located in the sign that rules the house it lies in.
The Uranian system is suitable for mundane astrology because it emphasizes the outer planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto). It is also ideal for relationship readings because it considers all the planets’ positions in both charts.
Koch Astrological System
The Koch system is an unequal house system developed in the early 20th century by German astrologer Walter Koch. It is based on the idea of “porphyry houses” used by ancient astrologers.
Porphyry houses are based on the principle that each planet is located in the house it rules.
The Koch system is suitable for natal astrology because it emphasizes the planets in their natural houses. It is also said to be ideal for predictive work because it considers the transits of all the planets.
Porphyry Astrological System
The Porphyry system is an unequal house system developed by the ancient astrologer Porphyry of Tyre. It is based on the idea of “porphyry houses” used by ancient astrologers. Porphyry houses are based on the principle that each planet is located in the house it rules.
The Porphyry system is suitable for natal astrology because it emphasizes the planets in their natural houses. It is also said to be ideal for predictive work because it considers the transits of all the planets.
If you are unsure which system is best for you, try them, or try one of the other many house systems, and see which produces the most reliable results. There is no “correct” way to use astrology, so experiment and find what works best.
There are many different house systems in astrology, each with its strengths and weaknesses. The most important thing is to find a system that works well for you and your clients.