Woodcut section borders on fols. Larger printer's devices on fols. Numerous woodcut animated initials in different sizes, mostly on black ground, the initial on fol. Contemporary wallet-style German binding, blind tooled pigskin over pasteboards, the lower cover overlapping the upper one. Covers within border of fillets and foliate roll, central spaces filled with floral and foliate tools. Spine with three raised bands, underlined by multiple fillets. Compartments decorated with floral motifs, trace of early inked title on the first one.
Head-edge darkened. Metal attachments missing, a small hole to the upper cover. A very fine copy, with strong impression of the woodcut borders.
A few paper flaws, loss to the blank outer lower corner of fol. A few contemporary marginalia, and reading marks. Pencilled bibliographical notes on the recto of the front flyleaf; on the front pastedown, the inked note ''. Provenance: John Jermain Slocum, the famous Joyce collector, and Joyce co-bibliographer ; pencilled note on the recto of the front flyleaf, 'Ex Coll. The first part of the Froben edition contains Erasmus' paraphrases of the Romans, Corinthians, and Galatians; the second part covers those of Timothy, Jude, James and John; and the third part is devoted to the canonical letters of Peter, Jude, James and John.
This Basel edition also contains, as a fourth and final part, the paraphrases of the letters to the Hebrews In epistolam Pauli apostoli ad Hebraeos paraphrasis per Erasmum Roterodamum extrema , which is not mentioned on the title-page nor in the list of contents. The text of this section was printed on five quires added during the printing, and owing to this circumstance complete copies with all four parts very rarely appear on the market. The border on fol. A1 is instead signed by Ursus Graf, with his monogram 'VG'. A further point of great interest in this copy is its blind-tooled pigskin binding, a handsome example of wallet-style binding, in which the lower cover extends along its length, folding over the fore-edge.
Few of these bindings have survived. Hieronymus, Basler Buchillustration bis , Basel , no. More information about this seller Contact this seller 6. Published by Johann Froben 27 June , Basel From: Phillip J. Double column, 56 lines plus headline in gothic type. Rubricated in red, capitals struck with red, initials in red or blue, opening of Jerome's prologue a2r with line maiblumen initial "F" in red and blue with a line descender, the space between the horizontal lines of the "F" with an apparently contemporaneous drawing of a haloed man on a bright pink ground, a4r with eight-line initial "D" in blue containing a slightly amateurish painted face in colors.
Front pastedown with ex-libris of Pauli Menso; title page with round black ink stamp containing crossed keys and "P. In an early unrestored binding, this is an especially pleasing copy of the first Bible to be printed in octavo format, and the first book known to have been issued by Johann Froben , a central figure in the printing history of the 15th and early 16th centuries.
He was also the friend and employer of Erasmus, and played a key role both in the intellectual ferment of the northern Renaissance and the theological turmoil of the Reformation. Whereas previously published larger format Bibles had a nobler appearance, one that was thought to be appropriate for their weighty content, they were cumbersome and expensive. The present item's portability, generally recognized accuracy, and innovative summation of chapter contents an idea apparently borrowed from Kesler's Bible earned it widespread acceptance as well as the sobriquet of "the poor man's bible.
The small type used here was originally thought to have been produced by Froben's former employer Amerbach, but scholars now believe it was Froben's own creation, and a considerable technical accomplishment. Copies of this Bible often appear incomplete, and they are seldom found in a little-worn contemporary binding. The supralibros indicates that our volume was owned by a senior cleric rather than a travelling preacher, which may account for its fine state of preservation.
Seller Inventory ST More information about this seller Contact this seller 7. Published by Basel, Johann Froben, GmbH Vienna, A, Austria. About this Item: Basel, Johann Froben, With woodcut title border and a border in the text by Hans Holbein the younger, 2 woodcuts in the text 1 full-page by Ambrosius Holbein, and 6 woodcut initials; printer's device on final page. Modern giltstamped full calf. Rare third, revised edition the first one printed in Basel of the famous "ideal state" novel that gave its name to a whole literary genre.
Edited by Erasmus of Rotterdam, whom More had sent the manuscript in The second part, about the ideal constitution for a state, was written first, while More was an envoy in Flanders in , while part one was written only in , after his return to England. The two woodcuts by Ambrosius Holbein, Hans's elder brother, include the famous bird's-eye view of the island of Utopia a full-page illustration and the charming scene showing the story's fictional traveller, Raphael Hythlodaeus, in discussion with More himself and his Antwerpian friend Peter Gilles Aegidius , with More's young assistant John Clement later to become a Royal Physician and More's son-in-law approaching them.
Like 'Gulliver's Travels', Utopia was written "as a tract for the times, to rub in the lesson of Erasmus; it inveighs against the new statesmanship of all-powerful autocracy and the new economics [. His manifesto is and will be required reading for both, and for all shades of opinion between" PMM. Handwritten ownership of Gerard van Assendelft, dated , at the top edge of the title-page. VD 16, M Adams M Panzer VI, , Isaac Heckethorn , Bezzel Erasmusdrucke Hieronymus Basel , , , f.
Gibson 3. Van der Haeghen III, PMM More information about this seller Contact this seller 8. From: Buddenbrooks, Inc. Newburyport, MA, U. The Editio Princeps, the first printing of the work in the original Greek. Greek and roman type. CC4v Heitz-Bernoulli Woodcut decorated headpieces, decorated and animated initials on black ground, from different alphabets designed by Holbein; on fol.
Hollstein s German, xivB, n. The covers are framed by two borders of blind tooled fillets, a floral tool at each corner; the central panel is divided into diamond designs with rosettes on the upper cover and fleur-de-lys on the rear. Turn ins and cords fixed at the inner boards. Antique spine and clasps renewed at a somewhat later date and accomplished with the greatest skill.
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The guard leaves are composed of two bifolia from a 14th-century manuscript breviary. A beautiful and fine broad-margined copy in a wonderful contemporary binding, faint waterstaining to the inner corner of the first quires, a minor repair to the gutter of the first leaves, two tiny wormholes in the last three quires. Provenance: John Alfred Spranger ; book-plate on front pastedown and stamp on title-page. The editio princeps of Diogenes Laertius Lives of the Famous Philosophers, is the most important source of our knowledge in the history of Greek philosophy, from Thales to Pyrrho. The text was known only in the Latin translation by Ambrogio Traversari , which made its first appearance in print in Rome around and which was widely reprinted during the fourteenth and the first decades of the sixteenth century.
This is the first printing of the book in its original language. The edition is dedicated by the typographers Froben and Episcopius to the scholars, and in their epistle they declare their publishing plan: to print at least a work per year able to combine usefulness and pleasure. The text follows a manuscript provided by the professor of Greek and Hebrew at the University of Wittenberg Matthaeus Goldhahn , called Aurigallus, probably a copy of the codex Raudnitzianus Lobkowicensis vi. More information about this seller Contact this seller 9. First collected editions. Titles within ornamental woodcut border, initials, printer's device in colophon.
First collected editions of these "Paraphrases" of the letters of Paul, which were undertaken shortly after Erasmus's revolutionary edition of the Greek New Testament of As part of that monumental reconstruction of the New Testament, Erasmus' intention was to "retell" the books of the New Testament in one, uninterrupted voice, without the clutter of textual commentary or critical interruption. It was a bold undertaking, and, in , Erasmus began with the letters of Paul.
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The collected issues - such as the three which are bound together in this exquisite volume - began to be issued in Basel by Froben in ; and finally, in , Froben issued a collected edition of all of the Pauline letters. All of the lifetime editions, both separate and collected, are rare on the market: the last copy of any of the above collected Pauline paraphrases to appear at auction was in Adams E; E; E Contemporary blindstamped pigskin.
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Covers somewhat soiled, one brass clasp missing, lower joint just starting but quite firm; internally a SUPERB, near flawless copy. Bookplate of scholar and author Nathan Comfort Starr Titles within ornamental woodcut border, initials, printer's device in colophon. More information about this seller Contact this seller Cesaraugustana ciuitate:.
Georgij coci alemani,. From: Andarto B. Pamplona, NA, Spain. Condition: Excelente. Seller Inventory C With woodcut title border by Hans Holbein. Bound with II: The same. In hakhasda'ah] Chaldaica grammatica [. Both works have woodcut printer's devices at the end. The 'Chaldean' element in the Bible has of course long since been recognised, and people like Aurogallus and Fagius had treated the subject earlier in connection with their Hebrew studies.
Obliterated contemp. I: VD 16, M Burmeister Steinschneider , 6. Hieronymus note. Smitskamp 8d note. BNHCat M OCLC Smitskamp 8. Leslau His paraphrase of the New Testament was written in Latin and conveyed as a commentary of sorts to those who had anappetite and a thirst for the Word of God.
Besitzvermerk, zu Beginn mit untersch. Rare incunabula edition, text surrounded by commentary, printed in black and red, with one half-page woodcut. Seller Inventory B With 3 repeated woodcut title borders, 2 large printer's devices, and full-page tailpiece. All edges red.
In custom-made clamshell cloth case. First edition. Burmeister 1. Steinschneider Hdb. Adams B Published by Johann Amerbach, Basel From: terrahe. About this Item: Johann Amerbach, Basel, Mit Titelholzschnitt. Halblederband wohl des Jahrhunderts mit handschriftlichem Titel und Jahreszahl; gesprenkelter Buchschnitt. Buchdrucker des XV. Die Wasserzeichenkartei Piccard im Hauptstaatsarchiv Stuttgart. Vom ersten Teil liegt nur der Anfang vor. Es folgt der eigentliche Anfang des dritten Teils mit Inhaltsverzeichnis aller Kapitel.
Johann von Amerbach? Jahrhundert so Duff S. Jahrhunderts bilden. Johann de Lapide um - wird als Herausgeber der vorliegenden Ausgabe angesehen siehe Hieronymus, S. The art of speaking in Byzantium : Erasmus' apprentice text as translator of the classics. The Latin translations are printed facing the Greek texts on parallel pages. Woodcut initials after designs by Hans Holbein, woodcut title border signed by Urs Graf. No Jacket. Declamatiunculae aliquot, eaedemq[ue] Latinae, per Des.
Erasmum Rot. Basel, Johann Froben, March at end: 1st May Greek text with Latin translation on opposite pages. With ornamental woodcut borders and historiated initials after Hans Holbein; ornamental title woodcut border signed by U[rs] G[raf]. Large printer's device at end. Contemporary blind-tooled half pigskin over oak boards. Erasmus proved his linguistic skills in his Latin version of the collected speeches on set topics by the 4th century Greek rhetorician Libanius, his first attempt at translating a classical text. Working from a Greek manuscript at Louvain University, he corrected several errors and omissions, for the first printing in The remaining errors were eliminated for this 2nd edition prepared by Froben, in which a number of passages were given a more accurate form.
Libanius, who taught at Antioch and Constantinople, was regarded as a model of style both in Christian Byzantium and in Renaissance Europe. He was advisor to both the pagan emperor Julian and the Christian emperor Theodosius I The volume additionally contains Latin versions of Isocrates Orations by Petrus Mosellanus , the declamations of Lucian of Samosata by Erasmus, and the orations of Lysias. A good copy with a contemporary manuscript entry on title and contemporary manuscript notes in Greek in a few blank margins; occasional light traces of waterstaining in blank margins, otherwise well preserved in its original binding.
Adams L Signed by Author s. Published by J. Petri, J. Froben, Basilea About this Item: J. Froben, Basilea, Condition: fair to vg. Contemporary blind-stamped vellum over wooden panel, with handwritten title at head of spine. Raised bands. Two brass clasps with leather strings. Printer's woodcut device on title. Striking illuminated initial at the beginning of the "Epistola sancti hieronymi ad Paulinum. In J. Petri and J. Froben, the Basel printers, printed this folio edition dated 25 aug. These "concordantiae ius canonicum" were compiled by Johannes Niuicelensis, an abbot, and were printed separately in This edition is also the first which bears the commendatory verses of Matthie Matthias Sambucelli on title page.
Text printed in double column 62 lines per column with references in both margins. Title centered at top of page. Chapter number in column. Paragraph form, without verse numbers. Includes: "Ad diuinaru[m] litterarum uerarumq[ue]; diuitiarum amatores exhortatio"; "Tabula prima et secunda"; "Tabula Tertia"; "Tabula alphabetica historiaru[m]"; "Epistola sancti hieronymi ad Paulinum", and with the following at end: "Interpretatio[n]es nominu[m] hebraicoru[m]" cf.
Imprint information from colophon at end of Apocalypsis: "Jmpressa basilee per p[re]stantissimo viros magistros Joha[n]ne[m] petri de langendorff et Johanne[m] froben de hammelburg: Anno d[omi]ni quingentesimo nono supra millesimu[m]. Calendas septembris" [25 August ]. Contemporary marginalia, including a few pointing hands throughout the text. Binding darkened and rubbed along edges.
Moderate foxing, with minor and sporadic creasing and chipping along edges of front free endpaper and fly leaves. Previous owner's inscription in ink on title page, and dated Light water-staining to upper margin of very first leaves not affecting text. Minor and sporadic foxing throughout. Contemporary previous owner's inscription in Latin to fly leaves at rear. Text in Latin. Binding in overall fair, interior in good to very good condition.
Published by Per Joannem Hervagium, Basileae [i. First collected edition. Title within architectural border, with device of Johann Herwagen. Profusely illustrated with iwoodcut maps, music, tables, diagrams. Text in two columns; with Index. The Father of English History. This is the first of three continental editions of the works of Bede, the others being from Cologne in and Johann Herwage, a printer originally from Strassburg, married the widow of the great Basel printer Johann Froben, and for a while collaborated with his stepson Hieronymus Froben.
From , however, he again started printing under his own name. Adams B Contemporary calf, rebacked, new leather spine labels labels misnumbered , later endpapers; covers worn but sound, one joint starting but firm. Text show various degrees of slight worming and scattered light foxing, but overall a very good, sound set of this massive collected edition, complete except for the final blank leaf of Volume VI Title within architectural border, with device of Johann Herwagen.
Published by Johannes Froben, Basel About this Item: Johannes Froben, Basel, Condition: Gut. Oktav, 19,7 x 15 cm 4 Blatt, Seiten, 8 Blatt. Erste Ausgabe. Im Buch fehlen die ersten sechs und das letzte Blatt, die aber durch Faksimiles auf altem Papier ersetzt wurden. Der Unterschied von Faksimile und Original ist kaum wahrzunehmen. The first six and the last leave are missing, replaced by facsimiles on old paper, else complete. Januar in Nieder-Ingelheim; gest. Mai in Basel war ein Kosmograph, Humanist und Hebraist. Er studierte und unterrichtete in Heidelberg, ebenso in Pforzheim und Basel.
Dezember vermutlich in Justingen bei Blaubeuren; gest. In dem Buch wird eine Umrechnung bzw. Auch Sonnen- und Mondfinsternisse und wie sie astronomisch funktionieren, wird dargestellt. Published by Basle, Johann Froben About this Item: Basle, Johann Froben, Condition: Fine. Martius Galeotti was an Italian astrologer, born in Narni, Umbria. He settled first in Boulogne and then went to Hungary after his religious views proved unpopular with the Catholic Church. His work De jocose Dictis et Factis Regis Matthias Covirni further incurred the displeasure of the church and he was taken to Venice where he was imprisoned for a time.
He was released following the intervention of Pope Sixtus IV, whose tutor he is said to have been at an earlier date. De homine is arranged in the classic way, describing the various parts of the body from head to toe, and with discussions of various diseases interspersed. Besides references to authorities such as Cornelius Celsus and Pliny, most others are to classical poets including Plautus, Persius, Manilius, Lucretius, Horace and Vergil.
Galen and Hippocrates are not generally named, but appear cumulatively as auctores Graeci. Appended to Martius work is a critical commentary by the Italian humanist and classical scholar Giorgio Merula c. The greater part of his life was spent in Venice and Milan, where he held a professorship and continued to teach until his death.
While he was teaching at Venice, he was the subject of a personal polemic by Cornelio Vitelli, directed at his scholarship. Merula produced the editio princeps of Plautus , of the Scriptores rei rustica, Cato, Varro, Columella, Palladius and possibly of Martial He also published commentaries on portions of Cicero, on Ausonius, Juvenal, Curtius Rufus, and other classical authors.
De homine was first printed in Italy around two further incunable editions followed. The first joint appearance of Martius work with Merula s critical commentary appended was the Milan edition of Froben s, the first sixteenth century printing, appears to be the most influential. There were subsequent editions and commentaries. Binding and provenance: bound in a thick vellum sheet, a generous section of the outer edges folded in; the vellum sheet attached to the book block via two strips of sinew and twirled across the spine; no front- or rear paste-downs, as per its original structure; the book block stitched across its back and onto three sets of thick cords over short vellum guards; the cords loops equally exposed at the back, the whole allowing for perfect insight into the entire, original structure of the binding and the process of its making; smudged inscription to the first of two front fly-leaves; near-contemporary inscription Caspar von Escherlbach at head of title below what appears to be a Latin motto; another inscription, with the surname partly erased and dated to the center of the title-page; a third early inscription Ex Supellectili Jo[ann]is Philippi Flachichierni?
About this Item:. With contemporary finely executed rubrication in red, green , yellow and some blue. Title within woodcut historiated architectural border signed HF , another historiated border on a1-recto by Hans Holbein. This copy also with contemporary finely executed rubrication and underlinings. Bound in somewhat later mottled calf, raised spine with gilt decorations and title label. Spine with restorations, joints cracked again but binding technically sound and with not many obtrusive signs of wear.
Both works were rubricated by the same, first? Boerii, Archdyacon Z Contsen[ ]? His name on both title pages in the same most probably his own handwriting. In the second book also some marginal notes in the same hand. A John Boerius, archdeacon, is mentionned in connection with Durham cathedral around But we cannot interpret the addition Z Contsen[ ]. There are no other provenance indications apart from a small thumnail printed ex-libris of ''MN'' with the devise '' cy est mon amy le moins fol'', tipped-in on the first paste down. Nicely preserved collection of two Basle postincunables pertaining to ancient Greek philosophy and literature.
Both works are extensively rubricated and colored. Folio 33,5 x 22,5 cm. Schweinslederband d. Die hier verwendete Holbeinsche Titeleinfassung Koegler 12 ist nicht identisch mit der im Februar erschienen ersten Erasmus-Froben-Ausgabe. Ob die aus vier Leisten gebildete Einfassung im nachfolgenden ersten Textblatt ebenfalls von Ambrosius Holbein stammt ist fraglich vgl. Hieronymus und Knaake Einrissen, ohne den Text zu tangieren.
Athanasius, zusammengestellt aus zuvor einzeln erschienen Uebersetzungen von Christopherus Porsena, Ambrosius Monachus und Angelo Poliziano. Seller Inventory AB. Published by [Basel, Johann Froben, ]. About this Item: [Basel, Johann Froben, ]. With 2 different woodcut devices. Bound with II: [Melekhet ha-dikduk]. Institutiones grammaticae in Hebraeam linguam [.
With several musical notes and two woodcut devices. Modern vellum, in custom-made cloth case. Numerous contemporary Hebrew and Latin marginalia. Includes fol. Numerous contemp. Both works are very rare; the former has not been seen at auctions since I: VD 16, B Hantzsch Steinschneider Bodl. Vinograd Mem Burmeister 2. Wolfheim I, Graesse IV, Cyprianus, Thascius Caecilius, Erasmus, Desiderius, Published by Basiliae : Ex officina Frob. About this Item: Basiliae : Ex officina Frob. Published by Ex officina Frobeniana, Apud inclytam Basileam In-folio x mm de 24 1 pp.
Published by ex officina nostra, pridie Calendas septembreis, Basileae About this Item: ex officina nostra, pridie Calendas septembreis, Basileae, In-folio de 22 1 pp. Marque de Johann Froben au verso du dernier feuillet. Exemplaire comportant de nombreuses et fines galeries de vers tout au long de l'ouvrage dans le texte et dans les marges. Vander Haeghen, Bibliotheca erasmiana, II, p.
Published by Froben, Basle About this Item: Froben, Basle, Two volumes in one. Separate title pages for each volume, with large woodcuts of Froben's device on each, plus one on final page. Numerous large and small historiated woodcut initials. Contemporary vellum binding with large blind-stamped arabesque on both sides, gilt lettering piece later added.
Binding a little soiled, minor wear to extremities, corners exposed, small burn mark on lower edge of front cover, lacking ties. Extensive notes in an old hand on front free endpaper, but otherwise an exceptionally fine copy internally, in a still attractive binding. In addition to his famous edition of the Greek New Testament, published with a Latin translation in , Erasmus also produced a paraphrase of the whole New Testament with the exception of the Apocalypse between and Written in his spontaneous and natural Latin style, the work was received with great acclaim, and an English translation made in was ordered to be placed in all parish churches next to the Bible.
The present edition is an early reprint of the first complete edition issued by Johann Froben in Adams E Size: Folio. GRAF Urs. Published by Basel, Hieronymus Froben d. About this Item: Basel, Hieronymus Froben d. Mit Holzschnittdruckermarke am Titel. Neuerer Pergamentband mit hs. Gesamtbild, S. Es fehlt das letzte Bl. Biblia hebraica - VT - Decalogus. With woodcut printer's device on verso of final leaf. Bound with numerous blank leaves. Contemporary vellum. Leaves d7-d8 contain the Aramaic text of the Ten Commandments [. Re-issued in by Sebastian Lepusculus" cf.
Burmeister, pp. Burmeister, p. Old ms. VD 16, B Hanztsch Prijs Vinograd, Basle Graesse I, 4. Yudlov, Ginzei Yisrael Published by Basel, Johann Froben , About this Item: Basel, Johann Froben , Modern vellum using old material; ties. In custom-made cloth slipcase. Slight worming near end in the blank margins, repaired. VD 16, E Panzer VI, , no. Published by Basileae: apvd Ioan. Hervagivm, [Mense Martio] Anno M. About this Item: Basileae: apvd Ioan. Condition: Muy bien. Papel de los planos desgastado dejando el pergamino en las puntas; cofias rozadas. Published by Basel, Johann Froben, November Z1, Z8 der letzten Lage.
Neuerer blindgepr. Drei Handschriften von , und gingen voraus; eine vierte Handschrift, die dem Druck zugrunde lag, ist verlorengegangen" Burmeister, S. Notiz des Durchgehend etwas wasserrandig bzw. Es fehlen 2 Bll. Text sowie das Schlussblatt mit der Druckermarke verso. Papered spine. See Goold p. Thus, the arctics are 68 from their respective poles, the tropics are 58 from the arctics, and this leaves 48 as the distance between each tropic and the equator. The next two circles are the so-called colures 1. The equinoctial colure passes through the two equinoctial points in Aries and Libra, the solstitial colure through the two solstitial points in Cancer and Capricorn.
Manilius describes their paths in detail, mentioning the constellations that they traverse on their way. The Wrst is the meridian 1. The second is the horizon 1. Finally, Manilius turns to two oblique circles that—unlike the preceding ones—are not purely conceptual but can actually be seen on the Wrmament and also do not just consist of a line, but have real breadth. This is deWned as the band of twelve signs that serves as the path of the Sun, Moon, and other planets: fulgentia signa alter habet, per quae Phoebus moderatur habenas subsequiturque suo solem uaga Delia curru et quinque aduerso luctantia sidera mundo exercent uarias naturae lege choreas.
In the geocentric two-sphere universe, as we have seen, the sphere of Wxed stars revolves around the static central earth from east to west in the course of one day and one night. Portrait of the Universe 43 sphere, the planets including the Sun and the Moon likewise circle the earth from east to west in the course of one day and one night; this explains, for example, why the Sun rises every morning and sets every evening. Thus, they will, from one day to the next, appear slightly displaced in relation to the background of the Wrmament. In the course of one year, the Sun—all the while rising and setting every day—thus moves through all twelve signs of the zodiac, describing a circular path across the Wrmament from west to east that is know as the ecliptic.
Crossing the equator at an angle of about Manilius describes its course: hunc tenet a summo Cancer, Capricornus ab imo, bis recipit, lucem qui circulus aequat et umbras, Lanigeri et Librae signo sua Wla secantem. Thus, the oblique circle runs through three circles. In other words, the Sun reaches its northernmost point on the ecliptic in the sign of Cancer, at the time of the summer solstice; at the winter solstice, it is at its farthest point in the south, in the sign of Capricorn.
At the equinoxes, it crosses the equator, in the signs of Aries spring and Libra autumn , respectively. Evans But it is not only the Sun that moves along the zodiac. The same is true for the other planets, which all make their path through the twelve signs, albeit at diVerent speeds: the Moon completes its orbit in approximately twenty-seven days, Saturn takes about twenty-nine years.
They do not follow the route of the ecliptic exactly, but, moving all more or less on the same plane, they never veer too far above or below it. The zodiac is thus deWned as a band of twelve constellations cut in half lengthwise by the ecliptic; its width is such as to contain the paths of all planets: bis sex latescit fascia partes quae cohibet uario labentia sidera cursu. In the ancient two-sphere universe, the planets thus participate in a twofold movement.
Thus, for example, Vitruvius writes: si in rota, qua Wguli utuntur, impositae fuerint septem formicae canalesque totidem in rota facti sint circum centrum a minimo adcrescentes ad extremum, in quibus hae cogantur circinationem facere, uerseturque rota in alteram partem, necesse erit eas contra rotae uersationem nihilominus aduersus itinera perWcere.
De Civ. An equivalent modern comparison is found in Beck 23 and 27—8, who likens the planets to seven hands turning on a clock face, while the clock face itself is rotating in the opposite direction. Similarly, the planets struggling against the movement of the Wrmament complete their orbits in their wanderings, but by the revolution of the outer sphere they are carried backwards in the rotation that happens every day.
Another typical way of describing the west—east movement of the planets, which runs counter to that of the outer sphere, is to depict it as a struggle. Thus, Manilius in our passage presents the planets as aduerso luctantia sidera mundo ; cf. After his treatment of the zodiac, Manilius turns to his Wnal celestial circle, the Milky Way 1. Holding no astronomical signiWcance, this imposing phenomenon nonetheless clearly fascinates the poet, who dedicates an extensive discussion to it. The passage ends with yet another homage to Augustus, who is likewise promised astral 73 Cf. Manilius fastens on the last possibility, expounding on it at some length.
The portentous nature of comets was commonplace in Roman society, where omens of all sorts, including celestial phenomena, had been observed and interpreted for centuries, and, as an astrologer, Manilius was probably particularly open to the idea that fate manifests itself in the sky in this way as well. On Augustus and his anticipated apotheosis, see 4.
These lines—their position and their content—are the topic of 2. Bartalucci For the historical comets mentioned in the passage, see Ramsey Index locorum s. Montanari Caldini 2—3 whose article treats the passage on the comets in detail suggests that this failure on the part of the poet has to do with his comparative neglect of the planets in general see immediately below in 2. Portrait of the Universe 47 not agree with the determinism otherwise dominant in the Astronomica. Apropos of the topic of disease, Manilius includes a short vignette of the plague in Athens during the Peloponnesian War —91 , thus alluding to the famous Wnale of the sixth book of De rerum natura.
There, Vergil likewise discusses unfavourable portents, including comets G. Manilius has thus clearly constructed the end of his Wrst book to be parallel to this Wrst Wnale of the Georgics; however, viewing matters from a diVerent historical vantage point, he is able to end on a rather diVerent note. Writing in the late 30s bc, Vergil is still caught up in the Civil Wars, and, even though he is praying to the gods and asking them to support Octavian G. It is thus likely that the passage originally stood somewhere else. This could easily be followed by the mention of the planets and then the discussion of the comets; there would even be a nice parallelism between sunt alia.
Thus, the discussion of the planets would come immediately after the 82 Interestingly, though, Manilius uses present subjunctives throughout the passage, making it sound like a prayer similar to that at the end of Georgics 1. The poet is, as it were, taking on the Vergilian role of a concerned Roman at the time of the Civil Wars themselves, all the while knowing, with the beneWt of hindsight, that his prayer will be fulWlled. I return to this passage in 4. Portrait of the Universe 49 description of the Wxed stars, which is wrapped up in the summarizing passage 1.
The lines on the planets would follow logically in this context; they would also be in the same position—between Wxed stars and celestial circles—as the equivalent passage about the planets in Aratus on which see below. Both scenarios have their attractions, and we can assume with fair certainty that the four lines were originally found in one of these two places.
What is striking is the extremely limited space Manilius allots the planets and the scarcity of information he provides about them. All that we learn is that these stars move between heaven and earth in a direction contrary to that of the outer sphere and that their order from top to bottom is Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, and Moon. As will be discussed in greater detail in the following chapter, the main task of the astrologer is to determine the exact position of the planets relative to the signs of the zodiac at a given moment and to interpret its meaning.
Without planets, there is very little scope for astrology, and it is thus surprising that Manilius gives them such short shrift in his description of the universe. The ancient two-sphere universe is beautiful in its simplicity, with the tiny stable earth in the middle and the immense Wrmament revolving around it with the regular motion that, as we have seen, appeals so much to Manilius. However, this simple construction is but the stage for a more complicated drama, featuring seven players, the planets, which circle the earth in the vast space beneath the outer sphere, moving at a slow pace on a path that coincides with the zodiac on the Wrmament that 84 A third proposal, put forth by Waszink —14 and adopted by Liuzzi —7, according to which the lines originally came after 1.
Manilius here adopts a system often associated with Pythagoras, which places the Sun the most important of heavenly bodies in the middle; this ordering Wnally became standard, being accepted by, among others, Ptolemy see Evans —9. Of the seven, the Sun and the Moon behave in a way that is somewhat complex but whose details—changes of the seasons, phases of the Moon, eclipses—were nevertheless well understood by the time of the Roman Empire.
The other Wve planets, however, presented a puzzle. Sometimes, though, they appeared to halt on their path for a considerable period of time a phenomenon known as station or even, for a short period, to retrace their steps eastward and thus describe a kind of loop a phenomenon known as retrogression ; during retrogression, they appeared more brilliant, which seemed to indicate that at this time they were closer to earth. The seemingly erratic behaviour of the planets presented an enormous challenge to the two-sphere universe. How could the observed motion of these stars be reconciled with the generally accepted cosmological model?
The development of ever more intricate planetary theories is a fascinating chapter in the history of science, even more fascinating for the fact that the whole undertaking ultimately proved futile. After 2, years of ingenious hypotheses and complicated calculations, astronomers like Copernicus, Kepler, and Galileo Wnally realized that the basic premisses of the geocentric two-sphere universe simply did not hold and that the phenomena could be saved only by making a momentous adjustment: placing the Sun in the middle of the system and having the earth revolve around it as a planet.
It was Ptolemy who, in the second century ad, devised the most detailed theory of planetary motion and whose works lived on to inform 86 Cf. Kuhn 45—50 and Evans — Portrait of the Universe 51 Islamic and Western astronomy up to the early modern period. However, already by the time of Manilius, numerous hypotheses had been put forth to account for the behaviour of the planets.
All these spheres revolve around the same centre, the earth, but on diVerent axes and in diVerent directions. This way, each planet participates in a number of diVerent movements at the same time, the sum of which accounts for the complexity of its observed behaviour, especially the apparent retrogressions. The apparent motions of the planets can be explained if we asssume that each planet does not revolve around the earth directly, but rather circles, in a narrow orbit, around a point on a larger circle that in turn circles the earth.
In technical terms, the planet moves in a so-called epicycle around a point on the larger circle, the so-called deferent— which accounts for the fact that from the earth it sometimes appears to move backward owing to the motion of the epicycle while nevertheless on the whole being steadily carried forward owing to the motion of the deferent. This model can be further reWned by having the deferent revolve not around the earth directly as the outer sphere is imagined as doing but around a point somewhat removed from the centre; the assumption of such eccentric planetary orbits makes it even easier to account for all the irregularities of planetary movement.
In addition to these geometrical explanations for the seemingly erratic movements of the planets, there was also an astrological one, which we Wnd reported in authors close in time to Manilius: Vitruvius 9. However, the theory was clearly around in the days of the early Empire, and one may assume that Manilius would have known about it. In fact, as we have seen, he has hardly anything to say about the planets at all. It has been suggested that perhaps the lacuna in Book 5 contained a discussion of the wandering stars, that parts of the poem possibly devoted to planetary theory have been lost, or that Manilius simply did not Wnish his work and thus never got around to the planets.
None of these hypotheses can be proved I shall return to the topic in 3. We have to ask ourselves, why is he doing so? Obviously, the astronomical planetary theories sketched out above are extremely complicated, with their intricacies being of interest only to specialists and unlikely to become general knowledge. Portrait of the Universe 53 popular prose treatises on astronomy thus for the most part refrained from entering into the matter in any great detail cf. If, in the opinion of a critic like Quintilian, a simple description of the universe was already an unpromising undertaking on account of the aridity of the subject matter see fn.
As a matter of fact, Aratus himself dedicates but eight lines to the topic Phaen. May I be competent to speak of the circles of the Wxed stars and of the signs in the sky. Aratus—or so it seemed to the scholiast—was smart enough to realize that the planets could not be treated adequately in poetic form. However, even at his time, not everybody felt the same way. Eudoxus, of course, was also the inventor of the system of homocentric planetary spheres, but he presumably did not discuss this theory in his description of the stellar sphere, the book that Aratus adapted, but rather in a separate work called On Speeds for the title, see Simpl.
Instead, he conWdently keeps open the possibility that he will treat the topic in the future. These fragments are of a clearly astrological character and are largely concerned with the planets, with fr. While the authenticity of the fragments is generally accepted, it is unclear what their status is. Are they part of a diVerent work of the poet the one announced in lines —5 of his adaptation of Aratus?
Latin prose authors, too, engage with the topic cf. Bakhouche — In the century before Manilius, Vitruvius dedicates the Wrst chapter of his ninth book of De architectura to a description of the universe, discussing primarily the planets and mentioning the radiosolar theory about their retrogressions and stations. Portrait of the Universe 55 motions 59— Beaujeu —66 , but he does make mention of the model of eccentric circles, while otherwise giving pride of place to the radio-solar theory.
None of these Latin works is scientiWcally sophisticated and none enters into the technical details of Hellenistic astronomy. Still, they at least venture to describe and sometimes even explain salient features of planetary movement, from the orbits of these stars and the lengths of their revolutions to their irregular behaviour in terms of stations and retrogressions. It is thus even more surprising that we Wnd nothing like this in Manilius. We may grant that it would have been impossible for him to discuss the motions of the planets in such a way as to enable his readers to calculate their position at any given moment a crucial prerequisite of astrology : for one thing, as Evans —4 points out, the geometric models mentioned above do not necessarily allow for exact calculation of planetary position which was usually determined using purely mathematical methods taken over from the Mesopotamians ; and, at any rate, practising astrologers hardly ever did their own calculations from scratch, relying instead on tables, so-called ephemerides, prepared by astronomers modern astrologers use computer programs.
I suggest that Manilius purposely ignores the planets as best as he can since they constitute an embarrassment for him. As we have seen again and again, the poet is a fervent believer in the idea of the kosmos, a universe that is, above all, orderly and regular. Perhaps the Roman sensed that the planets were a danger to the two-sphere universe, a time bomb, as it were, that was ticking away and would ultimately blow up the entire system; perhaps he was just frustrated by the complexity of their motions, which he thought he could not adequately describe.
And nothing is more remarkable in this great crowd than its rationality and the fact that everything obeys Wxed laws. Since the Phaenomena is concerned with reading the starry sky as a great system of signs, the varying signals sent by the planets are potentially disruptive. It is tempting to think that Achilles is here—just as Manilius often does see my comment in fn. Portrait of the Universe 57 Aratus does not want them in his description of the universe.
Neither does Manilius. Regarding astronomy as merely propaedeutic to astrology, Manilius introduces into his description of the cosmos larger themes that will be of importance later in the work, stressing especially the regular workings of the universe and introducing the notion of a governing divine force. The idea that the world is a kosmos, a thing of order and beauty, is central to nearly all ancient cosmology, but Manilius takes it to new heights, interrupting his astronomical treatment again and again with rapturous celebrations of the regularity and rationality of everything that goes on in the heavens.
I have suggested that it is this belief in cosmic order that causes the poet to pass quickly over the important topic of the planets, whose seemingly erratic movements would appear to contradict the otherwise clockwork-like functioning of the two-sphere universe. There, the Stoic Balbus uses the very irregularity of planetary motion as an argument in favour of the ultimate regularity of the mundus making, it would seem, a virtue of necessity : the planets only appear to move erratically; in fact, they adhere to a complicated, but ultimately orderly, scheme.
Tellingly, though, Balbus does not oVer any explanation of how this is supposed to work. Chapter 3 The Rules of Fate After the completion of his astronomical portrait of the universe in Book 1, Manilius devotes the rest of his poem to an exposition of astrology proper. While the structure of his treatment is somewhat loose and it is not always apparent why the poet discusses individual topics in the order he does, we can nevertheless discern a bipartite division: roughly speaking, Books 2 and 3 explain various ways of mapping the sky, that is, of conceptualizing the position of heavenly bodies in order to make them astrologically meaningful, while Books 4 and 5 describe the inXuence of certain celestial features on human beings.
Since he also does not provide a general introduction to astrology and its tenets though he touches on such larger topics repeatedly in his proems and throughout the text , it is nearly impossible to understand the Astronomica unless one is a lector doctus able to match the poeta doctus and unless one already has a basic knowledge of astrology or otherwise uses a commentary or edition with notes. I begin with a general discussion of the belief system of ancient astrology 3. The chapter 1 This division was Wrst pointed out by Scaliger , who on pp.
Over the millennia, astrology has meant many diVerent things to many diVerent people, but even at any individual point in history, such as Rome at the time of Manilius, there existed a multitude of diverse opinions about the supposed relationship between the movements of the heavenly bodies and happenings in the human realm including, of course, the opinion that no such relationship obtains at all. Accepting the central tenet of astrology—that the stars can tell us something about ourselves—raises a number of additional questions, which were already hotly debated in antiquity.
If it is possible to read in the stars what we are like and what is going to happen to us, it follows that our fate has some kind of objective existence outside ourselves, that it is, indeed, fated. The question then arises to what extent our lives are codiWed and, in principle, legible in the heavens: is every single detail laid down including, say, the type of our death, for example, that we will drown , or are the stars the repository only of information of a general kind, such as innate tendencies for example, that we have a fear of water and will thus have a hard time learning how to swim?
Again, there were two schools of thought already in antiquity. In the terminology of A. Long n. In this view, there is no causal connection between signiWer and signiWed it is not because Regulus is in the ascendant that the person is a born king , which does away with the need for an explanation of why such a relationship of cause and eVect might exist and how it would work. Have they been set up as such by the gods or by divine providence as claimed by Arat. This position, which may appear far-fetched to us, Wts in well with cosmological ideas popular in the ancient world.
If the universe is indeed a kosmos, a well-ordered whole cf. On its royal connotations, see, e. For there is some force and nature that, if one observes the signs for a long time, predicts future events. Note the vagueness of uis et natura quaedam: there must be some superior force that signals to us via the stars and other signs , but Quintus is not sure what it is. The Rules of Fate 61 over the less powerful and altogether inferior earth that they circled. In the light of such ideas, which by the time of Manilius were mainstream, the belief that the movements of the stars—powerful, near- divine forces that are nevertheless closely connected to us—cause events on earth makes a fair amount of sense.
It was not even necessary to have recourse to elaborate cosmological theories to argue that human life is greatly inXuenced by the heavenly bodies. A typical argument in favour of astrology drew attention to the undeniable power exerted by the Sun and the Moon: the heat of the Sun enables life on earth, and its annual course along the zodiac brings about the changing seasons, with their signiWcance for the life cycle of plants and human agriculture; similarly, the phases of the Moon cause the tides and, according to ancient belief, numerous other phenomena, such as menstruation.
If the two luminaries have such power, why would the other stars not also inXuence the earth and its inhabitants? This very line of reasoning is employed by Manilius 2. In the proem to Book 4 1— , Manilius makes clear that the fate dispensed by the stars is comprehensive and absolute: fata regunt orbem, certa stant omnia lege longaque per certos signantur tempora casus.
At birth, we die [i. It appears in two funerary inscriptions CIL 2. On the fortune of the line from the Wfteenth century onward, see Maranini 68—74; as a quick Google search shows, it has ongoing appeal. As is clear from this passage, Manilius views the universe as a living being, an organic structure kept alive by divine breath and governed by reason. It is not by chance that Manilius refers to the zodiac, which plays a particularly important role in his astrological system, as praecordia mundi 1.
At the same time, the universe is pictured as both an organism and an artfully designed structure an image likewise popular in ancient thought; see Lloyd — 94 and cf. Thus, signs exactly opposite each other are, as it were, connected by a straight line opposition ; signs separated by three other signs are part of an equilateral triangle trigon ; signs separated by two signs form squares; and, Wnally, signs separated by just one sign make up hexagons all other kinds of relative position, such as direct juxtaposition, are powerless. The idea appears to be that the signs which are typically identiWed with their anthropomorphic and zoomorphic constellations look at each other along the imagined straight lines that connect them, and that the force of their vision travelling along these lines aVects the earth, which is the centre of the circle on which the signs are placed.
Manilius therefore maintains a claim not found elsewhere in our sources that the trine aspect signs at the corner of trigons is more powerful than the quartile signs at the corner of squares , which in turn is more powerful than the sextile signs at the corner of hexagons , since, if the signs are farther away from each other as in the case of those Wgures with fewer angles , their line of vision comes closer to touching the earth: sed longe maior uis est per signa trigoni quam quibus est titulus sub quarto quoque quadratis.
Their line [i. The Rules of Fate 65 their vision leaves behind the sky and approaches the earth and sends infected air down to our atmosphere. As is clear from this passage, Manilius regards the vision uisus of the signs as a force that literally infects the air around us cf. Describing the constellations as looking at one another is thus not so much a playful metaphor as a way of conceiving of the physical reality of astral inXuence—one that makes particular sense in light of the fact that ancient theories of vision typically suppose a Xow of an actual physical substance in and out of the eye.
There are next to no indications in the Astronomica of a worked-out physical theory such as that found in the Tetrabiblos of Ptolemy, who explains celestial inXuence by means of the Aristotelian theory of the four elements and their concomitant four qualities hot, cold, wet, and dry, whose mixture and balance are, as Ptolemy maintains, aVected directly by the movement of the stars.
In his opinion, one of the crucial ways in which the heavens aVect people is by giving them the desire and the ability to get to know cosmic processes and their meaning see esp. Thus, the reason for our capacity for astrology ultimately lies in the divine nature of man, himself a microcosm who shares in the divinity of the macrocosm and is therefore able to understand its laws see esp. Manilius has no doubts on this count, and he ends his discussion of astral inXuence in the proem of Book 2— from which many of the passages quoted in this section have been taken—with an argument that, one assumes, is supposed to clinch the matter: sed, ne circuitu longo manifesta probentur, ipsa Wdes operi faciet pondusque Wdemque; nam neque decipitur ratio nec decipit umquam.
For this method never goes wrong and never leads astray. A path trustworthy for the right reasons, it must be followed in the proper way, and then the outcome obtains as is previously foretold. What Fortune aYrms, who would dare call that false and contend with the casting of such a mighty lot?
Astrology works. How exactly they do so is not the concern of our poet, whose ambition instead is to teach us how we can read and understand their workings. Apart from an extended discussion of zodiacal geography 4. The Rules of Fate 67 4. This Weld can be divided further into katarchic and genethlialogical astrology. Katarchic astrology from Gk. First 1. In the very region of the rising sun, they ruled over Werce peoples, traversed by Euphrates or Xooded by the Nile, in the place where the Wrmament returns and moves over the dark cities.
The role of Hermetism in the Astronomica will be discussed in greater detail in 6. The Rules of Fate 69 worthy of becoming privy to its secrets. Manilius himself may have used them as a source. In particular, Manilius is keeping out of the controversy over whether it was in fact the Babylonians or the Egyptians who invented astrology, a controversy apparent in some of our other ancient sources and one that persists into the modern period, frequently bound up with ideological concerns about the relative merits of individual cultures and the origins of Western civilization see Barton a: 9— OLD s.
However, at the same time, the poet takes fastigia literally, imagining that the elevated position of the kings implies an actual proximity to the sky. Is it possible that Manilius is alluding to the ziggurat, the Mesopotamian temple towers that served as astronomical observation platforms? Like others see esp. Liuzzi , however, I do not consider their arguments cogent and thus retain the verse. Strictly speaking, the Chaldaeans were a south-Babylonian tribe, which furnished a caste of priests as well as the neo-Babylonian dynasty — , but in the classical world the name came to denote Babylonians in general.
The fragments are collected by Riess —3. That the poet would associate priests with the origins and practice of astrology is not surprising, since, as a type of divination, the interpretation of the stars was imagined as falling under the purview of religious practitioners and in Mesopotamia and Egypt, it actually did ; in particular, Manilius may be thinking of the famous Egyptian priest Petosiris, the above-mentioned nominal author of a number of pseudepigraphic works.
For generations and generations, the priests observe the stars, noting how each and every position of the heavens relates to human life until they have Wnally amassed enough data to cover every possible constellation of heavenly bodies—and know what it portends. This is no mean feat, given that, as the Greeks and Romans were well aware, a Great Year takes thousands of years. Generally on the concept of the Great Year, see van der Waerden and esp.
In the three parts of his history of astrology, Manilius thus appears to ascribe the discovery of this art to three diVerent factors: the gift of the gods 1. If the three sections feature diVerent personnel and appear to imply vaguely a procession in time though it is not clear how exactly may have have had access to them in a compilation made by Hipparchus see Hunger and Pingree —9, with reference to G. NA It is thus not surprising when, in his immediately following brief history of civilization 1.
In the context of a discourse that was all about truth, authenticity was not an issue. WhitWeld 9—76 is a beautifully illustrated popular account. The Rules of Fate 73 however, no astrological writings from this time survive intact, it is impossible to trace any detailed development. In other words, the Mesopotamians invented genethlialogical astrology, as is apparent from the existence of cuneiform horoscopes from the late Wfth century onward.
The Rules of Fate 75 individual stars for time-keeping purposes. The most prominent Egyptian element in Western astrology including in Manilius; see 3. Already Herodotus and Plato had been fascinated by the age and sophistication of Egyptian civilization, and it had become a typical trope to claim Egyptian origin for everything from writing, mathematics, and board games Pl.
However, evidence for this process is extremely hard to come by, since astrological writings of the period survive only in fragments or not at all. Actual horoscopes, too, are preserved only from the Wrst century bc onward. On the role of astrology in Hellenistic society, see Gordon In those cases where he presents a diVerent approach, he may either be reXecting a doctrine that happens to be unattested in the extant astrological literature or be diverging from the accepted way of doing things for reasons of his own. SuYce it to say that I believe that Manilius used a variety of diVerent sources and that he did not always make an eVort to reconcile their partly contradictory teachings.
The Rules of Fate 77 the universe, the static earth is the obvious object of the inXuence however conceived of the heavenly bodies that circle around it. First, the astrologer can look at the zodiac itself, a circle divided into twelve signs of each, with each sign named for its more or less underlying constellation. Interestingly, there does not seem to be any evidence that the Mesopotamians, the inventors of genethlialogy, imagined a spherical universe—or, indeed, developed any geometrical model of the cosmos; see, e. For any person on earth, half the zodiac is always above the horizon and half is invisible, and while the signs of the zodiac and the planets in them keep moving, they all follow the same circular path, rising on the eastern horizon and setting in the west.
This abstract, purely conceptual, route is our second astrological circle, deWned primarily by its four so-called centres Gk. The Rules of Fate 79 Figure 6. Papyrus horoscope P Oxy. Reproduced with kind permission of the American Philosophical Society from Neugebauer and van Hoesen 18—19 no. In addition to pinning down the Wxed circle by means of the four cardinal points, astrologers divide it into twelve sections, the socalled places Gk.
Manilius does not discuss this otherwise mainstream doctrine; see 2. The twelve places see Figure 7. In this twelve-place system, known as dodecatropos Gk. Zodiac and planets thus continuously rotate through the dodecatropos, the Wxed circle centred on the observer; a horoscope maps their position at one particular point in time.
The Rules of Fate 81 While zodiac and dodecatropos are absolutely central to the practice of astrology, the third circle described by Manilius, that of lots Gk. Rather, it changes at every moment according to the movement of the two luminaries: the position of the Wrst lot, the socalled Lot of Fortune, must be calculated according to a speciWc formula that involves the distance between the Sun and the Moon and is diVerent depending on whether it is a diurnal or nocturnal nativity. The other lots then follow in counter-clockwise direction, each of them carrying a particular signiWcance for the native.
The third [the circle of lots], also incorporeal, is neither rotatory like the Wrst nor stationary like the second: the astrologer carries it in his pocket, whence at the moment of a nativity he whips it out and claps it on the zodiac. Of course, in a way, these circles are all the same circle or, rather, they are but three diVerent ways of dividing up and making sense of the zodiac, the oblique path of the Sun and the other planets around the earth. The result of having these three systems is the creation of a multitude of astrologically meaningful phenomena. At any given moment, a zodiacal sign will be in a place as well as in a lot; four of the signs will also be at cardinal points.
Each planet will be in a sign, a place, and a lot; it may Wnd itself at a cardinal point as well. Things become even more complicated once we take into account not just whole signs, but their individual degrees. While the lots are typically just points on the zodiac, in the Astronomica they are actual divisions, just like the twelve places, on which Manilius may have modelled them. In his presentation of the principles of genethlialogy, Manilius treats the three circles in turn with varying degrees of detail, but with hardly an attempt to relate them to one another or to explain his procedure.
After the long and splendid proem to Book 2 parts of which have already been discussed above in 3. The poet proceeds to expound the characteristics of the individual signs 2. They can be further classiWed according to their aquatic, terrestrial, or amphibious nature; the degree of their fertility; their position running, standing, sitting, or lying ; whether they are whole or disWgured some of the constellations do not represent complete shapes ; and how they are distributed over the four seasons.
This becomes even clearer in the following discussion of the relationships the signs have with one another 2. The Rules of Fate 83 Figure 8. Aspect: trigons 62—5 , which include friendships, enmities, love, and treachery and which, if we believe Manilius, give rise to high drama in the heavens. First, the poet tackles the important astrological doctrine of aspect already discussed in 3.
Thus, there are four trigons and three squares, as well as two hexagons and six pairs of signs in opposition. Signs in opposition are mostly, though not exclusively, hostile to each other, while belonging to a trigon, square, or hexagon is the equivalent of belonging to a club whose members get along, at least in principle59 as mentioned above, the relationship of the trine aspect is, 59 Here Manilius diverges from the astrological communis opinio, according to which trine and sextile signs are harmonious, but quartile signs are hostile; see Feraboli, Flores, 84 Manilius and his Intellectual Background Figure 9.
Aspect: squares according to Manilius, more powerful than that of the quartile, while that of the sextile is generally weak. In addition to the zodiacal friendships and enmities caused by aspect, individual signs relate to other individual signs in a variety of ways that are, again, described in anthropomorphic terms.
The Rules of Fate 85 Figure Even within the same trigon, the poet sadly reports, friendship does not always prevail, with single signs frequently bullying others. It is thus apparent that the zodiac is anything but a happy family and that true friendship is a rarity among the signs. This pessimistic assessment enables Manilius to explain 2. For the method behind them, see Housman — 2, pp. Aspect: opposition realm, too, hostility and aggression prevail: obviously, the heavens determine what happens on earth, and if friendship is a rarity there, the same will be true here.
After an invective against human crime and treachery, which in typically Roman manner alludes to that ultimate sacrilege, the Civil Wars,62 the poet concludes: 62 See Housman —30 ad 2. The mention of the disappearance of the Sungod in 2. The Rules of Fate 87 scilicet, in multis quoniam discordia signis corpora nascuntur, pax est sublata per orbem, et Wdei rarum foedus paucisque tributum, utque sibi caelum sic tellus dissidet ipsa atque hominum gentes inimica sorte feruntur.
The last topic pertaining to the zodiac proper that Manilius discusses is the so-called dodecatemoria Gk. According to this doctrine, each sign is divided into twelve sections of 2. To make matters more complicated still, each dodecatemorium can be subdivided into Wve parts of 0. That the poet does not mention the commonplace idea of the houses though see Abry 98— for possible traces of it in the zodiacal geography of Book 4 is in agreement with his general downplaying of the planets, on which see further 3.
After stressing the importance of the dodecatemoria in the preparation of a chart, Manilius backs oV from this complicated topic, promising more detailed treatment for the future 2. However, he takes this opportunity to explain his didactic method in a famous passage 2. The poet then, without any proper introduction, launches into his discussion of the Wxed circle, beginning straightaway with a description of the four cardinal points 2. The four cardines furthermore divide the circle into four quadrants, each of which inXuences a period of human life 2.
The Rules of Fate 89 In such a way you must mark the power of the places, through which the whole series of signs rotates, taking over their laws from them and adjusting their own to them, and through which also the planets travel, in their Wxed order, as nature allows, and activate the various powers of the places, whenever they take up foreign realms and reside as guests in camps not their own.
Just as in the case of the dodecatemoria, the poet in 2. The discussion of the dodecatropos brings Book 2 to an end, and in Book 3, after the proem 1—42 , Manilius turns to his third astrological circle, that of the twelve lots. Unlike in the cases of the zodiac and the Wxed circle, where the poet, as we have seen, unceremoniously begins his discussion of the technical details without any general introduction to the topic, Manilius here gives an elaborate and stylistically exalted explanation of the signiWcance of the lots 3.
As mentioned above, Manilius is our only surviving source to operate with a fully developed system of twelve lots, and, whether he found it in an earlier writer or made it up himself,66 he would have been aware of the fact that it was far less mainstream than the material treated in Book 2—and may thus have decided to give it some extra advertising by means of a purple passage. To this purpose, nature divided the zodiac into twelve sortes 70—82 , sections of equal size that are superimposed on the zodiacal signs in such a way that one lot always occupies one sign, but the circle of lots itself keeps turning atop the zodiac.
horoscop acvaria capricornn azi
Once the Wrst lot, that of Fortune, has been determined, the others follow in order. After Manilius has thus, as it were, elevated the lots to the central feature of astrology, he lists the signiWcance of each in order 3. In the case of the lots, as in other instances, he may have wished to downplay the role of the planets in the more common seven-lot system, each lot is associated with one particular planet and highlight that of the zodiac instead with twelve lots viewed not as points on, but divisions of, the zodiac, each corresponding to one of the signs.
On this strategy, see further 3. After this, the poet proceeds to explain how to Wnd the Lot of Fortune in the Wrst place 3. For a night-time nativity, count the degrees from the Moon to the Sun and then continue in the same manner. Having expounded this simple formula and thus completed his treatment of the circle of lots, Manilius addresses his student: forsitan et quaeras, agili rem corde notandam, qua ratione queas, natalis tempore, nati exprimere immerso surgentem horoscopon orbe. This seemingly casual question introduces the central section of Book 3, one of the most technical and mathematical parts of the Astronomica, which is dedicated to the diYcult matter of determining the ascending degree of the zodiac.
The construction of the Wxed circle crucially depends on this knowledge we need to know the ascendant to determine the other three cardines, as well as the twelve places , as does the determination of the Lot of Fortune and thus the whole circle of lots. The Rules of Fate 91 impression that Manilius is now informing us how actually to cast a nativity is misleading. Such knowledge can be found in tables and almanacs not that Manilius mentions such aids , but, since the information necessary for Wnding the ascendant can as well, it is not immediately obvious why the poet discusses the topic at such length.
The practical and didactic qualities or the lack thereof of the Astronomica will be our topic in 5. As for the calculation of the horoscopus, we might speculate that Manilius has crafted this section not so much to impart actual useful knowledge as to show oV his astronomical sophistication and ability to convey complicated scientiWc matters in the medium of the hexameter. In addition, though, the discussion has an important ideological function and serves to demonstrate the validity and viability of astrology. One of the most popular ancient arguments against astrology was the observation that twins— who are born, after all, at the same time and thus ought to share a birth chart—often have quite diVerent fates.
De civ. The answer to this, of course, was that any serious astrologer would in fact take location into account. Now, the critic, even if satisWed with both answers to both arguments, might still play the trump card and maintain that all this was well and good, but that it would simply be impossible properly to calculate the position of the zodiac for an exact time and location. In the main part of his discussion 3. It is, therefore, extremely surprising when, in 3. Of course, this is nothing but the uulgata ratio in disguise, being predicated on equal rising times for all twelve signs.
This alternative method of yours, my poor Marcus, is none other than the vulgar method which in —24 you said you knew, and which in —46 you exposed as false. The wolf, to whom in his proper shape you denied admittance, has come back disguised as your mother the goose, and her gosling has opened the door to him. Of course, the poet may simply be closely, and mechanically, following an already confused source, or otherwise be combining sources without realizing their contradictions.
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At the same time, the section oVers a last, poignant image of the zodiac, the primary astrological circle that serves as the basis for the dodecatropos and the circle of lots and that is here presented in its capacity as the path of the Sun on its annual course. This divergence, which is borne out by other ancient sources, reXects the fact that the equinoctial and solstitial points change over time owing to the precession of the equinoxes; see Goold pp.
The Rules of Fate 95 3. However, while the bipartite division implied by the previous sentence largely obtains, a number of qualiWcations are in order. First, it is not as though Manilius has really taught us in Books 2 and 3 how to cast a horoscope: while we have been overwhelmed with technical details about Wnding the horoscopus, many elements of a chart still elude us.
This selectivity will be subject to closer investigation in 3. There are two long passages in which the poet enumerates the eVects of particular constellations: 4. The discussion in Book 4, which immediately follows the proem dedicated to the absolute power of fate , is introduced as follows: nunc tibi signorum mores summumque colorem et studia et uarias artes ex ordine reddam. Note that Manilius announces his topic not as the mores, color, studia, and artes of the human beings aVected by the signs, but literally as the character and pursuits of the signs themselves signorum.
This metonymy points once more to the intimate connection that exists between heaven and earth: as we have seen in the discussion of the enmities among the signs of the zodiac, the two realms mirror each other, with the stars creating humans in their own image and imparting to them their own character traits. He [the lion] always prepares new battles, new wars against animals, and lives oV booty and his prey of Xocks.
They [the natives] are eager to decorate their high doorposts with animal skins and to nail caught spoils to their houses and to bring peace to the woods through fear and to live oV what they catch. There are also those whose similar inclinations the city walls do not keep out, but they walk around with body parts of animals in the middle of the city, hang bloody limbs from their storefront, prepare slaughter for the sake of luxury, and consider killing a proWt.
They are given equally to sudden anger and easy withdrawal and have a simple mind in their pure heart. The natura of the sign and the artes it grants to the people born under it clearly correspond to each other cf. Beck 65—8. Note that the described nature of the sign Leo is really the nature of its underlying constellation, which was believed to represent a lion, speciWcally the Nemean Lion, whose catasterism is alluded to by Manilius in 2. In fact, its nature as depicted in the text is that of a real lion, who thinks of nothing but hunting and slaughter and feeds on the animals he kills 4.
The sign is thus identiWed with its constellation, which in 78 As Cumont 87 points out, the future profession of the native is a major topic of ancient horoscopes and astrological writing. Note that another central concern, the sex life, marriage, and oVspring of the native Cumont , plays next to no role in Manilius. The Rules of Fate 97 turn is identiWed with the creature it was before it became stelliWed.
This natura of Leo is then replicated in the artes it prescribes dictet, for its natives,79 as is apparent from the parallel emphatic placement at the beginning of the hexameter of the pronouns ille and hos Those born under the sign become either hunters —2 or butchers —6 , the bourgeois representatives of the leonine instinct for killing animals. Their irascibility coupled with guilelessness —8 likewise reXects popular ideas about the disposition of actual lions.
However, in the case of this modern Laienastrologie,82 it is clear that a 79 Here Manilius is playing nicely with the concepts of natura and ars, so dear to ancient theories of ethics and education: while the lion is bloodthirsty by nature, the bloody pursuits of the people born under it are in fact learned skills. Also possible is that Manilius downplays the inXuence of Leo for the reason that this was the sign of Antony, who had attempted to exploit its royal potential in his propaganda see Abry a and 4.
As Eriksson 12—13 points out, Laienastrologie is characterized by one-dimensionality, i. When Manilius thus speaks of the inXuence of the individual signs, under which circumstances does he envisage them as manifesting their powers? Astonishingly, the poet is entirely silent on this point. On the assumption that Manilius imagines the signs to impart their characteristics to the native when they Wnd themselves in an astrologically particularly meaningful situation, three possible scenarios present themselves: 1 the signs described in 4.
In favour of 1 it can be argued that the paranatellonta, whose inXuences on the native are discussed in detail in Book 5, are clearly imagined as imparting these inXuences when rising over the horizon. Since the treatment in Book 5 is the counterpart to our discussion in Book 4 just as the paranatellonta themselves move in tandem with the zodiacal signs, next to which they are rising , it would make sense if in Book 4, too, the crucial moment were that of horoscoping. However, it is not clear whether he is describing the eVects of the sign at the moment when it is actually housing the luminary or whether he is simply referring to the position of the Sun as a seasonal marker.
In his description of Taurus, for example, the poet declares: in Petron. On the kind of texts and tables used in Laienastrologie, see also Boll, Bezold, and Gundel — Thus, while, e. The Rules of Fate 99 ille suis Phoebi portat cum cornibus orbem militiam indicit terris et segnia rura in ueteres reuocat cultus. While the mention of the placement of the Sun is suggestive of the concept of the Sun sign, Manilius may be saying nothing more than that the agricultural year begins in spring, that is, when the Sun is in Taurus of course, this provides a further reason why the sign would be associated with farming.
Ultimately, though, what matters is not whether we are able to determine by some ingenious line of argument what Manilius must have meant, but the plain fact that the poet does not see Wt to inform his readers about the circumstances under which the signs are supposed to have the described eVects. We shall return to this topic in 3. After his exposition of the inXuences of the single signs, Manilius turns to a discussion of the decans 4. These constitute a 85 The case is similar in 4.
As mentioned in 3.
Astrologe Martin Schmid
None of this is on evidence in the Astronomica, where the decans are instead said to be ruled by the signs of the zodiac itself: the Wrst decan of Aries belongs to Aries, the second to Taurus, and the third to Gemini, while the Wrst decan of Taurus is ruled by Cancer, and so on, with the signs following one another in their regular order until all the decans are distributed. And this explains—as the poet points out 4.
But reckoning with decans is not enough. After a brief digression 4. The Rules of Fate are sterile cf. To achieve his purpose, Manilius comes up with inventive methods of Wtting Latin numerals into his hexameters. Volk n. Scaliger , commentary p. Thus, for example, the Wrst point of Aries 4.
In so doing, the poet momentarily moves from genethlialogy to mundane astrology, considering the power of the stars, not over individuals, but over the whole earth. This extended discussion of zodiacal geography 4. He then explains that the ethnic and national diVerences among the peoples of the earth are due to the fact that diVerent signs of the zodiac dominate diVerent regions, crucially inXuencing the appearance and lifestyle of their inhabitants 4. We thus have a double mirroring of macrocosm and microcosm: the structure of the heavens macrocosm is replicated in the two parallel microcosms of earth and man.
After expounding in detail which countries belong to which signs 4. Note that, in the intervening passages about the decans and the partes damnandae, Manilius gives no indication as to the circumstances under which they supposedly wield their power. The Rules of Fate sic diuisa manet tellus per sidera cuncta, e quibus in proprias partes sunt iura trahenda; nam eadem, quae sunt signis, commercia seruant, utque illa inter se coeunt odioque repugnant, nunc aduersa polo, nunc et coniuncta trigono, quaeque alia in uarios aVectus causa gubernat, sic terrae terris respondent, urbibus urbes, litora litoribus, regnis contraria regna; sic erit et sedes fugienda petendaque cuique, sic speranda Wdes, sic et metuenda pericla, ut genus in terram caelo descendit ab alto.
For they keep the same kinds of interactions that the signs have: just as these join each other and Wght in hatred, now in polar opposition, now connected in a trigon, and whatever other cause brings forth their feelings, in the same way countries relate to countries, cities to cities, shores to shores, and kingdoms to hostile kingdoms. And everybody must seek and avoid a dwelling place, hope for trust, and fear dangers according to the way in which his ethnicity comes to him from high heaven. On earth as it is in heaven: man is ruled by the stars, not only through his horocope, but also in terms of his dwelling place and country of origin.
The last astrological topic of the book is a discussion of the so-called ecliptic signs, the signs that happen to house the Moon during a lunar eclipse 4. An eclipse has the result of cancelling out any eVect a given sign may have, and not only the Moon sign itself, but also the Sun sign which in a lunar eclipse is in opposition. Once these signs have recovered their strength which can take over a year , the weakening eVect passes on to the two signs that precede them. It is not entirely clear why Manilius brings up this topic at this particular point. In other sources, the question of eclipses is closely related to the topic of zodiacal geography since eclipses were supposed to aVect diVerent regions diVerently; see, e.
Interestingly enough, Manilius once again uses the example of the earth to make his point 4. Already Aratus dedicates part of his Phaenomena to an enumeration of constellations that rise and set together with the individual signs of the zodiac — , doing so for the expressed purpose of facilitating the telling of time at night: from sunset to sunrise, six signs rise, but, since their constellations may not always be observable, it is good to know which other stars are rising at the same time.
Many of these sources include not only the canonical Greek constellations known from Aratus and his followers, but also a wealth of others that are clearly of non-Greek, that is, Mesopotamian or 95 This line of argument is reminiscent of the one Manilius employs apropos the partes damnandae in 4.
In both cases, the poet invokes the principle of universal mutability cf. The Rules of Fate Egyptian, origin.