CLAUDIUS PTOLEMY:

TETRABIBLOS

OR THE QUADRIPARTITE MATHEMATICAL TREATISE

3. Of the Familiarities between Countries and the Triplicities and Stars.

Now of the four triangular formations recognized in the zodiac, as we have shown above, the one which consists of Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius is north-western, and is chiefly dominated by Jupiter on account of the north wind, but Mars joins in its government because of the south-west wind. That which is made up of Taurus, Virgo, and Capricornus is south-eastern, and again is governed primarily by Venus on account of the south wind, but conjointly by Saturn because of the east wind. The one consisting of Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius is north-eastern and is governed primarily by Saturn because of the east wind, and conjointly by Jupiter because of the north wind. The triangle of Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces is south-western and is governed primarily, because of the west wind, by Mars, who is joined by Venus as co-ruler on account of the south wind.
As this is so, and since our inhabited world is divided into four quarters, equal in number to the triangles, and is divided latitudinally by our sea from the Straits of Hercules to the Gulf of Issus and the mountainous ridge adjacent on the east, and by these its southern and northern portions are separated, and in longitude by the Arabian Gulf, the Aegean Sea, the Pontus, and the Lake Maeotis, whereby the eastern and western portions are separated, there arise four quarters, and these agree in position with the triangles. The first quarter lies in the north-west of the whole inhabited world; it embraces Celtic Gaul and we give it the general name Europe. Opposite this is the south-eastern quarter; this includes eastern Ethiopia, which would be called the southern part of Greater Asia. Again, the north-eastern quarter of the whole inhabited world is that which contains Scythia, which likewise is the northern part of Greater Asia; and the quarter opposite this and toward the south-west wind, the quarter of western Ethiopia, is that which we call by the general term Libya.
Again, of each of the aforesaid quarters the parts which are placed closer to the centre of the inhabited world are placed in a contrary fashion with respect to the surrounding quarters, just as are the latter in comparison with the whole world; and since the European quarter lies in the north-west of the whole world, the parts about the centre, which are allied to the opposite angle, obviously are situated in the south-east part of the quarter. The same holds of the other quarters, so that each of them is related to two oppositely situated triangles ; for while the other parts are in harmony with the general inclination of the quarter, the portions at the centre [of the world] share in familiarity with the opposite inclination, and, again, of the stars that govern in their own triangles, in all the other domiciles they alone govern, but in the parts about the centre of the world likewise the other group, and Mercury besides, because he is mid-way between and common to the two sects.
Under this arrangement, the remainder of the first quarter, by which I mean the European quarter, situated in the north-west of the inhabited world, is in familiarity with the north-western triangle, Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius, and is governed, as one would expect, by the lords of the triangle, Jupiter and Mars, occidental. In terms of whole nations these parts consist of Britain, (Transalpine) Gaul, Germany, Bastarnia, Italy, (Cisalpine) Gaul, Apulia, Sicily, Tyrrhenia, Celtica, and Spain. As one might expect, it is the general characteristic of these nations, by reason of the predominance of the triangle and the stars which join in its government, to be independent, liberty-loving, fond of arms, industrious, very warlike, with qualities of leadership, cleanly, and magnanimous. However, because of the occidental aspect of Jupiter and Mars, and furthermore because the first parts of the aforesaid triangle are masculine and the latter parts feminine, they are without passion for women and look down upon the pleasures of love, but are better satisfied with and more desirous of association with men. And they do not regard the act as a disgrace to the paramour, nor indeed do they actually become effeminate and soft thereby, because their disposition is not perverted, but they retain in their souls manliness, helpfulness, good faith, love of kinsmen, and benevolence. Of these same countries Britain, (Transalpine) Gaul, Germany, and Bastarnia are in closer familiarity with Aries and Mars. Therefore for the most part their inhabitants are fiercer, more headstrong, and bestial. But Italy, Apulia, (Cisalpine) Gaul, and Sicily have their familiarity with Leo and the sun; wherefore these peoples are more masterful, benevolent, and co-operative. Tyrrhenia, Celtica, and Spain are subject to Sagittarius and Jupiter, whence their independence, simplicity, and love of cleanliness. The parts of this quarter which are situated about the centre of the inhabited world, Thrace, Macedonia, Illyria, Hellas, Achaia, Crete, and likewise the Cyclades, and the coastal regions of Asia Minor and Cyprus, which are in the south-east portion of the whole quarter, have in addition familiarity with the south-east triangle, Taurus, Virgo, and Capricornus, and its co-rulers Venus, Saturn, and Mercury. As a result the inhabitants of those countries are brought into conformity with these planets and both in body and soul are of a more mingled constitution. They too have qualities of leadership and are noble and independent, because of Mars; they are liberty-loving and self-governing, democratic and framers of law, through Jupiter; lovers of music and of learning, fond of contests and clean livers, through Venus; social, friendly to strangers, justice-loving, fond of letters, and very effective in eloquence, through Mercury; and they are particularly addicted to the performance of mysteries, because of Venus's occidental aspect. And again, part by part, those of this group who live in the Cyclades and on the shores of Asia Minor and Cyprus are more closely familiar to Taurus and Venus. For this reason they are, on the whole, luxurious, clean, and attentive to their bodies. The inhabitants of Hellas, Achaia, and Crete, however, have a familiarity with Virgo and Mercury, and are therefore better at reasoning, and fond of learning, and they exercise the soul in preference to the body. The Macedonians, Thracians, and Illyrians have familiarity with Capricorn and Saturn, so that, though they are acquisitive, they are not so mild of nature, nor social in their institutions.

Of the second quarter, which embraces the southern part of Greater Asia, the other parts, including India, Ariana, Gedrosia, Parthia, Media, Persia, Babylonia, Mesopotamia, and Assyria, which are situated in the south-east of the whole inhabited world, are, as we might presume, familiar to the south-eastern triangle, Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn, and are governed by Venus and Saturn in oriental aspects. Therefore one would find that the natures of their inhabitants conform with the temperaments governed by such rulers; for they revere the star of Venus under the name of Isis, and that of Saturn as Mithras Helios. Most of them, to , divine future events; and among them there exists the practice of consecrating the genital organs because of the aspect of the aforesaid stars, which is by nature generative. Further, they are ardent, concupiscent, and inclined to the pleasures of love; through the influence of Venus they are dancers and leapers and fond of adornment, and through that of Saturn luxurious livers. They carry out their relations with women openly and not in secret, because of the planets´ oriental aspect, but hold in detestation such relations with males. For these reasons most of them beget children by their own mothers, and they do obeisance to the breast, by reason of the morning rising of the planets and on account of the primacy of the heart, which is akin to the sun's power. As for the rest, they are generally luxurious and effeminate in dress, in adornment, and in all habits relating to the body, because of Venus. In their souls and by their predilection they are magnanimous, noble, and warlike, because of the familiarity of Saturn oriental. Part by part, again, Parthia, Media, and Persia are more closely familiar to Taurus and Venus; hence their inhabitants use embroidered clothing, which covers their entire body except the breast, and they are as a general thing luxurious and clean. Babylonia, Mesopotamia, and Assyria are familiar to Virgo and Mercury, and so the study of mathematics and the observation of the five planets are special traits of these peoples. India, Ariana, and Gedrosia have familiarity with Capricorn and Saturn; therefore the inhabitants of these countries are ugly, unclean, and bestial. The remaining parts of the quarter, situated about the centre of the inhabited world, Idumaea, Coelê Syria, Judaca, Phoenicia, Chaldaea, Orchinia, and Arabia Felix, which are situated toward the north-west of the whole quarter, have additional familiarity with the north-western triangle, Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius, and, furthermore, have as co-rulers Jupiter, Mars, and Mercury. Therefore these peoples are, in comparison with the others, more gifted in trade and exchange; they are more unscrupulous, despicable cowards, treacherous, servile, and in general fickle, on account of the aspect of the stars mentioned. Of these, again, the inhabitants of Coelê Syria, Idumaea, and Judaea are more closely familiar to Aries and Mars, and therefore these peoples are in general bold, godless, and scheming. The Phoenicians, Chaldaeans, and Orchinians have familiarity with Leo and the sun, so that they are simpler, kindly, addicted to astrology, and beyond all men worshippers of the sun. The inhabitants of Arabia Felix are familiar to Sagittarius and Jupiter; this accounts for the fertility of the country, in accordance with its name, and its multitudes of spices, and the grace of its inhabitants and their free spirit in daily life, in exchange, and in business.























Of the third quarter, which includes the northern part of Greater Asia, the other parts, embracing Hyrcania, Armenia, Matiana, Bactriana, Casperia, Serica, Sauromatica, Oxiana, Sogdiana, and the regions in the north-east of the inhabited world, are in familiarity with the north-eastern triangle, Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius, and are, as might be expected, governed by Saturn and Jupiter in oriental aspect. Therefore the inhabitants of these lands worship Jupiter and Saturn, have much riches and gold, and are cleanly and seemly in their living, learned and adepts in matters of religion, just and liberal in manners, lofty and noble in soul, haters of evil, and affectionate, and ready to die for their friends in a fair and holy cause. They are. dignified and pure in their, sexual relations, lavish in dress, gracious and magnanimous; these things in general are brought about by Saturn and Jupiter in eastern aspects. Of these nations, again, Hyreania, Armenia, and Matiana are more closely familiar to Gemini and Mercury ; they are accordingly more easily stirred and inclined to rascality. Bactriana, Casperia, and Serica are skin to Libra and Venus, so that their peoples are rich and followers of the Muses, and more luxurious. The regions of Sauromatica, Oxiana, and Sogdiana are in familiarity with Aquarius and Saturn ; these nations therefore are more ungentle, steril, and bestial. The remaining parts of this quarter, which lie close to the centre of the inhabited world, Bithynia, Phrygia, Colchica, Syria, Commagenê, Cappadocia, Lydia, Lycia, Cilicia, and Pamphylia, since they are situated in the south-west of the quarter, have in addition familiarity with the southwestern quarter, Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces, and their co-rulers are Mars, Venus, and Mercury; therefore those who live in these countries generally worship Venus as the mother of the gods, calling her by various local names, and Mars as Adonis, to whom again they give other names, and they celebrate in their honour certain mysteries accompanied by lamentations: They are exceedingly depraved.. servile, laborious, rascally, are to be found in mercenary expeditions, looting and taking captives, enslaving their own peoples, and engaging in destructive wars. And because of the junction of Mars and Venus in the Orient, since Mars is exalted in Capricorn, a sign of Venus's triangle, and Venus in Pisces, a sign of Mars's triangle, it comes about that their women display entire goodwill to their husbands; they are affectionate, home-keepers, diligent, helpful, and in every respect laborious and obedient. Of these peoples, again, those who live in Bithynia, Phrygia, and Colchica are more closely familiar to Cancer and the moon; therefore the men are in general cautious and obedient, and most of the women, through the influenee of the moon's oriental and masculine aspect, are virile, commanding, and warlike, like the Amazons, who shun commerce with men, love arms, and from infancy make masculine all their female characteristics, by cutting off their right breasts for the sake of military needs and baring these parts in the line of battle, in order to display the absence of femininity in their natures. The people of Syria, Commagenê, and Cappadocia are familiar to Scorpio and Mars; therefore much boldness, knavery, treachery, and laboriousness are found among them. The people of Lydia, Cilicia, and Pamphylia have familiarity with Pisces and Jupiter; these accordingly are more wealthy, commercial, social, free, and trustworthy in their compacts.
Of the remaining quarter, which includes what is called by the common name Libya, the other parts, including Numidia, Carthage, Africa, Phazania, Nasamonitis, Garamantica, Mauritania, Gaetulia, Metagonitis, and the regions situated in the south-west of the inhabited world, are related by familiarity to the south-western triangle, Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces, and are accordingly ruled by Mars and Venus in occidental aspect. For this reason it befalls most of the inhabitants, because of the aforesaid junction of these planets, to be governed by a man and wife who are own brother and sister, the man ruling the men and the woman the women; and a succession of this sort is maintained. They are extremely ardent and disposed to commerce with women, so that even their marriages are brought about by violent abduction, and frequently their kings enjoy the jus primae noctis with the brides, and among some of them the women are common to all the men. They are fond of beautifying themselves and gird themselves with feminine adornments, through the influence of Venus; through that of Mars, however, they are virile of spirit, rascally, magicians, impostors, deceivers, and reckless. Of these people, again, the inhabitants of Numidia, Carthage, and Africa are more closely familiar to Cancer and the moon. They therefore are social, commercial, and live in great abundance. Those who inhabit Metagonitis, Mauritania, and Gactulia are familiar to Scorpio and Mars; they are accordingly fiercer and very warlike, meat eaters, very reckless, and contemptuous of life to such an extent as not even to spare One another. Those who live in Phazania, Nasamonitis, and Garamantica are familiar to Pisces and Jupiter; hence they are free and simple in their characters, willing to work, intelligent, cleanly, and independent, as a general rule, and they are worshippers of Jupiter as Ammon. The remaining parts of the quarter, which are situated near the centre of the inhabited world, Cyrenaica, Marmarica, Egypt, Thebais, the Oasis, Troglodytica, Arabia, Azania, and Middle Ethiopia, which face the north-east of the whole quarter, have an additional familiarity with the northeastern triangle Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius, and therefore have as co-rulers Saturn and Jupiter and, furthermore, Mercury. Accordingly those who live in these countries, because they all in common, as it were, are subject to the occidental rulership of the five planets, are worshippers of the gods, superstitious, given to religions ceremony and fond of lamentation; they bury their dead in the earth, putting them out of sight, on account of the occidental aspect of the planets; and they practice all kinds of usages, customs, and rites in the service of all manner of gods. Under command they are humble, timid, penurious, and long-suffering, in leadership courageous and magnanimous; but they are polygamous and polyandrous and lecherous, marrying even their own sisters, and the men are potent in begetting, the women in conceiving, even as their land is fertile. Furthermore, many of the males are unsound and effeminate of soul, and some even hold in contempt the organs of generation, through the influence of the aspect of the maleficent planets in combination with Venus occidental. Of these peoples the inhabitants of Cyrenaica and Marmarica, and particularly of Lower Egypt, are more closely familiar to Gemini and Mercury; on this account they are thoughtful and intelligent and facile in all things, especially in the search for wisdom and religion; they are magicians and performers of secret mysteries and in general skilled in mathematics. Those who live in Thebais, the Oasis, and Troglodytica are familiar to Libra and Venus; hence they are more ardent and lively of nature and live in plenty. The people of Arabia, Azania, and Middle Ethiopia are familiar to Aquarius and Saturn, for which reason they are flesh-eaters, fish-eaters, and nomade, living a rough, bestial life.
Let this be our brief exposition of the familiarities of the planets and the signs of the zodiac with the various nations, and of the general characteristics of the latter. We shall also set forth, for ready use, a list of the several nations which are in familiarity, merely noted against each of the signs, in accordance with what has just been said about them, thus:

Aries: Britain, Gaul, Germania, Bastarnia; in the centre, Coelê Syria, Palestine, Idumaea, Judaea.

Taurus: Parthia, Media, Persia; in the centre, the Cyclades, Cyprus, the coastal region of Asia Minor.

Gemini: Hyrcania, Armenia, Matiana; in the centre, Cyrenaica, Marmarica, Lower Egypt.

Cancer: Numidia, Carthage, Africa; in the centre, Bithynia, Phrygia, Colchica.

Leo: Italy, Cisalpine Gaul, Sicily, Apulia; in the centre, Phoenicia, Chaldaea, Orchenia.

Virgo: Mesopotamia, Babylonia, Assyria; in the centre, Hellas, Achaia, Crete.

Libra: Bactriana, Casperia, Serica; in the centre, Thebais, Oasis, Troglodytica.

Scorpio: Metagonitis, Mauritania, Gaetulia; in the centre, Syria, Commagenê, Cappadocia.

Sagittarius: Tyrrhenia, Celtica, Spain; in the centre, Arabia Felix.

Capricorn: India, Ariana, Gedrosia; in the centre, Thrace, Macedonia, Illyria.

Aquarius: Sauromatica, Oxiana, Sogdiana; in the centre, Arahia, Azania, Middle Ethiopia.

Pisces: Phazania, Nasamonitis, Garamantica; in the centre, Lydia, Cilicia, Pamphylia.

Now that the subject at hand has been set forth, it is reasonable to attach to this section this further consideration - that each of the fixed stars has familiarity with the countries with which the parts of the zodiac, which have the same inclinations as the fixed stars upon the circle drawn through its poles, appear to exert sympathy; furthermore, that, in the case of metropolitan cities, those regions of the zodiac are most sympathetic through which the sun and moon, and of the centres especially the horoscope, were passing at the first founding of the city, as in a nativity, But in cases in which the exact times of the foundations are not discovered, the regions are sympathetic in which falls the midheaven of the nativities of those who held office or were kings at the time.




Ptolemy's Tetrabiblos

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