Planet Ruler Exaltation

Sun Leo trines Aries

Moon Cancer sextiles Taurus

Mercury...Gemini trines Aquarius

Venus Taurus sextiles Pisces

Mars Scorpio sextiles Capricorn (or Virgo)

Jupiter...Pisces trines Cancer (or sextiles


Saturn Aquarius trines Libra

As explained by Ptolemy in the Tetrabiblos, the Moon and the Sun were assigned to the Rulership of Cancer and Leo because "these are the most Northerly of all the Signs, and approach nearer than any others to the Zenith of this part of the Earth: the Moon to Cancer because both are feminine, and the Sun to Leo, because both are masculine." This resulted in the division of the zodiac into a Solar semi-circle from Leo forward to Capricorn, and a Lunar Semi-circle from Cancer backward to Aquarius. In order that each planet might rule a Sign in each semi-circle, whereby it could be configurated with both Sun and Moon, Mercury, which is never more than one Sign distant from the Sun, was assigned to the rulership of Gemini and Virgo; Venus, which is never more than two Signs distant, to Taurus and Libra; Mars, because it is dry in nature, was assigned to two Signs of a similar nature, Aries and Scorpio, whose square relation to the respective Signs of the luminaries was appropriately discordant; Jupiter, whose fruitful nature deserved a harmonious relationship in which to operate for good, was assigned to the two trine Signs Pisces and Sagittarius; leaving Saturn, a cold planet in an orbit remote from the harmonious, to be assigned to Cancer and Aquarius, and for the added reason that their "configuration by opposition does not cooperate towards the production of good." As the basis on which the Exaltations were assigned is equally arbitrary it is no wonder that Wilson scoffs at and refuses to accept the entire doctrine of Essential Dignities.

To render matters worse confounded some of the moderns have endeavored to upset the scheme by assigning to Uranus the rulership of Aquarius, and to Neptune the rulership of Pisces, and are now in a battle royal as to whether Pluto shall be assigned to Aries or Scorpio. Looked at from a scientist's viewpoint the entire Doctrine of Dignities appears to be a fortuneteller's device whereby to find at least some answer to a question concerning a House which contains no planets, and is thus unable to give positive testimony regarding a question asked. Wilson seemed to think that Placidus side-stepped the doctrine as one with which he could not agree, but regarding which he dared not disagree. Marc Edmund Jones says that few modern practitioners pay much attention to the Essential Dignities and Debilities. v. Ptolemaic Astrology.

To distinguish between these dual rulerships, the positive signs were called Day Houses, and the negative signs, the Night Houses -- although since they are signs not houses, the terms Day Home and Night Home would be preferable.

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