Asteroid Artemis


Artemis is the Greek goddess of hunting, forests, mountains and animals. She is depicted as a young maiden with an archer’s bow and sometimes a crescent moon. The crescent is symbolic of her virginity and the fact she is a youth, brimming with spark and vigor.

Artemis’s Roman equivalent is Diana who is mainly portrayed with the crescent moon as a crown. The two goddesses have pretty much the same meaning. In this post we will focus on the Greek myth since Artemis is the name of the asteroid and not Diana. However I have chosen to use the Roman Diana image for this post’s illustration because I just love it! 

Artemis Mythology

So in the Greek myth, Artemis specifically asked of her father Zeus to preserve and protect her virginity and her hunting companions were all virgins too. Because of this she is associated with protecting young girls.

Artemis was born a day before her twin brother Apollo and helped with his birth, so she is also the goddess of midwifery and childbirth. Her main role seems to be that of protector of the innocent and guardian of purity.

Asteroid Artemis 105 was discovered by C J Watson on September the 16 1868 at the Detroit Observatory. It is quite a large (119km) main belt asteroid and takes 3.6 years to orbit the sun. It is very dark in colour since it consists of mainly carbonaceous matter.

Duality & Contradictions

Artemis is rather contradictory; her duality is expected however since she is one of a twin. Maybe she is the shadow of shiny Apollo her brother. We see the paradox in the fact that Artemis is the protector of animals, yet also a hunter of animals. She is the goddess of childbirth but never has children. She protects young girls but sometimes even brings them illness.

The duality continues as there are also two versions the myth with Orion her hunter companion. In one version; Orion while hunting with Artemis boasted he could knock out any beast. Gaia the earth goddess sent a Scorpion to sting him in the foot as a punishment for his arrogance. Artemis was heartbroken and begged Zeus to make Orion into a constellation.

In another version it was Artemis herself that killed Orion, either by a Scorpion’s sting or by one of her arrows. This was as punishment for his attempting to rape her and for pillaging her creatures. “Hapless Orion fell by the cruel virgin’s [Artemis’] shaft and now fills Chaos [the Air, which Orion fills as a constellation].” [1]

Vengeful Slip Of A Girl!

“Nemesis to Artemis “What Orion is using force against you once more? The wretch that touched your dress still lies in his mother’s flanks, a lifeless corpse; if any man has clutched your garments with lustful hands, grow another scorpion to avenge your girdle.’” [2]

Artemis may have just been a slip of a girl, but anyone disregarding her chastity or taking sacred creatures as trophies did not live long to brag about it. Chest-beating hunters bled to death in agony, pierced by her arrows. Artemis is described as having a wrathful and vengeful nature when crossed and this comes from a close connection to the wild beasts in her protection.

Artemis is often depicted with deer and stags, which were her favourite animals. The bear features strongly in her myth too, and Artemis has similar characteristics to two important stars in Ursa Major, the great bear. The fixed star Dubhe is quiet female strength, but with a fearsome temper when roused.

Phecda has a real bloodlust and reflects Artemis’s penetrating and bloody arrows. Hera ended up turning Artemis’s favourite companion Callisto into a bear as punishment for having Zeus’s child and it is this bear that became the constellation Ursa Major.

Artemis Discovery Chart

After all this talk of bears its not surprising then that we find the Sun in Artemis’s birthchart is on Alkaid in the Great Bear! It is right on the tip of the tail like a deadly Scorpions stinger too. Alkaid means “Hired Mourners” The Ebertin’s studied this star over centuries in mundane astrology work and found it did indeed bring about mourning and death.

“it will claim human lives in calamities such as mine accidents, collapse of houses and bridges, mountain slides, earth tremors and catastrophes caused by weather”.  The constellation as a whole is supposed to give “quiet, prudent, suspicious, mistrustful, self-controlled, patient nature, but an uneasy spirit and great anger and revengefulness when roused.”

The Great Bear’s attributes fit very well with Artemis’s guarded nature and explains her wild temper. As an archer though she is also skilful, patient and has great self-control. So when she is stalking, she does not let her passions overtake her. Her temper is aroused primarily in defending the innocence of young girls.

Asteroid Artemis Discovery Chart

I love Artemis’s birth chart. It looks like an archers bow! Mars/Uranus are drawing back the arrow. Ceres is the arrow point with Black Moon Lilith (Mean version) which symbolically is interesting.

( I no longer consider BM Lilith a proper influence unless we use the true Lilith AND it is conjunct or opposite the moon. See ‘Moon Food’ post) Ceres can signify rape and abuse. (Ceres as Persephone was raped by Pluto.) Ceres is a midwife too. Ceres in the 8th house also refers to the possible abuse from Orion. The 8th house is the underworld of the chart, the house of sex and death.

The wide Mars/Uranus conjunction can be asexual and pre-pubescent just like Artemis’s eternal virginity. They are independent and relish solitude. Ceres is on Deneb Algedi “It is said to cause beneficence and destructiveness, sorrow and happiness, and life and death.” Appropriate given Artemis’s paradoxical nature Ceres is on one of the psychic and occult stars in Aquarius, Sadalsuud giving her great instincts and magical savy.

Mars is on Pollux in Gemini, lunar Artemis works well as sunny Apollo’s darker twin. Mars on Pollux has the dubious reputation of murderer or murdered, but it’s fitting for a huntress like Artemis. The North Node happens to be on another Ursa Major star, bloodthirsty Phecda which I mentioned earlier, but actually closer to Alfard in the watersnake, associated with poisons (the Scorpions sting again) and explains Artemis’s tendency for bitter revenge.

The discovery degree for asteroid Artemis is 5º Aries 41’ and she was discovered on the day of a new moon. The asteroid was opposite that moon, appropriate for a Goddess associated with the growing crescent. She is fresh, new, excited and pure.

The Sabian symbol for Aries 6 reads “A Square Brightly Lighted On One side” some of Linda Hills keywords that I think apply nicely to Artemis are “Illuminated Solutions that provide ways out of tight situations. Having to put up walls to protect and defend versus taking down barriers. Lighting up dark corners.” A nod to Apollo there. Some of Lynda’s negative keywords fit too “Feeling trapped. Fear of ambush. Fear of attack from behind.” [3]

Artemis in Astrology

If Artemis is found to be prominent in a chart, then the subject may find that they are perfectionists and are very choosy when it comes to a sexual mate. They will preserve their dignity at all costs and only let their guard down very slowly and after a great deal of trust has been earned. Externally they can seem puritanical, but they are far from frigid once the ice has melted!

Remember Artemis has a wild and untamed side, so the virginity is not literal, she simply does not like having her sexuality owned or controlled. Artemis loves to stalk, but she abhors being stalked herself. With Artemis strong in the natal chart, passion is stimulated by the thrill of the chase, but these people are often surprisingly and abruptly cool, if the “beast” should start to chase them.

Artemis can be very defensive, but she will always protect the innocent and has a special affinity with children even if she never has any of her own. The subject will always retain the air of a teenager well into their mature years.

Artemis people may not marry, but they will never be lonely since they always attract a gang of like-minded souls around them. They tend to travel with an entourage. A modern day career for Artemis may be a paparazzi photographer, or moviemaker where the famous become her prey and she is shooting and capturing them on film.

PS. This is an updated and revised post from 2012.

Find Artemis In your Chart

  1. Create your chart HERE.
  2. Choose “Extended Chart Selection”.
  3. In “additional asteroids or hypothetical planets” add 105.
1.Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica 4. 104 ff (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.)
2. Nonnus, Dionysiaca 48. 395 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.)
3. 360 degrees of Wisdom. Lynda Hill. Pg 6.