Planet Ceres

Ceres was discovered in Sicily and named as such because of her close mythological and cult connections to this Mediterranean island. Enna in Sicily was said to be where Persephone was abducted by Pluto, who apparently flew out of the volcano Etna. Ceres was discovered right on the fixed star Algol in Medusa’s head! Ceres is really exact Algol at 0 degrees 00’! The Algol connection with Ceres is all the more strange because Medusa’s head motif is also found on the Sicilian flag. They have mixed Ceres symbolism with Medusa by entwining the snakes with sprigs of wheat. Later we will see the snake symbolism again with the stars involved in Ceres’ discovery chart. The whole thing is pretty uncanny.

Ceres was discovered as early as 1801, the 1st day of a new century at 8pm [1]. For 500 years it was actually classified as the 8th planet. Ceres was discovered by a Sicilian monk astronomer, Giuseppe Piazzi. He wrote in his notes that Ceres was sitting on the shoulder of the bull (Taurus). Perseus the constellation that contains Algol lies behind the Bull in the heavens. Ceres is credited as having possible rulership of Virgo due to its brightest star Spica being the chaff of wheat in the hand of the Virgin. However I’ve always thought Ceres can have  an affinity with the sign of Taurus and the 2nd house too.

Ceres Discovery Chart

ceressicilyIn Ceres’s discovery chart sensible, responsible Saturn is rising. Everyone knows Ceres as the earth mother. So straight away we have the themes of mothering, nurturing, child custody and parental responsibility absolutely highlighted by that tight square from Ceres in the chart to Saturn. We have a striking Yod to Pluto containing the Moon, making this a Hades Moon:

“The Hades Moon, and the devouring mother, is reflected too in life-threatening childhood events: difficult birth, traumatic separations, alienation and rejection…. There is indeed a treasure at the heart of the Hades Moon. It offers the gift of empowerment and regeneration, the strength to face fearlessly whatever must be.” [2]

This mirrors everything I have been finding out about Ceres so far. I have always felt there was such a heavy Plutonic influence, but I thought it just came from the connections of Ceres to the Persephone myth. However it is more than that, Pluto is right here in her birthchart, smacking us in the face full force with that Yod. The other planet of seperation and death of course is Saturn, which as we have seen weighs heavy on the ascendant. Saturn is opposing Venus, so affection is expressed with difficulty, it’s far more tough love and discipline here, like a matron. There is also practical magic. Ceres in her Virgo guise rules nurses and midwives, so this is fitting.

ceres-sicilySaturn is on fixed star Alfard in the water snake. With Saturn: “Strong passions but cool, cautious and slow to anger, secret and sorrowful love affairs of short duration, domestic disharmony, danger of death by poison”. [3]. The condition of Saturn is important since is is rising, I haven’t looked at the AC star because we cannot be 100% about the time of this chart, but around 8pm will most certainly have Saturn within range of the AC. I think this star is important because it shows the dark side of Ceres addiction problems particularly with toxic relationships and opiates. Saturn with Alphard according to Ebertin: “… poisoned hatred in women, gas poisoning, danger to life by wrong use of drugs and over indulgence of good living, smoke inhalation and danger of suffocation….. A ‘poisoning’ is also possible in a relationship between man and woman in marriage.” [4]

Toxic Relationships

Mercury is on Ras Alhague in Ophiuchus, yet more dark influences. “Unpopular attitude and criticism through religion, philosophy or science; difficulties in marriage and quarrels fostered by others, trouble through opposite sex, not very good for gain.” [5] Ophuichius is the snake charmer and for me it is the Lilith constellation. Lilith will always have trouble submitting in relationships, but here Lilith is on brave Betelgeuse, making her even more of a fighter and a spiritual warrior. Ceres then can be a Florence Nightingale, Joan of Arc, healer and midwife. If she channels her energy this way it will then dilute the tendency to smother and possess her children or creations. Ceres is very concentrated, like Marmite, you need to spread it very thin.

ceresBut Ceres is not all matronly and dutiful. The bass of the Yod is a free-spirited Moon sextile Uranus. Ceres has a wonderful, wicked sense of humour with the Moon conjunct Jupiter.  Moon in the 12th will give her the famous mothers intuition, but it also the house of self-undoing too so she can be her own worst enemy at times.

Sun on Vega in the Lyre gives artistic talent, and Ceres is fertile with ideas , “Vega is said to pave the way to riches and fame. However, if other influences play a part, this wealth may be lost again.” [6] and the trine to Mars give a pushy stage-mother I would think. Mars on the MC looks just about right for Ceres. Bossy, mouthy and apt to put her foot in it. Embarrassing in public yes. The Venus square Neptune will have romantic notions of what love should be. Yes you shall marry a handsome prince my child. Oh God, please no, not THAT one, not him on the bike. I didn’t mean the Prince of Darkness…. where did she go?…PersephonAAYE!!?

Ceres Sun & Moon Aspects

You can get a better idea of Ceres in the birthchart by looking at her in aspect to the Sun and the Moon.

Sun conjunct Ceres  • Sun sextile Ceres
Sun square Ceres  Sun trine Ceres
Sun quincunx Ceres  Sun opposite Ceres

Moon conjunct Ceres  Moon sextile Ceres
Moon square Ceres  Moon trine Ceres
Moon quincunx Ceres  • Moon opposite Ceres

1. Giuseppe Piazzi and the Discovery Of Ceres – pdf “Lacking an invitation, Piazzi was totally unaware of the society’s plans when at about 8:00 p.m. on January 1, 1801, while working on his star catalog, he detected what he termed a tiny star in the “shoulder” of Taurus (Piazzi, 1801).”
2. Hades Moon, Judy Hall.
3 & 6. Fixed Stars and Constellations in Astrology, Vivian E. Robson, 1923. p.193
4 & 5. Fixed Stars and Their Interpretation, Elsbeth Ebertin, 1928, p.50. p.75-76.


Author: Marina Macario


  1. What does Ceres opposing Venus mean in the chart? Ceres in Leo opposing Venus in Aquarius. Does this make for difficult, detached relationships?

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    • What does Ceres conjunct Uranus in the 1st House mean in my natal chart?

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