Seeing death in the horoscope

In a previous post we looked at the chart of astrologer C.E.O. Carter who foresaw his own death in his birth chart.  I believe that Carter studied the chart of his progressed New Moon to predict the year of his death.  For those unfamiliar with the technique of secondary progression, it is a symbolic timing measure in which each day after birth is equated to a year of life.  For example, if you were born on January 10, then the positions of the planets on January 11 would reflect your life at age 1, and the positions on January 25 would reflect your life at age 15, etc.

As another example, let’s consider the chart of Nobel Prize winning author Ernest Hemingway who was born on 21 July 1899 at 8 AM in Oak Park, IL, and who died by suicide by gunshot on 2 July 1961.  Here is the birth chart:

Ernest Hemingway Natal Chart

We begin by asking whether there are any indications of suicide in the birth chart.  The 8th house rules death and has Aries on the cusp.  Mars rules Aries by domicile and becomes the ruler of his 8th house of death.  Mars occupies the 1st house in his natal chart, suggesting that he will play a significant role in his own death.  Morin in Book 21 of Astrologia Gallica, Chapter V, says:

“If the ruler of the 1st house is in the 8th house, or the ruler of the 8th is in the 1st, it indicates a premature death; and the native himself is the principal cause of his own death by, wittingly or unwittingly, deliberately placing himself in danger, as for example in cases of those who attempt to stave off death by performing excessive blood letting in an immoderate effort to cure their illness” (my translation).  Hemingway died prematurely by his own hand, so Morin’s 17th century observation certainly applies.

Mars is particularly afflicted because it squares both Saturn and Pluto as part of a high-energy T-square formation.  Saturn and Pluto are both natural signifiers of death.   Saturn is particularly significant because it occupies the 4th house of the end of life.  In Morin’s system, Mars in Virgo is peregrine and expresses itself through its dispositor Mercury, which lies in the unfortunate 12th house of sorrow and self-undoing, including suicide.  Mars rules firearms and other weapons.  Mars also squares Neptune, which suggests that his death will be related to clouded perception, possibly related to mental illness since a part of Pisces (ruled by Neptune) lies in the 6th house of illness.  The natal chart certainly carries the potential of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at the end of life.

Saturn in the end-of-life 4th house is retrograde and peregrine and thus expresses itself through its dispositor Jupiter, which lies in Scorpio (ruled by Pluto) and is square the Sun, which rules the 12th house of suicide.  The Sun is also exalted in Aries and so rules the 8th house of death by exaltation.  All-in-all, his death by suicide is clearly foreshadowed in the natal chart.

When working with progressed charts that contain retrograde planets, it is always worthwhile to determine when the natal retrograde planets become stationary and turn direct by secondary progression.  Such periods are always highly important in the life of the native with reference to the matters symbolized by the natally retrograde planet.

In Hemingway’s case, natal Saturn turned direct by secondary progression in September of 1930 and continued on to conjoin its natal position on 12 April 1961.    His father had committed suicide with a gun in 1928.  In 1929 his novel A Farewell to Arms was published and became very successful.  In 1930-31 his financial success allowed him to establish his first American home in Key West, Florida.  These events correlate with Saturn turning direct by progression in his 4th house of family and home.

When Saturn returned by progression to its natal position in April 1961 Hemingway was quite depressed and was receiving psychiatric treatment for his suicidal depression.  Natal Saturn in the 4th house, symbolizing his end of life, having come by secondary progression to its natal position suggests a potential time of death.  Here is a progressed chart for progressed Saturn returning to its natal position (his progressed Saturn Return) with his natal chart superimposed:

Progressed chart 12 April 1961 for Hemingway’s progressed Saturn Return

Note that Venus rules both the ASC and the 8th house of death of the progressed chart.  Progressed Venus closely conjoins the 12th cusp (self-undoing, suicide, confinement) of the progressed chart.  The progressed Moon, which rules the progressed 8th by exaltation, almost exactly opposes the progressed ASC.  On the date of his death (2 July 1961) the progressed ASC had moved to 22 Aries 47, exactly opposite the progressed Moon of his progressed Saturn return.

Hence, just as a study of Carter’s progressed New Moon revealed the year of his death, a study of Hemingway’s progressed Saturn return indicated his death by suicide.

Another striking feature is that the primary directed Mars (ruler of death) conjoined the natal Sun (ruler of the 12th of suicide) on 2 July 1961, the exact date of his suicide (Regiomontanus primary with latitude, using Ptolemy’s measure of 1 degree RA = 1 year).

About Anthony Louis

Author of books about astrology and tarot, including TAROT PLAIN AND SIMPLE, HORARY ASTROLOGY, and THE ART OF FORECASTING WITH SOLAR RETURNS.
This entry was posted in Astrology. Bookmark the permalink.

71 Responses to Seeing death in the horoscope

  1. Jane Stern says:

    Anthony Louis is truly a genius.

  2. Abz says:

    though not familiar about progression, I still find this article great!!! Good job sir! 🙂

  3. karthik says:

    Calculate my death time ,year of death. My date of.birth :16/5/1994. My time of birth:6:30 p.m. country:INDIA, place: bangalore city. State: karnataka, timezone: 5.30 ,latitude: 12.58N. Longitude: 77.38E

  4. Jane Stern says:

    Tony. It is way to easy to calculate the time, place, and year of their death once they have ceased living… even a bozo like I can do that!

  5. Delaney says:

    I have been working on a friend’s sons chart he is no longer living, I am new to this I would love your assistants in seeing how his death occurred using this technique! His birthdate is October 30, 1987 time of birth: 8:15 PM Birth place: Dahlonega, Ga USA I am having trouble seeing his death in the chart, I have read that Neptune in the 8th house can mean death.

    • I’m not sure what you are asking. The 8th house does rule a person’s death. In the chart you mention, Capricorn is on the 8th cusp (Placidus), which makes Saturn the ruler of the 8th. Saturn lies in Sagittarius and conjoins Uranus, also in Sagittarius. You don’t mention how the young man died. Saturn/Uranus suggests some type of sudden event or accident. Neptune lies in the 7th Placidus house but in the 8th Whole Sign House, so that Neptune may also be implicated. Let me know if you have other questions about this.

      • Delaney says:

        Thank you so much for replying! His name was Justin and he was living in a half way house when he committed suicide, his mother my step mother inlaw believes he was murdered. I feel she is still mourning the lost. No one expected his sudden suicide. I was going over his chart and saw Neptune in the 8th and had read on the internet that could be interpreted as suicide. I’m still learning how to accurately read charts, so was unsure how to go about this. It seems two people could interprete a reading very differently. I have been trying to read all of your chart interpatations trying to learn how you read a natal chart the way you do. I also have multiple books but they don’t mention anything about seeing a suicide or sudden death. Any and all the help with this is amazing! Thanks

  6. Delaney says:

    What do you mean when you say “Neptune lies in the 7th Placidus house but in the 8th Whole sign house, so that Neptune may also be implicated.”

    • The chart I’m looking at has 21 Gemini rising and 13 Capricorn on the cusp of the Placidus 8th house. Neptune at about 5 Capricorn lies in the 7th. Do you have the same chart?

      • Delaney says:

        No mine is different I have 10 gemini rising and 5 capricorn on the cusp of the 8th house neptune is on 5 capricorn but is in the 8th house cusp. Maybe I am saying it incorrectly. I am using a disk that I got from “The only astrology book you will ever need” to make my chart. Like I said Im very new so I could be saying something incorrectly. I am only practicing with this chart. I appreciate your help greatly.

  7. Go to and enter the data in the section that calculates birth charts. Here is the data I am using:

    October 30 1987
    8:15 PM Time Zone is EST
    Dahlonega, GA

    This gives:
    Rising Sign is in 21 Degrees Gemini
    Moon is in 24 Degrees Aquarius.

    For some reason our charts are an hour apart.

  8. vipul says:

    hello will u plz tell me how long i will live .I am not asking exact age but in the form of medium,short or long.If u could tell abt my father and mother longivity then i will be vry thankful to u.I am very tensed abt my parents as some says negative abt them.
    My dob is 20 12 1991 9 am
    place panipat(har)

    • Vipul,

      I look at charts of deceased people to find indicators of their demise. I do not do this for living people because there is no guarantee that I will be correct and I would not want to make a mistake which would give inaccurate and potentially upsetting information.

      • vipul says:

        Thank you sir for replying.I also know that death is only in the hands of almighty.No one can predict the death but sir I just want to ask abt parents coz some says in the coming yrs anything negative can happn to them.Thats why just to remove the doubt I am asking this.IF just answer in one word i.e they will be with me in coming 10 yrs?? thank u sir

      • Amit Karnik says:


        Can you please tell me the reason of my mother and fathers demise:

        Mother born 24 June 1947 6 PM , Solapur India
        Father born 13 Mar 1939 1 PM Bombay India

  9. Ricardo says:

    I have Pluto in Libra, Lilith and Juno in Scorpio, all in 8 house, Mars in Cancer 5 house.
    Moon in aquarius 12 House.

    I have Mars square Pluto, Moon trine Pluto, Ascendant trine Pluto and Sun sextile Pluto.

    Any indication of possible cause of death and what age?

  10. sarah says:

    This scares me because my 8th house is in Aries…do all individuals with the 8th house in Aries tend to die prematurely?

  11. Helen says:

    Hi I have Virgo ascendant, Aries cusp in 8th ruled by the 1st house Virgo Mars. Uranus in Aries right now transiting at the cusp. I made my own decision to have elective surgery to remove plate and pins from previous accident. My natal Mars trine moon in capricorn in 5th and sextile Merury in Scorpio in 3rd, Mars also square by Neptune in Saggiturus from 4th the ruler of 7th as the only stressful major aspect. I thought of suicide due to partnership breakdown and disappointment several times in the past. But never really attempted it. However it was that motor accident, motorcycle 3rd house mercury gave me some injuries from 3rd house and by a woman, moon. I have been recovering well while awaiting compensation payout. The overall accident is beneficial. Both mercury and moon strengthen Mars in Virgo in the 1st house-8th house surgery and insurance also relevant to paperwork 3rd and luck 5th, ongoing business partnership with the lawyer 7th.

    • Helen says:

      For the accident, it was her fault to hit mean at the green pedestrian crossing however few minutes before the accident I made change of the direction I was going. Therefore it was somehow linked to my self initiate course of event. Also the timing was indicated by my solar return and solar eclipse 2 days post solar return conjoined my natal mercury and ruler of ascendant which mercury in Scorpio mutual reception with the 8th house lord by sextile by signs by houses. My boyfriend who is an astrologer had warned me few week before not to use my new bicycle to ride to work however it turned out to be me hit by motorcyclist anyway.

  12. Jenny Moon says:

    What kind of effect would Intercepted houses in the natal have here? Like if 7th and 8th house are in the same sign. And if Saturn or Pluto were the rulers, what woud that mean?

  13. Eva says:

    Dear Tony,
    Any idea what would be my possible cause of death…I would really appreciate your help/advice.
    I have very extreme personality


    Zodiac in degrees 0.00 Placidus Orb:0

    Sun Pisces 7.06 Ascendant Sagittarius 9.06
    Moon Aries 3.40 II Capricorn 16.04
    Mercury Aquarius 10.14 III Pisces 3.03
    Venus Capricorn 27.31 IV Aries 10.33
    Mars Libra 19.00 R V Taurus 5.49
    Jupiter Scorpio 10.20 R VI Taurus 24.06
    Saturn Libra 21.40 R VII Gemini 9.06
    Uranus Sagittarius 4.34 VIII Cancer 16.04
    Neptune Sagittarius 26.47 IX Virgo 3.03
    Pluto Libra 26.43 R Midheaven Libra 10.33
    Lilith Sagittarius 17.10 XI Scorpio 5.49
    Asc node Cancer 21.44 XII Scorpio 24.06

    Sun in III
    Moon in III
    Mercury in II
    Venus in II
    Mars in Midheaven
    Jupiter in XI
    Saturn in Midheaven
    Uranus in XII
    Neptune in Ascendant
    Pluto in Midheaven
    Lilith in Ascendant
    Asc node in VIII

    Planet Aspect

    Sun Trine Jupiter 3.13 90
    Sun Square Uranus 2.32 -75
    Sun Square Ascendant 1.60 -67
    Moon Trine Uranus 0.54 106
    Moon Trine Ascendant 5.26 29
    Moon Opposition Midheaven 6.53 -42
    Mercury Square Jupiter 0.06 -128
    Mercury Sextile Ascendant 1.08 115
    Mercury Trine Midheaven 0.20 77
    Venus Square Saturn 5.51 -4
    Venus Square Pluto 0.48 -69
    Mars Conjunction Saturn 2.40 80
    Mars Conjunction Pluto 7.43 45
    Mars Conjunction Midheaven 8.27 26
    Saturn Conjunction Pluto 5.03 129
    Uranus Conjunction Ascendant 4.32 66
    Neptune Sextile Pluto 0.04 59
    822 -385 437

  14. eva says:


    i have cancer on cusp of 8th house..which is empty

    moon is in my 3rd house…aries cusp
    mars is in libra..10th house..libra cusp in conj with pluto and saturn.

    what will i die off? Im really intetested to know

  15. nikita tamang says:

    when will i die??

  16. Marke says:

    Well can you tell me when I’m going to die cuz I feel like it is coming, especially with my progreesed asc hitting my natal pluto in Scorpio at 22 degrees. I am not afraid of death. Please respond.

  17. StillLearning says:

    I know this is an older thread, but how did you figure out Hemmingway’s birth time? Or did you just use 8am as a default? I’m interested at looking at my late mother’s progressed chart, but do not know her time of birth (she was born in 1955).

  18. J. Ellner says:

    I am curious why you didn’t mention his very prominent (if out of sign) 1st house dispositor in the 12th house. I’ve met two people with placements like that, and both were prone to severe depression and self-destructive tendencies. One had in fact tried to commit suicide several times before I met him. This makes sense, when finding the dispositor of ego in the house of self-undoing, and is the first thing I look for when looking at anyone’s chart.

    • Good point. I thought I had mentioned the dispositor. In any case it is always useful to consider dispositors of planets to see how and where they are likely to show an effect in the native’s life.

      • Helen says:

        solar eclipse conjoined or in strong aspect over natal ascendant lord or solar eclipse occurred close to your solar return period could be useful. Planet stands out as in same degree to the angles or at least closest to your solar return axises will be the highlight of the year. Many people often got into life changing illness soon before and soon after their solar return. Seen plenty in hospital people got admitted during that 1 month before or after window.

  19. jaspal says:

    Hello Sir,
    My elder brother was found dead last month in his room. Can you please let us know what can be the reason for his death at young age, he was just 36.
    Details are : Born on 24 May 1979
    Time: 7:30:00 a.m.
    Location: New Delhi, India
    Why he not lived a long life, he was not having any disease either.

  20. Dipak says:

    Dear Sir,My wife Suicide on 08/09/2015 @ 10:30 Am Her Birthday was 24/03/1985 07:15 Am.
    Plz Ans me Why she do this…W loved grt 2 eachother….whts the reason….?

  21. Sameksha says:

    Can u pls tell the nature of my death like natural(ageing),suicidal, or accidental. Dob: 31 may 1993
    9.50 am Mysore karnataka

  22. I really don’t understand why ppl. would put you, Anthony, in the hot seat by asking you to either predict their demise or answer why/ where in a chart suggested someone’e death. Just think that’s asking too much. What if you gave a wrong aanswer? then what. Don’t blame you for not answering those questions, I would not either.

  23. ketaki nagarkar chawla says:

    I want to know about my dad’s death. He is already dead, however, want to know if his death was destined as it was a very sudden death without any illness. His dob is 22 june 1955. Time of birth 1 am. And place daryapur maharashtra india. Name subhash nagarkar

  24. ketaki nagarkar chawla says:

    I need ur help and wud really be thankful to u. My dad died on 25th jan 2016, it was a sudden death without any illness.Due to this my family is completely disturbed. Cud you please help me in reading his death. I want to know whether his death was destined or he died b4 his actual death time. Name-subhash nagarkar, dob-22/06/1955, time- 1 am, place- daryapur maharashtra india

  25. jade says:

    Will it still work the same way if using a whole houses chart?

  26. I not sure anyone will see this comment but I am really disturbed by all the people asking about death like they are asking about the weather. Tony must surely be disgusted by it. They have no respect for death (or spelling either for that matter) and treat it as such. Blog authors should not answer any question if the writer can’t even take the time to spellcheck their post! Lol! Seriously, this article was well written and reasoned and comments, except for a few, are immature and annoying and you can tell that they did not read/understand/process what Tony wrote. Only the ‘death’ part.

    • Many people have a terrible fear of death, which is really part of the life cycle. I find “death” charts instructive in astrology because it is such a definitive event that it should show up symbolically in the methods that we use to study a chart. Except for people like Elvis, there is usually very little controversy about the facts.

  27. I agree with your reply. I hope you did not misconstrue what I wrote as I was speaking about the commenters who were flip and facile about you predicting their death, I was not criticizing in any way the intuitive and instructive educational post that you wrote.

  28. Marina, I don’t have experience or knowledge of how to determine suicide in a past life.

  29. I would like to know when am destined to die? Natural or suicide? My details are Ashu Bhatia Pattni born on 20 th Nov 1967
    In New Delhi and cant remember the time

  30. Krista says:

    Hi. I am working on helping someone find the remains of a missing person that has been missing for a few years. I am very new to astrology and I am using horary and asked the question, where are the remains on May 8, 2018 at 1:51 pm out of Rehoboth MA… 71w15 41n50

    I have Uranus and Mercury conjunct in the 8th house of aries –
    In the 4th house I have saturn with a cusp on sag…

    What else should I be looking at? From what I have researched the 4th house should tell me the “end” or where the remains are, but I don’t get what its telling me. Can you help me?

    From what I have been able to gather, she was at home and got an injury to her head/brain from someone she may know? Is this correct interpretation?

    • My preference is these cases is to study the chart for the time and place the missing person was last seen or heard from by someone. If that is not available, I would use a chart for the time someone closely connected with the missing person asked for a horary reading.

      • Ketaki Chawla says:

        Sir could u please tell me whether my dad’s sudden death was destined or he could have been saved?
        Dob-22/06/1955, place- Daryapur, Maharashtra, India
        Death date-25/01/2016 time around 3 pm. Place- Delhi, India

    • Ashu says:

      Please calculate our deaths and tell us when is it scheduled
      20-11-67-Ashu Bhatia
      29-09-67-Hemanshu Roy Pattni

  31. Ketaki Chawla says:

    Sir could u please tell me whether my dad’s sudden death was destined or he could have been saved?
    Dob-22/06/1955, place- Daryapur, Maharashtra, India
    Death date-25/01/2016 time around 3 pm. Place- Delhi, India

  32. I actually have a question. I looked up my sons natal chart yesterday with the intentions of seeing his juno, and ended up coming across his death in the 8th house saying it is to happen on foreign land by blade or bullet of war. He is intending on joining the US MARINES as soon as he graduates high school. I can not go back from knowing this Information coming from his natal chart now so can someone please tell me an approximate time or even year or date of this to occur? His natal chart is (May 8 2002 at 5:35am in little rock Arkansas)

  33. golmash205 says:

    I would like to know when am destined to die? Natural or suicide? My details are
    February 3, 1978
    3:38 am
    Baltimore, Maryland

  34. Nancy says:

    Thank you for your post on “Seeing death in the horoscope.” I have been studying evolutionary astrology for the past few years and am unfamiliar with some of the terms as I believe they are used in vedic astrology, but certainly am fascinated by the analysis. Recently I have been comparing natal and death charts looking at the placements of the nodes, Pluto, Saturn, etc. in the two charts. I would love to have any suggestions from you about anything that you or others have written (blogs, magazine articles, or books) that look at this topic closer. Thank you!

  35. Ashu says:

    I have been advised by an astrologer that my husband has an early death. If you have the knowledge please help me
    I am not aware of his birth time though but I have all other details as follows
    Place of birth- Mombasa , Kenya
    Date – 29-09-67
    Name- Hemanshu Roy Pattni

  36. Roger says:

    What an insightfull extraordinary blog.
    I need to have a pvt chat with u if u would.
    I will disclose reasons when u contact me

  37. What would it mean to have your Sun in the 8th house and in the 12 house also is the Asc sign?? All of which are Scorpio!

    November 15, 1983
    Little Rock, Arkansas

  38. why do you use placidus house system when you are using morinus book reference?

  39. You make a valid point. Morinus used Regiomontanus houses and he also described his own Morinus system. Ideally when using “rules” from Morinus one should stick with the same house system(s) that he used. In this case, it makes no difference whether one uses Regiomontnanus, Morinus or Placidus to determine the 8th cusp because in all three systems it lies in early Aries.

  40. Anna says:

    Sir, I am learning astrology on my own. Many questions and doubts cross my mind while going through the chart. Would you help? I am naturally Inclined to read the charts and help others. The reason could be my moon in Pisces in the fourth house and Jupiter in the 12th house.

  41. Pingback: Death of Rush Limbaugh, 2021-02-17 (time uncertain) | Grandtrines

  42. Margarita says:

    Hi Anthony,

    “On the date of his death (2 July 1961) the progressed ASC had moved to 22 Aries 47, exactly opposite the progressed Moon of his progressed Saturn return”

    you mean the progressed moon had moved to Aries and is opposite progressed ASC ?

    “Another striking feature is that the primary directed Mars (ruler of death) conjoined the natal Sun (ruler of the 12th of suicide) on 2 July 1961, the exact date of his suicide (Regiomontanus primary with latitude, using Ptolemy’s measure of 1 degree RA = 1 year).”

    would you help out following you (and learning along the way)?
    In the progressed chart, I have Mars in 0 Scorpio conjoining Jupiter in 1 Degree Scorpio. Do you mean this?
    or do you mean in Transit of that day? (Mars is in 24° Pisces..but not in conjunction to the natal sun)

  43. Hi Margarita,
    Sorry for any confusion. I did mean to say that on July 2, 1961, his progressed Moon was opposite his progressed Asc.

    Regarding Mars conjoining the Sun, I was referring to primary directions rather than secondary progressions. Primary directions are formed by the daily rotation of the Earth every 24 hours. In the birth chart, Mars at 20 Virgo in the 1st house will rise as the Earth turns and will arrive at the position of the sun (at 28 Cancer) in the 11th house. On the Ecliptic there are about 52 degrees between Mars and the Sun. By the method of Regiomontanus, this is equivalent to an arc of almost 62 degrees on the Equator, which by Ptolemy’s measure (1 degree on the Equator = 1 year of life), corresponds to roughly 62 years of age when Mars by primary motion arrived at the position of the Sun.

    • Margarita says:

      Anthony, thank you for your reply and no worries!
      Your blog is very interesting btw. I have to look through it, just found it.

      Phew, I’m a beginner, though very interested in how this works (also on a deeper level)
      I’m using astro-seek (it’s free and has many options nonetheless)
      Recently Petr (the owner) added primary directions, I just read about it after reading your reply, because I want to try it to come to the same result as you)
      I need some time for tweaking around with this tool though and understand it. It’s kinda confusing for me especially as a beginner.
      Because they are trying to calculate ascensional rising times using latitudes for Primary Directions.

      Anthony, if you are interested (and have some little time) would you please take a quick look – what you would say I can enter there – in order to see when Mars conjoins the Sun at age of 62 ? Or what would you say is this the correct tool at all for primary directions, maybe I m thinking too complicated here.


      Thank you, appreciate your time.

      • Margarita says:

        I meant to say time and help (that I appreciate), sorry English is not my mother language as you might have guessed already:)

    • Margarita says:

      Hey Anthony,
      I finally got it, I calculated it here with help of google translation 😅
      and finally could see it.
      I still have to learn more about primary directions, I just wanted to make sure that I can follow.

      on this site though
      I don’t understand it yet at all what is about, promissors and significators etc.

      Sorry for my blabbering.

      Anyways thank you for your wonderful post and replies.

  44. Margarita says:

    Gotcha, thank you
    (I have Linux and Android only)

    I will find a solution or something. I may try it with wine (the layer for Windows programs for Linux lol)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s