What Is a Decanate? Each is divided into three parts, and each part is called a decanate or a decan (the terms are used interchangeably). The word comes from the Greek word dekanoi, meaning "ten days apart." The Greeks took their word from the Egyptians, who divided their year into 360* days. The Egyptian year had twelve months of 30 days each, and each month was further divided into three sections often days each. It was these ten-day sections the Greeks called dekanoi. Astrology still divides the zodiac into decanates. There are twelve signs in the zodiac, and each sign is divided into three decanates. You might picture each decanate as a room. You were born in a certain sign, for example Gemini, that consists of three rooms (decanates). Which room of Gemini were you born in? , , The zodiac is a 360-degree circle. Each decanate is ten degrees of that circle, or about ten days long, since the Sun moves through the zodiac at approximately the rate of one degree per day. (This is not exact because not all of our months contain 30 days.) The decanate of a sign does not change the basic characteristics of that sign, but it does refine and individualize the sign's general characteristics. For example, if you were born in the second decanate of Gemini, that does not change the fact that you are a Geminian. It does indicate that you have somewhat different and special characteristics from those Geminians born in the first decanate or the third decanate. Each decanate has a constellation in the heavens that represents it. These constellations have special mystical meanings, which' also add to the unique quality of your decanate. Finally, each decanate has a specific planetary ruler, sometimes called a subruler because it does not usurp the overall rulership of the sign. The subruler can only enhance, or add to, the distinct characteristics of that decanate. For example, the entire sign of Gemini is ruled by Mercury, but the second decanate of Gemini is subruled by Venus. The influence of Venus, the subruler, combines with the overall authority of Mercury to make the second decanate of Gemini unlike any other in the zodiac. In the following guide, I have outlined the subtle differences and special characteristics of your own unique decanate.
FIRST DECANATE: THROUGH
Constellation: Ursa Minor, the Small Bear. This is the constellation of the . The Small Bear symbolizes goals and true direction.
Planetary subruler: Sun
The Sun is both your ruler and subruler, and you are doubly under its beneficent influence. You enjoy being in the spotlight and may be known as a colorful personality. You have an artistic flair. You also have a knack for dra wing attention because of the way you speak and present yourself. The role of a leader comes easily, for you are able to excite and stimulate others. In general, you don't keep your feelings to yourself. When you are happy the world knows about it. When you are melancholy you are usually vocal in expressing your moods. You are impulsive in love, and tend to follow the dictates of your heart without thinking. At times, you can be very stubborn about wanting your own way.
SECOND DECANATE: THROUGH
: Ursa Major, the Great Bear. This.is the constellation of the . The Great Bear symbolizes wisdom.
The expansive planet Jupiter co-rules your decanate with Leo's Sun, accenting intellectual and visionary qualities. You have a very proud nature and a quick temper. Your ability to dissect problems and see immediately what needs to be done gives you an authority that others respond to. Though you are jovial and good-humored, it's hard for you to laugh at yourself. You are ambitious, but not just for money; what you want is to know more, to gain in intelligence. While you can do manual labor, you much prefer mental pursuits. Sometimes you are thought of as being brash and overconfident, but that is simply a geI!uine expression of your enthusiasm and willingness to try.
THIRD DECANATE: THROUGH
Constellation: Hydra, the water-serpent, who symbolizes activism and mental energy.
Planetary subruler: Mars
The aggressive planet Mars combines with Leo's Sun to underline your impetuousness and will power. You plunge into new projects with verve, but you want tangible results for your efforts. Dayto-day routine quickly bores you; you need fresh ideas, new stimulation, and challenge to keep you at your best. Your life is often marked by furious bursts of energy, followed by periods of complete lethargy. In personal relationships, people are never in doubt about where they stand with you. Love may be troublesome because you want it to be perfect and you can be too demanding of a lover. You find waiting very difficult. Since you are outspoken, you dislike secretive people. Sometimes you have the reputation for being temperamental.