(Astrology Explored) Royal marriages arranged or not, love matches or not, have made their mark not only on our notions of romance but history. The marriage of Prince William and his long time love Kate Middleton focuses our attention on the British royal line. What is interesting in this line is that the special configuration the Yod runs through the composite charts of monarch and spouse. A Yod is often called the Finger or alternately the hand of God. It conveys a sense that destiny played a hand in bringing the marriage partners together.
The concept of a royal line of succession is a difficult one for most Americans to grasp. We’ve had certain families rise and continue to maintain financial prominence, but by and large we still buy in to the idea of the “American Dream” that anyone can become rich and/or famous.
For Britain, however, built on ancient family lines that manage that country’s business, having a monarch that is the “dignified” rather than the “efficient” part of government is very important. Though not directing the affairs of State, the monarch is non-the-less an influential non-partisan representative of the people with the duty to appoint the Prime Minister and the capacity to dissolve Parliament to call a new election. As head of the Church of England, the monarch represents the moral center of the country, directing by example, the virtues of the British people. In addition, according to Wikipedia, it is claimed that “the UK needs a head of state for the very occasional crisis.”
It is for these reasons that the UK chooses to support a constitutional monarch, even though many other European countries had divorced their royal families from a governmental role long ago. And it is for these reasons that the UK has a vested interest in maintaining the royal line of succession, a family bred to the unique duties required by the English people.
Until Will and Kate, Windsor marriages were either arranged outright or a carefully crafted pairing. Quite unusually, young Queen Victoria was presented with an array of eligible princes from the various royal houses of Europe with much discussion on the suitability of each within her advisors. She chose Albert, but not without the approval of her advisors. Their son Edward’s wife Alexandra was chosen by Queen Victoria and Albert after shopping the available European royal houses. She was devoted to him, but he not so to her. He kept many mistresses during the course of their marriage. Unlike his father, the next king, George the V was devoted to his wife, Princess Victoria Mary of Teck, chosen by Queen Victoria. He never took a mistress. His son, Edward VIII, was known for his playboy lifestyle until he met Wallis Simpson. It fell to Edward’s brother to become George VI in the shadow of World War II shepherding the country by his works and example through that impossibly difficult time. Since it wasn’t expected that George VI would become king he was given more latitude in his choice of a wife, and for the first time in many years, the wife was not chosen by someone else. Allowing him to choose someone who was legally a commoner, though the daughter of a peer, was considered a gesture in favor of political modernization. He and his wife had two daughters and the eldest Elizabeth, became Queen Elizabeth II. Queen Elizabeth reportedly fell in love with her future husband at the age of 13 after meeting him for the third time in her life and started exchanges letters with him. They married six months after she turned 21. Their long marriage was not without problems as reports of Philip’s infidelities in the 50’s surfaced. Charles, their son, lived a playboy lifestyle through his twenties, but in his early thirties, this lifestyle was seen as unsuitable for a future monarch. He was counseled to find a suitable wife who arrived in the form of Diana Spencer a young woman barely eighteen. Their marriage turned out to be a personal and media relations nightmare for the royal family causing the Queen to take the extreme measure of counseling them to divorce. Diana’s death a year after the divorce caused a great outpouring of grief by the people of England, who mirrored the grief of Diana’s sons, William and Andrew.
What can astrology tell us about this family and the royal marriages that sustain the monarchy?Victoria and Albert
The composite chart of Victoria and Albert has not one, but three yods, and these yods express themes that reverberate to the throne today.One yod has the zodiac signs of family oriented Cancer and security conscious Taurus at the base, two signs traditionally noted with desire for securing a home base. The apex of the Yod is Sagittarius denoting a desire to establish a philosophy of how things work. Victoria inherited a throne tarnished by the sexual scandals of her uncles and Albert had experienced the pain of his parents divorce caused by their respective infidelities. Together by example they crafted what’s known as Victorian morality, a family values centered approach to sexuality. Victoria’s husband Albert is credited with sculpting the current monarchal role by encouraging Victoria to remain above partisan politics.
The second Yod involves the zodiac signs Libra, Sagittarius and Taurus. Here the introduction of Libra brings forward the idea of partnership, balance and harmony. It appears that Victoria and Albert that were true partners. Albert, though denied an official role, and even for many years even the title “Prince Consort” acted for the Queen in so many instances that:
The clerk of the Privy Council, Charles Greville, wrote of him: “He is King to all intents and purposes.”
The third yod has Libra at the apex with Pisces and Taurus as the base. Here Saturn on the Pisces leg, Mars on the Taurus leg and the North node at the apex. Here is the basis of their sexual compatibility, both partners manifesting a romantic aura over their marriage the resulted in a true and authentic love.
Victoria and Albert were by all accounts devoted to each other. This was one royal marriage that was considered to be a happy one.Edward Vll and Alexandra
Victoria and Albert’s son, Edward the Vll inherited the throne. His mother arranged for him to marry a distant relation, Princess Alexandra of Denmark. Princess Alexandra became immensely popular with the English people, and she reportedly was devoted to her husband but Edward was not so inclined. Edward kept many mistresses.
As a child Edward failed to meet his father’s expectations and he had a poor relationship with his mother. She even blamed him for his father’s death though his father had been in poor health for many years. Alexandra, though the daughter of a king, grew up in reduced circumstances since Denmark’s royal house was not wealthy. As a child Alexandra was said to have sewn her own dresses and along with her sisters had to wait on the table of the house.
In the composite chart of this relationship Venus (representing the woman) is in the relationship sign of Libra and Chiron, the planet of wounds is in the sign of the king, Leo.
The apex of this yod is Uranus in Pisces. Pisces is the sign of deception, and Uranus is the planet of freedom from restrictions. Here Edward’s relationship with his father and mother caused him to rebel through multiple affairs with other women. It had very little to do Alexandra so maybe this is why she tolerated his affairs.George V and Mary of Teck
George, being the second son of the Edward and Alexandra, wasn’t expected to be king. He was destined to serve in the navy as many of his male line relatives did. His brother was engaged by arrangement to his second cousin once removed Mary of Teck. Six weeks into the engagement, his brother died, leaving George in line to the throne. Grandmother Queen Victoria thought Mary was still a suitable match and George and Mary grew close while mourning his brother’s death. This was one arranged marriage where love bloomed. They often exchanged loving letters and notes of endearment.
During their marriage May kept up a career of public service to the country, even during WW 1 visiting wounded and dying service men in hospital. May often helped George with speeches and advised him on history and royal protocol.George Vl and Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon
Albert was raised in the shadow of his older brother Edward, not expected to be king. When George V died, Edward became king, but his reign was short when he abdicated to marry twice divorced Wallis Simpson.
Bertie as he was known to the family fell in love with a commoner, Elizabeth Lyons. She refused his offers of marriage twice before accepting, not relishing the constrictions of a royal life.
George V and Elizabeth were symbols of stalwart British fortitude and unity during the dark days of WW ll. When it was suggested that the royal children, Elizabeth and Margaret be moved to Canada for their protection, Elizabeth replied, “The children would not leave without me, and the king would not stay.” Adolph Hitler called Elizabeth “the most dangerous woman in Europe” because of her positive effect on British morale.
When only thirteen years old heir presumptive Princess Elizabeth met for the third time her cousin, an expatriate prince of the Greek royal family five years older than herself. They began exchanging letters. Not much is known or talked about this courtship, other than with Elizabeth’s desire well known, it was assumed they would eventually marry.
Wikepedia tells us:
The marriage was not without controversy: Philip had no financial standing, was foreign born (though a British subject) and had sisters who had married German noblemen with Nazi links. Elizabeth’s mother reported, in later biographies, to have opposed the union initially, even dubbing Philip, “The Hun”. In later life, however, she told biographer Tim Heald that Philip was “an English gentleman.”
Philip gave up his titles and rights to succession to the Greek and Danish thrones prior to marrying Elizabeth, and anglicized his name from the German Batten to Mountbatten, the name of his uncle’s family took. The decision was made to keep the name of royal house that of Windsor. He complained that he was the only man in Europe not allowed to give his children his name. Eventually the name of Mountbatten-Windsor was adopted for the royal house.
The issue of Philip’s place in the royal scheme of things must have been a topic of conversation.
“After her accession to the throne, the Queen also announced that the Duke was to have “place, pre-eminence and precedence” next to her “on all occasions and in all meetings, except where otherwise provided by Act of Parliament”.
On her first official overseas visit to South Africa in 1947 Elizabeth said in a speech” I declare before you that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the great Imperial commonwealth to which we all belong.”
Philip apparently shared her belief about the place of the monarchy:
“It is a complete misconception to imagine that the monarchy exists in the interests of the monarch. It doesn’t. It exists in the interests of the people. If at any time any nation decides that the system is unacceptable, then it is up to them to change it.”
But their marriage was not without trials. In the 50’s reports of Phillip’s infidelities leaked to the press, rocking the private and personal lives of the royal couple. How things were worked out we probably won’t know until after their deaths. A hint may lie when later in his life Phillip counseled his son Charles and his wife Diana in their troubled marriage to “see things from each other’s point of view.”
In their composite chart, Saturn, clearly representing Phillip is in Libra and the Moon is conjunct Neptune in regal Leo. The apex is Uranus in Pisces, showing either the delusions the couple might have or the higher purpose to which each aspire.
The Yod Sets
Out of the seven Windsor marriages only two did not share either of Victoria and Albert’s yod placements. Yod placements, for the purpose of this discussion, center on sets of zodiac signs. Victoria and Albert’s yods are respectively, with the apex listed first, Pisces, Leo and Libra, and Sagittarius, Taurus and Cancer and Libra, Taurus and Pisces.
The Pisces, Leo and Libra yod is shared by Victoria and Albert, Edward and Alexandra and Charles and Diana. Leo represents in its most literal interpretation, the king. Libra represents partnerships and marriages and Pisces the highest to which we can aspire, or the depths of our delusions. The last two marriages were marred by infidelity that became public knowledge. In a Piscean way one or both partners in these marriages somehow felt that the marriage vows did not apply to them. This well could be the most difficult of the Yod sets for the Windsors to manage. It seems that if these partners do not have a spiritual goal to incorporate into the marriage, it falls prey to the delusions of life.
Elizabeth and Philip is the only couple to date to share the Libra, Taurus and Pisces yod with Victoria and Albert. While they are very tight lipped about their private lives with this yod we see their commitment to their public roles with Saturn being the apex of this configurations.
Breaking the Mold
The two marriages that did not share any of Victoria and Albert’s yods were marriages that had to weather two world wars.
George the V and his wife Mary of Teck ruled during the politically turbulent years of World War I. Anti-German sentiment was high. Up to this time the house Windsor carried the name of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and George and Mary had several German titles from Albert’s lineage. George, to appease British nationalist sentiments released his German titles and renamed the house Windsor. He also had his relatives go along with releasing their German titles and claims, creating new British peerages for them. This was no small feat as the claims released were substantial in the line of succession for several European thrones.
Their yod is in the zodiac signs of Taurus, Sagittarius and Libra. Perhaps presaging the changes George made to conform to public sentiment, Pluto the planet of transformation sits at the apex of this Yod, straddled by the planet of value systems, Venus and the planet of communications, Mercury. George’s actions headed off a national crisis over the role of the British royal family. In any case, the Taurus apex tells the tale. Security was a paramount concern of this couple.
With George and Elizabeth the yod here has Chiron in Scorpio and the North Node in Capricorn as the base and Neptune in Gemini as the apex. With the North node symbol it seems like the country literally lucked out in having George and Elizabeth as their King and Queen, who used their reign to serve the British people during one of England’s most difficult times.
One thing that that Victoria and Albert, George and May and George and Elizabeth share is the North Node as one part of their yods. These royal unions had important and defining roles in the history of Britain. Will and Kate also has the North Node in their yod, so it will be interesting to see the part their marriage plays in British history.
Other posts in the series The Astrology of Royal Weddings:
Part 1: Saturn in LIbra
Part 2: The Yod–Destiny Plays a Hand
Part 4: Ladies of the Rings
Photo published under a Creative Commons License from Flickr.