Your Stars August 2017

Paul Nash: Eclipse of the Sunflower

Any event with the prefix ‘The Great American…’ is going to be of interest to the current incumbent of the White House, so one awaits with interest the response of Donald Trump to the ‘Great American Eclipse’ of August 21st.

A total eclipse of the Sun is a regular event, but the last one visible in North America was back in 1979. This August’s eclipse will see a total black out across a swathe of the United States, from Oregon to South Carolina, while other parts of the continent will see a lesser version – California, for example, will see an 80 per cent eclipse. For more information, try NASA’s site at

In the past, eclipses were often feared as evil omens. Take an early speech in Shakespeare’s King Lear: ‘These late eclipses in the sun and moon portend no good to us… Love cools, friendship falls off, brothers divide, in cities mutinies, in countries discord, in palaces treason, and the bond cracked ’twixt son and father.’

Doubtless there will be non-astrological folks who see this August’s eclipses the same way (there are two, the full Moon of August 7 being a partial lunar eclipse). Many astrologers certainly do, given that the solar eclipse falls so precisely on the birth chart of President Trump, whose given birth time hands him an ascendant of 29 degrees of Leo, within one degree of the eclipse at 28 Leo.

The eclipse is also conjunct the fixed star Regulus, a symbol of royalty, which in the USA’s case is surely the equivalent of the Presidency. There are other overlaps with Trump’s horoscope – one notes, for example, Saturn at 21.12 degree of Sagittarius, exactly conjunct Trump’s natal Moon at 21.12 Sagittarius- that looks like a moment of karmic reckoning. Interesting, too, to note that of the 14 states that will experience total darkness, 13 of them voted for Trump in last year’s election.

For those interested in further exploring Trump’s ‘scope and its transits, there is plenty of action on the world wide web – your astrologer particularly recommends the site of astrologer Adrian Duncan:

Not everyone thinks eclipses are bad news – the House of Windsor seems very fond of them – but they are usually reckoned to be hinge moments, so birthdays of August 21/22 might usefully consider that this eclipse is also a new Moon, which astrology considers a positive signal.

On a more mundane note comes the retrograde of Mercury. The quicksilver planet of communications turns backwards for three weeks on August 13 in its own sign of Virgo, suggesting that until early September, there is going to be very little quicksilver about events. Back up your computer, keep hold of your train ticket and don’t mislay your keys.


Should anyone be in doubt about your talents, your individualism, your sense of purpose, your largesse, your appealing sense of drama, not to mention your stubbornness, August and early September is the time to set them straight.

How come? Firstly, it’s your birthday, and your Sun ruler is in Leo’s skies. Secondly, you have just come off one new Moon (on July 23) and have a second approaching on August 21, which is also a total solar eclipse, an event considered above and to which we will return.

In addition comes Mars – the warrior planet remains in Leo’s patch of the heavens until September 4, lending dashing energy to your cause (and you had better have a cause). Then there is Venus heading for your skies, reaching them on August 26 and staying until September 19, bestowing charm and grace on your regal presence. However, you can’t just flounce around like something out of Versailles (Louis Quatorze, France’s ‘Sun King’ was born with Sun in Virgo, but with Moon and Venus in Leo). You also have obligations to inspire and care for your subjects (i.e. the rest of the zodiac, poor things). If you want to impress others, bling isn’t enough – lead by noble example.

The full Moon of August 7 – in Aquarius, a sign concerned with society as a whole – may remind you that other people matter just as much as you. Not a moment for a huffy contretemps.

As pointed out in last month’s forecast, your horoscope has an obliging social caste. Saturn helps you resolve long-term projects – amidst the endless round of Pimms and parties, don’t forget to work! – while Jupiter puts you in the swim with any educational projects, as does planet Prometheus, which spends all of August stationary in the zone of far away places and inspirational ideas. Birthdays of August 21 and 22 have no need to cower before the total solar eclipse – it’s a new Moon, and you are born anew. For all of you, the future beckons – the past, as a famous writer put it, is a foreign country. So it is. Happy birthday.


Virgo, being a deeply practical member of the zodiac, does not fear complexity, which is just as well since you now face two months of your ruling planet, Mercury, looping the loop. The planet of cognition – one of your things – is marching forwards in your skies until August 13, then slips backwards and exits your sign at the end of the month, then returns to normal service in mid-September.

You cannot just sit on your hands for a retrograde of Mercury, but you can clear your desk beforehand, and exercise saintly patience when your car or computer malfunctions. Also, remember that during Mercury’s backslide, old business is as good as new.

The planetary action in your adjacent sign of Leo re-enforces that message. Many Virgos have planets in Leo – if so, you’re rocking – but the Sun behind the scenes until August 22 (including that mighty eclipse) calls for quietness, retreat, contemplation. One notes that sales of books about mindfulness and the like are currently rising, and a dip into the mind-body-spirit axis (very much Virgo’s bag) is in order.

Venus smiles on your social life until the Sun reaches your skies on the 23rd to re-stoke your fires. On the same day Saturn starts to rumble forwards. The ringed planet has asked uncomfortable questions of many Virgos this year (especially birthdays after September 14), the issues being principally property, family and work. No urgency just yet, but in September you have to find a strategy to have such issues under your control, and not controlling you.


Your sign comes with a reputation as the great romantic, in love with love itself, your heart melting amid a flurry of rose petals tra-la. Nice work if you can get it, Libra, but your horoscope comes with a grittier caste in August. Your one-on-one relationships (past, present and future) remain in the grip of planet Prometheus, an uncompromising bundle of energies that delivers jangled nerves rather than rose petals, and can give your partnerships a distinctly unorthodox quality. Birthdays circa October 20 take especial note.

August’s two eclipses, which fall across your romance/friendship axis, likewise suggest a touch of turbulence. The Leo Sun, along with Mars, favours an energetic social life (nice time for a holiday), but the lunar eclipse of August 7 and the big black-out of the 21st could as easily be a farewell, or the transformation of camaraderie into something more intimate. Here, there is everything to play for.

Still, the big story for Libra remains Jupiter, planet of largesse, steaming through your skies until your birthday month, which may well provide a finale for any relationship issues in play in August. Jupiter squares Pluto early in August to provide a breakthrough on the issue that’s bugged you this year – you just have to apply energy and optimism.

Jupiter also spells good times, travel and putting your hands deep, too deep, into your pockets to pay for it all. Still, as the old saying has it; Live Now, Pay Later. August 25/26, when the Moon is in your skies, deserve a bigger splash.


The holiday month of August may not be the ideal time for a professional move, but your stars are currently tuned into your career in a major way. The Leo Sun is here every year, of course, but this month’s two eclipses and the presence of your Mars ruler make this a potentially important time, even if you have to wait a little for things to fall into place. Jupiter reaching your skies at your birthday month is one likely time frame if events at work don’t impact you directly now. Keep an eagle eye on developments around the eclipse of August 21, a potential game-changer.

If you are on holiday yourself, your professional direction is one to ponder to the crashing of the waves. If you remain in harness, you are duty bound to put on something of a performance, one that you can extend through the autumn as Mars moves from Leo to Virgo. Rivals at work need to be isolated rather than confronted; keep your energy levels high and positive. Later in the month Venus crests your solar chart, bringing balm to office politics (though said planet can also signify a pushy Leo female, but let’s stay positive).

Romance? Where you find it just now. A holiday fling fits the frame for the first three weeks, thereafter it could one of those affairs about which the office gossips. If you are in the grip of a long-term affair that seems to have hit choppy, uncertain waters, take advice, friendly or professional – delusion and/or illusion are the enemies here. Enchantment, another of Neptune’s meanings, is another thing entirely.


In the ancient world Saturn was the god of time, Kronos (hence chronometer), and the planet’s movements are a big clue to your own schedule this summer and autumn. Later this month, August 24, the ringed planet moves forwards once more after a pause of three months, and will complete its passage through the Centaur’s skies at your birthday. That makes August a time when you can kick back and enjoy yourself and/or prepare yourself for the taskmaster planet’s final demands during autumn.

Your solar ‘scope is in unusually benign mood this August. Mars and the month’s two eclipses highlight travel and international contacts, folks from afar, education (whether as teacher or student), and anything that feels like a new frontier. Part of the Centaur’s mission is to quest, and whatever shape that takes for you, here’s your moment. The irksome retrograde of Mercury, moving back and forth over the apex of your ‘scope, asks for patience about professional developments – here, the time frame is early September, when the communications planet sorts itself out.  Meanwhile, in depth research will help guide your way.

Mercury’s backslide is offset by the stately progress of your ruling planet, Jupiter, which is oiling the wheels of your social life, and the interface between work and pleasure – the two remain nicely intertwined through to October. Romance-oriented Centaurs might usefully hang out with the after-hours gang from work, or indeed any collective or team scenario. Plus, with planet Prometheus at a halt in your zone of hot dates and crushes, unorthodox people promise to gatecrash your party…in a good way.


As Capricorns well know, one needs to render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s – i.e. don’t try to fool the taxman, ensure you have a decent cash flow and a healthy savings stash because, who knows, there may be trouble ahead.

Your current stars certainly favour your innate caution and determination to have a few dollars tucked away. Two new Moons and two eclipses across the axis of resources, not to mention a retrograde Mercury returning to the same spot, are a fat cue to revisit and perhaps restructure your fiscal set-up and its accompanying contracts.

Also pertaining to the outside world and its status games is Jupiter, now moving forwards in your career zone, asking for a courageous rather than a play-it-safe attitude to work. A link between Jupiter and Pluto (which is in your skies) early in the month strengthens your powers of leadership.

On a more intimate level comes fair Venus passing through your relationship zone, promising sweet hours and days with your beloved, the chance to smooth things out after any recent fracas, and for singletons the prospect of Mr or Ms Right – or reasonable facsimile thereof – drifting across your vision. Emotions run deep around August 15 (a Venus-Pluto opposition), so try and stay in upbeat mode and avoid scenarios that reek of vengeance.

The Sun’s shift from fiery Leo to earthy Virgo on the 22nd means you head into autumn on a positive note. Yes, Mercury is retrograde and your wheels are inclined to spin if you push to hard, but anything with a ‘re’ prefix – rethink, readjust, research – works fine.


If you are over 21 you should have a pretty good instinct about the month of August by now. It is halfway through your personal year (i.e. six months since your birthday) with the Sun in opposition – not always a time to feel at one’s strongest despite the summer weather (if present).

This year you face a mega-August, thanks to a total eclipse of the Sun on the 21st, and a less dramatic lunar eclipse of the full Moon in your skies on the 7th. Oh, and warrior Mars is in opposition all month. These are celestial events that signal potential upheaval, so if you are in turmoil or someone close to you – friend, lover, ex – has declared war, then you are, at least, tuned into your stars, should that be any consolation.

If you are sailing on as normal, stay alert to shifts of mood from your other half. You need strong alliances just now, and while your horoscope offers plentiful support from less personal sources, one-on-one relationships are what count. You can’t just be pushed around, but make compromise, understanding and patience your game plan. And sometimes, close relationships do have to be jettisoned for both parties to grow – should you be looking to lose someone, here’s your moment.

Adding complexity comes a retrograde of Mercury from the 13th – no biggy as a rule, but a reminder that other people can and do change their mind, and a nudge in your ribs to have the financial aspect of close relationships in working order.

More easeful news is the arrival of Venus in opposition from the 26th, a transit that can smooth out disputes and bring highly amenable people into your orbit. Simultaneously, your traditional ruler, Saturn, begins to move forwards in another part of your ‘scope, enabling practical affairs – your work, business or personal team – to assist you over autumn. ‘Lucky’ Jupiter is already at full speed in your fellow air sign of Libra, and if you have any involvement with education or legal affairs, so much the better.


These are the dog days of summer, and for you especially there is no better way to spend them than eating, drinking, swimming, making languorous love or finding a hot date. Sensual Venus, a planet with which Pisceans have a strong connection, spends most of August in your fellow water sign of Cancer, which for you represents earthly delights and emotional fulfilment.

As much is the easy part of August’s stars. Happily you are out of the firing line of the month’s most challenging aspects – an eclipsed full Moon on the 7th and a total solar eclipse on the 21st. Both events highlight the mind-body-spirit axis of your solar ‘scope, so providing you are following the common sense mantras of healthy eating (not dysfunctional diets, then) and mens sana in corpore sano – you are fine. You may even be granted a cosmic insight or two, especially around that full Moon. Immediately after its fullness, Luna moves on to the Fishes’ skies, making August 9 and 10 potent days for you, whatever your agenda.

The more challenging aspects of the month concern your complementary and opposite sign of Virgo, where Mercury turns hoopla on August 16, and other people decide they have changed their minds/plans, not necessarily to your advantage. Even Mercury retrograde has its positive side, however, and looking up old pals, even old flames (or them looking up you) can be rewarding. The sun’s annual move into Virgo, on the 23rd, underscores such encounters.

On August 26 Saturn also changes direction beginning its slow rumble across the career zone of your ‘scope through to Christmas, by which time you should have completed your promotion/finished your prize canvas/landed a prime role in a new play or similar – especially if your birthday is March 11th or thereafter. Slowly but surely does it


Some signs embrace change eagerly, some resist it (best not name names) – the astrological Ram is somewhere in the middle, alert but apprehensive. At present, however, you may not have much choice but to go with the flow, such is the highly charged state of your solar ‘scope.

As related last month, two new Moons in your kindred fire sign of Leo are always likely to turn up the heat in your personal life, especially since the second, on August 21, is a total solar eclipse. The presence of your Mars ruler in the same sign adds to the sense of a wildfire burning somewhat out of control. With any luck – a quality not absent from your stars just now – this spells a burst of creative inspiration, a heart-warming romance or simply a highly pleasurable spell of high summer. As a gifted songwriter once put it, get your teeth into a small slice of the cake of liberty (thanks Ian Dury).

Birthdays circa April 18 will need little urging. Indeed, with planet Prometheus parked on your Sun just now, holding to the same-old same-old may be proving impossible. Fortunately, you have options! Nor are said birthdays the only ones being pulled and pushed into intriguing new lifestyles. Jupiter in opposition means your main squeeze is part of the upheaval, whether he/she has packed her bags, just arrived or is having a life-changing moment of his/her own. A key element you are looking for in all dealings with lovers, spouses, ex’s and enemies is justice. Rams are often ‘me-first’ people, but just now, balance and even handedness are what you seeking.

A minor complication in all of this is the retrograde of Mercury, which requests you slow down and think of practicalities in the midst of the excitement – the real action is on the inside but do preserve good order and a tidy routine in the outside world.

Any fire in your heart isn’t about to burn out just because the Sun moves into Virgo on August 23 – eclipses resonate over months, but a more soothing note is introduced once Venus reaches the Lion’s skies on the 26th. You can swap the mosh pit for a foxtrot, so to speak. And with Saturn moving forwards once more, your ambitions in the big bad world have also to be given due consideration. Meanwhile, let it burn.


Taureans are not customarily lazy (there are exceptions) but they like to work at their own steady speed rather than one dictated by the outside world. The pair of new Moons at the root of your solar ‘scope this summer – a rare event, made more unusual by one being a total solar eclipse – may, however, force you to speed up a little, even if a retrograde Mercury is determined you should slow down.

Confused? Quite rightly, since the message of those Moons, accompanied by Mars, and a lunar eclipse at the top of your chart is complex. At the simplest level, you are being asked to address your home, to purge some of your treasured possessions and ensure that Taurus Towers is fit for purpose and sustainable in the long term (a Bull without a secure home is one sad creature).

At the same time, questions about your ancestry may also be in the air – not just your parents (though those too) but your longer lineage, and how you identify your place in the chequered history of humanity. You may like to run your personal version of that TV show asking celebrities ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’

On another level still, the lunar tides (getting technical, the cycle of the lunar nodes) are checking to see whether the energy you have pumped into your career and creative ambitions is paying off. Here, only you can be the judge, measuring what you hoped for against what you have actually achieved. One useful time frame is the 18 year cycle of the nodes (eclipse points), but the four months since the Taurus new Moon of April 26 are also pertinent. No cheating; acknowledge your shortcomings. The lunar eclipse of August 7, high in your skies, suggests others won’t be fooled.

Whether you are satisfied or not, the awkward transit of Mars this month is a spur to try harder and achieve more; it’s a gee-up, a signal to go faster. You have help from your ruling planet Venus, nicely placed in your communications zone until the 26th, and qualified assistance from Mercury in your fellow earth sign of Virgo until the 13th, when it turns retrograde (the slow-down signal) after which you might usefully revise plans, ready for a relaunch (another one!) in September, a far more obliging month. The Sun’s shift into Virgo and your fifth house of creativity and pleasure on August 25 begins the re-energising process.


Socially speaking, it looks simple enough to keep the pot bubbling. Two new Moons in Leo alongside Mars make your circle of friends, neighbours, siblings and acquaintances a valuable asset during August; circulate accordingly. Then there is big-hearted Jupiter, splendidly sited in fellow air sign Libra, promising that the love in your heart, whether for your kids or your latest crush, will be returned with interest.

And talking of interest, Venus in your cash zone should help you both acquire more of the folding stuff and to spend it on what’s important (at this point, enjoying yourself). A clash between Venus and Pluto on August 15 may turn your mind to more long term financial concerns and plans; stay mindful.

Even August’s two eclipses are unthreatening for the Twins tribe. Indeed, the eclipsed full Moon of August 7 looks obliging for any long-distance contacts. The total solar eclipse of August 21 may call for a change of travel plan, especially as by then your ruling planet. Mercury is in one of its bothersome retrograde phases. This particular retrograde – from August 13 to September 5 – passes back and forth over the very root of your ‘scope, perhaps prompting a re-think about your beautiful home or a re-assessment of your ancestral line; a cue for some unknown relative to emerge from the past.

The Sun’s shift across the nadir of your chart on August 23 may shine a light here, and is also a prompt to turn your attention back to work and career, though with any luck you can postpone re-entry until late September. Also at the end of August, Saturn starts its final four months of opposition from the sign of Sagittarius. It will take a week or two for the taskmaster planet to reassert its demands in earnest (unless you have a birthday circa June 12, in which case you had better concentrate on work right now!), and with Jupiter so obliging just now, optimism and joy beat anxiety hands down.


Having the Moon as one’s ruling planet is an exclusive to Cancer, but means that eclipses can weigh more heavily on you than on other signs. That doesn’t look quite the case this August, since both the partially eclipsed full Moon of August 7 and the spectacular total solar eclipse of August 21 lie oblique to your Sun, rather confronting it directly.

In your solar ‘scope, both these events fall across your financial axis, so you may wish to scurry down to the cellar where your emergency savings are secreted to ensure the mice haven’t gotten to your stash of dollars. Eclipses are predictable but their effects are not, so let’s hope that it’s a windfall that arrives.

Venus, a planet associated with money (needed to pay for a Venusian life of luxury), spends most of the month in Cancer’s skies, lending you the grace and good taste required for a charm offensive, aimed at either a romantic target or in the service of your career. It’s an ideal time to market yourself and promote your personal brand. Also to create, get a make-over or sashay around the art galleries.

Venus is joined by Ceres, largest and most impressive of the asteroids – so much so that she has now been reclassified as a ‘minor planet’. In mythology Ceres is quite a player, the mother who rescues Persephone from the clutches of Pluto down in the underworld, a role you might wish to co-opt and apply in your own life; a benign intervention, a protective hand. Ceres’ opposition to Pluto may raise precisely such issues, or signal a crisis in a relationship.

Venus, of course, is also the goddess of romance, so relationships, crushes and marriages are all in the mainframe this month…mostly in a good way, though events around the 24th may prove disruptive.

The retrograde of Mercury, a minor but irksome transit, may disrupt your schedules from mid-month through to early September, and a reshuffle of your plans may be unavoidable. The weekend of August 26 is a time to watch for a touch of minor chaos, though this is also a chance to your infrastructure and technology on a firm footing.