How to Read an Astrology Ephemeris
An Astrology Ephemeris is basically a big book of planet positions, in the different 12 zodiac signs, which shows you the patterns affecting your horoscope, for many years into the future – but also stretching back into the past. It’s the best way to see the astrological weather. It can also be confusing. Here is how to find a free ephemeris online for any year and then read the symbols, so you can figure out your chart.
What an Astrology Ephemeris Looks Like
We are really lucky to have Astro.com out there, which supplies an Ephemeris for every year, free. They also supply this website with its technology! This is a typical example of a month (March 2025) from the free Astro.com library, which you can look up any time. This obviously shows you the past. It can be interesting to see what was going on in your horoscope during a major life event, like a wedding, or the birth of a child, or a new job!
To unscramble the information below, you may want to pick up a pen and paper. Once you’ve done it, though, you will always know how to do it. Then you can also look into the future. You can pick up the Ephemeris for a year like 2025, for example.
Image: Astro.com, Source: Astrodienst Swiss Ephemeris for Users
An Astrology Ephemeris Explainer
To get the Ephemeris for a particular year, type into Google – the year in question, then the word Ephemeris. So if you want to find out about next year, 2025, you’d key in ‘2025 Ephemeris.’ This screen shot shows you what you’ll get back. A link to a PDF called Astrodienst Ephemeris Tables – Astro.com with the year in question. Scroll down and you will see data for every month, of 2025.
Yes, But What Does It Mean?
Let’s look at the Astrodienst Ephemeris entry for September 2012:
Image: Astro.com, Source: Astrodienst Swiss Ephemeris for Users
The days/dates in question are shown on the far left side of the tables. So you’ll see S1 (Saturday 1st) S2 (Sunday 2nd) M3 (Monday 3rd) T4 (Tuesday 4th) and so on, in the left-hand margin. Look across the page for these symbols, which I have hand-drawn in my neatest handwriting! These show you the slow-moving outer planets. They matter more. They change your life.
Don’t worry too much about the other symbols. Just glance across to the right-hand side of the Ephemeris until you see Jupiter, Saturn and the rest, below. The very first zodiac sign symbol you see underneath, tells you what sign that planet is passing through. Below my hand-drawn guide to the planet symbols.
So, What Was Going on in September 2012?
Looking across the page, for that September 2012 example, you can see Jupiter with the Gemini glyph below it. Jupiter was in Gemini. Saturn, the next one along, has Libra below it. Saturn was in Libra. Uranus, the next one along, was in Aries. Don’t worry too much about the R symbol (it stands for retrograde). Keep going to see Neptune in Pisces. Pluto in Capricorn. The North Node in Scorpio.
The South Node is not shown but it is always the opposite sign to the North Node. So, the South Node was in Taurus.
Opposite Signs in the Zodiac
Keep looking across the page until you get to Chiron and you will see he was in Pisces on September 2012. Make a note of the zodiac signs the slow-moving outer planets and other heavenly bodies/points were in. If they were in the same sign as anything in your chart, you were experiencing ‘weather’ typical of that planet, or whatever, during that particular month.
So, if you have horoscope factors in Gemini, you had Jupiter in Gemini weather back in September 2012. Jupiter tells you about the opportunities. Gemini tells you it was about communication – your Third House is ruled by Gemini in the Natural House System – so this was probably about the internet for you, or multimedia.
If you have horoscope factors in Libra, you had Saturn weather in your Seventh House of sexual relationships in September 2012. Your love life would have been hard work. If you have horoscope factors in Aries, you had Uranus weather that month in your First House of image.
If you have horoscope factors in Pisces, Neptune was in Pisces – Neptune weather. Factors in Capricorn meant you were experiencing Pluto weather. Factors in Scorpio and/or Taurus saw the North Node and South Node passing through. Factors in Pisces (again) meant you also had Chiron weather, as well as Neptune weather.
In a very general way, you can take a snapshot in time, just by understanding what each planet (or whatever) means, in astrology, and you interpret it just as the weather journalists interpret storms, high temperatures, cloud and the rest. These are slow-moving factors in your chart, though, so although the month in question would have shown you just this kind of ‘climate’ in your life, you would also have felt it in August 2012 and again in October 2012.
In other words, even though we’re just looking at September, the whole year of 2012 probably saw months of ongoing conditions, rather like a dry year, or a wet year. In 2012, as Pluto passed through Capricorn, if you had stuff in Capricorn in your chart in the Tenth House of career, you would have experienced typical Pluto weather (power and control issues) at work – all year long. Now, when does the weather peak in intensity and bring about events?
Aspects and Transits in Astrology Using the Ephemeris
Astrology is a numbers game. To predict the future or accurately ‘call’ what happened years in the past, you are looking for an exact line-up, with the degrees – or numbers – you see above.
I’m only showing you the basics here. Yet – there is an aspect called a conjunction in astrology which is rare and important. It happens when a travelling planet, Node or other heavenly body (like Chiron) ends up at the same zodiac sign as anything in your chart, at the same number – or degree.
In this Ephemeris above, just look for the first number before the tiny circle which indicates a degree. So, if you’re looking up Sunday 30th September 2012, you’re eyeballing Jupiter in Gemini at 16 degrees. Saturn in Libra at 29 degrees. Uranus in Aries at 6 degrees. Neptune in Pisces at 0 degrees. Pluto in Capricorn at 6 degrees. The North Node in Scorpio at 27 degrees. Not pictured, but automatically opposite to that, is the South Node in Taurus at 27 degrees. Chiron in Pisces at 5 degrees.
If you have anything at all in your horoscope at those exact degrees, or perhaps one degree away (a one-degree orb of difference) you would have seriously felt quite unusual weather – like a lightning bolt coming down your chimney, or a sudden flash flood in your garden, or soaring temperatures in your town – in a personal way.
So if you were born with the Sun at 16 Gemini in your Third House, the last day of September 2012 would have seen Jupiter at 16 Gemini in your Third House. If you were born with the Moon at 29 Libra in your Seventh House, the last day of September 2012 would have seen Saturn at 29 Libra in your Seventh House.
Decoding the Astrology
If you are a Premium Member you will have access to plenty of ebooks, exclusive features and locked ‘explainer’ stories on this website which will show you how to decode the astrology.
I am sure that when you see a conjunction – an unusual meet-up between a travelling planet and your own planets – you will want to know every detail of what that means!
So you look up all the information together. Taking Jupiter as an example again, you can see he was in the zodiac sign of Gemini at 16 degrees on the final day of September 2012. On the first day, September 1st, he was at 14 degrees, so he’s crawled a whole 2 degrees that month, and ended up there. If you have the Sun at 16 Gemini in your Third House of internet, communication and multimedia, you would take the whole thing apart as follows:
SUN – How you shine, gain attention, stand at the centre, radiate – how you are exposed, and hopefully brilliant in some way.
GEMINI – Internet. Multimedia. Languages. Publishing. Education. Communication. Speech. Writing. Images.
THIRD HOUSE – As above, but in greater detail – vocabulary, voice tone, writing style, editing, social media.
JUPITER – Opportunity, growth, expansion, solutions, good fortune, benefits, breakthroughs, open doors.
On that day, or very close to it (allow one degree’s difference, and maybe a couple of days difference, in astrology as a rule-of-thumb) you might have won an award for your debating skills at a conference, or gained your first Twitter account, or bought an iPhone. It’s personal to you, but the weather would be the same for anyone with factors at 16 Gemini in their chart.
This is a simple and fast ‘explainer’ to the Ephemeris you can find, free, for any year – thanks to Astro.com. You might also have an Ephemeris at home, as Raphael’s Ephemeris publish their books every year, and if you are very lucky you might have found a large Ephemeris for the years 2000-2050 in a bookshop, which is basically like a great big time-travel directory!
Once you get the hang of working with conjunctions and slow-moving outer planet cycles, you can then get stuck into the rest. Astrology can be quite intuitive, so you’ll be surprised at how quickly you can pick it up.
Try it now with 2019 and 2020. What can you see for your own chart as Jupiter passes through Sagittarius, then Capricorn?
Hi dear Jessica, I checked all the most important days in my life and about the day that I lost my brother I saw 3 conjunction : Saturn transit was 12 degree in Taurus and my natal moon is 11 degree in Taurus !
Uranus transit was 16 degree in Aquarius and my MC is 15 degree in Aquarius !
But I think the most important is Chiron transit 29 degree in Scorpio my 8th house and my natal Juno is the same at 29 Scorpio! and also my natal Chiron is also in 29 degree but in Aries .
That’s is why I have always a strange feeling by 29 degree of planet transit.
Thanks for your help for using Ephermeris, it is very useful .
It was worth the hard work of all the checking, right? Saturn at 12 Taurus was almost conjunct your Moon at 11 Taurus. Tremendously sad and it must have been so tough for you, Haleh. You may know that Saturn takes 29 years to return to each zodiac sign, so in fact you were experiencing something that could only have happened once in almost 30 years. You had a ton of transits in Aquarius and Scorpio at the same time, so no doubt you had to lean hard on the ‘brotherhood’ of friendship (Aquarius) having lost your brother – and Scorpio is always legacies on some level. I am glad you have figured out how to read your Ephemeris and now you can use it for the rest of your life. It’s also helpful to work backwards as you have seen.
That was very interesting when I checked 6 more important dates in my life and I found out that transit in Aquarius and Sagittarius were more effective on my life, I am more curious to decode others planet effect, fore example on march 2006, Jupitur was 18 degree in scorpio when I officially became a German citizen and now Jupiter is again on 17 degree in scorpio! it is a little bit confusing to match all the transit but I am trying to decode my natal chart and enjoying too 😉
*I posted another respond before this comment but I think it isn’t sent, please ignore the previous respond if you reach it.
Thank you so much my distance teacher, Jessica 🙂 I am learning many thing from your topics here
Thank you. I am glad you are learning astrology like this – Scorpio and the Eighth House are about your legacy and the legacy you receive and by adopting German citizenship you altered the laws to which you are subject, regarding your will, and anything left to you in the will of others. There may also be issues here about any benefits or taxation advantages from your switch to German citizenship.
Hello, So I had a go at reading the Ephemeris for my wedding day (09/07/1994) and it does make sense. I had both the Sun and Moon in Cancer, Jupiter in Scorpio, Uranus and Neptune in Capricorn, Pluto in Scorpio, North Node in Scorpio and Chiron in Virgo. I am going to have a go now with my children’s birth dates. If I wanted to make a future prediction regarding career, how would I go about doing that? Thanks.
Future career prediction is about your Capricorn factors, so have a look at the 2019 Ephemeris and see if anything is crossing Capricorn at the same number (degree) as anything in your chart. If not, then go to 2020 to see if you’re getting closer. Then take it apart. Know the actual meaning of the signature in your horoscope, then look at the new deal passing through, which you will ‘sign’ with your chart.
Hi Jessica I have looked at 2010 Ephemeris for 11 June if I read this right Uranus had entered Aries Uranus was conjunct Jupiter? I think Mars was in Virgo ? Does this translate to a big shock in my body and life as Every 11th June for three times since 1997 I have had a bad accident on that exact date . I need to somehow avoid this usually I have a car accident , once I fell down the stairs and broke my leg in several places and had surgery . Its a recurring event that I would like to get to the bottom of with relief I t hasn’t now happened since 2010 .As the 11 th June is not far away it would be good to know. I now avoid going any where on that date . Thank you for a great article . I will try and decode more .
Blimey. The only possible recurrence on 11th June in any year is the Sun in Gemini hovering around 20 degrees. Aesculapia at 19 Aquarius in your birth chart is the only factor you have on 20, or close by. Strangely enough he was the Roman god of healing, medicine and surgery and his temples were the Ancient World’s equivalent of hospitals today. He ruled revivals, resurrection, radical repair work. As you have this asteroid in your Eleventh House of groups and friends you need to figure out if somehow the accidents are significant in terms of reviving friendships or group commitments in some way. If so, you have your answer. Freud said there are no accidents, of course.
Thank you Jessica I was wondering also if Uranus was changing signs had anything to do with it , it seems at that date at 00 deg although I only have Vesta at 00 deg in Gemini I think .And of course Uranus has just changed signs into Taurus . I will look at the years and corresponding times Uranus changed signs . I get a long rest I suppose but Getting injured isn’t a good way to go about it .
So interesting! I have had many relatives pass away on November 7….my grandmother, my father, my aunt and my mother-in-law! The very strange thing is it is my mothers birthday (who is still alive). I have moon/neptune conjunct in scorpio.
The Sun is always at 13 or 14 degrees of Scorpio on 7th November of any year. You have Saturn at 13 Capricorn and your MC or Midheaven at 13 Aries and IC or Immum Coeli at 13 Libra. In other words you were born with a T-Square at 13 degrees, leading from your IC which describes your family tree, roots, heritage, history and culture – and when the Sun passes 13 Scorpio in your Eighth House of family legacies, the pattern unfolds. Astrology can never predict death, though. And never should.
Hi dear Jessica.
tanx for this very teaching & decoding article.
it would be nice to share you what I have found about a near future transit on my chart.as you know Jupiter will be on station direct point on 10 July at 13°20 Scorpio, an exact conjunction with my natal Saturn located 13°21 scorpio which has a nice trine or maybe sextile to my natal Jupiter station D in Capricorn.( a rare trine of same planet being station D) also a nice trine between transiting sun & everything I have explained at 13° Scorpio (both natal & transiting). can we consider it as a very extrime fate making trigger or an antiscia or a Boooooom. I appreciate you to lance a glance on my chart & giving me a piece of advice.
My warmest greetings,
Actually Pluto at 0 Scorpio in your Eighth House is what you need to watch. Uranus at 0 Taurus opposes this in 2018 and again in 2019. Try to get the best financial and property advice you can – there will be challenges and changes – you will need to be flexible and adaptable here. Jupiter on your Mars at 24 Scorpio will help you. That’s an opportunity to take action over the house, business, apartment, money which you can only experience every 12 years, but you do need to be aware of how unpredictable life is, from this point. There are no guarantees with Uranus opposing Pluto.
Thanks for for the endless guidance as always. But this one was so much fun.
It was so exciting to find on my wedding day Jupiter was transiting Taurus conjucting exact degree my natal Sun and Bacchus. Hurahhhh!
I also did all unforgettable days of my life and result was jawdropper. The list is long so I won’t bother you.
And so I did little research in to near future and found that on 12 October, 2018 transiting Jupiter and moon will conjuct my natal Uranus in Scorpio, Sun my natal Pluto in Libra and Uranus very close to my Hygeia. This troubles me becouse on almost not so good days in the past the Moon in Scorpio shows up! Any insight you may have is appreciated.
I am so much learning from you and I would like you to know how grateful I am
TG, I am thrilled you found your way around the ephemeris for your wedding day and found Jupiter right on your Sun and Bacchus. What fantastic timing, and you did it all intuitively. Interesting about Jupiter on your Uranus – it’s pretty hard to go wrong with any kind of Jupiter conjunction because this is a 2000+ year old symbol of solutions, opportunities, good fortune passed on, win-win outcomes, largesse, generosity, improvement, growth and all the rest. In Scorpio and your Eighth House it is of course about your money, house, business, possessions, charity or apartment. You have a lifelong pattern here of producing and creating structures for yourself, then rejecting them, distancing yourself from them – and then finding out there is never going to be any ‘stable’ as it’s all about the changes. This will be triggered as Jupiter swings past but it will be to your gain.
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