The Conjuror’s Magazine
Vol 1 No 7 (February 1792) p.209-10.
This is the fourth in a series of Gilbert’s astrological notices in succesive numbers, and it includes a fatal error. You can predict Royal downfall quoting Hosea (“the revolters are profound to make slaughter”), promise “forcible abductions and rapes”, but if you announce “There will be no more frost” and turn out to be wrong, gardeners will rise up and complain.
ASTROLOGICAL NOTICES FOR FEBRUARY [E1]
THIS FULL Moon is consecrated to divine vengeance. Lilly observes, that if the Lord of the 10th be in the 12th, the figure being one that declares witchcraft, the affliction is from the hand of GOD. It is the same when the Lord of the 12th, especially a malefic, is in the 10th. Familiarity between the Lords of the 12th and 6th, or 8th, are indubitable signs of spiritual afflictions, particularly if Mercury afflict Lord of Ascendant from a convenient place of the figure; that is from any parallel to the evil houses: and, in all cases of secret dealing, I take into judgment, on my own authority, the 4th house, of which, however, the books are not wholly silent; my judgment led me to this, and it has never failed in experiment. Mars, Lord of 4th and 12th, is on the cusp of the 10th, in mutual though cross reception, (which yet is best for mischief), with Saturn placed in the 4th, and Lord of Capricorn , wherein also Mars is exalted, and dispositor of Sun with reception, and together with Saturn himself, of Mercury and Venus, with which also Mars has a strong cross reception, and separates from a partile square, she being lady of the 10th, and in mundane parallel with all the bad houses. Mars and Venus also rule two good houses, 1th and 5th; but as the motives which determine them to mischief, are so universal, this circumstance must be considered as spreading the contagion among persons and places, that fancy themselves very secure. Next, Jupiter, Lord of the Ascendant, on the cusp of the 11th, his JOY, is flourishing away with external honours; confident of his own goodness, of peace, and of his ascendancy; but rotten at the heart, Hosea, v. 11,12. that is without one essential dignity, and where Mars has no less than eleven essential dignities with no participator, by either night or day: to this wretched Jupiter his open antagonist Mercury applies by a Square completed in fixt signs; and I never saw planet less prepared to receive an enemy than Jupiter. Had mercury any dignities where Jupiter is, they would parry the blow in some measure; had Jupiter any where Mercury is, they would soften the blow; but now it comes with fearless, with unmitigated violence: and in that nativity, where Jupiter is now on the place of Mercury, and not befriended by him at birth, he will receive such a stroke for his intrusion, that he will never recover.
The nature of the calamities will be wretched obstructions in the parts signified by Scorpio [E2], and the neck and præcordia; such as hooping-coughs, hoarsenesses, heart-burnings etc. and in the reins, thighs, breast, and knees. As I have called it pre-eminently a DIVINE SCOURGE, I will say what it is for: I find the Ascendant, the Lord of it, Jupiter and Venus to signify CONJUGAL LOVE; and from Jupiter being out of all dignities, as I said before, I must conclude that the judgment proceeds from a total inattention to, and aversion from, that key-stone of Society, CONJUGAL AFFECTION. “Whoremongers and adulterers GOD will judge:” Venus, on the contrary, Lady of the 10th and 6th, also in a sign, where she represents Conjugal Love, is VERY STRONG. This marks the difference between the KING and people in this regard. The Pleiades in 6th, threaten sore eyes and blindness; a signification corroborated by Mars’ view of both the luminaries, for he aspects Moon with a semi Square, and Sun with sesqui Square, applying, and Moon is in Leo, descending into the 8th. Lastly, as Jupiter is placed where he represents the Royal household, whether spiritual or natural, I cannot sum up the contents of this figure so well as by the first four verses of Hosea, V.—Hear, ye Priests, and hearken, ye House of Israel! and give ye ear, O House of the King; for judgment is toward you; because ye have been a snare on Mizpeh, and a net spread upon Tabor. And the revolters are profound to make slaughter, though I am a rebuker of them all. I know Ephraim, and Israel is not hid from me; for now, O Ephraim, thou committest whoredom, and Israel is defiled. They will not frame their doings to return unto their God; for the spirit of whoredoms is in the midst of them, and they have not known the LORD.” John xiv.17. [E3] Read the whole Hosea, particularly 14th verse—“I am unto Ephrain as a LION, and as a young LION to the house of Judah. I, I will tear, and go away; I will take away, and none shall rescue.” Jupiter in a fixt sign sottishly abides his fate; nay, accelerates it by retrogradation. The only new thing I see remarkable among mankind under this full moon, besides those I have noticed, are forcible abductions and rapes, in which the actors seem very secure; but return, and the result helps the progress of LIBERTY.
At the new Moon of the 22d, Venus transiting Mercury’s place at the full and following up his square Jupiter, while he goes from Trine Mars to Sextile Saturn and Opposition Georgian [E4] continue the effects already predicted. Women will be brawling among themselves. The winds are very various, and shifting under these influences; there will be some heavy gales; but the proximity of Moon’s North Node to Mars, takes off thunder and lightning which otherwise would assuredly happen.
There will be no more frost.—The Trine of Sun and Jupiter by this time helps something; but it rather helps out of difficulties than prevents.
I find Mars retrograde on the King of Prussia’s Sun; the significators of both government and people much afflicted, and very weak in general; let him expect a blow from France if not already struck; I assure him the French will not honour their King much at present. I, however, think highly of the King of Prussia’s character, and am certain, he is a sincere, and will be a distinguished friend to peace and reform. But, let no little petulance embroil him with France; and let him take care of the Emperor. [E5]
[E1] The astrological notice in the January number was also headed “February”. I considered amending the title to March but on further research, Gilbert is using in this article the astrological configuration of the full moon 3:11a.m. 8 February 1792. (14 days after the new moon of 23 January which was the configuration used for his previous astrological notice - See general astrological reference). So although this is a repeated title for his monthly prognostication column, the month used may be deliberate.
[E2] Scorpio rules genitals, bladder, urethra, rectum.
[E3] John xiv.17: “Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be with you.”. It’s hard to see how this has a bearing on Gilbert’s argument. He uses this chapter of John a few pages later in his ‘Explanation of the Number 666’, where the relevance of the “Spirit of truth” is clear.
[E5] King Friedrich Wilhelm II of Prussia, and Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor were at this time on the verge of war with France. They were trying to remain supportive to the French King & Queen, and advance the cause of the moderate French Feuillant party by standing firm against the Brissonists, the hawk party in the French Assembly. Friedrich Wilhelm II and Leopold II made a formal alliance on 7 February 1792. Leopold died three weeks later on 1 March. France declared war with Austria on 20 April.