Summary of the meanings of the Constellations from "Gospel in the Stars" by Joseph Seiss
The Virgin: the figure of a young woman lying prostrate, with an ear of wheat in one hand and a branch in the other.
The Seed of the woman
The Desire of nations
The Man of double nature in humiliation
The exalted Shepherd and Harvester
I. THE DECANS OF VIRGO
1. Coma, the Infant, ‑ the Branch, the Desired One (erroneously, Berenice's Hair);
2. Centaurus, a centaur, with dart piercing a victim;
3. Boőtes, or Arcturus, the great Shepherd and Harvester, holding a rod and sickle, and walking forth before his flocks (erroneously called Bears).
The Scales: the figure of a pair of balances, with one end of the beam up and the other down, as in the act of weighing. In some of the old planispheres a hand, or a woman, appears holding the scales.
Price to be paid
The Cross endured
The Victim slain
The Crown purchased
II. THE DECANS OF LIBRA
1. The Cross, over which Centaur is advancing, called the Southern Cross
2. Victim of Centaur, slain, pierced to death;
3. The Crown, which the Serpent aims to take, called the Northern Crown.
The Scorpion: the figure of a gigantic, noxious, and deadly insect, with its tail and sting uplifted in anger, as if striking.
Cleft in the conflict
The Serpent's coils
The struggle with the Enemy
The toiling Vanquisher of evil
III. THE DECANS OF SCORPIO
1. The Serpent, struggling with Ophiuchus;
2. 0phiuchus, wrestling with the Serpent, stung in one heel by the Scorpion, and crushing it with the other;
3. Hercules, wounded in his heel, the other foot over the Dragon's head, holding in one hand the Golden Apples and the three‑headed Dog of hell, and in the other the uplifted club.
The Bowman: the figure of a horse with the body, arms, and head of a man‑a centaur‑with a drawn bow and arrow pointed at the Scorpion.
One triumphing as a Warrior
He gladdens the heavens
He builds the fires of punishment He casts down the Dragon
IV. THE DECANS OF SAGITTARIUS
1. Lyra, an Eagle holding the Lyre, as in triumphant gladness;
2. Ara, the Altar, with consuming fires, burning downward;
3. Draco, the Dragon, the old Serpent, winding himself about the Pole in horrid links and contortions.
The Goat: the figure of a goat sinking down as in death, with the hinder part of its body terminating in the vigorous tail of a fish.
Life out of Death
The Arrow of God
Pierced and falling
Springing up again in abundant life
V. THE DECANS OF CAPRICORNUS
1. Sagitta, the Arrow, or killing dart sent forth, the naked shaft of death;
2. Aquila, the Eagle, pierced and falling;
3. Delphinus, the Dolphin, springing up, raised out of the sea.
The Waterman: the figure of a man with a large urn, the contents of which he is in the act of pouring out in a great stream from the sky.
Life‑waters from on high
Drinking in the heavenly flood
Carrying and speeding the Good News
Bearing aloft the Cross over all the earth
VI. THE DECANS OF AQUARIUS
1.The Southern Fish, drinking in the stream;
2. Pegasus, a white horse, winged and speeding, as with good tidings;
3. Cygnus, the Swan on the wing, going and returning, bearing the sign of the cross.
The Fishes: the figures of two large fishes in the act of swimming, one to the northward, the other with the ecliptic.
Swimming in the heavenly waters
Upheld and governed by the Lamb
Head over all things to the Church
The intended Bride bound and exposed on earth
VII. THE DECANS OF PISCES
1. The Band, holding up the Fishes, and held by the Lamb, its doubled end fast to the neck of Cetus, the Sea‑Monster;
2. Cepheus, a crowned king, holding a band and sceptre, with his foot planted on the polestar as the great Victor and Lord;
3. Andromeda, a woman in chains, and threatened by the serpents of Medusa's head.
The Ram, by some nations called the Lamb: the figure of a strong sheep, with powerful curved horns, lying down in easy composure, and looking out in conscious strength over the field around it.
The Lamb entered on dominion
The Bride released and making ready
The Breaker triumphing
VIII. THE DECANS OF ARIES
1. Cassiopeia, the woman enthroned;
2. Cetus, the Sea‑Monster, closely and strongly bound by the Lamb;
3. Perseus, an armed and mighty man with winged feet, who is carrying away in triumph the cut‑off head of a monster full of writhing serpents, and holding aloft a great sword in his right hand.
The Bull: the figure of the shoulders, neck, head, horns, and front feet of a powerful bull, in the attitude of rushing and pushing forward with great energy.
The invincible Ruler come
The sublime Vanquisher
The River of judgment
The all‑ruling Shepherd
IX. THE DECANS OF TAURUS
1. Orion, a glorious Prince, with a sword girded on his side, and his foot on the head of the Hare or Serpent;
2. Eridanus, the tortuous River, accounted as belonging to Orion
3. Auriga, the Wagoner, rather the Shepherd, carrying a she‑goat and two little goats on his left arm, and holding cords or bands in his right hand.
The Twins, or a man and woman sometimes called Adam and Eve: usually, two human figures closely united, and seated together in endeared affection. In some of the older representations the figure of this constellation consists of two goats, or kids.
The Marriage of the Lamb
The Enemy trodden down
The Prince coming in glory
His princely following
X. THE DECANS OF GEMINI
1. Lepus, the Hare, in some nations a serpent, the mad enemy under Orion's feet;
2. Canis Major, Sirius, the Great Dog, the Prince coming;
3. Canis Minor Procyon, the Second Dog, following after Sirius and Orion.
The Crab: the figure of a crab, in the act of taking and holding on with its strong pincer claws. In Egyptian astronomy the scarabaeus beetle, grasping and holding on to the ball in which its eggs are deposited, takes the place of the crab.
The Egyptians called this sign Klaria, the Folds, the Resting places. We call it Cancer, which in later vocabularies means the Crab, but which, in its Noetic roots, explains what we are to see in this Crab. Khan, means the traveller's resting‑place, and ker or cer means embraced, encircled, held as within encircling arms. And so Can‑cer means Rest secured
The Possession secured Lesser Fold, the first‑born, the rulers Greater Fold, the after‑born The Heroes landed from their expedition, their toils and trials over
XI. THE DECANS OF CANCER
1. Ursa Minor, anciently the Lesser Sheepfold, close to and including the Pole;
2. Ursa Major, anciently the Greater Sheepfold, in connection with Arcturus, the guardian and keeper of the flock;
3. Argo, the Ship, the company of travellers under the bright Canopus, their Prince, the Argonauts returned with the Golden Fleece.
The Lion: the figure of a great rampant lion, leaping forth to rend, with his feet over the writhing body of Hydra, the Serpent, which is in the act of fleeing.
The King aroused for the rending
The Serpent fleeing
The Bowl of Wrath upon him
His carcass devoured
XII. THE DECANS OF LEO
1. Hydra, the fleeing Serpent, trodden under foot by the Crab and Lion;
2. Crater, the Cup or Bowl of Wrath on the Serpent;
3. Corvus, the Raven or Crow, the bird of doom, tearing the Serpent.