An Example of the Oldest Tradition in (Persian) Dorotheus – the Confine Lord Being the Only Owner/Oikodespotes

Hi. I moved this article to my new website. Please read its updated and improved version there. Thank you.


Addendum from same day:  I have recalculated the chart for the capital of the Persian empire – Ctesiphon, which is very close to Baghdad. The coordinates for the older location – Alexandria, Egypt are 31N11 53 and 29E55 9 vs those for Ctesiphon: 33N4 59 and 44E34 59. The difference between the charts is 20 minutes of arc, which is totally insignificant but it is important to have the correct location as this is a historical chart.

Note: I want to thank my friend Dimityr Kojuharov who brought this chart to my attention. Even though his reason was to discuss the length of life technique with me, I noticed something that is also very relevant for determining the Owner and Captain of the chart.

Upon reading this passage in Dorotheus (Book III, p 78 or 238 – Dorotheus of Sidon translated by David Pingree and published in 2005 by the Astrology Center of America) I noticed something which had escaped me in the few times I have read Dorotheus.

For those readers that do not have a paper copy of that indispensable book, Deb Houlding has generously provided the first three books in electronic format for personal study use only. You can download them on her wonderful website: , with Book III being here:

The passage I am discussing corresponds to page 3 in the pdf.

Since everyone can download the book for free with the touch of a button, I won’t write the planetary longitudes.

Here is the chart, calculated with Delphic Oracle and Pophyry Magus 2 – the best programs for Ancient Astrology:




The only difference of a portion or more in given in the original chart is Zeus but that is absolutely of no consequence as to what I want to draw your attention to.

Notice that the chart is from 26 Feb 381, Alexandria Egypt, at 7.07.21 AM if one uses Aldebaran 15 Taurus to make the Asc 18 Pisces.

In other words, this chart does not come from Dorotheus of course, who wrote in the 1st century CE.

So why is this significant? Well, because it proves that the Persians who added it more than 300 years later were following the original Dorotheus when it comes to determining the Giver of Years/Oikodespotes. I have always been very suspicious of some things included in Dorotheus, when I read the book for the first time all those years ago, and this was one of them, that is, he always said to use the confine lord (as did Valens and Rhetorius among others), but the text also said to use all the other 4 lords – domicile, exaltation, trigon and face. Here is the insight:

You will notice that the author/s were very sparse in their delineation. They could have explained their choice but they did not. Thus once is forced to figure it out, which I did with relish last night.

It is a diurnal chart, but yet the author/s skip the Sun as a Giver of Life/Apheta/Hyleg. The ruler (ONLY the confine one) of the Sun is Zeus but he is averse. Then comes the Moon. Its ruler is also Zeus who is also averse to it.

Pay close attention here: IF the original Dorotheus had said to use the other 4 lords (even if one does not even bother with the face, this leaves the domicile, exaltation and trigon), then why did the authors reject the Moon?

The Moon is conjunct the Dsc, even strongly advancing, thus it is in the 7th by WS and quadrant. Moreover, it is in a feminine zoidion and quadrant – rejoicing as the Hellenistic author say, but not completely because it is above the horizon. So why was the Moon thrown away? Its domicile and exalted lord Hermes is conjunct the Asc and thus opposing the Moon, which is fine because it is not averse. It is however invisible, it became so 4 days before birth, as PM2 shows: EL-4.

Does this mean the Persian knew how to calculate the real astronomical visibility of the planets? I do not know; it cannot be said from this. What is making this more difficult is that Hermes also started to walk back 3 days before birth and is within 15 portions of the Sun, thus under the approximate beams. Moreover, as the authors are following Dorotheus, that is, they do not care about any other lords, this is also not helping figure out whether they knew or not.

Anyway, this leaves the trigon lord (and the face one if one cares for it, which happens to be the same trigon one) which is Aphrodite. It is opposing the Moon, this time by an applying diametrical configuration. What is more, Aphrodite is exalted and strongly advancing in the Asc, in a feminine zoidion and quarter. Yet it is thrown away. Why? Because, again, the Persian author/s follow Dorotheus according to whom the ruler is the confine lord only and no one else.

The author/s choose the Asc eventually. Notice something else though. It is a Full Moon chart, which means one must look at Fortune, which is in Libra and its ruler is Kronos who is averse to it! This is not mentioned though.

There are difficulties with the Asc though: Hermes, the confine lord, is conjunct the Asc but is invisible. So why did the Persian/s choose the Asc as a Giver of Life? Well, SAN (the prenatal lunation) is cadent, so this leaves nothing else. Fine, but why ignore the Moon and choose the Asc? Because the ruler of the Asc, its confine lord Hermes, while invisible, is not averse to it, whereas Zeus the ruler of the Lights, while visible, is averse to them.

My purpose is not the length of life here, but notice that even though he chose the Asc, he did not use the years of its ruler Hermes (because he is invisible). He directed the confines to the Asc/Distributions and thus calculated the length of life.

Another thing, which the astute reader would have noticed, but that is provided that the Persians knew of the doctrine about the Owner and Captain (which we do not know whether this is so), is that the author/s did NOT say that the nativity is without a ruler/confine lord. What this means, provided they knew, is that they allowed an invisible Owner because they knew that there is a difference between the Owner and the Giver of Years.

Please note this is mere speculation on my part. It cannot proved with this surviving text, but it cannot be disproved either.

This is not important; what IS important is to draw your attention to the fact that the Persians were following Dorotheus who was representing a very old tradition (remember what Dorotheus said in first page of Book I, namely that he traveled to Egypt and Babylon and collected the best) where the confine lord is the only ruler of the Giver of Life/Apheta/Hyleg.

Written on 1 Oct 2016, day of Kronos, hour of the Sun, day of the Yang Fire Dragon, hour of the Yang Fire Monkey.

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