Many of you are probably wondering what on earth Ophiuchus is, when it’s at home?!! Well (drumroll!) Ophiuchus is the 13th sign of the zodiac! The constellation of Ophiuchus sits in the zodiac belt, and so, in the system of True Sidereal Astrology it is included, as it was by the ancients.

For a bit more of an introduction into sidereal astrology head over here.

Sidereal Ophiuchus – December 7th to December 19th

The Sun actually rises in the constellation of Ophiuchus from 7th December through to 19th December this year. Only a small part of the constellation of Ophiuchus sits in the zodiac belt, so therefore its ‘season’ is very short – just under 2 weeks – and lands between Scorpio and Sagittarius Seasons.

And, yes if you read up about sidereal astrology, these dates are not set in stone, over almost three quarters of a century the dates will change by one day, in accordance with precession.

As mentioned above, the reason that we include Ophiuchus in True Sidereal Astrology is because it appears in the zodiac belt, just as the other 12 signs do.  However, if you’ve come this far with me in exploration of Sidereal Astrology and including a 13th sign is really going to push you over the edge, don’t worry!  If you were to ignore the constellation of Ophiuchus you would say that Scorpio Season runs through until 19th December.  The fact is that because Ophiuchus has been ignored for many centuries in astrological research, there is simply not the body of wisdom on this sign that there is on the other 12.

So Who Needs to Really Read this?

  • People who are born between December 6th (NB see above comment about the dates changing; what this means is depending on how old the person is they may have been born into Ophiuchus season even if they were born on the 6th December, check with me) and December 19th. Being born between these dates means that your ‘Sun’ sign is Ophiuchus and you identify as an Ophiuchus. You most likely see yourself as an instinctual, wisdom seeking healer
  • People who know their astrology chart and can identify that either their Moon or their Ascendant (Rising) is in the sign of  Ophiuchus.
    * If your Moon is in Ophiuchus this means that you need to feel Ophiuchus qualities for your emotional wellbeing – you need to have the opportunity to help others and to constantly revise what you think and feel about things
    * If your Ascendant/ Rising sign is Ophiuchus, this means that this is the sign that was on the Eastern horizon when you were born and it is what you are becoming and developing through this life. You are working towards a transformational, redemptive life experience

Also of course if you are in a significant relationship (parent, child, partner, lover, close friend or colleague) with someone who has an Ophiuchus Sun, Moon or Ascendant (or 6th House) then this could be useful information for you! Enjoy!

Mutable Water/ Ether

Because Ophiuchus does get included in with Scorpio many people think of it as a Water sign.  I do feel though that Ophiuchus is not so much of an emotional energy as the water signs tend to be.  It almost rises above emotion as it seeks healing and resurrection through higher knowledge.  Therefore I feel that it does fit better within the Ether element. According to the dictionary, Ether is “the rarefied element formerly believed to fill the upper regions of space”.  It is also known as a liquid that burns easily, which is kind of nice in terms of linking it to the water element. To me the Ether element in astrology (of which Ophichus is the only sign) takes its energy to a higher, almost intangible, level.

Ether is almost a blend of Air and Water.  As I said, Ophiuchus is not so much an emotional energy, as an intuitive thinking energy.  Remember that Air is all about thought.  Gemini will refresh your memory about that.

If you need any more reminders about what the Water element means in the zodiac, head back to the piece about Cancer, which was the first Water sign.

If you do feel that Water is the most appropriate Element for Ophiuchus, it still has a marked difference with Scorpio because it is a Mutable mode sign.  Remember Scorpio was Fixed Water (deep and still).  The transformational nature of Ophiuchus makes it Mutable – constantly changing – like its other neighbour, Sagittarius, which is Mutable Fire.

Mars, Pluto, Chiron and the Serpent Bearer

Again Ophiuchus can be seen to be ruled by the same planets as Scorpio – Mars (traditional) and Pluto (modern).  But, more approriately I feel, it is also considered to be ruled by the asteroid Chiron, the wounded healer teacher.  Ophiuchus is all about healing, so that fits well. The healing energy of Ophiuchus occurs through transformation of knowledge, perspective and even consciousness.

Chiron is a messenger who translates an incurable wound into a lesson. Chiron is very important in medical astrology because his placement will indicate where we need to journey and learn through a healing crisis of some kind – physical, mental or emotional.

The symbol of Ophiuchus is the Serpent Bearer.  This again relates to the healing energy of Ophiuchus and the association of the snake or serpent symbol with medicine and healing.

The Eighth House

In astrology, the chart is divided into 12 houses, which refer to 12 different areas of life.  If a planet or a sign is ‘in a house’ this will give us the information about which area of life their energetic affect is going to be felt in.

Each of the signs ‘rules’ one of the houses.  This means that they each have a particular area of life in which they are most comfortable, they have a natural affinity to it.

Ophiuchus, in 13 sign astrology is considered to rule the eighth house, along with Scorpio.  The eighth house is all about transformation.  This certainly refers to the soul level work that we are all here to do, but also to healing. In medical astrology the 8th House is where we will find inherited conditions as well as situations where medical intervention is required, including surgery.


When thinking about the relationship between Ophiuchus and the 7 Essential Energies, or Chakras, Scorpio has strong connections to the 6th (Insight) Energy Centre, or 3rd Eye, and the 7th (Connection) Energy Centre, or Crown.

The Insight Energy gives us a clear look inside ourselves – essential for transformation – and the Connection Energy allows us to be supported by and connected to all other beings, including the higher powers.

This is where we leave Ophiuchus.  As I have already explained, there is really not enough research on Ophiuchus in relation to medical astrology yet for me to feel comfortable separating it out from Scorpio.

So for the moment, if you have strong Ophiuchus energy in your chart please refer to the Scorpio blog for more information on things to watch out for health-wise and things to do from a preventative perspective.