Wednesday, August 08, 2007
The constellation of Libra
Updated 17 AUGUST
A great Danish Book called ’Traveling among the fixed stars’ By Danish author Sigvard Mahler Dam, gives us even more about the stars located inside Libra. I will start with the Northern Claw: Under the name Zuben Eschamali, this author brings more light upon why this constellation has been baptized the scales; He writes that old Arabic salesmen (back then some of them were also astrologers), gave this star the symbolic name of ‘The Full Price’ (Zuben el Genubi) this was to symbolize a ‘good deal’ or a ‘good trade’. The Roman Marcus Manilius who lived around 1st century AD, was a poet and an astrologer. He was truly one of the Last Romans to respect the ancient Greeks, and in his works his appreciation is to be found for the Greeks. The Danish author Sigvard Mahler Dam brings light upon one of Marcus Manilius’ poems, which is attributed to the constellation of Libra: “When springtime begins to raise, blessed is he, who is born under Libras balance. As judge he shall weigh the burdens of life and death; He will order the scales of his authority upon the world and make law. Cities and kingdoms will tremble before him, and be guided by his commandments alone, while after his stay upon earth, judgment in the heavens awaits for himself.” this was in relation to Augustus birth (22/9 62 B.C) The first part of Libra occupied his horoscope.

Some believe Libra to be the Chariot of the Rich one (another name for the underworld god Hades, whose name was rarely spoken, because of the fear of him). He is supposed to have had a Golden chariot that was pulled by four pinch black horses he used this chariot to visit the upper-world (so the chariot is his tool for traveling among these two worlds.) I also found this story in a book from 1888, actually it is two stories, and they contain more information about other constellations too. But the names have changed, but this is the story which portrays The Rich one’s (Hades) nature and trips. - Again it is believed that Libra represents the Golden Chariot of Hades, again an object.
Abduction of Hippodamia Peter Paul Rubens  1637-1638
Abduction of Hippodamia,
painting by Peter Paul Rubens 1637-1638

The first Story is entitled “Theseus and Peirithoos” (Pirithous)
Of all the heroes that Theseus drew out into the world with, no one was dearer to him than Peirithoos. They were near and dear friends, that is why loyal friends in the old days would say „They love each other as much as Theseus and Peirithoos” Peirithoos was the King of Lapiths in Thessaly, when he married Hippodamia (Tamer of horses), many others were gathered, and even the fairest Centaurs were guests at their wedding. ‘The famous Battle of Lapiths and Centaurs’ occurred, because the Centaurs had a deep love for vine. One of the Centaurs became too drunk at the wedding meal and kidnapped Peirithoos’ wife. This off course caused the Wedding celebrations to become a battle ground, where Theseus and Perithoos Truly showed the Centaurs that they were indeed great heroes, many came to fall in this battle. Peirithoos’ wife died a short time after, and Perithoos life went on. Later on Peirithoos heard rumors about the beautiful Helena, who he then wanted to marry. But the Helena is said to have been too young at this time (some say that she was only 13 years old when Peirithoos wanted to marry her). Helena’s father refused Peirithoos request, so Peirithoos kidnapped Helena with the help of his friend Theseus. But Helena had two brothers, the Twins called Castor and Pollux (the constellation called The Twins). They were even braver and considered stronger than Theseus and Peirithoos, they were called Zeus’ sons also known as the Dioscuri (dios kouroi), meaning the "youths of Zeus". They began the hunt to retrieve their Dear sister Helena, which they successfully did, but their joy did not last for long. Personal Note: I just wanted to mention that Under the Aries-post; you can read more about this story, which speaks about more than one constellation, and how they play a part in the rescue of Helena (Helle). In this post you are also told how come their joy didn’t last long. --- The book dating from 1888 goes on, telling us that a short time after the twins had found Helena, Castor was mortally wounded in battle and was about to die. His brother Pollux filled with grief prayed to the Gods, and asked if he could share half of his brother’s fate. When Zeus heard his son’s prayer, he grated that for six month of the year they should live in the underworld, but the other six months they should live in the heavens. In the heavens they stand to help humans, and when ever there is a storm, the sailors would pray to the Dioscuri. If there then appeared two small flames upon the mast, then it was said that the twins (Gemini) was there to help.
The second Story is entitled “Theseus’s death”
[This is the story which is believed to contain the constellation of Libra, in the scenes that it is the tool for Hades to travel between the underworld and the upper world.] This is also from the book dating from 1888; Peirithoos had not lost his courage because of the unfortunate outcome with Helena’s Kidnapping, actually the opposites happen, and he got the foolish idea of kidnapping the beautiful wife of the fearful Hades. Hades wife was the fair Persephone. Again he would have the help pf his loyal friend Theseus. But soon after they had reached the underworld, Hades was aware of their presences. Hades caught them and welded them to a rock, where they were to spend the rest of their sad days. But later on Hercules had to go to the underworld, and recognized the twins, he felt pity for them and asked Hades to let them go. Hades was much too angry to let them go, but he agreed to let one of them go, which he chose to be Theseus. But Peirithoos had to spend the rest of his days welded to the rock in the underworld, because of his deed. - The Book from 1888, goes into another story at this point, it is as entangled as the mythology in itself. But other authors believe that Demeter who was Persephone’s mother had become so distort by her daughters kidnapping. Hades had kidnapped Persephone from her family in the upper world, and Zeus had accepted it. Demeter, who was the mother of all corn and reproduction of the land, became so sad that it in turn affected the nature. People began to starve because of the lack of corn, and bread, leaving the land in a drought. Zeus quickly realizes that this could not go on, or the new world would end. Zeus argues for his wife’s daughter, Zeus proposes a deal; if Persephone divides her time between the upper world and the underworld. In that for Four months she must stay in the underworld with Hades, and the rest of the year she would be free to visit her Mother (This must also mean that Persephone is allowed to use the Golden Chariot of Hades, which in our case was said to be the constellation of Libra, the only thing to travel between the worlds). Hades agrees to Zeus’s offer, and Demeter is satisfied, and nature returns to its normal state. This is supposed to be the reason as to why the world would retrieve into winter (This is what some authors think, but I do not agree on this point, because of Dike and her sisters.)
END of Update
The only constellation in our modern Zodiac circle that is an object, which has no human attributes. The Scales is the object of fairness, most often used as an object of “Just”. The constellation of Libra has always been known as the Scales, even as fare back as in ancient Egypt. But at the same time, it is also recognized as being a part of Scorpions constellation. The names of the stars that are located inside Libra are Alpha- Zuben El Genubi which is the Arabic words for ‘The Southern Claw’ and Beta- Zuben Eschamali, which is the Arabic words for ‘The Northern Claw’, this directly indicate that Libra is also a part of Scorpions constellation. - No wonder people might be confused by our constellations. But let me give you my personal theory, about this constellation.
goddess Demeter
Remember from the earlier post about Virgo, that I mentioned that authors thought she might be both Dike and Demeter? I spoke shortly about Demeter being the constellation Virgo especially when the maps depict Virgo with the Corn in her hand. And when Virgo was depicted with the scales in her hand, she was a representation of Dike (Justice). Dike and Demeter should not only be seen as ‘fairy’ like ladies, because they have two personalities, which most ancient gods have (again the Balancing theme). Dike and Demeter could be as cruel as they could be nice. The Scales/Libra is located in the Scorpions claw, which is of a rather harsh nature. Another thing worth mentioning and noticing is that on one side we have the fearsome Scorpion, and on the other side we have the beautiful Virgin Virgo. Two Very opposites natures, yet they are bound together by Libras balancing nature. Libra will always be partly affected by the constellations around it. The harsh nature of Libra belongs to the constellation of Virgo when she is depicted as Dike. Old Greek sailors would pray to her, when they reached shore. Some authors believe that Libra might be attributed with the goddess called Themis, which is probably the most proper presentation of Libra. Themis, the mother to the three Horae’s Dike, Eirene and Eunomia. The Horae’s are said to be a second generation, which in turn tell us that Themis is the first generation. Themis means; the goddess of law and order; the patroness of existing rights. Themis was one of the twelfth Titans, which where the children of Uranos and Gaia. The goddess attributed to Libra, seems even harder to pin point than Virgo was. Libra is called the youngest sign of our modern Zodiac circle this is probably because some believe that it did not exist before, only as part of the Scorpions constellation. I personally believe that the Libra constellation – The Scales also was identified by itself in ancient days. Different authors have different opinions as to what legends belong to the constellation of Libra. Libra's legends are to be found among All the legends and myths. Themis was a Titan who lived and died by an undeniable order, from a much older world. She is the true order which IS NEEDED for a society to exist, or to say it with a better word – Coexist. She was the mother of Dike and because she came before, she was seen as a much greater oracle at Delphi than Dike – Again Dike being the second generation of the Titans blood. Homer wrote that Themis’ position among the Olympian gods by telling us that she opened for gatherings among the gods. EGYPT: I personally place the great Goddess Matt as being attributed to the constellation of Libra/ The scales.
Ancient Egyptian papyrus of Ani
Normally Matt is illustrated as a goddess, but sometimes she is shown in a more direct manner, such as we find in the judgment scenes (Some of them). As this papyrus of ANI above shows, then you will see the feather (symbol of Matt) above the Scales. This does not mean that this is a direct depiction of the constellation Libra, or has anything to do with this constellation directly. This was only to illustrate that they indeed used this symbol of the scales, and its meaning, And most often in their tombs (or with other word; place of passing’s).
Ancient Egyptian the Scales - Libra Egyptian the constellation of Libra by Karima Lachtane


  1. Hi,

    What a great find! I'm researching Persephone for a Blog Im going to write about Eris (as Persephone.) being the rightful ruler of Libra. How great to see that Libra was actually Pluto's chariot and you have included the scales in the shape of Matt.
    I'm very interested to see the connection between the Eqyptian Gods and the Greco/Roman.
    I will put you on my Blog list. Why do you keep your bad comments? They are ignorant people. I'd take them off if I were you.

  2. Dear Marina,

    Thank you for the comment, it sounds like a interesting blog you are making, please do give me your URL, so I can visit and read? :) You are probably right, I should delete all those ignorant comments, but again I am a Libra :) and maybe one day they will see/read their own comment and re-think their short or otherwise foolish comment, and not comment so 'lame' again ;0)

    Karima -WB

  3. yo this is some killer info my friend thank you very much i will hopefully show you the outcome of the knowledge that was just learned

  4. Dear Tommy C,

    I am deeply grateful that you like the information in this post.
    May you have a wonderful evening,

  5. Anonymous6:42 AM

    Hi Karima,
    I just stumbled upon your "Blog" or website tonight and I find it extremely helpful. I do not know you, but, I do trust everything you say and KNOW ,rather than believe, that this information is valuable.
    Please keep in touch if possible.
    Your Unknown friend,
    P.S. dont know how to sign up for this. Help me out,email me:

  6. Dear Jacob

    First off I deeply thank you for your comments!
    I must say, do not just trust (even thou I am deeply thankful that you feel this way) but the person that I am, will always say, search for your self and you will truly know, Even I make mistakes, and maybe you find something where I made a mistake, and then you could help me correct it. I will never claim to know anything (like the old said; I am wiser than normal, because I know that in the end (or when it comes down to the nitty gritty) we as people know Nothing, therefore we will always be the student of life as well as everything else. – I hope that made sense in the Good way?
    I will send you an email, within the week, need to be with my family in this time, Christmas is the time for Family love and forgiveness and inspiration.

    Your Unknown Friend - Karima

    PS: I will guide you in the sign up process in the email that I will send you, I hope that this is alright?

  7. Very interesting article. It features in deed that history of Libra. Also it tackles its origins from both Greek and Egyptian culture. You really did your homework. Kudos!


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