A rare manuscript “The Watsons” written by Jane Austen yesterday went under the hammer and was sold at auction for nearly £1,000,000 to the Bodleian Library in Oxford. This keeps the unfinished and previously “lost” work in the UK. Jane was responsible for writing classic novels like Pride & Prejudice, Sense & Sensibility & Mansfield Park.
Jane Austen was born on 16th December 1775 in Steventon, Hampshire in England at 23.45. She was an optimistic Sagittarius with a social Libran Moon and a perfectionist Virgo Ascendant. The Sun Moon combination is wonderfully open and fun loving, this is a lady who would have loved a party or a social occasion, mixing with people, chatting dancing and having a good time. It also has an out reach and a knowledge of what the people would want. However, Jane was never to be married, and never enjoyed the success that her books have eventually received. The reasons I will explain below.
The Sun sits quietly in the 4th house so Jane her home was her workplace, and what went on there she would keep secluded to the outside world. What did go on inside the Austen household? With Pluto and Mars in the 4th as well, one can assume that there were many arguments, tantrums, even cruelty. Mars square Moon suggest that Jane would have had a fierce temper and would fight back if provoked. Mars & Pluto are in conjunction and suggest that her home would have been a competitive battlefield & more than likely was an upsetting place to be. With Saturn conjunct to the Moon, there seems little doubt to me that the main heart of the problems would have been caused with her relationship with her mother. This combination always shows that the mother rules with a rod of iron. This is compounded as the Saturn Moon conjunction is square to the Mars Pluto one. You can see the repressive hold of this upsetting square aspect and imagine the fights between mother & daughter that would have ensued. Jane’s life at home would not have been a happy one and her emotional life would have caused her pain too. The Saturn Moon conjunction is very difficult as the emotions are very suppressed and one finds it difficult to get into relationships, let alone deal with the disappointments in love which often happen as a result of this aspect. Remember as well that Jane has a Virgo ascendant which is nervous, worries about what other people think of you, is careful, cautious and self-critical. She only ever had one marriage proposal in her life and she turned it down, she led a single life from then on.
Despite the difficulty of this square, there were plus points within it too. Saturn Moon/ Mars Pluto holds a huge amount of talent, drive, emotion, determination and ambition (Mars Pluto in Capricorn). Putting this all together, (Astrology is like putting the pieces of a jigsaw together), we have an outgoing lady (Sagittarius/Libra) held back by nervousness, worry, emotional shyness and a home-life which would have been like living in a prison, with a powerhouse of emotions and ambition bubbling under the surface. The Moon in the first house shows that despite being a gentle and compassionate person, Jane would take her own route to success and would have been fiercely determined to do her own thing. All this potential in Jane desperately needed an outlet.
The square I talk about forms a rare Thor’s hammer formation with the Saturn Mars aspect forming the base. At the point via two sesiquadrate (135 degree) aspects is Uranus in Gemini which is part of an opposition to Mercury in Sagittarius. A Thor’s hammer needs that square energy translated into a creative form for it not to be a totally destructive influence on the persona. That creative outlet which was to propel Jane to international fame was communication through writing. Not only do we in this opposition have a huge Mercury effect – 3rd house Mercury, Uranus in Gemini ruled by Mercury but we have a huge 9th house influence too as Mercury is in Sagittarius ruled by Jupiter and Uranus is in Jupiter’s 9th house of wisdom and internationalism as well as Jupiter sitting here natally too, also in Gemini. Uranus in Gemini/Mercury in Sagittarius shows a far reaching intelligence, it is inquisitive, especially of far off places, wise, curious, progressive and creative. It shows that this lady would touch people all around the world with her talents. The Midheaven showing her work path and public reputation is ruled by Gemini, and of course the Ascendant in Virgo is ruled by Mercury. Last but not least, Mercury makes a obsessive and very focused quindecile to the Midheaven. Everything in this chart says writing, creation, stories, poetry, plays; you name it, Jane would have had a passion for it.
There are two planets I have not touched on yet. Neptune sits on the ascendant and squares to the Sun forming a t-square with that Gemini Midheaven. Neptune trines to Pluto and Mars which gave her great charisma and artistic talent; through it she had a wonderful, inspirational, imagination. Neptune on the Ascendant also hints at escapism. Writing was the escape from all the heartbreak she suffered elsewhere in her life. Interestingly, Jane Austen never was accredited as an author in her day and all the books, poems and plays she wrote were written anonymously. Neptune acts here as a veil, hiding her public image. Her father (represented by the Sun), with whom she would have had a much better relationship than with her mother, helped her in trying to get her manuscripts into the public domain, shown by the close opposition to her Midheaven.
The other planet to mention is Venus. Venus in deep and dark Scorpio sits in the 2nd house of self worth, money, finance and personal possessions. Venus is also peregrine, not connected to any other planets by major aspect and is immensely powerful here. This is a incredible store of deep emotion, of intrigue and desire for relationships, love, harmony and an impassioned interest in women and women’s issues. Women and their relationships, sexual exploitation, scandals and their quest for possessions feature heavily in all Jane’s novels, all influenced by that compulsive Scorpio influence. Why didn’t these desires come out in Jane’s novels rather than in her own life? Because Saturn was also sitting in this second house of self worth as a blocking element. Jane would never have felt lovable, so through her writing all the passionate emotions she couldn’t let out, all the fantasies she wanted to experience but felt unable to face up to herself, came out through the pen in her hand.
Venus in the 2nd house also brings a huge desire for money and it is not surprising that she became a professional writer to fulfil this desire for wealth. Unfortunately that annoying Saturn would have got in the way again. A 2nd house Saturn always means that you will be short of money in your life, and you will struggle for resources and you will have to put in hard work before they come. Saturn also is the planet that represents time. A trine to the Midheaven from Saturn effectively held up her career too, and so it was a long time after her death and the hard graft that Jane had put into her books that success finally came. It is tragic that Jane Austen never saw and accepted the acclaim that her novels now receive, but I am sure that she would have been proud that her work eventually touched millions of readers across the globe.