He was born in Provence on December 14, 1503, at mid-day to a Jewish family. In that era, Jews were regarded with great suspicion, and the government was trying to force them to move to another State, or convert to Catholicism, as, indeed, Nostradamus' family did.
In Nostradamus's birth chart there is a very beautiful stellar trigon, formed by the Moon, in Scorpio in the eighth house, by Uranus in Pisces in the twelfth house and the third point formed by not one but three planets, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars, lying in Cancer in the fourth house. We can thus see how the element of water predominates in his birth chart, indicating the remarkable sensitivity, foresight and intuition that characterised the subject, qualities that the Sun in Capricorn in the tenth house, joined with Mercury, channels into tangible outcomes, causing Nostradamus, probably only in his adult years, to assert himself in life and his profession in such an incomparable manner.
The Capricorn element reflects his aptitude for mathematics, astronomy and medicine, the latter being the science he studied at the University of Montpellier until 1525, at which point, due to the epidemic of plague that broke out in France, he was called to dispense medical services throughout the country. He had deduced, and later observed empirically, that a more balanced diet and greater attention to personal hygiene could be an excellent way of preventing the terrible disease that was afflicting France and, using his indubitable creativity, he
invented a pill, red in colour, that seemed to assuage the illness. His remedy brought him fame as a pharmacist. During his many journeys, he met and exchanged information with numerous scholars and leading minds of the Renaissance, who were fascinated by such unusual disciplines as alchemy, astrology and the Kabbala, satisfying in this way his curiosity and his need to scrutinise the human mind through unusual methods, characteristics expressed by the very beautiful, though complex, Scorpion Moon, lying in the eighth house. The luminary indeed forms trigon with Uranus, in Pisces in house 12, which significantly sharpens his gift of foresight and sensibility, allowing him to anticipate the times, both in manners and philosophy, remaining nonetheless always firmly anchored in reality.
An additional trigon, formed by the Moon with Saturn, other than furnishing him with excellent abilities of analysis and summary, paved the way for him, in 1547, his first wife and two children having perished, perhaps because of the plague, to get married for a second time to an important lady, a rich widow (Scorpion Moon in the eighth house in trigon with Jupiter), by whom he had six children. It is indeed in this very year that we see him beginning to move away from medicine, and three years later he published an almanac that aroused such interest he was encouraged to publish new editions every year.
In one of these almanacs, Nostradamus predicted the death of Henry II’s son, four years in advance. When the heir to the throne actually died, Nostradamus’ fame grew. All his life, he would enjoy the favour of the king and queen, but even this didn’t spare him from the fear of falling victim to the severity of the Inquisition, which in that era sent innumerable victims to the stake throughout Europe. For this reason, after having written his first predictions in a forthright and clear manner so as to be understood by all, he began to compose the 1000 quatrains which comprised the predictions for which he is famous today, encrypted so that, for most, they would remain indecipherable.
Nostradamus’ premonitions were so detailed and intense that he was considered an emissary of the Devil by some and a prophet by others, and this ability is easily recognisable in his birth chart in the very beautiful stellar trigon that the Scorpion Moon forms.
He even managed to predict his own death, which occurred on July 2, 1566.
by Carla Pretto
Translated by Nick Skidmore