Understanding an Astrology Chart

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I thought I’d give an explanation of some of the main things an astrologer will look at when doing an Astrology Chart analysis. From this you should be able to tell how different a personalised chart is from a generalised zodiac sign interpretation.

What am I Seeing?

When you look at an Astrology chart, there are quite a lot of symbols ‘dotted around’. Some you may be familiar with and others not so much.

Charts can be set out in different ways so the zodiac glyphs could be inside the planetary glyphs or vice versa. Some charts display more information than others. My designs nearly all show zodiac glyphs, planetary glyphs, houses and aspects between planets. Some charts have the data printed on but as mine are pieces of art, this information is not included. Here is a very simplified explanation of what is shown in a chart.

The Houses

These often form the outer boundary of the astrology chart. They are numbered from 1-12 anticlockwise and each house represents a life area. The first house is at the 9.00 position if you were looking at the chart as a clock. This house tells how you relate to the world and how others perceive you. The first house ‘cusp’ shows what is called your Rising Sign or Ascendant. This is not the same as your Sun Sign (or ‘Star Sign’) unless you were born at sunrise. When looking for example at a birth chart , imagine that each of the houses represents very approximately 2 hours. Put simply, this wheel makes one complete revolution in 24 hours and your birth chart captures an image of the wheel at the moment of your birth.

The Zodiac Glyphs

These are in the houses, and you may hear someone say for example ‘My third house is in Taurus’. The symbols or glyphs are shown here. These can be shown in different styles. I’ve drawn them as flames in my fire element chart

table showing zodiac symbols alongside their names

Each of the planets (and any other information such as Chiron or the Moon’s Nodes) is in a house (life area). Each house or life area has a Zodiac sign or glyph on the cusp – the start point of the house. Houses may contain more than one sign. The Zodiac sign ‘flavours’ or brings certain qualities to that particular life area. So the person with 3rd House Taurus may be very practical and or stubborn in terms of communicating. S/he may also use financial or material resources in communication.


The Planetary Glyphs

The Sun and Moon are considered as planets in a chart as well Pluto. Other celestial bodies may also be included, but the planets are the start point. Each Zodiac sign is ruled by one or two planets. In a chart each planet has a specific type of energy. Mars for example shows your drive and energy, while Venus shows how you love and how you appreciate beauty. Here are the symbols or glyphs for the planets. A couple can be depicted differently but these are what I choose to use in my designs. Here is a link to show another style

table showing planetary symbols next to the planet's name

As an example then, someone with Mars in Aries in the 10th house would put a lot of fiery and possibly competitive (Aries) energy into their career (10th House). This is just one way of looking at the placement. All other parts of an astrology chart need to be considered as well.


The lines drawn between planets (and other points on a chart) are called ‘Aspects’. Aspects stimulate or moderate the influences of the two planets or points and can be tense or harmonious. This adds another layer of complexity to a chart.

All of this information is a start point for a chart analysis. Lots of other factors are taken into account before someone has their in depth chart interpretation. Hope you enjoyed reading!


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