House Modalities, Elements and Interpretations
Table of Contents
Just like signs of the zodiac have their quality/modality and belong to a certain element of Nature, houses have similar ways of expression.
Angular houses are those defined by starting points of quadrants, meaning they are at horoscope’s angles – 1st, 4th, 7th and 10th house. These houses represent activity and the energy to move forward, and are in a way connected to the nature of Mars.
Succedent houses are those that follow angular ones, protected from all the changes and too much movement. They are closely connected to stability, reminding us a lot of the fixed sign quality. These houses are 2nd, 5th, 8th and 11th.
Cadent houses are 3rd, 6th, 9th and 12th and they are a bit tricky, for they seem to be predecessors to what comes in the next angular house. These are houses connected primarily to the process of learning, but we shouldn’t neglect their role as a basis for anything created by activities done later on in angular houses.
The Four Elements
Similar to zodiac sings, houses also belong to the four elements of nature. Just like their corresponding signs, each of them carries a story in its element. This practically means that the first house corresponds with the sign of Aries, and as such – belongs to the element of Fire. The same goes for every house that follows – the second house belonging to the element of Earth, the third to Air, the fourth to Water, etc.
Each house in one’s natal chart, or any chart for that matter, represents the most personal and earthly tool to be used in any analysis. The house itself represents a place or an area in which a planet is located in. For example, the fourth house will speak of many things, but most literally, it will depict a home of a person and what’s in it. With Venus here, for example, we will see beautiful things, jewelry, money or a lover waiting at home.
It is important to remember that in most cases, the planet will speak of a specific person or thing that the energy is focused on, the sign will give a closed description of the planet, and the house will speak of location of life area in which the planet will show up or manifest. The first house is in a way an exception to this rule, since it speaks directly of the physical body of the person in question. However, it still remains tied to the element of Earth in a way, way more personal than anything else, and mostly unemotional and concrete.
Houses have cusps in different signs of the zodiac, and this gives them a stretch of an arm to be additionally interpreted through their ruler. The house is ruled by the planet that rules the sign it falls into. So to clarify, if the third house falls in the sign of Virgo, meaning its cusp is in this sign, the house’s ruler will be the ruler of Virgo - Mercury.
It is not always easy to define the importance of the house ruler comparing to the nature of the planet itself and the nature of the sign it rules. This is why the best thing to do is keep in mind that angular houses manifest strongly and their rulers represent turning points in everyone’s life. Every other interpretation will be, as everything, a moderate and balanced approach that takes all factors into consideration in just the right amount.