This is the sign
for Venus, the planet,
our closest neighbour in the planetary system apart from the moon. In
ancient Greece the sign for this planet was drawn
and . In Greece the planet was associated
with Aphrodite and Athena. In the Roman Empire it was associated with Venus, and in
the Phoenician Empire
with Astarte. Earlier, in
region, it was associated with
Inanna (later Ishtar). The symbol
representing all three, Innanna-Ishtar-Astarte, is the
eightpointed star sign .
The planet Venus appears to us on earth as either the Morning star, alone or together with the waning moon, , or as the Evening star, alone or with the crescent of the new moon visible. Venus is the only planet that is unambiguously associated with one and only one graphic structure, . If one plots one of Venus' appearances' (as the Morning star, or as the Evening star) movements in the zodiac during exactly eight years, this structure is the result. See in Group 29 for further data in this respect.
The planet was worshipped by all peoples and cultures of antiquity as the divinity of fertility, the goddess of war, beauty, and love. In its role as the goddess of war and fertility it is associated with the Morning star. In its role as the divinity of sexual love it is associated with the Evening star. In the cradle of our culture, ancient Greece, it was not realized until around 500 B.C. that these two stars were one and the same heavenly body.
The astrologers consider (together with , Jupiter) to be a benefactor, its influence in the birth chart being positive. As a horoscope symbol Venus represents the drive for togetherness, the aesthetic drive, and sensuality. The planet is the ruler of , Taurus, and of , Libra. It is not considered well placed in , Aries, and in , Scorpio.
In the West the planet Venus has always been linked to the female sex, women, in biology, botany, medicine, and other natural sciences.
Lately has been adopted by the women's liberation movement in the form , that is with a pictorial sign of a fist in it.
Since antiquity it can also be found related to the metal copper. The reason for this is that the island of Cyprus in antiquity was a great exporter of copper. It also happened to be one place where the goddess Astarte or Ishtar was highly worshipped. Consequently, when the sign for the planet associated with this goddess of fertility was established as it also became associated to this island of copper (cuprum in Latin, from which the island's name Cyprus is derived).
The day of Venus is Friday, the day of Freja, the fertility goddess in the Nordic countries. In Latin countries Friday is vendredi, viernes, referring to Venus. See the weekday heptagram, , in Group 29.
The use of this sign, however, has not always been consistent. During the eighteenth century it was sometimes used to signify mercury.
In Cabbalistic mysticism it has been used to represent the archangel Anael.
In the variation this sign was used in alchemy for calcinated copper, or copper oxide. See in Group 37 for synonymous signs. Refer to in Group 18 for the process of calcination.