Barren sign

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In astrology, a barren sign is a sign of the Zodiac that, according to ancient astrological tradition, is not likely to possess strong powers of procreation, i.e. they are "barren".[1][2] The signs most associated with infertility are Gemini, Leo, and Virgo. In addition, Aries, Sagittarius, and Aquarius are also believed to quite often have problems in matters of reproduction and are therefore considered "semi-barren".[3]

William Lilly (1647) in CHAPTER CXVIII of his book Christian Astrology described the signs as follows:

Aries: By reason Mars, a sterill planet hath that for his house, and the Sun for Exaltation, is rather a Sign of Barrennesse than otherwise.

Taurus: Is reputed more fruitful than barren, being the house of Venus, who is fruitful, and the exaltation of the Moon.
Gemini: Is adjudged barren, being the house of Mercury, who discerns nothing of himself.
Cancer is the most fruitful and bountiful Sign, it being the house of the Moon, and the exaltation of Jupiter.
Leo: Is reputed barren, being the house of the Sun, and Lyons bring forth Young rarely.
Virgo: Hath the name of the barren Signe, for Mayds of themselves produce no Births &c.
Libra: Rather a Signe of fecundity, it being the house of Venus, and Saturn his exaltation.[4]
Scorpio: Though the house of Mars, yet generally accepted for fruitful.
Sagittarius: Ever conceived fruitfull, because the house of Jupiter.
Capricorn: A Signe of few children inclining to barrennesse.
Aquarius: Without doubt more fruitful than barren.

Pisces: Very fecund and prolificall, being the House of Jupiter and exaltation of Venus, its Signe of many Children.

In "The Anthology" Valens is translated as describing Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Capricorn and Aquarius as either "unfruitful", "unprolific" or "barren." Contrarily he refers to Taurus as "the wealth-bringing zoidion of the cosmos" and Libra and Scorpio as signs of property loss. He made no statement regarding the fruitfulness of Leo or Libra, possibly meaning that he regards those two signs as neutral or perhaps semi-barren/semi-fruitful.[5]

Most modern astrologists no longer ascribe to this premise.[2]