Capricorn (astrology)

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Capricornus symbol (bold).svg
Capricornus Astrological Sign at the Wisconsin State Capitol.jpg
Zodiac symbolSea goat
Duration (tropical, western)December 22 – January 20 (2023, UT1)[1]
Zodiac elementEarth
Zodiac qualityCardinal
Sign rulerSaturn

Capricorn (♑︎) (Greek: Αιγόκερως, romanizedAigókerōs, Latin for "horned goat") is the tenth astrological sign in the zodiac out of twelve total zodiac signs, originating from the constellation of Capricornus, the goat.[2] It spans the 270–300th degree of the zodiac, corresponding to celestial longitude. Under the tropical zodiac, the sun transits this area from about December 22 to January 19.[2] In astrology, Capricorn is considered an earth sign, negative sign,[3][4] and one of the four cardinal signs. Capricorn is said to be ruled by the planet Saturn.

There appears to be a connection between traditional characterizations of Capricorn as a sea goat and the Sumerian god of wisdom and waters,[5] who also had the head and upper body of a goat and the lower body and tail of a fish.[6] Later known as Ea in Akkadian and Babylonian mythology, Enki was the god of intelligence (gestú, literally "ear"), creation, crafts; magic; water, seawater and lake water (a, aba, ab).[7]

Cultural significance[edit]

In India, the zodiac sign of Capricorn is celebrated as the Makara Sankranti festival,[8] also known in Nepal as Maghe Sankranti.[9] The Indian astronomical calendar is not based on the western Gregorian or Julian date keeping system. The Gregorian calendar has fixed days in a year and does not accommodate difference in the actual solar year. Therefore, the festival is celebrated on either of January 14 or 15 every year, when, as per the Indian astronomical calendar, the Sun actually enters the Capricorn sign.


See also[edit]



  1. ^ Astronomical Applications Department 2011.
  2. ^ a b dictionary n.d., s.v. Capricorn.
  3. ^ Mayo 1979, pp. 38–41.
  4. ^ Ciubotaru 2008.
  5. ^ Enki n.d.
  6. ^ Adams 2014
  7. ^ Augustin n.d.
  8. ^ "Happy Makar Sankranti 2020: Makar Sankranti significance, history and why it's celebrated". Hindustan Times. January 15, 2020. Retrieved August 4, 2020.
  9. ^ "Celebrating the fervour of Maghe Sankranti". The Kathmandu Post. January 10, 2020. Retrieved August 4, 2020.


External links[edit]