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French Astrology in the 20th Century
by Patrice Guinard

-- translation James Elliot --

An outline of this text appears in an appendix to my thesis (1993). See also my "Top 10 English and French Astrological Books of the Twentieth Century", 15topboo.html.

Two centuries passed between Eustache Lenoble's Uranie (1697) [see, in French, 10lenob.html] and the first treatises of Fomalhaut (1897), Selva (1900) and Choisnard (1901), two centuries in which French astrology, failing to be purposefully rejected from the field of knowledge, nevertheless became occult, due in part to its inability to align itself with the secularized model of thinking or to conform itself to the technico-scientific canons of the Age of the Enlightenment.

The following is an analysis of the major trends that mark the birth and expansion of French astrological thinking in the 20th century. Are astrologers keepers of a knowledge, of a culture? Will some of them appear in tomorrow's encyclopedias? Will ideological bias concerning astrology decline? I answer "yes" to those questions; showing therefore the relevance of this compilation. Due to his specific knowledge and because he is disengaged from the intellectual research developed in other branches, the contemporary astrologer seems to be marginalized. Alas very few bridges link astrology to the social sciences, philosophy and epistemology. Astrologers are trailing behind the progress of the different domains of research. I explain why in the second part of my Manifesto [see 07athem1.html].

Not only do astrologers ignore ancient history, but also the most recent. Popular and "cookbook" style authors do not mention their sources. Some merely offer shortened bibliographies. Even serious astrologers are relunctant to quote their predecessors : for example Nicola who gives the impression - after reading his works from 1964 to 1977 - that he alone invented astrology.

Some might deplore the absence of their favorite mentor in this compilation of French-speaking astrologers. Nevertheless, may I suggest that the number of astrologers still being read in a few decades from now will be far less than the number of astrologers presented in this study. I have mentioned authors whose originality is questionable and that are only included because of their influence. I don't think I have dismissed any worthy astrologer. In my opinion, two or three of them might still be of interest for future generations.

If the 60's and 70's are to be considered the golden age of French astrology, one can only witness a void in the last two decades of the 20th century. If French astrology has declined during this period, compared to the growing English influence, I do not think talent or vocation are at issue; it is mainly because of the ideological hardening of editorial policies towards astrology. In the first part of the century Choisnard could publish his works through Ernest Leroux, publisher of historians Bouché-Leclercq and Cumont or through Alcan, the prestigious publisher of philosophers and psychologists. Volguine was still published by Flammarion, Gauquelin by Denoël, Barbault by Le Seuil and Verney by Fayard. The astrologers of the last part of the century have to deal with minor publishers whose series are controlled by ignorant staff. Astrology has become a product to sell, instead of a craft to practice. This is how the ideological logic of the Market eclipsed the efforts of research during the last twenty five years of the century (see, in French, 09ed1tem.html).

1. FOMALHAUT (pseudonym of Abbot Charles Nicoullaud)
- born May 3, 1854 at 9 am (09:00) in Paris. Died in 1925 (source : De Herbais de Thun, 1944)
(born March 3, 1854 and died in 1923 according to other sources)
- Freemason and author of a classic, the Manuel d'astrologie sphérique et judiciaire (Paris, Vigot, 1897), in which the trans-neptunian Pluto is mentioned (see, in French : 06syssol.html).

2. F. Charles BARLET (pseudonym of Albert Faucheux)
- born October 12, 1838 at 1.35 pm (13:35), in Paris. Died in 1921 (source : De Herbais de Thun, 1944)
- occultist, scholar, bibliophile, founder of the magazine La Science Astrale (1904-1907). Wrote few documents on astrology. - his main work, Les génies planétaires (Paris, Le Voile d'Isis, 1921), was first published in "L'Initiation" and "La Science Astrale" magazines.
- his pupil Abel Haatan (pseudonym of Abel Thomas) is the author of the Traité d'astrologie judiciaire (Paris, Chamuel, 1895).

3. Henri SELVA (pseudonym of Arthur Herrmann Vlès)
- born June 8, 1861 at 11 pm (23:00) in Baden Baden. Died in July 1944 in Paris.
(sources : De Herbais de Thun, 1944 ; and P. Guinard : email received May 9, 2008)
- Jewish born author, a pioneer in rational and statistical research, founder of the short-lived magazine Le Déterminisme Astral (1904-1905).
- published an adaptation of Morin de Villefranche, La théorie des déterminations astrologiques (Paris, Bodin [1902]; éd. Traditionnelles, 1976; 1981), and La domification ou construction du thème céleste en astrologie (Paris, Vigot, 1917), which studies several house systems.
- his main work remains the Traité théorique et pratique d'astrologie généthliaque (Paris, Chamuel, 1900). "Astral influences" are caused by the integration of suprasensitive forces by the nervous system, in the form of rhythms indicated by light. Selva recommends the calculation of the apparent positions of the planets according to the location in which they are observed (and not their projection on the ecliptic) and rejects fictitious factors (nodes, hypothetical planets...) such as those which do not respond to a significant periodic cycle.
- a major influence on Nicola

4. Paul CHOISNARD (pseudonym of Paul Flambart)
- born Febuary 13, 1867 at 11 pm (23:00) in Tours. Died on Febuary 9, 1930 in his famous 63rd climateric year.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut, 1994, from Luc de Marré)
- graduate of the École Polytechnique, author of 30 books, founder of the short-lived magazine L'influence Astrale (1913-1914); undoubtedly the main influence of French astrology in the XXth century. His works deal with the main branches of astrological research (technical and statistical, historical, epistemological).
- author of Influence astrale (or Essai d'astrologie expérimentale, Paris, Chacornac, 1901; 1913; 1926) : "For the anti-scientific astrologers, astrology only consists of applying - with more or less skill -  the incoherent aphorisms found in ancient texts, which they claim to be tradition, without any care for verification" (preface to the 1913 edition, p.31).
- author of Langage astral (Paris, Chacornac, 1902; 1921; 1928; 1930; and a 5th revised edition in 1940). Far more practical than the previous, it has charts with commentaries, and more than 200 data entries. He introduces the circular and zodiacal representation of the natal chart : "I draw a circle with twelve equal sectors figuring, by its circumference, the Ecliptic (or apparent orbit of the Sun) with the twelve signs of the zodiac." (p.68)
- author of La loi d'hérédité astrale (Paris, Chacornac, 1919), which proposes the hypothesis of hereditary laws of an astral nature and stipulates the transmission by the parents of a certain planetary sensitivity, indicated by the angles of the natal chart, and by a tendency of the child to be born under heavens similar to his genitors. He influenced Michel Gauquelin who worked on his hypothesis and gave them a new justification.

- Choisnard is the pioneer of empirical astrology, "demonstrative", claiming to be scientific, founded on the research of "facts". Astrology would be the sole discipline that establishes correspondences between human faculties and exterior objects. Modern statistical astrology was born with him (Luca Gaurico and his Tractatus astrologicus, John Goad and his Astro-Meteorologica being his predecessors). One hundred years later, one can consider this approach quite naive, rooted in the positivist context of the beginning of the century, and that the "experimental evidence" of planetary "influences" gives rise to many questions. This astrologer can be credited with: the mistrust towards all practical applications of his "results", his criticism of astrological predictions (be it individual or mundane), and his feeling that one must remain cautious in the field of counseling, and even asking the suspension of charts' interpretation.

5. JULEVNO (pseudonym of Jules Evenot)
- born March 16, 1845 at 3 pm (15:00), in Vannes. Died in 1915 (source : De Herbais de Thun, 1944)
(According to his wife, born at 4 pm (16:00) in Questemberg, Morbihan department)
- Hellenist and Latin scholar, translator of Ptolemy and Thomas Burgoyne. Author of the classic compilation Traité d'astrologie pratique (Paris, Chacornac, 1912-1921-1927, 3 vols.)

6. Eugène CASLANT
- born December 1, 1865 at 10 pm (22:00), in Nanteuil-le-Haudouin (near Senlis). Died in 1940.
(source : De Herbais de Thun, 1944)
- graduate of the École Polytechnique, colonel in the military, author of perpetual ephemeris.
- in his main work, Les bases élémentaires de l'astrologie (Paris, Éd. Traditionnelles, 1976-1978, 2 vol.), published posthumously, Caslant claims to belong to a "scientific", but not statistical astrology. This turgid work remains hard to read.

7. Gustave-Lambert BRAHY
- born Febuary 1, 1894 at 11 pm (23:00), in Grivegnée (outskirts of Liège). Died in 1989.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut, 1994, from Luc de Marré)
- lecturer, leader of Belgian astrology, founder of the Revue Belge d'Astrologie (1926), which was renamed Demain in 1930.
- author of predictions (mundane) and financial reports.
- his most noted book, Fluctuations boursières et influences cosmiques (Institut Astrologique de Belgique, 1933; 2nd edition Bruxelles, Demain, 1941), is a study of the economic and stock market cycles.

8. Karl Ernst KRAFFT
- born May 10, 1900 at 12.45 pm (12:45), in Bâle. Died in 1945.
(source : De Herbais de Thun, 1944)
- international lecturer, author of a number of articles and books in French and German. Maintains the idea of an influence of cosmic radiations on the endocrine glands.
- author of Influences solaires et lunaires sur la naissance humaine (Paris, Maloine, 1928).
- in his celebrated Traité d'astro-biologie (Paris, Legrand & Lausanne, Porchet, 1939) he generalizes - with numerous samples - the statistical work of Choisnard on social activity and heredity.
- founder of "typocosmie" (typocosmy), adopted by his senior, Swiss psychologist Adolphe Ferrière (1879-1960), which is a reflection on the astral archetypes whose combinations characterize the phenomena of the visible world. He repudiates the statistical approach - of which he was a leader - by showing its limits and shortcomings, and comes back to a reflection on symbols.
- his Correspondance (ms University of London, Ann Arbor), offers interesting insights on his life and thoughts: for example his disastrous speculations on the stock market ("I only have contempt for the New York stock market; their recent collapse cost me all the earnings I had made this fall, and more money on top of that!", letter from December 28, 1931)  and his belief (September 1939) that the Jews wanted WW2. Krafft died in the Buchenwald concentration camp in 1945.


- born Febuary 4, 1891 at 7 am (07:00), in Villeneuve-St-George. Died in 1989.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut, 1994, from L'Astrologue, No. 85, 1989)
- engineer, disciple of Choisnard, chief editor of Astrologie magazine (founded in 1934), vice-president of the Société Astrologique de France (1934-1937), and president of the 4th International Congress of Astrology (Paris, 1937).
- author of the Bases scientifiques de l'astrologie (Paris, Chacornac, 1937; éd. Traditionnelles, 1966; 1976), a classic technical manual for astrologers.

10. Dom NÉROMAN (pseudonym of Pierre Rougié)
- born June 18, 1884 at night, in Gramat (Lot department). Died in 1953 (source : Patrice Guinard, from civil record).
(according to himself, born at 11pm [23:00]).
- mining engineer, founder of the Collège Astrologique de France (C.A.F.) in 1933, editor of Sous le Ciel magazine (1936-1940); major influence in French astrology after the death of Choisnard, vindictive and sharp critic, a captivating personality whatever may think De Herbais de Thun.
- author of 20 books [some on philosophy] : Grandeur et pitié de l'astrologie (Paris, Sorlot, 1940) [cf. in French, 09placm.html], and Traité d'astrologie rationnelle (Paris, Sous le Ciel, 1943), in which the term "astral impression" can be found (p.387).

- Néroman's astrology, speculative, extremely complex in its details (hence unworkable), multiplies structures, creates new concepts, develops new techniques (the "Domigraphe"), and systematizes the problematics, while trying to find the internal coherence of the astrological corpus. The Rulerships (Rulers and Exaltations) that are the cornerstone of the theory, are established according to the 12 zodiacal signs' equation with the "12 planetary factors" (including Earth and asteroids). Néroman wants to make a clean sweep of the past and "tradition" and suggests that one should not satisfy oneself with vain words in considering "scientific" astrology. He is the first French astrologer to understand the importance of restructuring the astrological corpus, which would then become independent from a "tradition" to which one would not adhere blindly, and of the said scientific methods (essentially statistical) which deprive him of the essential - its systematic coherence. Nicola will follow the same trend, with different tools.

11. Henri GOUCHON
- born March 1, 1898 at 7.30am (07:30), in Roreto Chisone (near Pinerolo, Italy). Died in 1978.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut, 1994, from Cahiers Astrologiques, No. 195)
- author, in collaboration with Jacques Reverchon, of the popular Dictionnaire astrologique (Paris 1935-1937-1940, 3 vols.; Paris, Dervy, 1975).

12. Léon LASSON
- born September 17, 1901 at 2.51 pm (14:51), in Saint-Bucil (near Grenoble), France. Died in 1989.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut, 1994, from Patrice Louaisel, in Astrolabe, No. 16)
- author of Astrologie mondiale: Quinze ans de paix sur l'Europe (Bruxelles, Demain, 1938). This book written to restore the somewhat tarnished reputation of predictions in mundane astrology turned out to be a fiasco (see also Gabriel Trarieux d'Egmont's Que sera 1939? (Paris, Flammarion, 1938) and see 07athem2.html, note 31).
- his best work, Ceux qui nous guident (Paris, René Debresse, 1946), influenced the research of Michel Gauquelin. Lasson's statistical research, applied to the daily cycle of the planets as opposed to the annual cycle used by Choisnard and Krafft, determines the "Gauquelin curves" and shows the presence, more often than on average, of a specific planet on the angles of the chart according to the native's activity : Mars for military, Saturn for scientists, but also Venus for artists or Neptune for mystics.

13. Alexandre VOLGUINE
- born March 3, 1903 (Grégorian style) at 5.45 am (05:45) in Novaja Praga (near Kirovograd, Ukrain). Died in 1976.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut in 600 personnalités des Poissons, Brussels, 1982).
- scholar, historian, instigator in the translation of ancient documents, founder of the Cahiers Astrologiques (Nice) in 1938, considered the best French astrology magazine, published until 1983.
- brought back into favour the "ruler of nativity" and developed the "planetary frames" technique (close to the midpoints of the German Witte)
- author of Astrologie Lunaire (Nice, Cahiers Astrologiques, 1936; Paris, Dervy, 1972), and of L'ésotérisme de l'astrologie (Paris, Dangles, 1953). Opposed to statistical research, too cramped and simplified, he denounced the compromises made by an astrology that went astray influenced "by a materialistic modern mentality" (p.18), and adheres to a metaphysical conception - trans-historic and trans-cultural - of astrology, that would incorporate Indian, Chinese, and Mexican contributions.
- his best work remains L'astrologie chez les Mayas et les Aztèques (Nice, Cahiers Astrologiques, 1946), cited by Lester Ness in the annotated bibliography of his work, Written in the stars: Ancient zodiac mosaics (Warren Center (Pennsylvania), Shangri-La Publications, 1999, p.220), which follows his doctoral thesis in 1990.
- Volguine's astrology is quite dated, and his planetary values grid, that is still in use, offers some fanciful rulerships.

14. Jean VERDIER
- born August 6, 1886 at 5.27am (05:27) in Tourcoing (source : De Herbais de Thun, 1944).
- engineer, author of Ce que disent les astres (Paris, Stock, 1940; Stock, 1970), a classic book inspired by the works of the German Herbert von Klöckler.

15. Jacques REVERCHON (pseudonym : Brulard)
- born March 27, 1909 at 0.43 am (00:43) in Paris. Died in 1985? (source : De Herbais de Thun, 1944)
(according to Jacques Halbronn, he was born at 12.30 pm)
- collaborated with Gouchon for the two last volumes of the Dictionnaire astrologique, author of cyclic ephemeris (1938) praised by Krafft, author of a bilingual brochure, Value of the Astrological Judgements and Forecasts (Yerres, 1971), which is a radical critique of astrological predictions (notably of André Barbault's works) and contributor to Françoise Schneider-Gauquelin's magazine in 1983.

16. Armand BARBAULT (pseudonym : Rumélius)
- born April 2, 1906 at 9.51 am (09:51) in Champoulet (near Briare). Died in 1974.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut, 1994, in Cahiers Astrologiques, No. 149)
- André Barbault's elder brother, engineer and alchemist, author of L'or du millième matin (Paris, J'ai Lu, 1970).
- his first astrology articles were published in Consolation magazine (1936).
- author of Technique de l'interprétation: Les bases naturelles de l'astrologie (Paris, France-Belgique, 1947; Dervy, 1986).

- born May 9, 1898 at 7 am (07:00) in Paris. Died in 1986.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut (1994), from Patrice Louaisel, in Astrolabe, No. 16)
- college director, author of a number of educational books for beginners, Initiation à l'astrologie globale (Paris, éd. Traditionnelles, 1976), from the courses she gave in the winter of 1953-54, and Assimil astrologique (Paris, éd. Traditionnelles, 1969; 1977).
- in her main theoretical work, L'horoscopie cartésienne (Paris, éd. Traditionnelles, 1965), she engages in a reflection on analogy, that should convey "a relationship and not a similarity" (p.41), and on symbols : "We do not agree with astrologers who think symbols are enough to establish astrology's basis, which would give it value, not only of a universal value, but also of cause. This, in terms of thought, is inadmissible" (p.159-160). She sets herself on "the (philosophical) pure thought side" as opposed to the "scientific thought" of Nicola (p.58), like the analogical and empirical research of André Barbault (p.25).

- Following the example of Dom Néroman and Descartes (!), "Santa" recommends to make a clean sweep of the past, so as to rebuild astrology. Astrologer-philosopher, she put forth the idea that the astrological exercice is essentially reflexive (theoretical and practical), which implies a permanent confrontation of the astrological discourse to reality, and criticizes the sterility of an unrefined empiricism that would not emerge as a modelization. Another important idea concerns the need for a constructivist approach to the chart by its global interpretation, which necessitates the hierarchical organization of the factors (planetary values), a subordination of the planets between themselves (the notion of "planetary link"), and finally a simplification of the chart, otherwise this globalization would be out of reach of the mind's abilities. This results in a critique of standard manuals : "All these meanings [planets in signs, planets in houses, aspects...] have a worthy value as documentation, but only as documentation." (in Cahiers Astrologiques, 104, 1963, p.175). These excellent ideas have had a decisive influence on a generation of practitioners and gave birth to a French specificity. Claire Santagostini is the first great lady of French astrology, and the significance of the works of her eldest, Janduz, alias Jeanne Duzéa (1874-1954), is far less important.

18. Alexander RUPERTI
- born May 23, 1913 at 10.08 pm (22:08) in Stuttgart. Died in 1998.
(source : Jacques de Lescaut (1994), from Lois Rodden's AstroData News, No. 3, 1986)
- international lecturer, naturalized British, disciple of Dane Rudhyar, whose teachings he spread through his network of humanistic astrology, author of a number of articles.
- his main works are Cours sur l'astrologie psychologique de Rudhyar (Bruxelles, 1948-49, 2 vol.), and Les cycles du devenir (Cycles of Becoming; French translation by Marief Cavaignac, Monaco, Le Rocher, 1981).

19. André BARBAULT
- born October 1, 1921 at 5 pm (17:00) in Champignelles, France (47N47, 3E03)
(source : from himself in several books)
- author of some fifty books. With Nicola, he was a pioneer of the "cookbook" type of delineation (Astroflash, 1967), founder of L'Astrologue magazine (1968), he became well known and respected in the field of mundane astrology.
- benefited from the teachings of his brother Armand, his mentor Jean Carteret and Claire Santagostini.
- his work De la psychanalyse à l'astrologie (Paris, Le Seuil, 1961), was meant to enhance astrology to psychology's level (p.30), by adorning it with questionable Freudian and neo-Freudian themes (Sun-Father, Moon-Mother, Mars-Son...), by exploring the steps of Oedipal childhood and by interpreting character traits by "types" and "complexes" (Icarus, Prometheus, Cain...) inherited from the philosopher Gaston Bachelard.
- in his main work Les astres et l'histoire (Paris, Pauvert, 1967), he proposes an astrological reading of recent history from the combined cycles of slower moving planets (from Jupiter to Pluto).

- Despite his empirical approach of astrology, André Barbault has a philosophical streak, even if he owes a lot to his collegues for the characterological and "symbolist" delineation of astrological factors. With the passing of years, he specialized in prediction, particularly mundane, according to him the only way to validate astrology. Unfortunately the planetary concentration index, which he inherited from Gouchon, shows a minimum for 1914-18, 1942-45, but also for 1954-57 and 1981-85, years that were forecasted as major upheavals that never happened. The combined cycles of the slower moving planets seem to have shown at least one sizeable result: the fall of the Soviet regime with the Saturn-Neptune conjunction of 1989. It remains to be seen if this "experimental result" is not the tree that hides the forest. One can remain skeptical on the issue of knowing whether the planetary cycles can lead to a forecast of factual nature, and to question the reasons that would make a geopolitical power associated at a time of its history with one given cycle rather than with another. The empirical approach does not give an inkling of an answer, even less an attempt to formalize the model.
See Value of the Astrological Judgements and Forecasts

20. Michel GAUQUELIN
- born November 13, 1928 at 10.15pm (22:15) in Paris 14 (Died on May 20, 1991 (suicide) in his 63rd climateric year)
(source : Jacques de Lescaut, 1994).
- married to Marie Schneider from 1954 to 1985, who said : "He was something of a medieval tyrant, not easy to live with."
- author of a number of books and articles, published in many languages (a bibliography comprising 150 references has been published by Suitbert Ertel in Astro-Psychological Problems, 8.2, 1992).
- his first works, Les hommes et les astres (Paris, Denoël, 1960), and Le dossier des influences cosmiques (Paris, Denoël, 1973) remain the most important (see 10athem3.html, around note 56, and 11domi2e.html, around note 40).

- This astrologer "in spite of himself", with a significant influence even outside of the astrological milieu, has criticized the outdated methodology of his predecessors (Choisnard, von Klöckler, Krafft, Lasson) and introduced the necessary astronomical and demographic corrections for reliable psycho-statistical research. Astral influences would only comprise 4 and later 5 planets (Mars, Moon, Saturn, Jupiter and Venus): the "Gauquelin planets" that are the median planets" (niveau "Existence" of the R.E.T. planetary representation system of Nicola: cf. infra), answer to the presupposed concrete existentials (socio-professional categories, obvious character traits) put in place by statistics to test them.

21. Jean-Pierre NICOLA
- born May 8, 1929 at 8am (08:00), Nice (source: Patrice Guinard (r.p.: 1979) and Jacques de Lescaut, 1994)
- influenced a number of astrologers and teacher to - among others - Yves Lenoble, Max Lejbowicz, the Belgians Yves Thieffry and Jacques Vanaise, Françoise Hardy, Catherine Aubier, Jean-Pierre Vezien, Bernard Blanchet, Jean-Paul Citron...
- chief editor of Carré, Astrologique (1976-1979) and Les Cahiers Conditionalistes (since 1980) magazines.
- author of astrometric research on the solar system in 1971 and 1992 (see, still in French, 06syssol.html), also tried to bring rationality to the astrological corpus.
- his two main works remain La condition solaire (Paris, éd. Traditionnelles, 1965), and Pour une astrologie moderne (Paris, Le Seuil, 1977).
- created a number of models to improve the astrological corpus and automatize interpretation. These models are largely discussed and analyzed in my thesis : "The Reflexological Zodiac", based on the works of Russian psychologist Ivan Pavlov (see, still in French, 16zodi.html), the R.E.T. planetary grid (see 08planet.html), the S.O.R.I system applied to the 12 classic houses (see, in English, 11domi2e.html, note 46) and the theory of planetary Ages from their sideral revolutions (see the oncoming part of my thesis, 7/12).

- This reinterpretation of the corpus leads less towards a valid systemic coherence, than to an ostentatious use of the classic tools of the astrologer, not exempt from a jargon that duplicates the one already used by the practioneer opposite his uninitiated client. The conditionalist discourse is presented as an untouchable revelation. Nicola does not easily admit criticism and prefers to work in a closed circuit, instead of mingling with other astrologers. With time, like Freud a few decades earlier, he parted from his best collaborators. He is the eternal enemy of André Barbault criticizing his laxity and his hostility towards him. Their never-ending sterile quarrels are legendary in the French astrological milieu. What is pitiful is that Nicola used the same intimidating actions and behaviour towards his first collaborators as those he denounces in his rival. What is funny, is that their approach, despite their differences, and with the distance that can give the knowledge of the current practices outside French hexagon, are relatively similar: the use of the same astrological corpus, a comparable importance given to the planets and their cycles in relationship to other factors, a certain mistrust towards the houses, an extreme prudence towards horary astrology...

22. Françoise SCHNEIDER-GAUQUELIN (born Marie Schneider)

- born June 19, 1929 at 4 a.m. (04:00) in Neuchâtel (Switzerland), 46N59, 6E56
(rectified : 4.10 a.m. by herself via her mother ; source Patrice Guinard)
- died August 10, 2007 in Joigny, 47N59, 3E24. Buried in the cemetery of Joigny.
(source : Patrice Guinard :
see also :
- married to Michel Gauquelin : November 6, 1954 (divorced in September 26, 1985)

- director of Astro-Psychological Problems magazine (1982-1995), not well known in France, but appreciated by the English-speaking community.
- author of books on applied psychology, of Psychology of the Planets (San Diego, ACS Publications, 1982), of the Problèmes de l'heure résolus pour le monde entier (Paris, Trédaniel, 1987), and, with her husband, of the famous BIRTH AND PLANETARY DATA.

- Her contribution to the works of the Gauquelins has been considerable, notably in the research of data and the technical organization of statistical procedures, while her husband can be credited with the initial intuitions (which are those of his predecessors, notably Lasson), the will to get results, and the writing of most of the works. Françoise Gauquelin has demonstrated, through her magazine, that she was a first rate researcher. She only believes in the results that she has found, and remains skeptical, if not hostile, to current practices. She will probably be the other great lady of French astrology in the XXth century.


23. Daniel VERNEY
- born April 6, 1935 at 12.30 pm (12:30) in Brest (source Patrice Guinard, r.p.)
- graduate from the École Polytechnique, founded an astrology school before distancing himself from the astrological circle, for reasons that we will easily guess (see, in French, my November 2000 editorial : 09ed1tem.html).
- in his first work, Fondements et avenir de l'astrologie (Paris, Fayard, 1974), which reference appears in the rubric "Astrologie" of a post-sixties bible (Le catalogue des ressources, vol. 3, Paris, Librairies Alternative & Parallèles, 1977, p.791), he attempts to modelize astronomy according to a certain intrinsic logic of the seven classical planets, widened to incorporate the three trans-saturnians and asteriods, in accordance with the "absolute structure" defended by Raymond Abellio in his 1965 work. This way the planets themselves would account for the whole of the astrological corpus.
- his second work, L'astrologie et la science future du psychisme (Monaco, Le Rocher, 1987), is a philosophical reflection on astrology, based on structures (and not on energy, like the previous book) and psychism (and not psychological or psycho-mental), psychism being the "infra-mental" reality "without which we would be nothing" (p.277). One can only deplore the Lacanian leaning of the author.


24. Jacques HALBRONN
- born December 1, 1947 at 11.25 am (11:25) in Paris 17 ( at 12.30 pm according to his mother)
(source : Patrice Guinard, r.p.)
- Ph.D (several theses), historian and ethnologist of the astrological "milieu", astrology congress organizer since 1975.
- author of ten books and more than thirty articles. The Guide astrologique (1984; Paris, Laurens, 1997) which carries on the idea put forth by De Herbais De Thun, is an index of astrologers and their activities.
- in the bibliography of his article "Astrologie" in the Encyclopaedia Universalis (1992), he only cites 3 books - in the twenty mentioned - in which he has no direct connection, either as a publisher or author. That goes to show the seriousness of the academic intelligentisia on the subject.
- in his extensive introduction to the truncated Histoire de l'astrologie by Serge Hutin (Paris, Artefact, 1986), he considers astrology to be a cultural reality : the relationship between the stars and mankind being only "A link created by man alone." (p.144). We are still waiting for the historical analysis that would justify this cultural "Lamarckism".
- his most useful works remains La vie astrologique il y a cent ans [from Alan Leo to F.Ch.Barlet],  Paris, Grande Conjonction & Trédaniel, 1992.

- Prefering to do research on his own, historian and untimely sociologist, quick-tempered organizer of symposiums, quarrellsome observer of astrological life, megalomaniac and maladjusted character, Halbronn is sort of a Socrates in the French astrological milieu. He seeks to deliver people's consciousness and exerts a kind of dualistic "maieutics" that is ignored by the majority of astrologers and incomprehensible for the believer. "In the last analysis, astrology would be too serious a thing to be entrusted to astrologers and the counseling session a too important meeting not to be rethought about in the second degree." (in L'astrologue face à son client (Les ficelles du métier), Paris, Grande Conjonction, 1995, p.46). He successively supports conflicting theses in his works: from "sensory astrology" (1977) to "cosmotherapy" (1995), or "astrology of Tarot" (1983) to "stellar astrology" (2000), he deepens the superficial, brightens the ordinary. With time he has come to think of himself as the director of a hospital for the insane. Often in relation (and by reaction) to certain discussions that he had with me since 1983, he has developed more complex problematics. Halbronn is a better speaker than writer. He excells in confrontation, and recently reached  (in December 2000, at the CURA-MAU symposium in Paris) the summit of his art. While working out new "nearly-astrological" theories, he polished up his dialectic machine and moved the boundary between astrology and anti-astrology. It appears now that all the joint anti-astrological argumentation (first the one by astronomers, but mainly the one coming from the university circles, of sociological or historical orientation) remains at a level short of the problematics that he put in place, insidious and convoluted, nevertheless salutary and invigorating for any reflection on astrology.

25. Other important texts

Jean MAVÉRIC (pseudonym of Petitjean), La réforme des bases de l'astrologie traditionnelle (Paris, Alfred Leclerc, 1912)
- one of the few French works to propose an original Rulerships model.

Louis HORICKS (1900-1992) and Henriette MICHAUX, Traité pratique d'astrologie mondiale (Nice, Les Soirées Astrologiques, 1941)
- this work (before the ones of Michel de Socoa, Dane Rudhyar, Robert Doolaard, André Barbault, San Miguel de Pablos...) suggests the possibilty of an analysis of the great historical mutations in relation to the conjunction of the slower moving planets, and notably the cycles of Pluto-Neptune and Neptune-Uranus.

Charles DE HERBAIS DE THUN (1862-1946), Encyclopédie du mouvement astrologique de langue française au XXème siècle (Brussels, Demain, 1944)
- a unique document on the astrological life in the beginning of the century, prefaced by his compatriot Brahy, including an invaluable index of astrologers (birth data, careers, activities, published works, opinions...)
- one can only regret the author's tendency for trivial anecdotal elements instead of the contents of the works, and also his partisan and narrow mind (notably with Néroman).
- influenced Halbronn who will become the second observer of French astrological life.

Marcelle SENARD (1879-1971), Le Zodiaque, clef de l'ontologie, appliqué à la psychologie (Lausanne, 1948; Paris, éd. Traditionnelles, 1967; 1984)
- this well documented work attempts to link the knowledge of occidental and oriental myths to the psychological interpretation of the zodiacal signs : "The common source of astral and mythic energies can be found by exploring the psyche into its most archaic origins, which explains their similarity" (p.XII)

Robert DAX (1902-1982), Psychologie zodiacale (Vichy, 1950; Paris, Arista, 1983)
- the noteworthy portraits of the 12 astrological signs, first rate documentation (Santagostini), have influenced Nicola's works.

Michel AUPHAN, L'astrologie confirmée par la science (Neuchâtel, La Colombe, 1956)
- An essay of theoretical modelization of "astral influences" : a vibrating radiance ( whose nature and interacting mode with living mater is unknown), emitted by the Sun, would be reflected by each planet, and refracted by forming inside each of them a system of stationary waves.

Jacques de LESCAUT (1939-1995), Encyclopédie mondiale des astrologues (série A, volume 1), Blonay-sur-Vevey (Switzerland), 1994
- This data collection of 1,225 entries was the basis, with De Herbais de Thun's work, for the data of astrologers presented in this study.

Didier BÉTOURNÉ & Zoé FACHAN, Traité d'astrologie contemporaine (Paris, P.U.F., 1990)
- the natal chart holds a peculiar tale for each individual, that the skilfulness of the astrologer-interpreter renders more or less well : "The astrologer makes the bet that the mythology he is reading in a chart will echo on the one that was born at that instant in time, that the native will dare become a demiurge and revive the myth that was presented to him" (p.286). Astrological factors are words, and the zodiac a combinatory. Chart delineation is a dramatic art. The astrologer must try to recount and stage the history of his patient. The interpreter's imagination does the rest. But one can wonder and ask if it's not the authors that are recounting stories.

Patrice GUINARD, L'astrologie : Fondements, logique et perspectives (Paris, Sorbonne, Doctoral thesis, 1993)
- an online astro-philosophical thesis at the CURA site (new version 1999-2002, cf. artic-en.html)


One might be tempted to group the astrologers in 4 schools:

Prediction oriented empirical astrology (Brahy, Lasson, André Barbault) mainly concerned with mundane astrology, but which can be applied to individuals. Its is essentially based on the observation of visible phenomena and on "facts".

Psycho-symbolic astrology (Julevno, Volguine, Ruperti, Gouchon) which which takes its reasoning from a direct grasp of the supposed symbols and their confrontation with psychological diversity. It is essentially applied to chart delineation and relies on analogy and the respect of a certain tradition.

Constructivist astrology (Selva, Dom Néroman, Nicola, Verney) which ponders the possibility and workings of the astrological phenomenon, and tries to give an account with a new model. It dedicates itself to define a certain logic behind the facts, to uncover the internal coherence of astrological structures, and to reformulate the corpus.

Statistical astrology (Choisnard, le premier Krafft, Michel et Françoise Gauquelin) seeks to validate or invalidate classic astrological postulates, or even to find new ones. It relies on empirical psychology (character traits) and on the notion of socio-professional categories.

  Classic corpus Critique of the corpus
External data Predictive astrology Astro-statistics
Internal data Psycho-symbolic astrology Constructivist astrology

The first three categories more or less cover the three main trends (astromantic, typologic, soteriologic) analyzed by Brad Kochunas, which does not give an account of psycho-statistical research in The Practice of Contemporary Astrology (cf. 06kochu1.html). I think that tomorrow's astrologer will have to draw conclusions from the respective contributions of each of these trends.

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