Jude’s Threshold

A Tapestry Blog of Art, Astrology, and Politics

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Written by Jude Cowell

July 10, 2010 at 12:44 am

Posted in art, astrology, news, Politics

Is the British Royal Family Descended from King Arthur?

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Originally posted on CHILDREN OF ARTHUR:

As the royal wedding approaches, it’s interesting to dig into the royal family’s claims of descent from King Arthur. Here is some information about those claims from my chapter “Arthur and the English Royal Family” in King Arthur’s Children:

Among those who have tried to claim descent from King Arthur, the most prominent and most determined have been the monarchs of England. As we have already seen, little chance exists that any of King Arthur’s children outlived him, and the only grandchildren he had were murdered by Constantine. These two grandsons could have been old enough to have had children of their own before they died, but this theory is only a surmise since no record, chronicle, or romance states they had heirs. Therefore, it is highly doubtful that King Arthur had any descendants who lived beyond the sixth century. Yet the royal family of England has claimed, at…

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Written by Jude Cowell

October 14, 2014 at 10:15 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Addison’s “Cato” and the American Revolution

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Jude Cowell:

Modern day “republicanism” isn’t near what it once was. Would #GeorgeWashington be proud of Capitol Hill antics? Or would he have the posers tarred n feathered?

Originally posted on Stories from American History:

The 1712 play, “Cato, a Tragedy” by Joseph Addison, had a pervasive influence on the generation that fought in the American Revolution. Based on the story of Cato the Younger, the enormously popular play glorified Stoic virtue and devotion to republican principles.

During the darkest time of the Revolution, at Valley Forge, Washington assembled his officers to see a performance of “Cato.”

Washington paraphrased a line from the play when he wrote to Benedict Arnold, “It is not in the power of any man to command success, but you have done more – you have deserved it.”

Abigail Adams described George Washington with a paraphrase from the play: “Cato is stern, and awful as a god.”

Two of the most famous lines from the American Revolution are Nathan Hale’s last words on the gallows, “I regret only that I have but one life to give for my country,” and Patrick…

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Written by Jude Cowell

October 6, 2014 at 4:16 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Joan Rivers: Sun Gemini-Moon Sagittarius

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Today as I watch a re-broadcast of the celebration of Joan Rivers on TV this astrologer had to have a look at her natal horoscope which may be viewed here:  http://www.astro.com/cgi/chart.cgi?wgid=wgeJwljssKwjAQRb9GsDCFvFqrIRtdCBVcKCIuI41tqE2kSQ35exNczeVwuWeCHrUgvJ-ExNx04qK_anbQWmngBQ3UgLeUAiI7hGBgAXrZAYL9bO34jmZF0PqkTe9SONjF-FjA-ZHp7VrAhoaqBoYMbWABVkFJWJV2EJfd08hJiexJ7b810056JZqE2sWodLKdP338pCcnPwjpAx9cFCXmsxP4fvwBv1052A (apologies–the WordPress add-a-link tab isn’t working for me today.)

Born in Brooklyn, New York on June 8, 1933 (2:00 AM), Ms. Rivers had the communication and fast-thinking skills of a Sun Gemini opposing Moon in Jupiter-ruled Sagittarius, sign of actors and comedians. Not that Geminis can’t be funny, too!  Her just-past Full Moon birth indicates that relationships and hyper-awareness were very basic themes in her life.

As you see from the year 1933, Joan Rivers was born during the war torn Mars-Jupiter-Neptune conjunction in Virgo (sign of The Critic and she was that both onstage and on the Red Carpet, pioneering the “who are you wearing?” schtick.) These planets are the ‘Marseillaise Trio’ with its take-no-prisoners energies. For Joan the Trio appears in the 6th house of Dedicated Work and with her chart-ruler Mars (planet of impulse, energy, and action–Ascendant 3Ari53) Joan is famous for her decades of hard work in Comedy and her highly energized, even manic, performances.

Another factor indicating her high energy level and long career is a trine between natal Sun (ego, pride, physical constitution) and authoritative Saturn (work, concentration) showing longevity of life (June 8, 1933–September 4, 2014, age 81) and her decades-long career. Plus, natal Midheaven (Goal/Career/Public Status) is in Saturn-ruled Capricorn.

Her daughter Melissa (b. January 20, 1968 in NY) has said that her mother in private wasn’t funny with people she didn’t know–such as at dinner parties. She was “shy and nervous” and of course anyone who’s familiar with the Mercury-ruled sign of Gemini knows how very nervous they can be. In addition, Joan’s Mercury and Venus are conjoined @29Gem, a critical or crisis degree. Mercury-Venus gives writing talent and pleasant contacts with the public. Perhaps some of the hectic or manic energy Joan Rivers often displayed along with the ‘quick comeback’ ability of Gemini may be found within the critical 29th degree that is doubly emphasized in her natal horoscope.

After all, a 29th degree may be said to be impatient to reach the next sign which for Joan is Moon-ruled Cancer–in fact, 00Can00, a World Point of Prominence, Fame, and Success–and the Moon rules such realms as publicity and the public.

Now this is merely a brief astro-portrait of Joan Rivers and you may of course find much more information hidden in her natal chart so feel free to leave your insights with this post. Disagree if you must, add more info if it suits! 

To close, I add that to me, one of the best things to say about anyone who has passed away is, she will be missed. May the brilliant Joan Rivers R.I.P.



Written by Jude Cowell

September 7, 2014 at 8:24 pm

Harry Houdini: horoscope and a new TV show

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Escape artist extraordinaire Harry Houdini is featured on History Channel at 9 pm edt  this evening in a two-part presentation as played by actor Adrien Brody with part two broadcast on Tuesday evening (September 2.)

Born in Budapest on April 5, 1874 at 4:00 am LMT (astrodatabank gives this data a B rating) as Ehrich Weiss, we find a man with Sun in mid-Aries (15Ari09, the degree where transit Uranus has been electrifying of late–TV technology via Uranus now will spotlight his ego and personality–Sun.) His natal Moon @19Sco24 (considered anciently as an ‘evil degree’–and where authoritarian Saturn has been traversing)  is the only ‘planet’ out-of-bounds in the chart suggesting a faulty relationship with Mother–odd since he was devoted to her. He even put wife Bess “on a pedestal” to the extent that some believe their 32-year marriage may never have been consumated! However, an OOBs Moon is only the case if we accept the April 6th 2:24 am chart as correct–the version you see below for April 5th has no OOBs planets at all which is one factor that suggests its correctness.

April 5, 1874 4:00 am LMT Budapest:

Now Uranus to natal Sun denotes a time of finding a new identity, going off on one’s own, new ways of expressing creativity (like a TV production?!), and/or intense restlessness. Saturn to natal Moon marks a period when any accomplishments must be truly merited and digestive complaints my occur. As you know, Houdini was punched hard in the abdomen as he rested his broken ankle by an amateur boxer and this led to his death in Detroit on October 31, 1926 at 1:26 pm–Halloween! Spiritualism and seances were popular during his life and most people are aware of his secret message to Bess from his death bed that he would try to ‘contact’ her after his demise.

(No, he never got through to her. This does not surprise me since ‘The dead are unconscious and know nothing’, says the Bible and this I believe!)

Now there is a discrepancy concerning Houdini’s birth data for Marc Edmund Jones gives Houdini’s details as: April 6, 1874 (Sagittarian Moon) at 2:24 am in Appleton, Wisconsin though my suspicion is that astrodatabank has it right–Appleton was the first place the family landed after immigrating to American from Hungry to avoid anti-semitism. In the MEJ version, Houdini’s Ascendant is in late Capricorn (27:00); in the version I’m using, 26AQ59 rises with Midheaven (Career; Public Status) 

Plus, the Aquarius Ascendant degree conjoins America’s natal Moon (the public), and Houdini certainly was a very popular magician and escape artist in his day. His horoscope shows a splash pattern of planets and a splash he definitely made with his stage act!

You may wish to check out Houdini’s bio details and natal horoscope at astrodatabank’s Wiki pages:


And here is his natal chart with my scribbles added to show a few basic details. Not shown is Houdini’s death chart which has malefic planets on Angles as death charts tend to do: transit Saturn in Scorpio conjunct Midheaven, and Halloween 1926 Neptune conjunct his natal Descendant.

As you see, chart-rulers Saturn and Uranus oppose one another across the self-willed Leo/AQ axis;  the two ‘enemy planets’ make no applying aspects in the chart, however, both square (blockages, obstacles–like a pair of handcuffs) testy Mars so here is a T-Square pattern of violence, danger, injury, and/or accident. As you know, Houdini liked to place himself in dangerous positions onstage and made his income from this “thrill-seeking” behavior which expresses through Mars in 2nd house of Earning Ability:


Written by Jude Cowell

September 1, 2014 at 5:59 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Aug 23, 2014: Jupiter the General Returns to the Iraq War horoscope

On March 20, 2003 at 6:35 am BGT in Baghdad, the Bush-Cheney administration began its mission to subdue Saddam Hussein and interfere with his black market in oil. Perhaps you’re familiar with the War horoscope which may be viewed  here if you wish. In the chart Jupiter the General (among his many disguises) was retrograde @8Leo25, a typical indicator in Astrology of a ‘bottomless pit’ in financial matters and you may agree that that is what the Iraq War has turned out to be.

Since transit Jupiter is now traversing early degrees of Leo and with ISIS (or, ISIL, IS, Islamic State) now attempting to take over the country of Iraq by showing its prominent assassin side and the White House and the Pentagon in process of sending what are touted as a limited number of troops into the region along with drone strikes aimed at ISIS, it behooved me to check the date of expansive Jupiter’s return to natal degree which can on one level signify a US re-engagement there.

Setting the chart for Baghdad we find that the War’s Jupiter Return occurs tomorrow, Saturday August 23, 2014 at 8:12:45 pm BAT and ‘9 Leo’ is once again triggered: “Glass Blowers Shape Beautiful Vases with Their Controlled Breathing” (Rudhyar), a Sabian Symbol which in 2003 added to my disbelief of much of what the Bush-Cheney administration (with the help of Colin Powell) was selling the American public at the time in order to start a preemptive war.

If We the People fail to believe the Obama administration about the necessity for sending US troops back into the region it may just be a Cry Wolf condition that Washington caused with its past duplicity and fear propaganda. If you wish to read more on this topic as seen through the Political Astrology lens of a common-good populist such as myself, check out today’s post at Stars Over Washington concerning the New Moon in Virgo which perfects on Monday August 25, 2014.

New Moons signify new cycles of activity beginning and Monday’s lunation @2Vir18 conjoins the Ascendant in America’s current Secondary Progressions.

Written by Jude Cowell

August 22, 2014 at 7:00 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

The Noble Families of America

Jude Cowell:

An excellent analysis of who rules in America!

Originally posted on The Oligarch Kings:

Yesterday, today, tomorrow, and for all time coming…

TalkandPolitics asked me the other day if I could rate who were the most powerful families in the United States and who were the ruling ones now.  He also asked which I felt were the most powerful ever.   It’s a simple set of questions, and among those that originally spurred me to the research that led, eventually to this blog.

The questions, whilst perfectly understandable, are (I think) the “wrong” questions.  They assume that the Political Families which have bestrode, and still bestride, theUnited States stand separate, distinct, and individual.  The assumption in the questions is that the families must be different from each other, like chocolates in a box.

The truth is, that in large part the members of the political families of America, past and present, are not separate like chocolates, but form a mesh of interconnected families.  Less chocolates…

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Written by Jude Cowell

July 28, 2014 at 10:59 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Finally, Summer

Jude Cowell:

Wow Julie!

Originally posted on Handmade Days:


Grapes! Our first on this 3 year old vine.

Grapes! Our first on this 3 year old vine.


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Written by Jude Cowell

July 15, 2014 at 12:15 am

Posted in Uncategorized


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