Understanding Astrology: Being Born on the Cusp

Mackenzie Wright's picture

So what’s your sign? Libra? Capricorn?

You probably know your zodiac sign— also known as your “Sun sign” because it’s the position the Sun was in at the time of your birth. When you’re looking up your horoscope, you probably know which sign you’re looking for the moment you pick up the daily paper. But this sign may not be true to your nature, and the horoscope may not be very accurate for you.

Did you know that your Sun sign may not be the only influence in your life? Some people are born very close to the time when Sun signs are about to change, and can be influenced by more than one sign.

What Is the Cusp?

The cusp is when a Sun sign is in the last 5 degrees as it exits, or the first 5 degrees as it enters. This works out to be somewhere between last 5 days of one Sun sign and the first 5 days of another Sun sign. The Sun actually straddles both signs, briefly, at one time.

If you’re born on the cusp, this is why descriptions of only one sign have probably never sounded completely accurate to you.

When Are Cusps?

The only way to really know that you’re on the cusp is to have an accurate chart drawn up with not just the day of birth, but the time and location. However, cusps generally fall on the following birthdays:

April 16 to April 26: Aries/Taurus cusp
May 16 to May 26: Taurus/Gemini
June 16 to June 26: Gemini/Cancer
July 16 to July 26: Cancer/Leo
August 16 to August 26: Leo/Virgo
September 16 to September 26: Virgo/Libra
October 16 to October 26: Libra/Scorpio
November 16 to November 26: Scorpio/Sagittarius
December 16 to December 26: Sagittarius/Capricorn
January 16 to January 26: Capricorn/Aquarius
February 16 to February 26: Aquarius/Pisces
March 16 to March 26: Pisces/Aries

How Does Being Born on the Cusp Affect Me?

The Sun sign generally influences your basic personality; it’s your ego, the self you present to the world that most people know. Being born on the cusp of two signs means you have influence from the two different Sun signs.

How influential each sign may be depends on the actual time and place you were born. The closer you are to the moment of the transition, the more balanced the influence the two different signs will be. The further you were born from the moment of transition, the more one sign will be dominant than the other.

For instance, if you were born on March 19th or 20th, you are probably pretty balanced as a Pisces/Aries. If you were born on March 16th, you are a Pisces who will have definite Aries undercurrents. If you are born on March 26th, you’re an Aries with some Piscean traits.

If you’re born on the cusp, this is why descriptions of only one sign have probably never sounded completely accurate to you. It’s why you’ve always seemed a little different from other people who share your Sun sign. Any general horoscopes you read are always going to be slightly off. To make sense of yourself, you would have to look to both signs.

Beware of Inaccurate Charts

Some books, computer programs or lazy people dabbling in astrology will tell you that you need two different charts. This is because what they’re providing you with are pre-manufactured charts that were not specifically designed for you, but designed around a general date. Even more importantly, never let someone convince you that you have to pay to buy two separate charts—this is just a way to make money off of you, and the readings from both are going to be inaccurate anyway.

It’s always important to consult with astrologers who take the cusp into consideration in your chart. This means the chart they’re creating is specific to your time and date of birth, along with your location, and they should be able to show you the different influences of the two Sun signs under which you were born.

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