A prodigy is a child younger than 10 years old who shows astounding proficiency in one or more artistic or academic fields. These remarkable youngsters have inspired wonder and awe. And at certain times in our history they did not receive the respect they deserved. 24/7 Tempo has compiled a list of 31 famous child […]31 of the Most Famous Child Prodigies in History — 24/7 Wall St.
Italian painter Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio* was born, September 29, 1571 in Milan, Italy. ✻ Caravaggio is actually the name of his home town in Lombardy in northern Italy ❦ An artist who lived a short and tempestuous life matching the drama of his works. He is considered the first great representative of the Baroque […]Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio [1571-1610] — Marina Kanavaki
*Caravaggio was clearly a genius.
The genius of Bach, Mozart, Beethoven –
what makes such complexity relaxing,
such simplicity beautiful?
It defies my attempts to judge,
like tearing off a butterfly’s wings
I just sit, contemplate
and follow where it will go
copyright Francis Barker 2019
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was no mere child prodigy. In his short life he produced 41 symphonies, 17 piano sonatas, 20 operas… in fact around 600 works in total. He is, perhaps, the greatest known musical genius of all time.
He was born with Virgo rising, very useful for artists of all kinds, especially where attention to detail is paramount.
Astonishing talent, inherited genius
Astonishingly, the north node of the Moon – which along with the opposing south node, is often regarded as a karmic point in a birth chart – is virtually exactly conjunct his rising degree in Virgo and almost exactly opposite Uranus on the descendant in Pisces.
Uranus is often equated with genius, amongst other things, and being exactly conjunct the south node, it symbolises a born genius, someone who has inherited some astonishing, unusual gift. However, it is one thing to have the potential, quite another to realise it. Thankfully for all of us, his talent was spotted early.
In astrological terms, one is supposed to head more towards the north nodal position in the ‘present’ life, in Mozart’s case, right on the ascending degree, meaning that he had to push himself forward, realise his unique ability in music and composition.
The Virgo Pisces axis is particularly symbolic here, with Uranus and descendant (DC) in vast, inspirational Pisces and the ascendant (AC) in exacting, attention to detail Virgo, the perfect axis for bringing spiritual dreams into earthly reality, in his case in the form of music.
A wellspring of inspiration from the subconscious
His ruling planet, Mercury, which is also house 10 and MC ruler (career/life direction), was found in Aquarius conjunct his Sun in house 6 – opposite Neptune in house 12.
In many ways this substantiates the nodal position above on a different level. Here is the unconventional person (Aquarius), a natural workaholic too (Sun conjunct Mercury with Saturn nearby in house 6), but in contact with the spiritual numinous (Neptune) from the subconscious (house 12) in the form of music.
I find this remarkable and may attest, in astrological terms at least, to his genius and what the nature of it might be. His Venus trine Mars will also give him much creative energy and potential.
Another interesting feature of his chart, is the exact conjunction between the Moon and Pluto in Sagittarius in house 4, in good aspect to Jupiter in Libra in house 2. I think this basically represents an open, friendly manner, but probably with caustic edge at times. He would appear to have had a good sense of humour and keen on the odd bawdy joke. This aspect might also represent an interesting family and home life, plus ancestry.
copyright Francis Barker 2019
Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni – known simply to us as Michelangelo – is often considered the greatest creative genius of all time.
It is hard to argue against this considering his achievements. He was a notable artist, poet, sculptor and architect who created, among other things, the painting of the Last Judgement on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome, the Pieta and the statue of David in Florence.
If his birth data is correct, then he certainly seems to have a birth chart that implies a significant creative force.
Let’s start with the basics. Firstly, there is only Pluto in earth signs, which is very surprising considering many of achievements are practical creations, like sculpture – more of this later. His elements are primarily air and water, showing that he was inspired and put much rational thought into the creative process too.
He has Sagittarius rising, meaning he had a very free and multifaceted approach to life, an indication of his ability to span many types of creativity. His ruler, Jupiter, is in Aquarius in house 3, meaning there is more than a touch of originality, objectivity and freshness in his ideas and mentality.
Highly sensitive and creative
He has the Sun and Moon in Pisces in house 4, with the Sun in good aspect to Neptune in house 12, showing how he was essentially sensitive, impressionable and also deeply inspired from the subconscious. Mars is also quite close to the Sun, giving him great bursts of creative flair, especially so as Mars in ruler of house 5.
Venus in Aries is also an indicator of primal artistic flair, especially his Venus in house 5 of creativity. Venus is also ruler of house 6 of work and the MC, which also has associations with life direction and career.
However, I want to concentrate mainly on what I consider to be the primary pattern of his chart, namely the fairly loose, yet important ‘kite’ formation involving Mars, Saturn, Pluto and Neptune, and also the Sun and Uranus to some degree. This is a fairly unusual configuration and I am sure one that is significant when one comes down to discussing creative genius. I think the fact that all three ‘outer planets’ are involved is highly significant, an indication that he could tap creatively the transpersonal energies of transformation (Pluto), inspiration (Neptune) and originality (Uranus).
Through studying many birth charts of creative types, like artists and composers, I have found that Neptune in particular almost invariably forms strong aspects to personal planets, or is strongly placed, or both.
The ‘Kite’ – the sign of a great, dynamic genius?
Apart from Pluto, at the top apex of the shape, it all takes place in water signs and houses using the ‘whole signs’ house system, showing its emotive and inspirational wellspring.
In this regard, Pluto’s presence in an earth sign (Virgo) and house (10), becomes all the more significant, I feel, symbolising the long term, transformative physical effect Michelangelo produced and experienced in his career, and the incredible, powerful legacy he left with us.
Let’s take a closer look at it. Mars in Pisces in house 4, reveals his emotive, disparate energy in opposition to Pluto in Virgo in house 10, a tense, compulsive battle between personal and transpersonal power, which creates great waves of energy to transform the life direction but which needs to be harnessed to make useful.
Applications in the world
Enter Saturn in Cancer in house 8 and Neptune in Scorpio in house 12, both in good positive aspect (sextile and trine) to the Mars Pluto opposition, both of which can feed off this energy. Saturn will tend, despite being in a water sign and house, to earth this energy, look for practical, structural applications of it.
Neptune, and to some degree Uranus, will add sheer inspiration and some originality to the mix from a subconscious and transpersonal ‘muse’, perhaps encapsulating the very nature of genius. And with the Sun also fairly closely linked to this inspirational dynamo too, we can perhaps appreciate the great depths of creative potential that this man had, his ability to produce it for all the world to enjoy – even to this day and hopefully for centuries still to come. He was that rare individual, a genius for all time.
*If you are interested in getting your own astrological report, or would like one created for a loved one or a friend, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
copyright Leofwine Tanner 2019
I grab a cup of tea, set out
to make something of the day.
Snow again, it brings daylight on.
They describe it as ten centimetres
which I still find hard to see.
It’s enough to cover my shoes,
that’s how I look at it
while clearing your little car.
Later, the laptop warms my knee
with Schubert declaring his genius,
when I feel the phone shudder.
A cursory text says the roads
were not too bad.
I look outside at the gathering host,
busy blots of grey and black
on white. An emerging blue.
They know the human is about
and that he has food.
photo and poem © copyright dfbarker 2012