The end of July is the first anniversary of the coming out of Capricorn Research after the best part of 40 years spent examining thousands of charts in the search for clear concrete proof of astrology. Which article to use to celebrate this event was never in question, it has to be the one TV show that changed a whole generation.
Monty Python’s Flying Circus was launched upon an unsuspecting world in 1969 when Capricorn Research was 14, nothing even remotely like it had ever been seen before and as far as this devotee is concerned will ever be seen again. Capricorns are notoriously slow starters in life and seldom find their mission until past the 21st birthday and many not even until the first Saturn Return. This particular goat had no idea what career to pursue but was groomed by his parents for life as an accountant presumably because one of the few skills that had been mastered up to that point was adding up.
Fortunately the remorseless satire of the Chartered Accountant by his heroes meant that this future had to be avoided at all costs. Its probably true that Uranus and Neptune would have intervened to put a stop to this path anyway, but Capricorn Research still feels that his first serious rebellion was prompted by Monty Python. Something similar must have been true for many of that generation.
So far attempts to find the exact time of the very first episode have drawn a blank, it was always on late at night but from the very first sketch of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart introducing and scoring the famous death of Genghis Khan, 14 year old boys throughout the country were immediately hooked.
The first thing that jumps out of the chart is the 6 planet stellium in the 2nd half of Virgo and 1st half of Libra. We have the Sun, Jupiter, Mercury and Uranus in Libra with Venus and Pluto in Virgo.
The two signs seem very appropriate as much of Python combined the intelligent entertainment of Libra with some savage satire of Virgo. The five Brits were Oxbridge educated and their comedy is often pointedly intellectual, with numerous erudite references to philosophers and literary figures.
Jupiter in conjunction with the Sun shows the success that the show had.
Mercury’s conjunction with Uranus showed how original, controversial and eccentric it was.
That all four of these planets were the apex of a T Square accentuates the impact and shows why Monty Python was the single biggest influence in the history of comedy.
Its appropriate that this stellium covers the 4th and 5th houses. Entertainment is the province of the 5th house but the 4th is to do with past traditions.
The T Square is based on an opposition between the Cancer Ascendant and Mars in Capricorn. The Pythons viciously targeted the idiosyncrasies of British life ( Cancer ) especially that of professionals and people in authority ( Mars in Capricorn ).
A classic example was Graham Chapman’s “The Colonel”, a British Army officer who interrupts sketches that are “too silly” or that contain material he finds offensive. Another was John Cleese’s “The Minister of Silly Walks”, where he worked for the eponymous government department.
Some of the Pythons’ real-life targets were Reginald Maudling, a contemporary Conservative politician, who was singled out for perhaps the most consistent ridicule and Margaret Thatcher who was then Education Secretary. US President Richard Nixon was also frequently mocked, as was Conservative party leader Edward Heath, Prime Minister for much of the series run. The British police were also a favourite target, often acting bizarrely, stupidly, or abusing their authority, often in drag.
These and many other Mars in Capricorn targets were fair game. The opposition between Mars and the Cancer Ascendant produced the inevitable T Square result. The obvious tension was projected onto the apex planets of the Mercury / Uranus conjunction in Libra in the 4th house, so Monty Python, more than anything else, took the British class system to the cleaners.
The Python stellium contains 6 planets, one for each of the stars. It is based on two conjunctions which correspond to the two writing partnerships, Chapman and Cleese worked together as did Michael Palin and Terry Jones.
Chapman is the Sun, very often the central figure particularly in the films where he played King Arthur in Monty Python and the Holy Grail and Brian in The Life of…
Cleese is obviously Jupiter, the sheer size of the man could only be covered by this symbol and the fact that he was widely recognised as the King of British Comedy with Fawlty Towers confirms this attribution.
Palin was the light and friendly one so has to be Mercury, also confirmed by his subsequent travels and interviews.
Jones was Uranus, the most bizarre of the whole troop. If ever the Pythons wanted a truly outlandish character it was generally Terry Jones that played the part. He was drag artist in chief whenever middle aged women were required in the script.
The other two worked separately, Eric Idle has to be Pluto, and he often played the more unsavoury characters. Idle came from the same comedy background as Palin and Jones and so Pluto is connected to Mercury and Uranus by conjunction.
The one planet that isn’t conjunct any of the others is Venus. Terry Gilliam was appropriately the artist of the show, responsible for the bizarre animation that was a central theme. Gilliam was American and played a relatively minor role in the actual sketches, hence Venus is slightly out on its own in the chart.
It may seem that this astrological attribution of planets to the main players is stretching things a bit, but this kind of thing happens frequently. Another example is of the 4 girls in Sex and the City.
The charts for these 6 comedy superheroes are as follows. No attempt at psychological interpretation will be made on the grounds that no astrologer is worthy to perform such a task.
The synastry between their charts is fascinating, particularly the writing partnerships.
Chapman’s Sun and Moon form a Grand Trine with Cleese’s Ascendant whilst Cleese’s Sun returns the favour with a sextile to Chapman’s Ascendant. Cleese’s Moon is also square to Chapman’s Sun.
Palin’s Sun is square to Jones’ Sun and Moon.
The Monty Python chart has the Sun and Moon in sextile. Five of them have Sun / Moon aspects, all six if we extend to 13 degrees to include John Cleese. This must account for the fact that they all switched to playing female parts in drag with remarkable ease and as often as possible.
All of them apart from Chapman have Sun / Pluto aspects and Venus / Mars aspects.
All apart from Cleese have Mercury in contact with Saturn.
But the one aspect that encapsulates Monty Python is the apex Mercury / Uranus conjunction from the show’s chart.
They all have Mercury / Uranus contacts bar Gilliam, which makes sense as he wasn’t so involved with the sketches, but he has Uranus opposite his Sun and square his Moon.
For the whole troop, this Mercury / Uranus link is really important.
Cleese has the two in opposition as part of a T square focusing onto an apex Mars in Aquarius ( the sign ruled by Uranus where Mercury is exalted )
Chapman has Mercury and Uranus in trine and conjunction with his Sun and Moon respectively.
Jones has the square with Mercury in Uranus’ sign, Aquarius.
Palin has an exact Mercury / Uranus conjunction also conjunct his Moon.
Idle has the sextile which includes his Sun.
The strength of Mercury / Uranus confirms them all as comedy geniuses.
All five of them had important transits to their Mercury / Uranus in October 1969 when Python began.
Cleese had Pluto sextile Mercury, trine Uranus.
Chapman had Jupiter square Mercury inconjunct Uranus.
Jones had Neptune square Mercury opposite Uranus.
Palin had Uranus trine Mercury and itself.
Idle had Uranus opposite Mercury trine itself.
In 1969, Monty Python was definitely an acquired taste shared by a few fortunate devotees. The show ran for 4 series but the troop split up and the TV show ended in 1974.
They still came together for their films however. For many people their peak came with the ” The Life of Brian “, the greatest ever satire on absurdities of conventional religion. Many people thought they were attacking Jesus himself, but this was simply untrue. It was the unthinking followers of mass religious movements that were the targets here.
Brian was a device for this as he lived a parallel life to Jesus, shown in the wonderful opening scene where the Three Wise Astrologers arrive at Brian’s neighbouring stable and the Terry Jones mother figure asks
” What star sign is he ? ”
” Capricorn ”
” Capricorn eh, what are they like ? ”
” He’s the Son of God, our Messiah, King of the Jews ”
” That’s Capricorn is it ? ”
And finally once the Three Wise Men realise their mistake they return to snatch the gold, frankincense and myrrh back and Cleese pushes Jones over.
These three are the only other astrologers that Capricorn Research ever wanted to be.
The film came out in 1979 and for Chapman who played Brian, this was the peak of his life as reflected by the fact that Pluto was square his Sun and inconjunct his Moon at the time.
It was also a major turning point for the others.
Cleese had Pluto opposite his Moon.
Jones had Pluto opposite his Ascendant.
And both Palin and Idle had it square their Jupiter.
Since the sad death of Graham Chapman in 1989, any notion of the Pythons reforming was always dismissed but Pluto is never put off so easily.
The summer of 2014 saw all 5 surviving members on stage together to run through the old favourites for one last time. Pluto was at 12 Capricorn in square to the Sun in the 1969 opening show chart.
The only way to end this article is with profound gratitude to the 6 Pythons. Not only did they save me from a career in accountancy but they also taught me something that is profoundly difficult for a triple Capricorn – ” Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life “.