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Matrix Software > Learng Astrology > Astrophysical Directions > Introduction > 360°/Decimal Notation

Learn Astrology

Back to Introduction   |   Back to Astrophysical Direction 

360°/Decimal Notation

360° Notation = Absolute Longitude

The easiest method through which to translate positions from signs & degrees to 360° notation is through use of the above chart form. In this form both 360° notation and signs are presented. To use this 360° wheel, look up positions by sign and degree. Note what the equivalent value is in 360° notation. For example, what is the position of galactic center in 360° notation, if it has a value of 26° Sagitarius in zodiac or sign notation? Locate 26° Sagittarius on the above wheel and note nearest preceding whole-degree number. In this case: 260°.' In your mind, add 6° to 260° to get 266° = 260 Sagittarius.

Chart Wheel

360° Notation or Absolute Longitude

360° chart forms are available from several sources. Translating natal positions from the sign-degree format to 360° notation (absolute longitude) is straightforward. Use the 360° chart form as a guide and look up each planet or sensitive point on this form. For example: Charles Jayne has his natal Sun at 15° Libra 42' (reads: fifteen degrees Libra, forty-two minutes). To translate this into 360° notation, we find the sign Libra printed on the 360° form and count from the beginning of that sign to the 15th degree. Marking this degree with our pen, we then draw in the symbol for the Sun. Instead of writing 15° Libra 42' next to the Sun symbol, we want to write the 360° equivalent. These are printed on the chart form itself in 10° increments. We can see that 10° Libra is 190 degrees, measured from 0° Aries.

We want the 15th degree of Libra rather than the 10th, so we add 5° to 190° (in our mind) and write in 195°42' on our chart-form, along side of the symbol for the Sun. We do this for the rest of the planets. The Angles are then marked in on the outer rim of this chart form (see Figure B) in colored pens. Most asrologers use BLUE for the Mid-Heaven/I.C. axis, RED for the Ascendant/Descendant, and GREEN for the Vertex/Anti-vertex axis.

Those of your who are planning research that involves mid-points, harmonics, and other techniques that lend themselves to pocket-calculator, use will want to draw out their natal positions with 360°/decimal notation, as these positions are ready to enter directly into the calculator display screen. Another useful aid is a listing of your natal positions in 360° notation as shown in Figure C. Further instructions in 360° notation and 360°/decimal notation follow:

The simplest and most useful first step is to Iook up the position of your natal Sun in the Finder Zodiac List and note what kind of objects intercept the zodiac at that degree. Before we do this, we will present the basic format we have used in this book for source listings.

ALL positions listed in the Main Catalog and in the various Finder-Lists are in DEGREES-MINUTES-SECONDS (D-M-S) and in 360° notation. All positions in the main catalog are listed in at least four different coordinate systems. At this point we are only interested in zodiac listings of longitude (?) and latitude ( ß). Turn to the Finder Zodiac List at the back of this book. This is a list of the objects presented in this text in their sequential order in the zodiac from 0° to 360° of longitude. We will look up the position of Charles Jayne's natal Sun in the Finder Zodiac List at 195°42'. Here is what we find:

Zodiac Longitude Zodiac Latitude Type List
194 53 30 -63 OC 061
195 58 14 -74 FC 484
196 16 11 00 CS 022

The Finder Zodiac List consists of four columns:

  • Zodiac Longitude in 360°-Minutes-Seconds notation.
  • Zodiac Latitude in Degrees only ('+'= North Latitude, '-'= South Latitude)
  • Letter KEYCODE for object Type or Class.
  • the Number of the particular object in the list of that object class.

For example: The first object in our selection from the Finder Zodiac List is at: 194°53'50" of Zodiac Longitude and -63° (South) Zodiac Latitude. The Type of object is 'OC' or Open Clusters and the number of this object in the list of open clusters is # 61. If we want to know more about OC 61, we will have to look up the section on Open Clusters in the Main Catalog and consult the 61st listing or object found there.

Copyright (c) 1997-99 Michael Erlewine

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