4 Cornerstones of Chart Interpretation

In this post, I’m going to share with you the four cornerstones of chart interpretations.

Chart reading is a huge subject and there are many ways to skin this cat, so today let’s zoom out for a high level look at what you need to know.

And what is important for anyone who wants to read charts.


The four cornerstones are what holds things up and they can hold up your chart readings.

An example is the pyramids. They first lay the four cornerstones and make them level then they can build upon that.

Walls are built that hang from the corners.

It’s like the foundations of your house.

1 Signs

The signs of the zodiac are the gateway into chart reading.

Everyone knows their Sun sign.

As an astrologer, you need to understand the signs and one way to do this is with keywords.

Sign Keywords

There are a few main keywords for each sign.

A keyword cannot be generic like “happy” as this could relate to many signs.

It must directly relate to the sign and to no other sign.

A sign keyword is unique to that sign.

Example Sign Keywords

Fire signs keywords






















Your Astrology Journal

Read into your astrology books and reach for your astrology journal.

Make a page titled “Sign”.

On the next 12 pages, write each sign name at the top.

You will fill in more information later.

Choose five sign keywords for each sign. and learn them first.

Be aware of polarity, element and mode, but don’t worry too much about out this yet.

First learn the signs in which you have tenants, or planets.

So for instance, if you have the Sun in Libra, then learn that sign.

Next turn your attention to your Moon sign and learn that signs keywords.

Follow in for all the planets and learn these signs first.

2 Planets

As you start to learn the sign keywords, along with all of that you can add in some planet keywords.

Start with the Sun, the Moon and then work your way outwards from Mercury.

Get at least five planet specific keywords for each planet.

Planet keywords must not be generic and must be only relevant to that individual sign.

You can use all your astrology books as a reference but don’t quote other astrologers directly.

Book for beginners

If you are looking for a good beginner astrology book, I recommend The Contemporary Astrologer’s Handbook by Sue Tompkins.

3 Houses

For the houses there are 12 houses and each house represents a different area of life.

Houses can also contain people in your life.

Start learning the houses by your own planet in house placements.

So learn your Sun’s house keywords then your Moon’s house keywords and so on.

In this way you become more familiar with what is in your own chart first.

Then go back over and learn the rest of the house keywords.

That will be your vacant houses.

4 Aspects

Next learn the aspects.

Ptolemaic Aspects

There are five Ptolemaic aspects.

Start with the conjunction, opposition, trine, square and sextile.

In other words the major or Ptolemaic aspects.

When you have mastered the big five, go on to learn keywords for the minor aspects.

Minor Aspects

The minor aspects are the semi sextile, quincunx, semi-square and sesquiquadrate.

Aspects of Declination

Eventually you will learn keywords for the parallel and contra parallel aspects.

Lesser Used Aspects

And the quintile and biquintile. The sextile and bi-sextile and the novile and decile.


You won’t know everything at once it is a process.

Lay out your astrology journal with one double page spread for each cornerstone component of sign, planet, house and aspect.

Ideally you will leave pages inbetween each cornerstone topic so you can come back and add more information later.

Personal Astrology Resource

If you create an astrology journal it can become your very own astrology resource.

As you read more and more charts you can develop your interpretation style further.

Let me know if you have any questions about this topic

And you can send your questions and thoughts to starzology@gmail.com

I hope these ideas will give you something to think about

I’d like to think these four cornerstones will help you get going with learning your wonderful craft.

Thank you for being here and spending a part of your day with me.

Until next time.

This is Alison saying bye for now.


Author Bio

Alison encourages you to explore your unique creativity and live a satisfying life through your personal astrology. She offers her insights from the heart and with a sense of humor.

Go here to read more about Alison’s story.

If you want to send Alison a quick message go here.

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