Mercury’s glyph comprises the Crescent of Receptivity above the Circle of Spirit
on top of the Cross of Matter. Combined, these symbols represent the conscious and unconscious realms and Mercury’s ability to bridge the two by adapting, relating and communicating between them. Mercury also represents the bridge between above and below, the messenger of the Gods and the divine child. The circle of spirit is linked to both soul and matter.
Mercury is never further than 28 degrees of longitude away from the Sun. It is a fast moving inner planet and is therefore seen in phases. Mercury is hard to see because of its proximity to the Sun, visible for a period of weeks in the evening (occidental) or the morning(oriental). Due to its weak gravity, Mercury has no protective atmosphere and, like the Moon, is full of craters. Mercury rotates slowly making only one and a half rotations for each cycle around the Sun.
Diameter: 4878 km
Mean distance from Sun: 5,910,000 km
Rotation: 58.64 days
Orbital period around Sun: 88 days
Mercury’s energy is fast, unpredictable, quick, changeable and flexible.
-is known as the messenger planet, representing the formulation, exchange and movement of ideas through speaking, writing & networking.
– is known as a hermaphrodite: neutral and asexual, as is the mind.
– is logical, reasonable and rational, and embodies the principle of intellect.
– collects thoughts, words, information, facts, trivia and evidence, and is ‘in-the-know’.
– symbolises our functions of perception (i.e. what we think and how we learn) and communication (i.e. how we speak, write and express ourselves).
– is the ‘psychopomp’ who can bridge the gap between Mount Olympus and the Underworld, and therefore bridges the gap between separate experiences, eg. mind and soul, reality and unreality, knowing and not knowing.
– is known as the trickster planet and represents versatility, flexibility, curiosity and fun.
– changes from [simple_tooltip content=’bad luck and misfortune’]malefic[/simple_tooltip] to [simple_tooltip content=’have a favourable influence’]benefic[/simple_tooltip] and from masculine to feminine depending on which planets it connects with.
Mercury is closely tied to the Sun in its movement around the astrological chart, with its furthest distance from the Sun never more than 28 degrees. It takes either less than a year or just over a year to move around an astrological chart, depending on its retrograde cycle, which happens every three months for about 3 weeks. Mercury retrograde begins as Mercury moves closer to the earth and toward an inferior conjunction, then moves behind the Sun to a superior conjunction when it is not retrograde.
Diurnal (Day-time) Mercury, Ruler of Gemini
- When rising before the Sun, Mercury is known as Diurnal, Promethean and Oriental.
Mercury’s outward, exposed, forward-moving, future-oriented nature is highlighted here – these are all masculine, solar energies.
Diurnal Mercury starts a new cycle when Mercury is closest to the earth in an inferior conjunction and finishes at a superior conjunction, rising before the Sun.
- When Oriental, Mercury is a Hot and Moist energy, ie. outward-moving and sociable.
- Promethean Mercury challenges dominion and authority, seeks independence from social conventions, searches for new qualities, strives for effective ways to implement new ideas, and is eager, impulsive, spontaneous, full of vision, restless with creative expression and concerned with real world issues
Nocturnal (Night-time) Mercury as ruler of Virgo
- Mercury is known as Nocturnal, Occidental or Epimethean when rising after the Sun.
- Nocturnal Mercury represents Mercury’s lunar side and is a Cold and Dry energy, inward moving and focused.
- Nocturnal Mercury starts with the superior conjunction when furthest away from the earth and is seen as an evening star and finishes at the inferior conjunction.
- Mercury is interested in making ideas useful and practical.
- Mercury represents focusing and concentrating the mind in order to discern, analyse, digest and assimilate information.
- Mercury discriminates and becomes selective in thinking and speaking.
- Mercury keeps things in perspective and disciplines the mind.
- Nocturnal Mercury is objective, deliberate, evolutionary, historically minded, interested in the past, careful, concerned with goals and plans, success-oriented and hard working.
Youthful, curious, witty, clever, cheeky, tricky, quick, changeable, flexible, androgynous, informative.
Shadow – Gossiping, chattering pointlessly, hyperactive, glib, ‘foot-in-mouth disease’ (speaking before thinking), ‘monkey mind’ (wandering thoughts), two-faced, fickle, restless
Wednesday, Mercury/Quicksilver, thieves, merchants, words, writing, borderlines, crossroads, speeches, times of decision making, Marjoram, Hazelnut, Bean, The occult (as bridge between material and spiritual worlds), Astrology (traditional).
In the body
Nervous system, thyroid gland, nervous activity, siblings. Neighbours. Short journeys. Local environment. Communications and Transport. Languages. Newspapers and other periodicals.