UNDER this head of inquiry, a general and cursory investigation, only, can be performed; and an attempt to dive into minute particulars would be fruitless, and would prove to be merely a vain search after things not open to discovery. 2
The place, whence inferences are drawn respecting brothers and sisters, is to be considered as being applicable only to children of the same mother, and it is consequently, agreeably to nature, presumed to be the same as the maternal place; viz. the sign occupying the mid-heaven; or, by day, that which contains Venus, and, by night, the Moon. This sign and its succedent are considered as indicative of the mother and her children, and the same place is therefore properly allotted to brothers and sisters.
Hence, provided this place be configurated with the benefics, there
will be several brothers and sisters: the number of them depending upon the number and positions of such benefic stars, whether in bicorporeal signs, or in signs of single form.
If, however, the malefics should be in elevation over this place, or be hostilely situated in opposition thereto, the brothers and sisters will then be few in number; and this fewness especially follows when the malefics may surround the Sun. Should the hostile configuration be presented from the other angles, 1 and, particularly, if from the ascendant, Saturn will then represent the elder born; and Mars, by inflicting death, will diminish the total number of brothers and sisters. 2
Again, should the stars, which promise brethren, be favourably circumstanced as to their cosmical position, the brethren will be eminent and illustrious; but humble and obscure, if the cosmical position be of an adverse nature. If, also, the malefic stars should be in elevation over those which give brethren, the life of the brethren will then be only of short duration.
Stars, constituted masculinely, represent brothers; those femininely, sisters. The more oriental stars likewise represent the elder born; and those which are more occidental, the younger.
Moreover, should the stars, which give brethren, be harmoniously configurated with that one which has dominion of the sign allotted to brethren, the brethren will be mutually friendly and affectionate; and, if an harmonious configuration be also extended, by the same planets, to the part of fortune, the brethren will live together in communion. But, if the stars, which give brethren, should, on the contrary, be in situations unconnected with each other, or be in opposition, the brethren will then live at variance, mutually practising enmity and fraud.
81:2 In spite of this declaration of the author, it seems, by Whalley's note on this chapter, that Cardan maintained that the particular circumstances, liable to affect the brothers and sisters, might be inferred by adopting, as an ascendant, the degree of the planet holding chief dominion over the place of brethren, and erecting a scheme thereby; in a mode similar to that allowed by Ptolemy in the case of the parents.
82:1 That is to say, from the angles in quartile (and therefore hostile also) to the mid-heaven.
82:2 The text does not show whether it be necessary that Saturn and Mars should both be in the ascendant, in order to produce the effect described; nor whether the same effect would not follow, if one of them should be in the ascendant, and the other in the occidental angle, or even in some other position.