It’s common for people to stress over the planet Mercury going retrograde and wondering what effect that will have on their lives. However, few people realize the tricky little planet influences them all the time through their Mercury sign – what is yours?
All of the planets have an effect on us in astrology. As planets move through the zodiac, they pass through the each sign and express their unique energy and attributes through the qualities of each individual Sun sign.
One of the effects people talk about most often with a foreboding sense of dread is “Mercury in retrograde.” Retrograde is a time when a planet appears to be moving backwards as its orbit slows a bit a few times per year. The effect Mercury has at this time can sometimes be destabilizing or disruptive. But not always, sometimes such disruptions are beneficial as well. Nonetheless, this is an example of how planets influence us.
Your “Mercury sign” refers to where the planet Mercury was at the time you were born, meaning what zodiac sign the planet was in at that moment. This has a direct effect on the way in which you process information as well as how you express your ideas to the world around you.
Before we discuss how to calculate your Mercury sign, let’s take a quick look at the planet Mercury itself. You first need an understanding of how Mercury travels through the zodiac as part of calculating your Mercury sign.
The planet Mercury is associated with communication and travel and is also the name given to Hermes, the messenger of the gods, in Greek mythology.
Mercury comes from merx, or mercator, which means merchant, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac.
Mercury rules over the intellect-associated signs of Gemini and Virgo, as well as over the third House. Mercury takes only 88 days to orbit the Sun. And during Mercury’s speedy trip, the planet is never more than 28 degrees from the Sun, changing zodiac signs every 3-4 weeks. It can transit a sign in as few as 14 days and can orbit the entire zodiac in 10 months. However, it takes around a year to travel through all 12 zodiac signs on average.
You’ll need two pieces of information to calculate your mercury sign: Your birth day and year. Equipped with that info, you’ll next need to refer to a mercury transit table. There is a good one at Café astrology.
*Note, just a heads up…prepare to do a lot of scrolling as you’ll have to begin starting at the year 1930 and find your way to your birth date and year. You might want to use the “find” function in your browser, inputting your birth year to make the page fast scroll to where you need to start.
Mercury sign tables show the date, year and time that the planet enters a particular zodiac sign.
For example: Let’s say you are birth date is February 25, 1990.
Looking at the Mercury sign table, you would find that the closest date is February 11, 1930, when Mercury entered Aquarius.
The next item on the list is Mercury entering Pisces on March 3, 1990. Therefore a birth date of February 25 shows that Mercury was still an Aquarius. Thus, your Mercury sign is Aquarius.