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Overview of 45 years' work in terms of effect size In , in his final book, Gauquelin's view of his findings from what was now 45 years of heroic work was essentially unchanged from that expressed in in his first book: "Having collected half a million dates of birth from the most diverse people, I have been able to observe that the majority of the elements in a horoscope seem not to possess any of the influences which have been attributed to them" Neo-Astrology The mean effect sizes for various chart factors for professionals and for parents vs children are summarised below.

The above table shows how effect sizes put Gauquelin's entire findings into context. For both professionals and families the mean effect sizes for signs and aspects are less than 0. That is, they do not mean what astrology books say they mean. In heredity, the number of children having the same sign or aspect as a parent is effectively no different from that expected by chance. For professionals the mean effect sizes for diurnal positions range from 0. Applied pro rata to the general population, the hit rate is Gauquelin's last public appearance, Utrecht January , four months before his death.

Tests of astrologers In , after twenty years of unrelenting labour to test the claims of astrology and astrologers, Gauquelin summarised his philosophy and his findings as follows:. In that case it should once again assume an extraordinary importance. It matters little whether it is explained by symbolism or physics, or whether the stars are signs or causes. Every attempt, whether of astrologers or scientists, to produce evidence of the validity of astrological laws has been in vain.

It is now quite certain that the signatures in the sky which presided over our births have no power whatever to decide our fates, to affect our hereditary characteristics, or to play any part however humble in the totality of effects, random and otherwise, which form the fabric of our lives and shape our impulses to action" Astrology and Science , There was a time when they asserted, loudly and frequently, that statistics provided an ideal method of proving the truth of astrology, but this view was most popular during the period before the work of Choisnard and Krafft had been discredited.

Today, astrologers have gone into reverse and claim, on the contrary, that statistics are irrelevant to astrology" Astrology and Science Gauquelin's response to the above U-turn was to test astrologers to see if they could match birth charts to people of opposite character such as long-lived vs died-in-infancy, or ordinary person vs four-times winner of the Tour de France cycle race.

His matching tests pre-dated the matching tests of US psychologist and astrologer Vernon Clark after whom such tests are now named. But "astrologers regularly fail these tests and are sometimes so disillusioned that they accuse me of rigging the cases" Truth about Astrology Since then such failures have been repeatedly confirmed by others including astrologers, so Gauquelin's failures had nothing to do with any supposed rigging. Reactions of astrologers today Today astrologers react to the Gauquelin work in two conflicting ways. The first is to overstate the link between Gauquelin's positive results and astrology.

For example Mike Harding says "This proof [of astrology] has been made in the face of the harshest demands of statistics" Astrological Journal 39 6 , 17, But astrologers do not claim that astrology fails to work for half the planets, for signs, for aspects, for transits, for character, or for the The second is to dismiss Gauquelin's results as irrelevant. For example James Holden says "his work was very narrow in scope" History of Horoscopic Astrology , AFA , as if Gauquelin had never tested what astrologers actually did or had no understanding of astrology.

Not for nothing had Gauquelin read astrology books while still a teenager! His Astrology and Science shows a stupendous scholarly grasp of astrology's history, principles, and related cosmic influences that has never been bettered in a single book. His Neo-Astrology contains what could be the most succinct description of astrological principles and their disconfirmation ever published.

To dismiss his findings as irrelevant is absurd. In fact an often-cited point made in by Arthur Mather is as relevant today as it was then: "Both those who are for and against astrology in the broadest sense as a serious field for study recognize the importance of Gauquelin's work. Baffling planetary puzzles Gauquelin's work simultaneously discredited astrology and replaced it with weak planetary effects of no practical use. Despite their tiny effect sizes, planetary effects attracted a huge controversy about whether they were real and if real what caused them.

In effect there was total disagreement on whether planets could affect people. But planetary effects create far more intriguing puzzles than this, and it is these puzzles that are the real challenge of the Gauquelin work and the real legacy of his astonishing labour. Furthermore, as shown below, planetary effects are just as puzzling for astrology as they are for science. For astrology the puzzles include: Why only diurnal position and not signs or aspects, why traditionally weak positions cadent houses and not strong ones, why occupation and not character, why does the occupation effect disappear at low eminence and sometimes diminish at the highest eminence, why does it sometimes deviate from tradition eg Moon instead of Mercury for writers , and why only five planets Moon, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and not the Sun and other planets?

Indeed, why an effect in the first place if isolated factors really are as meaningless as some astrologers claim? And why such a small effect? For science the puzzles include: Why no link with physical variables such as size and distance Figure 3 , why no link with the sun, why is eminence important, why an effect only at birth, why contrary to all expectation is the effect larger for rounded birth times, and why does it disappear when the birth is induced or surgically assisted?

Why is it enhanced if geomagnetic activity is high at birth or if both parents have the same planet emphasized? Since physical influences are present all the time, what is so special about those at birth, why is the link with birth and not with conception or the onset of labour? Indeed, why an effect in the first place? What evolutionary advantage could it confer? Figure 3. Transit of Venus. In astrology Venus is entirely equal, as it were, to the Sun.

But not to those who watched the transit of Venus in June Nor in the Gauquelin work, where Venus has an effect but the Sun does not. See Part 2 for more on these puzzling differences. For more than fifty years these puzzles have defied explanation. They seem totally and utterly baffling. Together with artifacts they are explored in Part 2.

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Michel Gauquelin explained very briefly how it all started when he was interviewed in California by parapsychologist D Scott Rogo in after the publication of Truth about Astrology. Rogo, who was also a consulting editor to Fate magazine, describes the meeting as follows:. We met in his [Gauquelin's] Beverly Hills hotel room. I found him to be a charming, thoughtful and critical-minded man who clearly enjoys his work. I was interested in learning how he became interested in astrology in the first place.

I don't know why. My father was interested in astrology, but just for fun. He was a dentist. I learned to calculate a chart but when I was 16 I began to wonder, if maybe the whole subject as rubbish? So what could I do? I discovered some books by French astrologers who had tried to put astrology on a scientific and statistical basis.

The first thing I did was try to replicate their work; I failed. By the age of ten, I was begging my father to show me how to calculate the ascendant of an astrological theme. This was during the "disaster" of ; my family, fleeing from the Germans, had taken refuge in the south of France for several months, leaving everything they owned behind them. However, I eagerly learned the laws of horoscope. At the age of fifteen, together with a boy who has remained my best and most trusted friend, I cut classes at the Lycee Charlemagne to cross over the Seine and ferret through old Mr Chacornac's astrological bookstore opposite Notre Dame de Paris.

We had no money to buy books, so we read them there in the store. By the age of seventeen, I had devoured more than a hundred works on astrology and I was drafting my own "Treatise" during the tedious hours of French-Latin classes. One day the teacher caught me at it. He read my youthful compendium and was quite disconcerted by it. Shrugging his shoulders, he returned my work to me and predicted that I would fail the baccalaureat examination, which was rapidly approaching. I have kept this notebook with its hard gray cover, my first "Treatise.

Yet basically, I had absorbed all the mysteries of the horoscope. A childish game, a waste of time -- who knows? Until then, I had never asked myself this question: is all of this true? The limited success my predictions had earned me among my classmates, who had nicknamed me Nostradamus, and the small prestige which my specialty bestowed on me from very young persons of the opposite sex, were an ample reward. But the insatiable intellectual hunger that compelled me to read everything published about astrology was soon overcome by my desire to gather so many horoscopes that all skepticism would crumble under the weight of this proof.

I had discovered skepticism, not only in others, but also deep within myself. I could quote Descartes' first principle: Never accept anything as true unless I clearly and obviously know it to be true. But this would be deluding my readers and myself. One tends to rationalize afterward what has happened. I had at the very most a feeling that perhaps the astrological tree was concealing a forest of emptiness.

Assurances from the astrologers I met were unrelated to the complex nature of the problem. It is true that for them there was no problem, and I found it increasingly difficult to tolerate their palaver. Was their proof only in their imaginations? I decided to look for proofs and, if possible, to collect them. I began to frequent the Seine Archives, researching dates of birth. I filled notebook after notebook with figures, working as assiduously as a Benedictine monk. My head was full of such astrological aphorisms as: "Death occurs more frequently under the influence of Saturn;" "Professional soldiers are often born under the sign of Aries.

The little pocket money that I had was spent on stamps so that I could write to the many registry offices of France for records of hours of birth. I was not the first to have this idea. Some astrologers, also claiming to be mathematicians, had believed that there was only one way to establish the validity of astrology: this was to provide statistics on a large number of births. Had they been mistaken? They had indeed been mistaken, for mere enumerations are not sufficient. One must know the laws of chance.

I enrolled at the Sorbonne to learn them. A feeling of hopelessness, at first vague, crept into my thoughts. It seemed that astrological laws were quite incompatible with modern scientific knowledge. This realization was reinforced by the very unencouraging results obtained from the columns of figures I had tabulated in my large notebooks. No, death does not occur more frequently under the influence of Saturn.

No, professional soldiers are not born any more frequently than poets under the sign of Aries. Yet the passion did not desert me for a single moment. I examined the most obscure aspects of horoscopes to drain the astrological abscess and burst the zodiacal bubble, but also perhaps with the secret hope of being that "hard-working hen" referred to by Kepler, which "in the stinking dung-heap of astrology may find a grain of corn, indeed a pearl or nugget of gold, if it searches and scratches long enough.

I scratched for a long time and eventually I found the gold nugget. At least I believed I had. But at the same time, I was very much aware how unlikely it was that this was true. Could my pearl be an artificial one, a slip of my thoughts, or a mirage conjured up by my subconscious? I was alone with my problem. But fate was watching over me. On the university benches [this was in ] I met Francoise, my future wife. She was my first listener, my first reader and above all, my first critic. She advised me to write a book setting forth all the labor I had performed in secret. It was to be the "antiastrological" summary of my statistics and the nugget of gold.

Then you will know if you have truly found something and if it is worth the trouble of continuing. Nearly ten years later still, in his final book Neo-Astrology Penguin Arkana published after his death, his concluding words are as follows:. I was simultaneously baffled and filled with admiration.

The topic of this research seemed senseless, but his objective methods seduced me. I longed for a husband who would accept my collaboration in scientific research and had found, until then, only wooers for a "stay-at-home," domestic wife. Michel accepted my participation in the research on his subjects.

Without hesitation, I embarked on this adventure, certain that there was no risk involved. With objective methods, nothing positive could turn up from such a crazy enterprise. After a brief period of astrological verification, I hoped to convince Michel to abandon his projects for more quiet academic research within a normal curriculum at the Sorbonne. Our meetings developed into animated discussions about such things as how to properly divide the diurnal movement of the planets into thirty-six sectors, in which direction the sectors had to be numbered, and so on.

But my confidence in the quick effect of objective methods was too optimistic: the adventure proved to be much longer and much more difficult than I had expected. It has never ended. Highlights from the adventure are recalled in her memorial to Michel in APP 8 1 , , as follows:. But while following his courses in psychology and statistics, he began [writing] to French registrars for birth certificates of eminent professionals. To his amazement and delight, a first group of Academicians of Medicine showed peaks of Mars and Saturn frequencies after rise and culmination It was only after much prodding by me that Michel revealed what kept him always so busy between courses and where his statistical explorations had lead him.

Rather skeptical at heart, I offered him nevertheless my collaboration in this time and pocket-money consuming endeavor, provided we checked again with a new group of famous French doctors his first positive results with the Academicians of Medicine. At the Archives of Paris, we found a biographical dictionary listing the necessary dates and birth places of other French doctors, which, completed with each doctor's birth time, proved to be born with Mars or Saturn rising or culminating as often as the Academicians of Medicine had been.

Very impressed by this replication, I became Michel's permanent coworker and soon also his wife.

Michel Gauquelin. Obituary by Hans Eysenck published in The Independent newspaper.

And we started checking all the professional celebrities available at the Paris Archives. The results were plentiful: French sports champions had Mars overfrequent after rise and culmination, Academicians of Science had Saturn over-frequent in these areas, Military Leaders had Mars and Jupiter over frequent in the same zones, and so on The five most visible bodies, Moon, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn turned out to be repeatedly significant in always the same way. These first French results were published by Michel in All the new replications of the French experiments provided identical results as the data collected in France.

Later on, the same process was repeated also in the United States, again with identical results. While investigating other factors interfering with the astrological results astronomical and demographic cycles we had the opportunity to collect family data with which we tested Michel's heredity hypothesis. Following Michel's death, Francoise continued publishing and editing Astro-Psychological Problems , which she had founded in December as a forum for the discussion of Gauquelin matters.

In ill-health forced her to discontinue publication, and eventually she moved to an old people's home in Joigny km southeast of Paris, where she died in April Left to right: 1. Original title Astro-Psychological Problems became the sub-title from 5. In the s Gauquelin had noted how astrology lacked 1 birth data for proper tests, and 2 rigorous methods of analysis, which together amounted to a double void. Gauquelin approached the first void by filling it with eminent professionals.

He chose eminence because it was objective: eminent people are listed in biographical dictionaries. He chose professionals because their occupations had the qualities most suited to astrological study:. His preference for eminent professionals was soundly based. Earlier, in the s, the psychologist EK Strong and others had spent many years studying various professions. They found that the professions were significantly different from each other in ways having no apparent connection with employment, for example in their likes and dislikes about people, hobbies, amusements, and books.

The findings showed that a profession can represent a way of life as well as a way of earning a living, and led to what is now a widely used inventory, the Strong Vocational Interest Blank. Much subsequent research using this inventory showed that patterns of likes and dislikes do not arise from the profession but exist before a person enters it. Furthermore, they are as stable and permanent as any known aspect of personality.

All of which confirms the soundness of Gauquelin's approach. Having chosen to study eminent professionals, Gauquelin then laid down a method for collecting their data, starting with biographical dictionaries. For each dictionary entry without exception he extracted the date and place of birth, and wrote to the registry office at each place of birth to obtain the time and confirmation of the date and place.

Initially he used only French births, and managed to collect nearly , all supported by birth certificates bearing the town hall stamp and signature of the Registrar. All sources and the actual birth data are given in an appendix to his first book L'Influence des Astres pp. Now for the second void: rigorous methods of analysis. Once the data were in, Gauquelin calculated the birth chart, counted the frequencies of the relevant factors, compared the observed frequencies with the expected frequencies corrected for astronomic and demographic effects , and then tested the differences statistically.

A claim would be supported only if the difference was significant and replicable. Gauquelin's first book L'Influence des Astres lists the following tests of factors that Choisnard or Krafft had declared valid. In every case Gauquelin's results were negative, as follows:. Heredity studies. Personality and aptitude.

Other studies. Gauquelin comments that "This dry enumeration does not reveal the importance of the conclusions drawn from the results. They represent a considerable inquiry in the testing of astrological rules with large and varied samples. Excerpts have been chosen where possible to avoid duplication. The first is from a letter to Francoise Schneider-Gauquelin the name she adopted after her separation from Michel in APP 8 2 , 37, The rest are tributes from Astrological Journal 33 5 , , September-October The most complete obituary, covering Gauquelin's scientific work, is by Suitbert Ertel , Nachruf auf Michel Gauquelin, Meridian , includes a 3-page bibliography and a picture of the Gauquelins taken around From the editors Suzanne Lilley-Harvey and Zach Matthews As with the death of the AA's founder John Addey in , a whole era seems now to have ended; and we are left with a vacuum and a huge example to live up to.

Dedication to impartial truth was Michel's lodestar; indefatigability and impeccable standards were his method. Together, ideal and method, along with the equally unremitting efforts of his first wife Francoise, produced an enormous fund of valuable data for astrological research Under the auspices of the Urania Trust, the Michel Gauquelin Research Fund has already been established with pledged backing from both the Astrological Association and the Faculty of Astrological Studies.

The purpose of this fund is to encourage astrological research at the highest level; in essence, to continue the work of Michel Gauquelin. From Francoise Schneider-Gauquelin Knowing that I had been Michel's first wife from to and an enthusiastic collaborator of his astrological research projects Alas he was found lifeless on his couch with an empty vial of sleeping pills and a letter to his sister explaining his decision to end his life. It seems terribly sad to me that such a dynamic and resourceful researcher finally gave up pursuing this difficult career in a bout of depression.

I think that astrology needs the kind of serious sorting out of what has a lasting scientific meaning among the innumerable ideas and techniques offered to public scrutiny in astrological journals, to which Michel introduced me when we met. Not only was he one of the most dedicated and scrupulous collectors of data in the world; he had also the grand vision of how many thoroughly researched data samples, replications, and controls were needed to sound reasonably convincing in scientific spheres.

Obviously, after so many battles successfully conducted against rivals who were not always fighting in as fair and objective way as he did, weariness overwhelmed him. To this feeling the breakdown of his two successive marriages may have contributed, leaving him affectively too isolated. From Professor Hans Eysenck Michel Gauquelin was a delightful person, witty, sociable, and always ready to discuss his latest research.

He was a sportsman, ranking at his best among the 50 leading tennis players in France. At many conferences we attended, we would play truant and go off to have a game on the red clay courts of France, Italy, Germany or Switzerland. Michel always seemed eminently stable, a tower of strength; he never lost his temper, however unreasonable his critics. It is difficult to understand what caused him to take his own life, although the fact that his second marriage had broken down might have been responsible for the uncharacteristic depression which descended upon him this year.

The above was also part of an obituary by Eysenck in The Independent 20 June From Charles Harvey Michel Gauquelin, who had written so scathingly about the fantasies and absurdities of astrologers, as well as the grain of truth in astrology, was no dehumanised, dry-as-dust statistician, but a real, warm human being with whom one could have real discussion and debate. In fact Michel's first compelling love and romantic ambition had been to become a great painter. To that end he had studied for one year at the famous Paris Ecole des Beaux Arts.

Michel had of course been an ardent student of astrology since at least the age of eleven when his dentist father taught him the basic principles and how to cast a chart. Those scientists and colleagues who have not had that experience and who follow Michel's research and his intellectual arguments at their face value, cannot fully appreciate the subtlety of Michel's position.

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He was absolutely true to the canon's of scientific research. He cultivated a supreme impartiality and objectivity and was ever willing to follow the facts wherever they might lead him. Gauquelin is now part of our heritage and tradition. His memory will never fade. From Roger Elliot Michel Gauquelin was the best friend that modern astrology could have. Sympathetic to our ideas but never credulous, he unearthed a truth from the layers of guesswork, anecdote and hand-me-down rules that form the astrological tradition.

By some he was seen as a cold rationalist out to destroy our creed; and few practising astrologers yet use the Gauquelin sectors in their work. But to others, especially in Britain and, latterly, America, he became an endlessly helpful researcher, showing us how the scientific method could aid, not hinder, our work as astrologers. The above was also part of an obituary by Elliot in The Independent 25 June From J.

Lee Lehman Michel was a pleasure to know and to work with. In addition to his intellect, he had a fine sense of humour, and seemed genuinely interested in people. Skeptics have occasionally tried to claim that, even after positive results, Michel still did not embrace Astrology. I would simply recall an incident at the last UAC: speakers were asked to put on costumes and act out the various signs and planets. Michel did Scorpio. Would a skeptic impersonate his own Sun sign?! Some of these conversations have even been recorded in audio and video. Gauquelin had enormous discipline, in particular, as regards plain old hard work -- witness the repetitive data collecting tasks he set for himself.

He prided himself on his fairness and impartiality, and was always quick to declare that whatever facts arose -- whether they supported his own hypotheses or not -- they would be the side he would take. He abhorred bias of any kind, and was tireless in rooting it out of his own approach. In the end, he overcame whatever personal bias and hurt feelings he had and insisted on extending impartiality to his ex-wife.

I myself witnessed this. With Gauquelin, conversations were always dialogues. He was always interested in what you had to say. This fact alone makes him almost unique in my experience. From his tiny Laboratoire in the backstreets of Paris his immense labours created mesmerising puzzles that have assured his place in history. If he saw further than most it was not because he stood on the shoulders of giants, but because he stood on the shoulders of data. Despite his daunting workload he was a prompt correspondent, using the manual typewriter he preferred to any wordprocessor, and always a model of clarity.

For some of his later articles and books he invited help on what he called his "faltering English", which was ironic since Michel at his worst was usually clearer than most native English writers at their best. As befitted his elevated Jupiter he was philosophical about his results, confiding with a grin that he might or might not be right, and never sure that he would live to see the puzzles resolved, but always hopeful that he would. But it was not to be. When the sad news reached Australia it was early evening after a warm winter's day. The gum-scented air was quiet and sharply clear.

In the West, abandoned by the diminishing echoes of a golden sunset, hung a rare triangle of planets a mere fingerswidth apart, an arrowhead pointing past the bright curving Moon to the East where, as they set, Saturn would rise. All five Gauquelin planets in key sectors and blazing forth this new beginning. If angels have registry offices they had better watch out. In Richard Nolle, book reviewer for Horoscope magazine, wrote "Every astrology student above the beginning level needs to know the whole story behind Gauquelin's research into natal planetary placements. Of the thirty Gauquelin technical publications totalling several shelf-feet of A4 , seven are by Michel, one is by Francoise, and the rest are by both jointly.

A comprehensive bibliography by Suitbert Ertel of the Gauquelin books and articles appears in Correlation 11 1 , , Perhaps the most concise overview of the Gauquelin work to is Ertel's "Update on the Mars Effect" Skeptical Inquirer 16, , , includes 43 references and a survey of possible physical explanations. For more recent developments see "The Gauquelin work 2. Opinions, artifacts, puzzles" on this website under Gauquelin. A concise history with photographs Geoffrey Dean The universe is fantastic, don't you realize that? Gauquelin describes these early days it was as follows: "At the age of 20, I was wildly enthusiastic about everything to do with astrology, although I was almost equally mad about painting and tennis.

Subtitled Etude critique et experimentale avec trente-trois figures The book received good coverage in the French press. Gauquelin's conclusions were generally bad news for astrology and were as follows: Choisnard was ignorant of statistics and generally used rather small samples one or two hundred cases. Not based on experience. Sectors have no significant meaning.

Houses have significant meaning. Only key sectors have influence Every house has an influence and do not differ in quality. No sudden change at boundary. Sudden change at boundary. So far only Mars, Jupiter, Saturn. All planets work, even some stars. Maximum effect after axes.

Michel Gauquelin

Maximum effect before axes. Gauquelin comments: "The main reaction of those who examined the work was to advise me to try a replication of the experiments abroad, to see if the same results would appear among births other than French. I agreed. The scope of the experiments had to be extended if I wished to confirm the facts.

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Beginning in , my wife and I visited a different country each year. During the holidays, and taking advantage of the thirty days of freedom at our disposal, we accumulated new records; during the rest of the year we worked on the statistical calculations. In this way German, Italian, Belgian, and Dutch celebrities were united. In all, 15, births were collected for analysis, all complete, indexed, and obtained from the registry office by means of an energetic correspondence with numerous City Halls" Astrology and Science During this data gathering Francoise's language skills were crucial.

To Gauquelin the results seemed conclusive: "Our research has given the same fundamental results across five different countries, for births during , in latitudes of 37 to 55 degrees spanning more than 20 degrees of longitude, despite frontiers, differences in language, institutions, mentality, or history. This is more persuasive than replications in the same country" p. Later Gauquelin explained how it works by reference to his own family: "To take a practical example, my mother was born at Rouen in Normandy on 15 July at 4 o'clock in the afternoon, just at the rise of Jupiter.

As I wrote in my postscript to Gauquelin's Written in the Stars : "For each case you must first find a reference source such as a biography or biographical dictionary.

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  • Now take the business of explaining your procedures and results: "First, there is a statement of the problems of data, of astronomy, of demography, of statistical analysis and their solution. In their book Astrology Science or Superstition? N is often very large. An effect size of 0. For a client's chart reading, the minimum useful effect size is about 0. Traits vs predicted sign Tests of astrologers In , after twenty years of unrelenting labour to test the claims of astrology and astrologers, Gauquelin summarised his philosophy and his findings as follows: "It is useless to declare that astrology represents an infantile state of mind if well designed experiments prove that its pronouncements are correct.

    Astrologers predictably took little notice. Gauquelin comments: "Astrologers remain unconvinced by the publication of these statistics totally destroying their doctrines. Appendix 1. Michel on how it all started Michel Gauquelin explained very briefly how it all started when he was interviewed in California by parapsychologist D Scott Rogo in after the publication of Truth about Astrology.

    Rogo, who was also a consulting editor to Fate magazine, describes the meeting as follows: We met in his [Gauquelin's] Beverly Hills hotel room. As far back as I can go in my childhood, not to my earliest memories but to my first rational experiences, I have always known that I would be interested in astrology. I do not know. Initially, chance played a role. No one in my family was an astrologer. They regarded horoscopes as a parlor game, nothing more. By the age of seven, I was asking my classmates their birth dates to tell them triumphantly the zodiac sign under which they were born.

    The first is the fear of having been mistaken in asserting that astral influence is real; the second is the agonizing thought of all I have been unable to discover or explain. After 30 years of critical consideration of astrology, my passion for it has not diminished. But today I would not allow myself to draw drastic conclusions as I have sometimes done in the past.

    I will be content simply to have thrown a little light on this vast mystery which has occupied so many great minds over the centuries. Nearly ten years later still, in his final book Neo-Astrology Penguin Arkana published after his death, his concluding words are as follows: At the end of the twentieth century, two dreams must become reality: to go to the planets [space exploration], but also to know what the planets "do to us", so that as The Emerald Table says, "the miracle of unity may be perpetuated" [a reference to the unity expressed in "as above so below"]. Appendix 2.

    Francoise on how it all started In her book Psychology of the Planets ACS San Diego , Francoise Gauquelin gives the following brief account of how it all started: My training in psychology began in Geneva, Switzerland, my home country. Later, the fame of the Sorbonne University lured me to Paris. There a strange fate awaited me in the person of Michel Gauquelin, also a student of psychology and statistics, and secretly dedicated to investigating astrology. After some prodding, he finally confessed where he was disappearing to each Thursday afternoon, busily compiling files of complete birth data on the worst criminals in the annals of the French Police.

    Furthermore, his principal weekend activity was to calculate chart after chart to test the truth of astrological writings. Highlights from the adventure are recalled in her memorial to Michel in APP 8 1 , , as follows: I first met Michel at Paris University where we were both students in psychology, at the time a still little known science in France. This allowed us later on to make a successful career as editors of series of books popularizing the main discoveries in psychology. But to Michel, getting to know better this new science was not an end in itself. It was rather a way to learn how to explore with correct scientific methods the astrological theories which had intrigued him and fascinated him since a very young age.

    Also, innovative astrologers like Paul Choisnard, Karl Ernst Krafft, Leon Lasson had published books energetically asserting that they obtained significant results with their collections of data which Michel was unable to confirm with fresh data. This showed him how difficult it is to properly evaluate astrological hypotheses and induced him to look for proper training at the university.

    Appendix 3. Filling the experimental and methodological void In the s Gauquelin had noted how astrology lacked 1 birth data for proper tests, and 2 rigorous methods of analysis, which together amounted to a double void. He chose professionals because their occupations had the qualities most suited to astrological study: "occupations which are above all an objective manifestation of a personal interest, a powerful vocation, or which have a direct relationship with the great poles of attraction for the mind -- science, art, politics, war, and so on.

    The professions I studied are quite different from the monotonous exercise of a paid activity. They express the pressing need to fulfill oneself in a particular way of life or activity -- creating a work of art, making a discovery, acting in a play, and achieving a sporting feat.

    For these very reasons, it was first and foremost the celebrities in each profession that I sought, for they manifest in a very striking manner the fundamental tendencies of their professional activity" L'Influence des Astres as restated in Written in the Stars Gauquelin began this work well before the advent of calculators, photocopiers, and home computers, so every letter, every record, every calculation, every tabulation, and every analysis had to be made by hand. The work could hardly be more laborious but it was nevertheless essential to the proper investigation of a controversial area.

    It had the huge advantage that the selection of data was objective and could be verified all the way from biographical dictionary to registry information. In this respect alone Gauquelin revolutionised the approach to astrological research. Appendix 4. Early negative results Gauquelin's first book L'Influence des Astres lists the following tests of factors that Choisnard or Krafft had declared valid. In every case Gauquelin's results were negative, as follows: Planetary positions at death.

    Only births after were tested because earlier Moon tables were not available. Appendix 5. Nine tributes to Michel Gauquelin Excerpts have been chosen where possible to avoid duplication. From a letter by Douglas Coe, Berkeley CA You have made [a profound impression] upon many people like me, not just by the caliber of your scientific research, but by your personal example and your steadfast integrity in the face of irrational opposition from the scientific community. Many of us have research that has languished, because our jobs and families seem to leave us with little time for it.

    When I learn that you both held teaching positions, and had a family life, and published series of popular psychology books, and at the same time managed to complete the most important astrological research of the 20th century, I start to feel hopelessly inadequate. Gauquelin had similar success correlating other professions with the planets traditionally identified with them. For example, Mars turned up in the plus zones for elite athletes, Saturn was there for scientists, the Moon for writers and Jupiter for actors and politicians. The significance level for some of these correlations was also in the millions to one chance level.

    However, this result applied only to eminent professionals and elite athletes and was not present in the birth charts of ordinary athletes or professionals who were not eminent in their fields, which gave critics some contentious talking points. Michael Gauquelin is not the only researcher to demonstrate that planets rising on the Eastern horizon or culminating near the midheaven are more influential.

    A novel study by another French scientist, the late Prof. Suzel Fuzeau-Braesch of Paris University, sought to determine whether the behavior of pedigreed puppies from different litters would measurably correlate to rising or culminating planets in their birth charts. The whelping of a litter of puppies can extend over a period of several hours with as little as 15 minutes — or as much as two hours — between births. So birth charts lay out differently for every pup in a litter. The pups were closely monitored through the first eight weeks of life, but the hypothesized results were apparent almost immediately.

    Fuzeau-Braesch discovered that the dominant pups — the more aggressive, assertive, tail-wagging leaders of every group — had either the Sun or Jupiter rising or culminating in their birth charts with a frequency that far exceeded the threshold of significance established for the test.

    Depending upon whatever else is going on in the heavens at the time, astrologers might describe humans with these same prominent planetary placements as charismatic, dominant, strong, sociable or influential. And psychologists might use the term extrovert when labeling these same essentially positive, outgoing personality traits. At Johnson State College in Vermont, Psychology and Counseling Professor David Fink studied the Gauquelin results and came up with an ingenious way to test whether planets in the plus zones could predict introversion-extraversion behavioral traits as measured by the Eysenck Personality Inventory EPI questionnaire.

    We are vitally interested in any tool that helps us understand people and the challenging issues that bring them to seek help in therapy.

    The Gauquelin research stimulated my interest in examining whether the astrological birth chart might prove useful as an empirically defensible tool for assessing personality dimensions. Rather than testing the birth data of eminent professionals, Prof. Fink found a more promising — and less controversial — way to test the Gauquelin plus zones. Over a period of 15 years he administered EPI tests to college students at three universities: Johnson State, the University of Vermont and the University of Maine. Astrologers associate the planet Jupiter with expansive, outgoing personality traits and Saturn with caution and reserve.

    To analyze the collected data he reached out to astrological researcher David Cochrane, who at the time was enrolled in graduate classes in research methodology and statistics at the University of Florida. At Florida University he got approval from the head of the Research and Evaluation Methodology Department to do the analysis as partial fulfillment for a three-credit independent study course. A result is generally regarded as being statistically significant if the probability of obtaining it is less than 5 percent, or what researchers call a p value of.

    Also, non-astrological factors like genetics and the environment may factor into the outcome as well. With cases, the researchers wanted to determine whether the effect of a single variable could be detected. It was. In a more sophisticated test that included age as a predictor of the E score the result was even better with a 2 percent probability.