The history of astrology is actually quite interesting. Astrology has been a major part of many cultures going back to pre-historic times. Some of the history of astrology is masked in controversy and mystery, because astrology was used before tools were developed to see planets that cannot be seen without the naked eye.
Astrology made its first appearance in pre-historic times. Maps of the heavens were found on cave walls, much the same as other cave drawings. These are the most controversial and mysterious of all evidences of the history of astrology. These cave dwellers could not possibly have had the tools necessary to see the planets. How did they know where they were?
The next appearance of astrology was in ancient Mesopotamia and other ancient cultures. These cultures also had extensive astrology charts that cannot be explained. However, the study of astrology was likely passed to Greece through trade with these ancient civilizations.
Astrology in Greece expanded to the form that we recognize in the western world today. Astrology was a daily part of life in Greece, and the Roman Empire to follow. The names of the planets, the constellations, and the sun and moon signs are all named for Roman deities and other names.
Greek and Roman scholars were often guaranteed positions in the court of the current king or emperor. Their knowledge of the stars was regarded as a necessary part of royal decisions, battle planning, and other aspects of royal life. However, astrology experts of these times often found their lives ending abruptly when the current government did not like what they had to say.
For these and other reasons the art of astrology was lost. However, it made a nice come back in Western Europe during the time of the Renaissance. Astrology was once more a revered art form, and those who studied astrology were thought to be some of the greatest minds of the period. However, when the age of enlightenment ended, astrology once more became an obscure and little discussed topic.
In the late eighteen hundreds astrology once more came to light. A few brave souls formed a foundation for the study of astrology. The interest in the study of the stars became wide spread throughout Western Europe, and spread to America in the early nineteen hundreds.
In the 1930’s, the art of astrology became very common place. In the middle of that decade, Gerald Gardner formed the religion now known as Gardnerian Wicca. Wicca, like pagan religions before it, focused on astrology for the use of divination. Astrology was also brought to popularity in America through the publication of American Astrology, a magazine credited for the first horoscopes.
Astrology became a form of entertainment for many in America as horoscopes became commonly found in major newspapers and other popular print media. However, astrology as an art has once again begun to fade in the Western world. Christian groups still rile against the study of the stars, and many “reasonable” people refuse to see any truth in the astrological predictions. Still, astrology remains a popular study in many cultures today.