Darwin was the fifth of six children and his family was wealthy and well-connected. His
father was a free-thinking doctor and financier and his grandfather was a leading
intellectual. When Darwin was 8 years old his mother died.
Darwin studied at Edinburgh University and later at Cambridge and planned to follow a
medical career. But he became interested in natural history and in 1831 (aged 22) he
joined a five year scientific expedition on the survey ship HMS Beagle. Darwin’s father was
against the trip as he thought it was a waste of time but was eventually persuaded to
Most Europeans believed that the world was created by God as described in the bible but
Darwin had become interested in radical theories about evolution. Whilst on the voyage
he read about Geology which suggested that the fossils found in rocks were actually
evidence of animals that had lived many millions of years ago. For Darwin this theory was
reinforced by the rich variety of animal life and the geological features he saw during his
It was in the Galapagos Islands that Darwin’s own theories began to take shape. He
noticed that each island had its own form of finch which were closely related but differed in
important ways. During the voyage he sent specimens and letters about his findings to
Cambridge. This helped to establish his reputation as a scientist. On his return to England
in 1836 (aged 27), Darwin was a scientific celebrity and his father’s finances enabled him
to be a self-funded gentleman scientist.
Darwin began writing his journal from the notes he took on the voyage as well as taking on
other scientific work in writing, editing and publishing. His health suffered under the
pressure and it is thought that he may have contracted Chaga’s disease during his
voyage on the Beagle which was responsible for the ill health he suffered throughout his
life. In 1839 he married his cousin Emma Wedgwood. They had 10 children, 2 died in
infancy and one died aged 10. Darwin was a devoted father and feared that by marrying
his cousin their children may have inherited weaknesses. However, his surviving children
went on to have their own distinguished careers in astronomy, botany, engineering and
Darwin’s research continued and he formed his theory based on natural selection where
animals (or plants) that were best suited to their environment would be more likely to
survive and reproduce, so passing on these characteristics to their offspring. This caused
the species to gradually change over time. Darwin worked on his theory for 20 years and
on finding that another naturalist, Alfred Russel Wallace, had developed similar ideas,
they made a joint announcement of their discovery in 1858. In 1859 Darwin published his
book, 'The Origin of Species'.
Because the book inferred that man was simply another form of animal that evolved from
apes, this opposed the religious teachings on how the world was created. However, Darwin’
s theory soon gained support and now forms the basis of modern evolutionary theory.
Darwin was a prolific writer and had many of his works published.
Darwin died on 19th April 1882 (aged 73) and was buried in Westminster Abbey.
Astrology - Charles Darwin has a very unusual chart where all the planets are in the NE
half. This shows that he was self-contained and felt more comfortable doing research in
private to produce his own theories.
The Ascendant or rising sign (your appearance, how you are seen) is in Sagittarius and
this showed Darwin as a truth seeker with a need to expand his horizons through travelling
and thought. He was also quite scruffy in appearance and this is a characteristic of
The Sun (your personality, how you experience life, your essential energy) is in Aquarius
in the 2nd house and this gave Darwin his scientific logic and original way he saw life.
The Moon (your instinctive natural reaction, moods, habits and your mother) is in
Capricorn in the 2nd house and this gave him an emotional need for material security and
stability. Material security from his parents is also here and this is what enabled him to
spend his life researching his theories.
Mercury (your mind, intellect, communication, learning, mischief and criminal activities) is
in Pisces in the 2nd house and this gave Darwin imagination with a fluid intelligence. He
was probably a bit of a dreamer and this may have helped him to form his ideas about
evolution. This position of Mercury shows writers with mass appeal and Darwin had many
books published with 'The Origin of Species’ his most famous.
Venus (your relationships, love, affection, harmony and sociability) is in Aries in the 3rd
house and this shows that Darwin used compromise and not pressure to get what he
wanted. He was also a pioneer in communication. Darwin was very open with his emotions
when it came to those close to him and was said to be an excellent father.
Mars (your physical energy, initiative, action and how you get what you want) is in Libra in
the 10th house and Darwin found that his father tried to exert a strong influence on his
choice of career (although in the end he did what he wanted!).
Jupiter (your belief system, expansion and also representing the world of publishing) is in
Pisces in the 3rd house and this shows an expanded capacity for writing, communication
and publishing. Darwin made huge strides in his thought processes with fluid thinking on a
Saturn (your limitations, lessons to be learned, the key to your career, professional
performance and your father) is in Sagittarius in the 12th house and despite his hard
work, Darwin found it difficult to achieve recognition early on in his life. His search for
truth/knowledge involved him working in solitude much of the time.
Uranus (your power to invent the new, desire for change, originality and unpredictable
behaviour) is in Scorpio in the 11th house and this indicates Darwin’s unusual system of
thought and strength of conviction. He was determined, original and a natural researcher.
Neptune (the collapse of your boundaries, mysterious behaviour, elusiveness and
dreams) is in Sagittarius in the 12th house and it is very likely that Darwin used his dreams
and imagination in his search for the truth. Working alone is also here and being more
comfortable out of public view.
Pluto (your hidden issues, compulsion and dark side) is in Pisces in the 3rd house and
this position indicates strong and controversial opinions. With Pluto in this house it was
never likely that Darwin would give up in communicating his theories to the world, although
he researched for many years before announcing his findings.
Midheaven (your career, aspirations, public face and what you become) is in Libra and
Darwin would not have sacrificed his family life to achieve his own goals or vice versa as
he needed to have balance in his life. Interestingly, although there are indications
elsewhere in his chart that he liked to work alone, when it came to his public face he had a
partner in the form of Alfred Russel Wallace.
Charles Darwin - Aquarius
(naturalist, theory of evolution)
Charles Robert Darwin was born on 12th
February 1809 in Shrewsbury, Shropshire,