In astrology, there are the traditional planets and the modern planets. The traditional planets are Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn, plus the Sun and the Moon. These are planets that you don’t need a telescope to see. So, those in Ancient civilizations that came up with astrology could track their movements and base their astrological predictions on them. The modern planets are Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. These planets were discovered in our modern era and can mostly only be viewed through a telescope.
Modern astrologers have ascribed meaning to these planets primarily based on things happening in the world around the time of their discovery, and mythological legends. They have also based their meaning on studying the planets’ past transits prior to discovery and seeing how the transits line up with world events.
These modern planets are sometimes called the outer planets in astrology. Their orbits are so long that they are more generational planets because they stay in the same sign for many years. How they affect the natal chart is a little different than the inner, or personal planets, because most people born in a certain period of time have the same sign of the outer planets. With these generational bodies, which house it falls into and how it aspects the other planets in your chart may affect its manifestation in your life more than the specific sign it is in.
What Does Your Pluto Sign Mean?
While Pluto is no longer technically a planet according to astronomy, it is a powerful celestial body in astrology.
In Greek mythology, Pluto was a later conception of the god of the underworld. Originally, he was Hades, but as Pluto rose to prominence, Hades become the name of the underworld itself. He also appeared under the same name in Roman mythology. Pluto was associated with wealth because valuable minerals and stones were found underground, presumably close to the underworld itself. With his wife, Persephone, or Proserpina as she is known in Roman mythology, Pluto helped people navigate through the underworld after their death.
Thus, Pluto as an astrological planet is considered to be all about renewal. Death brings new life in biological cycles. With Pluto, that doesn’t necessarily mean physical death. It may represent ideas, stories, needs, and desires in your life that you will need to evaluate and let go of in this lifetime, in order to make room for new ones.
Pluto also rules over the extremes, mass social and political movements, and both personal and societal transformations. It also rules over anything that has to do with the physical or metaphorical underground. Pluto has a way of bringing the truth to the surface. It rules over things like mining, surgery, and detective work.
Pluto’s full orbit of the sun takes around 248 years. No one will experience a full Pluto return. It stays in each sign for anywhere from 12 to 30 years. Because of this, it also has strong generational and historical implications.
Because it is such a generational planet, when Pluto changes signs, big things can happen. For example, shortly after Pluto moved to Capricorn in 2008, the housing market crashed, sealing the downward market trends that led to a huge financial crisis. Keep your eye on Pluto transits and world events to see how they coincide.
Pluto Sign Traits
Pluto in Aries
Pluto in Aries Historically
Unfortunately, there is no one alive today who has Pluto in Aries. So, we can’t observe people to see how this placement may manifest. However, we can look to the last period of Pluto in Aries from 1822-1853 to see how this 30+ year transit affected society.
Aries is the first sign of the zodiac and it is also a cardinal sign, signaling the beginning of spring in the northern hemisphere. It has an energy of leadership, innovation, and trend-setting. However, it also has an association with war, warriors, and hotheaded anger.
During the last Pluto in Aries transit, the California Gold Rush started. This event saw people digging up precious minerals from the earth with the hopes of getting rich, which is a very literal interpretation of Plutonian pursuits. However, in order to get to California, people had to strike off on their own with an intrepid spirit. They also brought a war-like attitude towards the people who were already in America, the Native Americans. Colonizers were expanding westward in general with this attitude, leading to the displacement, enslavement, exploitation, and mass murder of Native Americans.
However, this time was also when many of the building blocks of technical innovation were sown. During this period the gas stove, friction matches, and braille were all invented. There were also several new types of rifles and other firearms invented, speaking to Aries’ love of battle.
People born during this time were likely self-sufficient and highly independent but sometimes reckless and even cruel, highlighting the extremes of the human condition as Pluto often does, through the filter of Aries.
The Next Pluto in Aries
The next time Pluto will be in Aries will be 2068. Many people who are alive at the writing of this article will have the opportunity to see how the next Pluto in Aries transit will affect society and innovation.
Pluto in Taurus
Pluto in Taurus Historically
Like Aries, no one is alive right now who has Pluto in Taurus. During the last period when Pluto was in Taurus, from 1853-1884, the world moved into a state of greater earthly comfort. A fixed earth sign, Taurus is a bit stubborn, but is concerned with hard work, stability, and structure.
So it makes sense that during the previous Pluto in Taurus transit, the Industrial Revolution started. This was a time of great innovation in home comforts and hard work, however, there was also a dark underbelly of child labor, wage slavery, unsafe working conditions, and the pull of capitalism’s influence on society.
It was also during this period that the New York Stock Exchange was founded. Is it a coincidence that the symbol of Taurus, a bull, lends its name to a “bull market”? In stocks and investments, that term is usually a positive one meaning prices are rising.
When in Taurus, Pluto highlighted the duality of the desire for more comfort and better living conditions paired with the difficult conditions it put some people in to get there. People who were born with Pluto in Taurus may have been hard-working and resourceful, but materialistic and self-centered.
The Next Pluto in Taurus
Pluto will not be in Taurus again until 2098. Experts believe that this next Pluto in Taurus period may have a significant effect on industry, capital, and the ways people work in general.
Pluto in Gemini
Pluto in Gemini Historically
The last Pluto in Gemini period happened between 1882 and 1914. During this time, there were many innovations in the field of technology. Gemini, an air sign, is all about communication, intellect, and a lifelong pursuit of learning. It is represented by the twins, so it can also be about two extremes or two sides, but in a different way than Pluto.
Telephones, radios, and photographs took off as new ways to share information and keep in touch. This was the beginning of the media industry bringing information to people quickly. The telephone revolutionized global communication and made the world an effectively smaller place. The radio allowed people to receive news and alerts very quickly. Photographs allows people to experience other parts of the world they had never been to in a more realistic way than a drawing or painting.
There was also a lot of knowledge gained in the fields of psychology and quantum physics. People were using Gemini’s pursuit of knowledge paired with Pluto’s desire to unearth truths that speak to the nature of the universe and humanity.
The Next Pluto in Gemini
Pluto will next be in Gemini starting in 2132. Astrologers predict there will be even more innovation in communication and the sciences during this time.
Pluto in Cancer
Pluto in Cancer Historically
The last time of Pluto in Cancer was especially tumultuous. It encompassed several wars, including the first World War, the Great Depression, and many large societal changes. Cancer is a loyal sign that is all about home and family. When paired with Pluto’s nature of turning societal norms on their heads to unearth the truth, the historic realities of home and family life were revealed.
There were advancements in contraceptives, freeing many women to have children only when they wanted to. There were also advances in kitchen appliances, which also had the effect of allowing women to have more free time, as they were expected to do most of the domestic labor during this period. As women gained more independence, divorce became more common. When paired with the wars of the time and the Great Depression, homes and families with less conventional structures for the time started to become more common.
Pluto in Cancer revealed the disparities in home life and allowed for advancements in that area. While it may have led to unhappy homes and childhoods, some consider these situations as growing pains in the journey towards greater gender equality.
The Next Pluto in Cancer
The next period of Pluto in this sign will not happen until the year 2182. It will remain there until 2200.
Pluto in Leo
Pluto in Leo Historically
Pluto in Leo brought the power struggles of empires, royalty, and leaders to the forefront. When paired with Pluto’s ability to highlight extremes and unearth ugly truths, the world saw Hitler’s unspeakable atrocities as well as other leaders’ attempts to fight it.
Leo is ruled by the sun, and there was a lot of brightness about this era. The golden age of cinema began, with movie star culture becoming mainstream. However, some of the “brightness” was actually full of evil and darkness, like the invention of the nuclear bomb. Its first uses on our planet were seen when the United States dropped two atomic bombs in Japan. These bombs use Plutonium, which is named after the planet Pluto, another connection to the underworldly god.
This placement highlights the human struggle for power, and brought out the very best and the very worst in people. Those born during this time may find themselves hungry for power, however, that doesn’t have to be a difficult trait. It might mean that they simply enjoy working hard and earning promotions or accolades at work. They tend to have a strong work ethic and take great pride in their work.
The Next Pluto in Leo
Pluto will next enter Leo on July 2, 2202. No one who is alive today will be around to see it!
Pluto in Virgo
Pluto in Virgo Historically
Virgo is an exceptionally critical sign. So, it makes sense that during Pluto’s last transit of this sign from 1956 to 1972, movements arose that were critical of unfair and oppressive standards in society, and overturned them, as Pluto often does. During the Civil Rights movement in the United States, people stood together to fight for racial justice. In the 1960s, there were also important movements that shifted societal norms in terms of gay rights, women’s rights, free speech, and environmental activism.
During this time, several tools were invented that showcased Virgo’s love of intellect and order. The first pocket calculator came to the market, as did the first ATM and the first computer programming language. The first e-mail was sent and the first hypertext link was created, starting the information age we are in today. Medicare and Medicaid started, relating to Virgo’s love of service and association with medical care.
People with this placement may have a tendency to overwork themselves and can enjoy working to serve others. However, their dedication to their work can be an inspiration to others.
The Next Pluto in Virgo
The next Pluto in Virgo transit with start in 2217.
Pluto in Libra
Pluto in Libra Historically
The most recent Pluto in Libra period saw great reforms in equality, especially in the areas of gender and sexuality. This transit gave people the choice to move into the beauty and equality favored by Libra, or away from it and deeper into intolerance.
In the United States, abortion became legal, giving people access to safer reproductive healthcare. Additionally, no-fault divorces became legal, meaning people could get divorced simply because they wanted to. People no longer had to prove any wrongdoing to leave a marriage. Women gained greater equality in the working world, thanks to the 2nd wave of feminism. However, these 2nd wave feminists, who were against porn and sex work, were at odds with other feminists who believed that women should be able to participate in those activities freely.
This time also saw many anti-war protests against the Vietnam War, speaking to Libra’s love of peace. Anti-war songs were popular. Mainstream artists created hit songs that we still hear today used in service of protesting war.
People with this placement desire for harmony in their relationships, but due to Pluto’s ability to highlight extremes, they may find that they can’t ignore conflicts. They can seek to resolve disagreements that have no resolution. They need to remember that some things are more about compatibility than a problem to be fixed.
The Next Pluto in Libra
The next time Pluto will be in Libra is not until the year 2228.
Pluto in Scorpio
Pluto in Scorpio Historically
Pluto is the ruler of Scorpio in modern astrology. Before the planet’s discovery, the ruler of Scorpio was Mars. Today, some consider both of these planets contributed to Scorpio’s intensity. The last period of Pluto in Scorpio from 1983-1995 is when most millennials were born. No wonder this generation is obsessed with true crime stories, horror movies, and the occult in general. Their childhood was full of reading Harry Potter and Goosebumps. Even kid-friendly movies had a spooky edge. Nightmare Before Christmas, Ghostbusters, and Edward Scissorhands all premiered during Pluto in Scorpio. During this period, body modifications, such as tattoos, became more mainstream.
From a historical perspective, this is when the first school shootings started. AIDS popped up, killing leading to a dark time for the LGBT community. Over 100,000 people died in the first 10 years of the disease. Most, but not all, were gay men. Even celebrities were not immune to the disease. Queen’s lead singer, Freddie Mercury died of AIDS in 1991. The Rwandan Genocide also happened during this Pluto in Scorpio period.
People born during this time may be interested in finding out the secrets of life. They are wired to become a reflection of Scorpio themes of sexuality, the occult, power, and pain in different ways. The millennial generation is more comfortable with sexuality than those that preceded them. BDSM has become more mainstream and casual hook ups are much more acceptable than they used to be. People of this era are passionate about anything they do, but they may become compulsively obsessed with their interests.
The Next Pluto in Scorpio
Pluto will next be in Scorpio in the year 2240.
Pluto in Sagittarius
Pluto in Sagittarius Historically
The dates of the most recent Pluto in Sagittarius transit coincide with the birth years for most people in “Generation Z.” Sagittarius is all about wisdom, learning, and expansion. This sign is particularly concerned with expanding the mind, learning about philosophy and religion, and excess. During this time period access to knowledge expanded immensely with the internet’s adoption by the general public. This also espoused another Sagittarian quality: friendliness. The internet made the world a smaller place and allowed people to stay in touch more than ever. It also allowed people around the globe to have new opportunities.
All of these Sagittarian ideals have their extremes when paired with Pluto. For example, people became even more fervently religious during this time period, and discrimination against certain religions soared. After the 9/11 attack in the United States, Muslims experienced discrimination. This was also the time that religious fanaticism rose to prominence in many communities. The internet also has it’s more difficult side. While it allows us to share information and communicate, it has also been the source of fake news, scams, bullying, and violence.
People born during Pluto in Sagittarius may have a tendency to try to get everyone to share their beliefs. This generation has a love of travel and expanding the mind. Luckily, they have the tools to do so at their fingertips.
The Next Pluto in Sagittarius
The next Pluto in Sagittarius transit will occur in 2253.
Pluto in Capricorn
Pluto in Capricorn Historically
1762-1778 & 2008-2024
In February 2022, the United States experienced its first Pluto return since becoming a country in 1776. This means that Pluto returned to the same degree of Capricorn that it was on July 4, 1776. During its time in Capricorn, which spanned from 2008 until 2022, the United States underwent a massive transformation. As Pluto transitioned into the sign, the United States, and the world, went into a huge financial crisis. Throughout the 2010s and 2020s, massive issues with racial injustice, police brutality, rape culture, and more were brought to light. It was also the time of the COVID-19 pandemic which fundamentally changed the ways we do everything. How we go to work, how we socialize, and how we live.
This makes complete sense as Capricorn as a sign is all about the larger structures at play in our society. On a personal level, Capricorn can give people stable business boss vibes. People with a personal planet in Capricorn may enjoy participating in some of the societal structures we have in place, such as politics or the corporate ladder. However, on a generational level, it touches on the structural foundations of our society. It only makes sense that Pluto in Capricorn would unearth and bring to light the ways that the massive and powerful machines of capitalism, patriarchy, and white supremacy have affected our world.
The Next Pluto in Capricorn
After leaving Capricorn for Aquarius on March 24, 2023, Pluto will experience a few retrogrades that will send it back into Capricorn for a few months from June 12, 2023, to January 24, 2024, and September 3, 2024, to November 20, 2024. After that, it will stay in Aquarius for about 20 years. The next Pluto in Capricorn period will happen in 2268.
Pluto in Aquarius
Pluto in Aquarius Historically
Aquarius is a technologically savvy, rational, humanitarian sign. During the last period of Pluto in Aquarius, the first philosophers and politicians who believed that women, children, and slaves should have equal rights to men started to speak up. These views were incredibly subversive for the time. This time period also had the end of the American Revolution, and the French Revolution. Both of these subverted monarchies and changed the way people were governed.
The invention of the telescope fully revolutionized humanity’s view of our place in the universe. The hot air balloon was also invented, which was the first time people got off the ground in any meaningful way. This makes sense because Aquarius rules anything in the air.
People born with Pluto in Aquarius are likely to have a passion for social reform and humanitarian ideals. They will put their effort behind what they believe in. However, they can be detached from emotions and too attached to rationality.
The Next Pluto in Aquarius
The next Pluto in Aquarius is just around the corner. It will occur from 2024-2044. Astrologers believe that this will be a time of transformation in technology. However, Pluto’s dichotomizing effects will show us both the light and dark sides of this. For example, AI may be used with positive intentions, but there may be unintended side effects that reveal some kind of dark underbelly. They also believe it will be a time of great social change. This may mean the continuation of movements for social justice, or it can mean something else that will turn our societal structures upside down, as Pluto can do. Only time will tell exactly how the next Pluto in Aquarius period will manifest.
Pluto in Pisces
Pluto in Pisces Historically
The last Pluto in Pisces period literally used water to transform the world. The high-pressure steam engine was invented, leading to more easeful travel on trains and boats. This time period was also the romantic era, which espoused the Piscean ideals of beauty and creativity. This artistic period resulted in beautiful, warm music. It was also the first time in European history that painting something other than historic scenes, biblical scenes, and royalty or the aristocracy became popular and acceptable.
Pisces is an emotional sign that always wears its heart on its sleeve. It loves love, sometimes to a fault. While the idea of a love marriage was not a new one, this time period saw more and more people eschewing arranged marriages and going with their heart instead.
This was a period that left behind the wars and revolutions of the recent past and leaned into art and romance instead. That’s not to say there were no wars. Pisces is often seen as a sweet and even naive sign, but it does have its own power.
Pisces is also an incredibly spiritual sign. During this time period, Franz Mesmer discovered hypnotism. This technique would later become important to the spiritualist movement.
The Next Pluto in Pisces
The next period of Pluto in Pisces will be from 2044-2068. Experts believe this may be a time of great creativity. It may inspire new artistic movements based in beauty and harmony. It may also be a time of reform for relationships, marriage, and love in general.
The photo featured at the top of this post is © NASA images/Shutterstock.com
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