Astrology in China

  • Ho Peng Yoke
Reference work entry

In traditional China there was no distinction between astronomy and astrology. The common word tianwen covered both. There was also no distinction between astronomy and astrology in Europe before the end of the seventeenth century. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, there were two kinds of astrology (a) natural astrology, which involved the calculation and foretelling of natural phenomena, as the measurement of time, fixing of Easter, predictions of tides and eclipses, and also of meteorological phenomena and (b) judicial astrology, which was the art of judging the reputed occult and nonphysical influences of the stars and planets on human affairs, also known as star divination or astromancy. Since the end of the seventeenth century the term natural astrology was replaced by astronomy and meteorology, while judicial astrology became the astrology commonly known today.

Traditional Chinese astrology included the two elements of natural and occult science. The latter provided the...

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  1. Ho Peng Yoke. The Astronomical Chapters of the Chin Shu. Paris and the Hague: Mouton & Co., 1966.Google Scholar
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg New York 2008

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  • Ho Peng Yoke

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