AUTHOR’S NOTE: I’m running my study of the Harmony Montgomery missing-person case on a parallel track to my normal daily posts, so – at the risk of overloading my readers – here is the latest effort, a bit ahead of schedule.
Because the accuracy of horary astrology relies on the instant the astrologer understands the question being asked, I decided to wait until I felt the “urge” to examine the missing-person case of Harmony Montgomery using horary techniques. That occurred at 11:01 this morning, the time for which this chart is cast. Usually, the 1st House of a horary map represents the Querent (the person asking the question) and another House signifies the Quesited (the thing being asked about). Technically, I asked the question but I don’t have a personal stake in the matter, so according to traditional rules I shouldn’t be doing the chart at all. But I’m not a purist, so I decided to use the Manchester (NH) Police Department as the Querent because they broadcast a public request for any-and-all tips (although I doubt I’ll stick my neck out and offer them my observations). The 2nd House symbolizes personal possessions, and is the home of all “moveable objects” (typically small items that have gone missing); since a 5-year-old girl is more a “possession” of the parents than an autonomous entity, I felt comfortable thinking of her in “2nd-House” terms.
In this chart, Aries is on the Ascendant, making Mars the “significator” for the Querent. Mars is in the radical 8th House, which in horary astrology is considered the house of death, and by extension (in terms of general astrology) we might see it as the house of “forensics,” suggesting that what is now a missing-person case might turn into a “wrongful death” investigation. In “classical” horary astrology neither the “minor” (Keplerian) aspects nor the modern planets (Uranus, Neptune and Pluto) are used, so Mars isn’t making any important aspects to what is left (that is, the police will be neither helped nor hindered by other factors). However, once again, I’m not a purist and I note that Mars is in a fairly tight (~1 degree of orb) square to Neptune, which is in the sign of its modern rulership – Pisces – and intercepted in the 12th House. This is a powerful combination for “concealment” and the square from Mars tells me it’s going to be a “tough nut to crack” for the investigative team.
Taurus is on the cusp of the 2nd House, and its ruling planet – Venus – is in the 10th House, or in horary terms, the “turned ninth house from the second house,” giving it 9th House connotations. Horary master John Frawley calls the 9th House the signifier of “special journeys,” which makes me think Harmony may have been “spirited away” somewhere and will not be found on the property where she was last seen. However, Venus is in Capricorn, which – as an Earth sign – is in Frawley’s estimation an indication that the missing “item” is “near, on or under the floor;” from this we can extrapolate that Harmony might in fact be buried underground or, if not, is being kept in a windowless basement. Capricorn is also a “cold, dry” sign, which may be indicative of the winter terrain at the location (which the police are trying to heat up with special equipment for excavation). Going a bit further, Venus is situated in a southerly direction from the astrologer’s (my) location in Rochester, NH, indicating that she may now be slightly east of her last known sighting in Manchester, and the Cardinal status of the radical 10th House implies that she isn’t very far away from that spot. Finally, Frawley observes that the (in this case “turned”) 9th House is the house of “predictions and prophecies,” lending emphasis and perhaps credibility to such attempts to find Harmony.
The condition of Venus is noteworthy. It is retrograde and therefore separating from conjunction with the Sun, although it is still officially “combust” (less than 8-1/2 degrees away). Frawley says “There is no greater affliction to a planet than this” but, although retrogradation might be considered an exacerbating debility, here it is actually improving the situation. Unfortunately, while the fact of separation might slightly reduce the negative consequences, the aspect is still tight at less than 3 degrees of orb. It can mean that “whoever or whatever is signified by that planet cannot either see or be seen” (Frawley). The implication seems to be that Harmony is either 1) being held incommunicado somewhere, or 2) she is in fact under the ground.
Venus is also closely square to the Ascendant and – being retrograde – is applying to “perfection” (exactness). Here is an indication that the Querent (i.e. investigators) will be serious challenged in finding Harmony (the second such implication in this chart). Frawley says “Squares bring things together with difficulty or with delay.” But we must also note that the Querent’s “significator” (Mars) is in a non-critical semi-sextile aspect to Venus, and the latter is separating from that aspect. Neither has any dignity by sign, and in traditional terms Mars appears to be “peregrine” or wandering (making no major Ptolemaic aspects to the “classical” planets), suggesting that the Querent may be “flailing around” aimlessly at this point. Therefore, I would not read too much into this factor on its own merits. Venus is not making any other important contacts in this chart; it is, however, the most elevated planet, showing that a great deal of attention is being brought to bear on the case. Being above the horizon along with the Sun is usually a sign of visibility (and thus “find-ability”), but here I think the combustion overrules that advantage.