What goes up must come down. In the rollercoaster of history, empires and superpowers rise and ultimately fall, sometimes to rise again, sometimes not. Nothing lasts for ever. Spain, France and England/Britain once had empires of unimaginable size – and now they don’t. But they still exist and in varying ways attempt to reconcile themselves to the loss of their former status. Pluto Returns occurring roughly every 250 years can be one indicator of rises and falls. The USA is moving into its First Return in 2022/23. Below are examples from countries which have old enough charts to have experienced Pluto Returns. Thanks to Hugh for a detailed looked at the Roman Empire’s turbulent history over many centuries through the lens of its Pluto Returns.
England 11 May 973 JC AD chart – Pluto 27 Leo. Pluto Returns in 1956; 1709/10; 1463/64; and 1217/18. The Pluto Return of 1709/10 propelled the British Empire into existence after the Act of Union with Scotland in 1707 – at its height it was the largest empire in history. The Suez Crisis in 1956 was the consummate humiliation for Great Britain, signalling its fall from world super-power with the empire crumbling fast in the years before and after.
Spain 19 January 1479 JC – Pluto 1 Libra. The Spanish Empire was one of the largest empires in history. From the late 15th century to the early 19th, Spain controlled vast overseas territories. One of the superpowers of the 16th and 17th centuries, it was known as “the empire on which the sun never sets” and reached its maximum extent in the 18th century. It moved through its first Pluto Return around 1724; and began a slow decline at a Pluto half Return in the 19th Century. The most recent Pluto Return around 1972 saw the dictator Franco gradually relinquishing power, nominating a monarch as successor and handing over the Prime Ministership by 1973.
France 19 August 843 JC – Pluto 29 Pisces. Previous Pluto Returns: 1577, 1332, 1088. Around the second Pluto Return in 1337 and the start of the Hundred Years War, France was at the height of its mediaeval glory. The most recent Pluto Return in 1821 saw the death of Napoleon on the exact aspect and the government of France moved into instability thereafter, though the Second French Colonial Empire built up post-1830 became one of the largest empires in history.
Russia 28 March 1462 JC – Pluto 22 Leo. Previous Return 1708/9. The most recent Pluto Return was exact when Stalin died in early 1953. Previous Pluto Return was 1706.
Switzerland 26 May 1231 JC – most recent Pluto Return joined the Council of Europe. Before that 1726.
Austria 18 October 1221 JC – was angling to join the EEC on the most recent Pluto Return, managed it 6 years later. Before that 1714, 1468.
Scotland March 25 1005 JC – the second Pluto Return in 1745 saw the Jacobite Rebellion crushed by the English with savage repercussions. The next Pluto Return in 1991/2 saw Alex Salmond take over leadership of the Scottish National Party which led later to its rise to power. The Pluto Return first was 1252.
Sweden 1523 – Pluto 14 Capricorn. In the 17th Century Sweden became a great power but had started to lose land and status fifty years before the next Pluto Return in 1768/9. The latest Pluto return of 2015/16 was during European refugee crisis.
Thanks to Hugh for the Roman Empire ups and downs of Pluto:
Rome – the traditional founding date is 753 BCE – Pluto 17 Leo.
The first Pluto Return in 509 BCE the Roman Republic was founded.
The Second Pluto Return coincided with the start of the Punic Wars circa 269 BCE.
The Third Pluto Return oversaw the second settlement of the Augustan Principate around 23 BCE.
The Fourth Pluto Return – 220s CE – the end of the Severan dynasty and the beginning of the 3rd Century Crisis of the Roman Empire which saw near constant civil wars.
The Fifth Pluto Return – 470 CE which saw the end of the Western Empire.
The Sixth Pluto Return – 717-718 CE oversaw the failed Second Arab Siege of Constantinople in (one of the most important events in European History).
9th Pluto Return – 1204 – the Sack of Constantinople by Latin armies in 1204 (an event that fatally weakened the Byzantine world).
10th Pluto Return – 1453 CE when the former Christian capital Constantinople fell to the Ottomans.
Hugh: “I find that a remarkable set of repeated major turning points stretching over 2000 years. I would say those run of events indicate that Pluto Returns played a not insignificant role in the rise and fall of the Roman Empire.”
See November 18 2018 post for more detail on England.