Aquarius is the creative, original thinker, the rebel, and the humanitarian of the zodiac. The symbols for Aquarius are the water-bearer and parallel waves. For those born between January 20 – February 18 or who have other planets in this unique zodiac sign, the world is full of hope, promise, and fascination. In this post, we’ll cover all aspects of this 11th zodiac sign in western astrology, from Aquarius personality traits to strengths and weakness, compatibilities, and more.
Aquarius Dates: January 20 – February 18
Table of Contents
Aquarius Quick Facts
Here are some high-level aspects of Aquarius:
- Dates: January 20 – February 18
- Strengths: creative, innovative, original, selfless, intelligent, altruistic
- Weaknesses: aloof, unemotional, overly-analytical, dogmatic
- Symbol: the water-bearer
- Ruling planet: Uranus
- Birthstones: garnet, amethyst, turquoise, sugilite, agate, jasper, rose quartz
- Element: air
- Season: mid-winter
- Modality: fixed
Aquarius Sign and Symbol
Before we dive into Aquarius’ personality traits, let’s take a look at the history and meanings behind this sign’s symbol. After all, they shed light on who and what this sign represents and has to offer to the world. As mentioned above, the symbol for Aquarius is the water-bearer. And the related glyph (or simplified symbol) is two waves of water rippling in unison.
The name Aquarius is Latin for “water-carrier” or “cup-bearer.” You are most likely already familiar with word like “aqua” as in aqua blue, Aquaman, or aquarium.
Like oxygen, water is a life-sustaining force on Earth. Thus, the symbolism of the water-carrier underscores the gravitas of this sign’s meaning. Aquarius as the water-bearer is a symbol of life, healing, and vitality as well as generosity and selflessness. This is why this sign is so often associated with humanitarianism and a dedication to important causes.
Aquarius Glyph: Meaning of Two Harmonious Waves
In addition to the water bearer, Aquarius is represented by the simple symbol, or glyph, of two parallel waves that ripple, or flow, in unison. The Egyptian hieroglyph for water was a wavy line, so it’s very likely the glyph for Aquarius has its roots in this symbol.
The two wavy lines together represent a ripple effect, or the dissemination of energy and knowledge. In addition, as they ripple in unison, they represent flow – the flow and exchange of ideas as well the concept of being “in flow” or being unified with cosmic order and universal truth.
Uranus: Ruling Planet of Aquarius
Aquarians are the rebels and eccentrics of the zodiac and this is due, in no small part, to their ruling planet, Uranus. The planet of innovation and original thinking, Uranus drives those with Aquarius in their horoscopes to follow their own path and think outside of the box.
In Greek mythology, Uranus was the offspring of the primordial Earth goddess, Gaia. He came to rule the skies and heaven. Then, in a twist of the plot befitting Greek mythology, Uranus and Gaia had children, including the 12 titans, the hecatonchires and the cyclopes.
The Cosmic Disruptor
Uranus (the deity) caused Gaia quite a bit of pain and trouble just as Uranus (the planet) seems to stimulate revolutions, upheavals, and massive social change on Earth. For astrologers, Uranus is the planet that drives us to break free from tradition and the status quo.
Needless to say, this can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on the circumstances. In the same way, Uranus can have both positive and negative effects on Aquarians. The positive influences of Aquarius’ ruling planet include powerful intuition and bright ideas, even strokes of genius.
The negative impacts of Uranus are aptly personified by the famous Aquarian James Dean’s character in the classic film Rebel Without a Cause. It’s a rebelliousness against authority or the status quo just because they’re there vs. what they might stand for. In other words, Uranus just likes to shake things up for the sake of shaking it up!
Another aspect of Uranus is that it rules technology. So, those with Aquarius in their birth chat often have a knack for technology and are fascinated by it. Just as Uranus is a cosmic disrupter, and Aquarians are innovative thinkers, new technologies can disrupt old business models and change the way we do things.
One of the oldest recognized constellations in the sky, the Aquarius constellation is located in an area of the sky referred to as “the Sea.” This is because other constellations nearby are also associated with water and the ocean, including Pisces (the fish), Cetus (the whale), and Eridanus (the river).
A number of ancient cultures have myths about the Aquarius constellation. The Babylonians associated the Aquarius constellation with their god Ea, who ruled water. Thus, when there were cataclysmic floods, Ea (and the Aquarius constellation) was to blame.
The ancient Egyptians associated the Aquarius constellation with the annual floods along the Nile River. They believed that Aquarius was pouring his jar of water into the river.
In Greek mythology, Zeus kidnapped a boy named Ganymede to be a cup bearer for the gods on Mt. Olympus. Thus, Ganymede is associated with Aquarius in the sky.1
Aquarius Tarot Card: The Star
Another important association in Aquarius symbology is the sign’s corresponding tarot card. In the tarot, Aquarius is represented by the Star card in the Major Arcana.
The Star card embodies inspiration, hope, and renewal. In the artwork, a woman holding two water vessels kneels by a pool of water. One of her feet touches to the ground, representing her connection to the material world. Her other foot touches the water, which represents her connection to the emotional sub-conscious. The star above her head represents her connection to spiritual guidance or universal wisdom. As she pours the water, she is sharing this wisdom with the world as she replenishes it.
Like the Star, Aquarius is known to having the capacity to tap into greater wisdom and to share it with the world for the greater good.
Aquarius Personality Traits
As the free-thinkers of the zodiac, those born under the sign of Aquarius, or who have it in their birth chart, have much to offer the world. And because of their friendly and generous nature, Aquarius is effective at opening people’s minds in a way that is non-threatening and interesting.
Aquarius is also the sign of friendship. And as a fixed sign, Aquarius is known to be a loyal and devoted friend.
As an air sign, Aquarius is creative, imaginative, and intellectual. And often they can parlay these gifts using technology, which comes naturally to them.
Aquarians are also the non-conformists of the zodiac. They tend to have their own sense of style, regardless of what is trendy. In addition, they are attracted to unusual, zany, or eccentric people. With an off-beat sense of humor, Aquarians are also really fun to be around!
Possibly one of Aquarius’ greatest personality traits and gifts to the world is their idealism and belief in causes that help the greater good. Aquarians are very often humanitarians, social justice advocates, environmentalists, and other types of activists who selflessly dedicate themselves to making the world a better place.
Modality: the Fixed Air Sign
In western astrology, an important aspect to each sign’s personality is what is referred to as its modality. The modality can best be described as the sign’s mode of operation or orientation. There are three modalities in western astrology: cardinal, fixed, and mutable. And each one contains the elements of fire, water, air, and earth.
Furthermore, within each modality, there are aspects of the four seasons of the year: spring, summer, autumn, and winter. For example, Aquarius’ modality is fixed and it represents the season of winter in the set of fixed signs. In addition, Aquarius is the only fixed air sign.
Here’s more information on each sign’s modality plus characteristics of those personalities:
Mutable signs: Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, and Pisces. The mutable signs are associated with flexibility, adaptability, and change. Thus, they embrace new experiences, they can deal with ambiguity, and they easily go with the flow. They’re also good at solving problems, being resourceful, and thinking outside of the box.
Cardinal signs: Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn. The cardinal signs are associated with new beginnings, initiation, and leadership. In addition, they are innovative and proactive. They’re also the types who are pioneers, who take initiative, and who lead.
Fixed signs: Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius. The fixed signs are associated with stability, consistency, and tenacity. Thus, making commitments and seeing plans through to completion comes naturally to them. They’re not wishy-washy types, and they know how to get the ball over the goal line to reach their dreams or objectives.
As the fixed air sign, Aquarius is steadfast when it comes to their ideals. Even though Aquarius is the most eccentric and unpredictable sign in the zodiac, they are consistent in their eccentricity and unpredictability. In other words, this is not just a phase Aquarius is going through!
Steadfast and loyal, Aquarius is a wonderful friend and they have many of them. When an Aquarius joins a crusade of some kind, they will work and fight with conviction until the objective is achieved. In fact, because Aquarius is the humanitarian of the zodiac, you can’t go wrong if you have one on your team – whether it’s a social revolution or a fundraising drive.
The negative side of a fixed air sign is that Aquarius can be a little judgmental if others don’t share their views on a social or political matters.
Here are some more details on the strengths and weaknesses of this sign:
Here’s a list of some of the best aspects to the Aquarius personality:
- Open-minded, progressive, and often ahead of their time
- Friendly, easygoing, and loyal
- Funny in an off-beat way
- Fair and justice-minded
We all have a dark side and Aquarius is no exception. Here are some negative Aquarius personality traits:
- Overly analytical
- Unemotional and aloof
- Focused on the greater good at the expense of closer, intimate relationships
Aquarius Mantras and Affirmations
Here are some mantras, or personal affirmations, that fit well with Aquarius strengths and weaknesses and which can help the water-bearer to thrive:
- I am using my gifts and talents to serve the greater good.
- When I care for those closest to me, I create a ripple effect of positivity in the world.
- I have the power to create solutions no matter how challenging things are.
- I am a healer.
- Creative and innovative ideas comes naturally to me.
Aquarius Compatibility: Love, Sex, and Romance
Who is Aquarius the most compatible with? In astrology, even when you try to set certain rules, there will always be exceptions. For example, even astrological odd couples can come together and build a relationship that withstands the test of time. In addition, the relationships or aspects between the other planets in each person’s birth chart play a role in how two people will interact.
With this in mind, here are some guidelines on how easy or challenging some astrological combinations can be when paired with Aquarius. Plus, there’s a list of some easy ways to turn Aquarius on or off!
Aquarius + Another Air Sign: Gemini, Libra, or Aquarius
When Aquarius pairs with a fellow air sign, it’s a match made in heaven. Air signs are generally independent and cerebral, which Aquarius respects in others. So, right away, the two signs will understand each other. In addition, Aquarius will likely be energized by a fellow Aquarius, a Gemini, or a Libra.
Furthermore, the two air signs will make each other feel comfortable. The drawback to this combination is that it may lack a level of passion and emotion to keep things interesting. Or the two may simply go their separate ways with time as other interests take center stage in their respective lives.
Aquarius + Fire Sign: Aries, Leo, or Sagittarius
When Aquarius pairs with fire sign, it promises to be perfect match. Aquarius can fan the flames of the fire, motivating and encouraging them in their pursuits. Meanwhile, the fire sign can energize, inspire, and motivate Aquarius. In addition, Aries, Leo, or Sagittarius can balance Aquarius’ sometimes cool and detached demeanor with passion and warmth. The two signs together can balance and comfort each other.
The risk in this relationship is that Aquarius may feel drained by the fire sign, who may be on the demanding side. In addition, Aries, Leo, or Sagittarius may have a hot-tempered or jealous streak that turns Aquarius off. But all in all, when Aquarius is matched with a fire sign, the future looks bright!
Aquarius + Earth Sign: Taurus, Virgo, or Capricorn
When Aquarius gets together with an earth sign, the two people can form a very effective partnership, whether romantically, creatively, or even economically. Taurus, Virgo, or Capricorn will be able to put Aquarius’ brilliant ideas into action and creating something tangible and even substantial. In addition, the earth sign can help Aquarius feel secure, comforted, and grounded. The earth sign will appreciate Aquarius’ conviction and steadfastness as well as their innovative mind.
Furthermore, Taurus, Virgo, or Capricorn will be tickled by Aquarius’ eccentricities, so the two signs will have a good time together. Where this duo could face challenges, however, is that Aquarius feels that the earth sign dampens their free spirit. And the earth sign may get frustrated when Aquarius is disorganized or emotionally aloof.
Aquarius + Water Sign: Cancer, Scorpio, or Pisces
Because of Aquarius’ sign as the water-bearer, many people assume Aquarius is a water sign instead of an air sign. However, that common misunderstanding does bode well for a relationship between Aquarius and the actual water signs: Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces.
In fact, more than any other air sign, Aquarius understands the water signs. To begin, the water signs are naturally sensitive and intuitive. Aquarius is also guided by intuition. In addition, Aquarius understand the emotional sensitivity of the water signs, which is inherent in Aquarius’ altruistic nature.
Where a match between Aquarius and one of the water signs could be challenging is that Aquarius may become uncomfortable with the depth and consistency of the water sign’s deep emotional states, causing Aquarius to figuratively feel like they are drowning and want to come up for air. By the same token, the water sign could feel that Aquarius is too emotionally detached or not there for them enough.
Aquarius Turn Ons and Turn Offs
If you’re trying to woo an Aquarius, it can be helpful to know what can turn them on or turn them off. Here are some suggestions:
How to Turn On Aquarius
- Give them plenty of space.
- Support causes or charities you believe in and explain why you do.
- Celebrate their off-beat and quirky nature.
- Engage in creative pursuits, whether art, music, dance, theatre, or something else.
- Be willing to try new things.
How to Turn Off Aquarius
- Be boring.
- Be possessive or infringe on their freedom.
- Text them around the clock or otherwise infringe on their personal time and space.
- Demonstrate that you have few intellectual interests.
- Be closed minded.
- Don’t pay attention to world events.
- Act like you don’t care about anyone but yourself.
Other Planets in the Birth Chart
While this article focuses primarily on the Aquarius sun sign, other planets in the birth chart can also be in Aquarius. Hence, the traits of Aquarius influence the aspects of a person’s life ruled by these planets. Here’s how the qualities of Aquarius can manifest in different planets of the birth chart:
Sun in Aquarius
Our sun sign rules our will, our identity, our self-expression, and our ego. It’s also one of the key drivers in how we will fulfill our life’s purpose here on Earth, or our self-realization. Thus, a person with their sun in Aquarius will be altruistic, original, creative, freedom-loving, and intellectually curious.
Your rising sign, or ascendant, is the astrological sign that was rising on the eastern horizon at the time of your birth. It reflects how others perceive you, such as by your outward appearance and mannerisms or your overall disposition. People with Aquarius rising often intrigue others because they seem to break the mold. Yet while they may appear to be off-beat and original, they will seem friendly and approachable.
Your moon sign represents your emotions, your inner world, and your subconscious state of mind. It also relates to your mother. Thus, it reflects how you take care of yourself. People whose moon is in Aquarius may be emotionally detached and could feel that they are on the outside looking in. However, they have profound empathy for those who struggle. Thus, they take it upon themselves to try to change things, whether it’s social injustice or other situations where people, animals, or nature are suffering.
Venus in Aquarius
Your Venus sign represents your approach to love and relationships, desires and passions, and what you value. People with Venus in Aquarius are often highly creative. And they may leverage the use of technology in their creative process.
In romantic relationships, they are often attracted to fellow non-conformists and people who are intelligent, intellectually interesting, and who have a quirky sense of humor. In addition, Aquarius will always maintain their sense of individuality in their relationship, and they won’t have a problem with their partner doing the same. Venus in Aquarius people are also creatively romantic, off-beat, and fun when it comes to romance.
Mars in Aquarius
Your Mars sign reflects what drives you. It’s the passion in your nature and how you take action. Your Mars sign often manifests itself in how you work, how you approach you free time, and in your sexuality.
Mars is in Aquarius people have independent spirits and a strong sense of self-identity. They often channel their energy into social activism and creative pursuits. They are highly committed to their social beliefs and the causes they believe in.
Those with Mars in Aquarius will often leverage technology in their work and creative pursuits, or they’ll work in the field of technology.
Furthermore, Mars in Aquarius are inventive, creative, and fun lovers!
Mercury in Aquarius
Your Mercury sign governs the way you communicate and express yourself as well as how you learn and process information.
Those with Mercury in Aquarius are some of the sharpest people in the zodiac. Indeed, this aspect in astrology is the mark of a genius. They are quick-witted and often way ahead of the curve when it comes to technological innovations and trends. In addition, Mercury in Aquarius people are excellent communicators and they have knack at explaining complex ideas in ways that other people can understand.
The Age of Aquarius
No post about the zodiac sign of Aquarius would be complete without mentioning the Age of Aquarius. Brought into popular awareness by the song Aquarius, or Let the Sunshine In, from the 1979 movie Hair, the exact dates of when this period begins and ends is still up for debate among both astronomers and astrologers.
However, most astrologers say that approximately every 2,160 years (as the Earth rotates around the sun), the period of the vernal equinox moves from one constellation of the zodiac into the next. And many believe that sometimes during the 20th century (from January 1, 1901 to December 31, 2000), we moved into the Age of Aquarius and will be here for around 2,160 years.)2
Just like the attributes embodied by the zodiac sign of Aquarius, astrologers say the Age of Aquarius is, or will be, a period of social, spiritual, and technological transformation. Many belief this break from the past will bring in a new era of innovation, understanding, empathy, peace, and love.
Whether we are already here or not, certainly the highest expression of the sign of Aquarius should inspire us all to take better care of each other.
Aquarius, Let the Sun Shine In by James Rado, Gerome Ragni, and Galt MacDermot
When the moon is in the Seventh House
And Jupiter aligns with Mars
Then peace will guide the planets
And love will steer the stars
This is the dawning of the age of Aquarius
The age of Aquarius
Harmony and understanding
Sympathy and trust abounding
No more falsehoods or derisions
Golden living dreams of visions
Mystic crystal revelation
And the mind’s true liberation
Let the sunshine
Let the sunshine in
The sunshine in…3
- Oprah Winfrey
- Charles Darwin
- Jennifer Aniston
- Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
- Alicia Keys
- Ellen DeGeneres
- Michael Jordan
- Lewis Carroll
- Christian Bale
- Abraham Lincoln
- Harry Styles
- Babe Ruth
- The Weeknd
- Charles Dickens
- Ed Sheeran
- Frederick Douglass
- James Dean
- Steve Prefontaine