This is the story of Sun sign astrology – the sort of astrology that makes up horoscope columns. The sort of astrology that leads people to believe that there are twelve types of people and that those types are described by their zodiac signs. In fact, this is often cited as a reason for its invalidity – how can there be only twelve types of people in the world? Oddly, this statement is often made by people who have no problem in classifying people as either extrovert or introvert.
There are plenty of histories of astrology. They detail thousands of years of astrological practice and theory, highlighting famous practitioners, placing them in their historical context and describing their techniques. Along the way, they mention Sun sign astrology, often as an aside. This book takes a different approach. Here our main concern is popular and mass market astrology, which in the West is Sun sign astrology, and it goes back a lot further than most people realise.