According to ancient lore, each day and each hour of a day is attributed to
a particular planet. The purpose of this attribution is to find the right
moment for a particular activity. For example, according to this lore, the
right moment for love matters would be the hour ruled by Venus on a Venus
Planetary hours are calculated as follows: We calculate the length of time
between sunrise and sunset and divide it into 12 equal sections. In the
same manner, we divide the length of time between sunset and the following
sunrise into 12 equal sections. The resulting 24 sections are called
'planetary hours'. Naturally, they are not ordinary 60-minute hours but can
be longer or shorter. The 24 planetary hours make up a planetary day.
Consequently, a planetary day lasts from sunrise on one day to sunrise on
the next day.
The 24 planetary hours are attributed to the seven classical planets in
astrology in the following order:
Saturn - Jupiter - Mars - Sun - Venus - Mercury - Moon - then from starting
again with Saturn - Jupiter - etc.
The order corresponds to the possible maximum speed of the planets, Saturn
being the slowest and Moon the fastest. Ancient astrologers assumed that
the same order applied to the distances of these celestial bodies from the
Earth. Moon is closest to Earth, Saturn is the planet which is farthest
The next day, which starts with the following sunrise, is treated in the
same manner. The order of the planets continues where it has ended on the
previous day. Since we began the previous day with Saturn, the first hour
of the new day inevitably starts with the Sun.
The planet of the day is determined by the planet which rules the first
hour of this day. In the above example, we have attributed the first hour
after sunrise to Saturn. Accordingly, the day is Saturn's day. The next day
will be, inevitably, Sun's day. The resulting planets for each day
correspond exactly to the days of the week. Some modern languages still
reflect this fact very well:
This also explains the origins of the days of the week.
||German ||Italian ||Spanish|
day||SATURday || || || |
|Sun's day||SUNday ||SONNtag || ||
|Moon's day||MONday ||MONtag
|| ||MARTEdì ||MARTES|
day||Wednesday || ||MERCOLEdì
|Jupiter's day||Thursday ||
day||Friday || ||VENERdì ||VIERNES|