• Wandeth Gonzo

Ophiuchus - The 13th Constellation

Updated: Sep 13



Ophiuchus aka the "serpent-bearer” is commonly represented as a man grasping a snake. The serpent is represented by the constellation Serpens. It was formerly referred to as Serpentarius.

Ophiuchus is one of thirteen constellations that cross the ecliptic and has been called the "13th sign of the zodiac". Don’t confuse zodiac sign with star constellations. There are 12 zodiac signs.


The constellations of the zodiac have only a loose association with the signs of the zodiac, and do not in general coincide with them.


In Greek sky lore, Ophiuchus represents Asclepius – said to have been the first doctor – always depicted holding a great serpent or snake. Depending on how it’s used, a snake’s venom can either kill or cure. It’s said that Asclepius concocted a potion from this snake venom, the blood of the Gorgon monster and an unknown herb to bring the dead back to life. This greatly alarmed the gods as it threatened to undo the natural order of things.

As the good doctor was trying to bring Orion the Hunter back to life, the god of the Underworld pleaded to Zeus, the king of the gods, to reconsider the ramifications of the death of death. Apparently his argument swayed the king of the gods. Zeus confiscated the potion, removed Asclepius from Earth and placed the gifted physician into the starry heavens.

We hardly know how the god of the Underworld made his appeal. Perhaps he said only that which never lives never dies, and that no mortal can have one without the other. The absence of death means the absence – not the continuance – of life. Sophocles may have expressed the myth’s inherent message when saying:


The Ophiuchus is associated with a real person named Imhotep, also known as Serpentarius, or Aesclepius by the ancient Greeks. Imhotep lived in the 27th century BCE in Egypt. Contrary to every other sign, it does not have an opposite. There aren't polar experiences associated with this sign.


The sign itself falls between Scorpio and Sagittarius, so too do its traits. And that's a good thing if you learn you're an Ophiuchan, which is represented by the symbol of the woman snake handler: People would find you very desirable, and good luck follows you.


The 13th sign is also a very passionate one, which — as many of us passionate people can confirm — is a double-edged sword. So while Ophiuchus has many wonderful qualities, it is also the jealous type, secretive, and arrogant, with a wild temper.


As an introvert, this sign is said to enjoy time alone and apparently avoids social situations where they know they can't dominate. You don't want to get on their bad side: Between the air of mystery surrounding them and their ability to fool and bring down just about anyone, Ophiuchus is not to be toyed with.


As you can see, like every other sign, Ophiuchus has its positives and negatives — but most of these qualities can also easily be applied to the stereotypical qualities associated with either Scorpio or Sagittarius (the two signs that currently reign over Ophiuchus' birth dates). So if you're born between November 29 to December 17 and you do relate to the personality traits of Ophiuchus, you might just be relating to the qualities of your Scorpio or Sagittarian sun sign — or perhaps some of the many other qualities in your astrological birth chart.


Ophiuchus is generally depicted as a man holding a snake, represented by the neighboring constellation Serpens, which is divided into two parts by Ophiuchus: Serpens Caput, the snake’s head, and Serpens Cauda, the snake’s tail. The snake is usually depicted coiled around his waist.

Even though Ophiuchus is one of the constellations that cross the ecliptic and there have been attempts to include it among the signs of the zodiac, it does not belong to the Zodiac family, but to the Hercules family of constellations.

Ophiuchus is most frequently associated with the Greek mythical figure of Asclepius, son of the god Apollo, who was said to be able to bring people back from the dead with his healing powers. Asclepius learned how to do this after seeing one snake bringing healing herbs to another. This happened when Glaucus, the son of King Minos of Crete, fell into a jar of honey and drowned. Asclepius saw a snake slithering toward his body and killed it. Then another snake came along and placed a herb on the first one, which miraculously brought the first snake back to life. Asclepius saw this and took the same herb and placed it on Glaucus’ body. The king’s son was miraculously resurrected.

Asclepius was raised by Chiron, the wise centaur, associated with Centaurus constellation, who taught him the art of healing. In one of the myths, Asclepius was given the blood of the Gorgon Medusa by the goddess Athene. The Gorgon’s blood from the veins on her left side was poison, but the blood from the veins on the right side was said to be able to bring people back to life.

In another tale, Asclepius resurrected Theseus’ son Hippolytus after the king’s son was thrown from his chariot. In this version of the myth, Hippolytus is associated with Auriga constellation, the charioteer.

he healer was killed by Zeus because the god was worried that the human race would become immortal with Asclepius around to heal them. Zeus’ brother Hades, the god of the Underworld, was concerned that the flow of dead souls into his domain would dry up as a result of Asclepius’ healing ability. Hades complained about this to Zeus and the thunder god killed the healer with a bolt of lightning. Zeus later placed Asclepius’ image in the sky to honour his gift and good deeds. The healer became the constellation Ophiuchus, the Serpent Bearer.

Ophiuchus constellation may be descended from an ancient Babylonian constellation that represented the serpent-god Nirah, who was sometimes depicted as a hybrid being, with a human head and torso, and serpents for legs. This theory, however, has not been confirmed by sufficient evidence.

The constellation got a notable mention in John Milton’s Book 2 of Paradise Lost, in which Satan was compared to a comet “that fries the length of Ophiuchus huge/In th’ arctic sky.”

phiuchus is the only zodiac sign that depicts a real man. Many people are envious of the Ophiuchan as he/she progresses well throughout life.An Ophiuchus is a seeker of wisdom and knowledge. They have a flamboyant dressing sense, favouring bright colours and wearing of pleaded dresses.Personality traits of Ophiuchus are between Scorpio and Sagittarius. Ophiuchus persons are extremely curious, open to change, passionate and very jealous too. Also other Ophiuchus personality traits include explosive temper, good humor, secretive, egotistical, thirst for knowledge and sexually magnetic.


Apart from these the other Ophiuchus personality traits are:


• Interpreter of dreams


• Seeker of wisdom and knowledge


• will have a great family but have to leave the home at early age.


• Attract good luck


• Visionary


• A great architect or builder


• Authority looks upon him/her well


Positive Traits

Some of the positive traits of Ophiuchus are:


- Tend to embrace and seek to change, disliking routine in life.


- Follow their instincts to a fault and can be impulsive.


-Are happy and humorous.


-Are honest to a fault.


-Are often described as intellectual and clever.


-Think with their hearts and not their heads.


-Are powerfully passionate.


-Have a great deal of creativity, imagination and curiosity.


-Are people magnets possessing high charisma.


-Are empathic, people pleasers with a knack for persuasion.


-have a strong sense of justice.


-Are great with language, arts and the written word.


-Are passionate and adept lovers naturally.


-Are eccentric and quirky.


-Are driven to succeed.


-Dislike authority, rules, regulation and restriction of any kind.


-Dislike irrelevant and trivial information.


-Have a high sense of pride and arrogance and dislike being treated as inferior.


-Enjoy being Number 1 and being told about it.


-Tend to seek the unknown and are always seeking knowledge and wisdom.


-Tend to take the defense rather than offense.


-Are not open but said to be secretive.


-Don't fall well into social labels.


Negative Traits

-Have trouble with monogamous relationships.


-Can be of the jealous type.


-Are judgmental and critical.


-Can be restless and irresponsible.


-Procrastinate as a rule.


-Have violent but short lived tempers.


- Are sarcastic and have a dry sense of humor.


-Tend to only keep useful things, including friends around.




One out of twenty people in the world are born under the sign of Ophiuchus.


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